More than 25 years have passed since I have started teaching English to young minds. Before I move further, I must state that the area (Bastar region) I belong to is known as backward in terms of education, knowledge and approach.
Now, the state government (Chhattisgarh) is making every possible effort to teach the students English with a view to competing with others living across the country.
Basic English is really a challenge to all the teachers as it has plenty of queries to be answered.
This blog aims at talking about the way in which I understand is the finest way to learn English. There are three formulas (Mantra) following which one can learn not only English but also any language on the earth. They are-
To Speak, To Listen To Write And To Read
One can prioritize them as per the need and drawback one feels. For example;
If you are a week at pronouncing words you must start from third (i.e. to read) irrespective of the facts you are pronouncing them wrong or right. This practice can be termed as jowl-exercise and I understand this comes first for those who want to learn how to speak English.
While others may start from LISTENING first if they feel they can’t understand how the language is spoken.
Well, the priority of the points can vary as per the need and demand of the students.
But long and short of it is that one must speak-listen, read-write. Scholars say that you can’t learn how to swim unless you get into the water. Similarly, you cannot learn how to speak unless you follow the points mentioned above. I don’t know whether you agree with me. But it’s a fact.
In the course of my teaching and learning many comments that one must have an ambience around oneself to learn the language.
I entirely wouldn’t agree to it as it is up to to the learner who could create the ambience of his choice. I am born and brought up under typical Hindi speaking ambience and most of my teacher used to speak local dialect to make the stuff clear when I was in school. However, I learnt and I didn’t attend any coaching classes as I see the present generation is doing to learn it.
Another mantra is that one must keep thinking about the dialogues what he is supposed to speak in one’s native language.
As per the IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) certain words are pronounced in a set format.
Let’s take an example of the letter “U” and find out the way it is being pronounced.
They either “ 00 “ “ or ŭ” and “ə”
Now, the questions which beginners often asked is that
“Why are PUT, CUT and BUT pronounced in a different way when there is a difference of just one letter e.i. ‘P’ and ‘C’ or “B”?
We have been asked plenty of such questions based on the phonetics and pronunciation when I had spared little time at Jawanga in district Dantewada. Please read my blog “Travel from Dantewada to Sukma” for details.
There are so many such queries that need to be answered. Experts say all comes down to the knowledge of phonetics. As you go on reading, listening and speaking you would come to know about their pronunciation.
There are a few suggestions to learn it. One can observe them make it effectively. Among them:-
- Read whatever you catch hold of like books, magazines, booklet, pamphlet, bills, advertisements, sale papers, and keep a copy of a dictionary with you.
- Make it point to read at least one page per day, that’s a good start for the beginners. Try to look up word meaning and make sentences of your own using them.
- Check all English news to see how they present the same news differently. Try to grasp their style of making sentences.
Then, begin to speak at intervals.
Translation books will also help you a lot.
Slowly you will pick up good English.
I hope this blog on learning English is helpful to the beginners
Till the next blog
See you soon ! bye bye