We Create the Languages

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Secrets of Learning a Language II

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“We can recognize that the acquisition of the mother tongue is a universal cognitive process, inherent to the human condition. The Language ability, materialized in the acquisition of the mother tongue, is a complex and specialized ability, which develops itself spontaneously in the child, without conscious effort or formal instruction, and it is quantitatively equal in all the individuals.” – Marta Baralo

Regarding to the topic of the listening, which was commented in my last post, I would like to add one note, and it is that in the most successful countries in learning foreign languages, like Holland, Belgium, Nordic countries, etc. children have access to TV programs in original version.  This shows us the importance of listening.

But let’s go on. We arrived to the point when children get to understand the world and the language that is around then. At this moment, they are ready to start emitting words and they do it in a natural way, without fear or pressure. Certainly, the absence of fear is a very important factor in favor of the process.

  • Speaking happens in a natural way when a language is understood y is a process that cannot be forced.

Therefore, do not feel bad if you have some problems to speak at the beginning. It is a long process that takes a lot of time. When you start feeling comfortable with the language, you will be ready to start speaking, and when you understand it very well and feel it as a part of you, you will express yourself fluently. Little children also start babbling some words and they perfect themselves little by little with time. The use of the language and the pronunciation improve when the years pass. The same happens to adults, because it is the same process.  We start emitting some words and rise level gradually, y there is no anything else, we can skip stages, it takes years, that is all. So that, as well as children errors are corrected with benevolence and understood, adults should receive the same treatment. Meanwhile, keep on listening, the results arrive for those who don’t give up.

  • Pressure is an enemy of the process of learning languages. The process takes a time and it has to be respected.

Today there are a lot of resources and applications that encourage speaking from the beginning. Whereas there is no pressure, this is not a bad thing, but languages are not learnt speaking, they are spoken when they are learnt. I don’t think that this is the best practice for beginners, unless they do it with the right tutor that can instruct them in vocabulary, because maybe the pressure is too big and this can cause frustration. Each thing has its time and comprehension is the first step. For levels from intermediate, however, it an appropriate practice because it can give you confidence, experience and you can always listen the native language, which is always positive. But remember always that to keep on learning you have to go on listening, among other things that we are going to see now.

Although it is true that children get to speak effectively, they do it somehow on a basic level. At this point, children are sent to the school where they learn to use one of the best existing tools to perfect and use correctly the language. Learning cannot be only based on listening, because then you would keep on speaking like a child. Do you want to know the tools that can help you to speak efficiently?

TO BE CONTINUED

Also see: Secrets of Learning a Language ISecrets of Learning a Language III

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Why “We Create the Languages”?

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Today I would like to explain you the reasons that led me to choose this title for my blog and the rest of my channels.

Language is always itself a creative process. It has been shown in all the cultures and epochs. Let’s see some examples.

Think about the colloquial expressions that you use most often. Now think about the expressions that are used for your relatives, friends and the people of rest of the environments where you live. In each group take precedence a sort of expressions that usually refer to common happenings, activities and events, something that all of you have experienced together. Later analyze each person, their idioms, or the words they use frequently. Every one of us tends to use the words that are more compatible with us, as well as the expressions that represent us more, not to say our own invented expressions, like those that you use with that person and only both of you know.

That way, little by little, neologisms appear day by day, continent by continent. There are always new things that must be defined or more current redefinitions for the same of always. The creative process never stops.

Let’s take a book of some centuries ago, its language it is probably said to be the same, but they are very hard to understand. Besides, the more time passes the more evident results the process. Fashion, social conditionings, words borrowed from other languages… all of this is slowly forming the new uses and words till they are institutionalized.

Another good example are the automatic translators, which no matter how much are improved, they can never equalize the flux of the natural language. This is because the meaning of a word it is not only in the word itself, but also depends on the context. Moreover, the idioms are not logical constructions that can be translated literally. They reflect the culture of the people, so you have to know the idiosyncrasy of the people of the target language to find the best matching expressions, if it exits.

To sum up, every time we build our phrases, we don’t limit ourselves to apply some rules, which the most people don’t even remember. What we do is to pour out our own ideas and thoughts over a vehicle that we know, Language, to give it the color of our popular culture, emotions, tastes, etc.

Every time we are talking, we are creating, and the language that every one of us uses has our unique touch, personal and special.