Name Institution Lecturer Date Reasons as to why immigrants fail to learn English while others learn and learn it rapidly Chapter 1 Teaching a group of immigrant students from different countries is always an active, vibrant and enjoyable experience. For the teacher, it is not just about imparting linguistic skills to the students, but also getting an insight in their mannerisms, mentalities, temperament, culture and their basic approach to life…
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Some take shorter time to understand than others, while others really have a hard time even grasping basic terminologies. From the onset, it is the teacher who initiates all communication and this can be a very frustrating experience. Obviously, at the start not all the students have equal mastery over the English language. Some will take a bit longer to grasp the introductory advances. To this effect, new teachers are usually barely well – equipped to handle multi – cultural students at once. No matter how many languages the teachers know and speak, there is always the chance that some student will come in whose language the teacher has not grasped. Furthermore, most teachers invest in learning mainstream foreign languages only e.g. French, German and Spanish. So when a Hindu speaking student joins the class for example, the teacher has to reanalyze his / her initial approach to teaching. Even after the basic salutations and pleasantries have been mastered by the students, the accent issue still dominates the learning environment. In some instances the teacher has to repeat the words severally before the students can grasp the pronunciation. Another problem that teachers encounter is dealing with the students’ varying motivation during the lessons. Naturally, the students will have enrolled due to different ambitions. While some undergo the lessons as a compulsory requirement, others enroll just for the sake of familiarizing themselves with a foreign language (in this case, English). In such a scenario, not all students will have the same level of motivation as the lesson proceeds. Shifting focus to the immigrants, most of them portray some reluctance to apply themselves to the learning process when they encounter the initial difficulty in familiarizing with the English language. One would notice some subtle resistance to learning the language. Then again there is the erosion of English in the United States. Dominance of slang confuses the foreign students. In the classroom, the students are taught one thing. When they step out into the street, they hear something entirely different. At some point the students will be bound to get disillusioned. With the language itself, English has very many idioms and other figurative styles of language. Expecting the students to apply and relate to such linguistic features when they are barely grasping the basic language is an uphill task. English literature has a heavy influence in the curriculum and therefore students are expected to familiarize themselves with hundreds of classic literary pieces during learning. They end up complicating matters and students have a hard time registering what they are taught. A student would find it hard to grasp the aspect of symbolism when he / she can barely distinguish between tenses. Rules of exception also act as obstacles to the learning process too. Foreign students take time to establish syntax, sentence structure and word order. Regional dialects in the United States also heavily affect the student’s mastery of the language. For instance, a student living in a Latino neighborhood will be affected by the dialect spoken in that area. Some immigrant students have a phobia for resident students because they feel inferior when their English is not as polished as their hosts. Chapter 2 Immigrants
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