There is no doubt that English is the most spoken language in the world. Numerous countries use it to communicate everyday even if it is not their official language. Other countries are beginning to see the need to learn it to advance economically, which is why they choose to go to the United States to learn and experience the language first hand or enroll in ESL classes. Bilingualism is important because it allows a person to have an edge against others who only know how to communicate in their native tongue.
As a Second Language Learner, I think that it is important to indicate how essential it is to have properly funded bilingual programs for the children who want to learn academically but are not native speakers of the English language. This is the only way in which these second language learners will be able to maximize their experience with the English language. It is also better if they start while they are young because this will make it easier for them to learn and mingle with students who are like them.
It will enhance their social skills, which will allow them to learn the language in a more personal way. This is entirely different from that of the adults because adults are much harder to teach because they already know so much about their native language that their ways might be hard to change. I agree with Allison that learning the English language is in line with the “melting pot” philosophy of the country. This is the reason why bilingual programs should be supported for those who are not native speakers of the language.
However, it is also important to note that learning English does not necessarily mean that the person is neglecting his or her native tongue. It would be very difficult to replace something so original such as one’s native language. Response to Kristina’s mini project: I believe that students should be taught in the English language. English is the universal language and most books and resources are found in the English language. This fact will make it hard for people to teach or learn academically in their native tongues because not every term can be translated in their own languages.
It would also be hard for them to find resources that are printed in their language. As such, the need for bilingual education is apparent. People, especially those who believe that bilingual education does not benefit the children, have to understand that learning a new language is not that easy. A student will not be able to learn as fast, especially if the English language is not spoken at home on a regular and constant basis. The participation of the family and the student is needed for faster learning of the language.
It is also significant to keep in mind that English is not the only language in the world and that we have to respect other countries’ languages. It is certainly not a waste of time to learn a language. On the contrary, it provides a whole new experience for the learner because it is one way of learning another country’s culture and tradition. Second language learning is beneficial for students no matter what opponents might say. They are not the ones who experience the learning.
It is the students who should be questioned if this learning is really beneficial to them. It is their opinions that truly matter and not those who oppose second language learning. Bilingual education does not promote language death. One cannot replace or forget his or her native language in the process of learning a new one. I agree with Kristina’s statement that promoting bilingual or multilingual languages can eliminate language deaths. People should be more supportive of each other’s languages so that they do not experience language barriers in the future.
Courtney from Study Moose
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