First Language Acquisition ( Sla ) Key Concepts Essay

First Language Acquisition ( Sla ) Key Concepts Essay

Length: 2232 words (6.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

I am a 23 year old, male, first generation Hmong-American descendent. Hmong is my native language. In this case study, I will explore Second Language Acquisition (SLA) key concepts through my personal testimony as a second language learner in America.

Student’s History and Linguistic background in First language
When I turned eight, I discovered that English was an essential tool in my life, and no longer resent from it. As a Hmong child to three siblings and a single mother, it is tradition for a male descent such as me to firmly hold onto my roots. After my parents were divorced, my family lived in poverty. My mother spoke in broken English, and she had trouble finding ways to meet our needs. We were very limited to education. My siblings and I did not have access to books nor to TV at home, because we could not afford these materials. The only item that sat in our small apartment was a weave plastic carpet, which my family used as a couch. At the time, we did not have anything worth over $100.
Being a single mother, my mother feared that my siblings and me would gradually lose our Hmong language if we invested too much time in English. Therefore, seeing my mother’s struggles, I wanted to make her happy by following her wishes. Instead of investing time in English, I would spend more time speaking, writing in Hmong, and reading Hmong hymn songs. Soon, Hmong became my dominant language, and acquiring English was pushed into the shadows. I did not speak English at home. No, not until the age of eight.
Although English was not used in my house, my mother taught my siblings and me how to read and write in Hmong. By the time I reached the age of 12, I was literate in both Hmong and English. However, there was clearly a difference...

... middle of paper ...

...her English to build her social network. I cannot say that my Hmong and English are equivalent, but they close. I am still comfortable with my first language and would prefer using it over English. My parity in the four skills (reading, writing, listening, speaking) in Hmong is excellent because I practice my language skills in Hmong routinely at home and church. I still need to practice my English skills. I believe I have grasped the essence of reading, writing, listening, and speaking. However, I am not completely confident in my writing and speaking skills yet. Why do I feel this way? My academic grades confirmed that I still need a constant drill in writing. Prior to writing, I also need to refine my enunciation skills. Many people have asked me to repeat my sentences because they could not comprehend “clearly” what I trying to say – specifically my enunciation.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Second Language Instruction ( Sli ) Essay

- In second language instruction (SLI), the role of one’s first language (L1) is often questioned: is it helpful. Does the L1 hinder the progress of second language (L2) learners. This article will discuss the possible effects of L1 on the L2 of learners and how these effects manifest themselves in the classroom construct. I will be discussing Victoria Murphy’s 2004 study of native English-speakers and ESL learners and their strategies for determining how to form the past tense of nonce English words....   [tags: Linguistics, Language acquisition]

Better Essays
1601 words (4.6 pages)

Second Language Acquisition ( Sla ) Essay

- Second Language Acquisition By definition, language acquisition makes reference to the process by which human beings acquire their capacity for not only comprehending and perceiving language but also for producing both words and sentences with the aim of communicating. Second Language Acquisition (SLA) thus refers to the process taken by people to learn a second language. In this case, a second language is defined as a language spoken in the locale of a person but is not necessarily their native language....   [tags: Language acquisition, Linguistics]

Better Essays
1428 words (4.1 pages)

Second Language Acquisition ( Sla ) Essay

- According to Ellis (2010), Second Language Acquisition (SLA) scholars have proved the importance of their research in the area for the Language Pedagogy (LP). At the same time, there is no consensus regarding the exact nature of this relationship as well as the actors and actions involved. Obviously, teacher training institutions have to take into account the specific nature of language teaching because, as mentioned earlier in the text, this field requires the instructors to teach, not only the subject per se, but also introduce the intercultural competence....   [tags: Language education, Foreign language]

Better Essays
1178 words (3.4 pages)

Essay Analysis of Learning Experience with Theories of SLA

- 1. Introduction Different from foreign language learning, second language acquisition (SLA) refers to “the learning of a nonnative language in the environment in which that language is spoken” (Gass, 2001, P. 5). According to the research timeline conducted by Myles (2010), the theories of second language acquisition date back to 1957 when Skinner (i.e., the representative of modern behaviorism) proposes stimulus-operant-response (S-O-R) theory emphasizing imitation and habit-formation, which is then intensely critiqued by Chomsky asserting that children are born with ability to acquire language and they can create new sentences besides imitation....   [tags: theories of second language acquisition]

Better Essays
2321 words (6.6 pages)

Essay about The Field Of Second Language Acquisition

- The role of input: Many theories in the field of second language acquisition highlight Krashen’s input hypothesis in some degree and focus on how an L2 learner uses the input they are exposed to whether spoken or written. Krashen’s theory of input is a fundamental approach to SLA along side the interaction hypothesis which transfer raw data into the production of language (output) directed by feedback. According to Krashen, the input hypothesis is the answer to how the natural order hypothesis takes place which assists L2 learner to moves from one stage to the next in SLA....   [tags: Linguistics, Second language acquisition]

Better Essays
793 words (2.3 pages)

The Communication Barrier And Language Acquisition Essays

- Take a look around in any instruction manual, what do you notice besides the instructions. The fact that it is printed in at least two different languages, sometimes even more. The United States is often referred to as the melting pot of many cultures. Therefore, the people speak many different languages. The use of these languages is a way of communicating amongst these cultures. As a result, it is becoming necessary to learn more than one language in order to properly communicate. The communication barrier can be eased through the learning of a second language by English speaking Americans....   [tags: Linguistics, Second language acquisition]

Better Essays
1937 words (5.5 pages)

Age and Second Language Acquisition Essay

- With the increasing popularity of dual immersion programs in schools and the widespread notion that language acquisition is something that needs to happen early on life, is there an ideal age to learn a second language (L2). Wilder Penfield and Lamar Roberts first introduced the idea that there is a “critical period” for learning language in 1959. This critical period is a biologically determined period referring to a period of time when learning/acquiring a language is relatively easy and typically meets with a high degree of success....   [tags: Second Language Acquisition]

Better Essays
1492 words (4.3 pages)

The Second Language Acquisition Theories Essays

- Second Language Acquisition Theories (Summarization of Cummins’ and Krashen 's Theories and Implications to ELL)
 According to Cummins, the first type of communication is Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills (BICS) and it pertains to the social development of a language which can normally be attained fairly quickly within the first few years of acquiring a new language. The social conversations are usually informal forms of communicating where individuals use this type of communicating when speaking or listening to another individual face to face where the vocabulary content is less difficult....   [tags: Language acquisition, Linguistics]

Better Essays
1111 words (3.2 pages)

Age Is An Important Factor On Chinese Learner 's Second Language Acquisition Of English

- Age is an important factor on Chinese Learner’s Second Language Acquisition of English With globalization, a growing number of Chinese starting to learn a second language. For example, massive foreign language teaching materials have been published and various foreign language training centres have been established. Second language acquisition, or SLA, is the processes by which people learn languages in addition to their native tongue. Johnson and Newport (1989) find that age is to some extent most significant factor which leads to the individual difference of second language acquisition....   [tags: Second language acquisition, Language acquisition]

Better Essays
1501 words (4.3 pages)

Language Acquisition Essay

- Language is perceived as the way humans communicate through the use of spoken words, it involves particular system and styles in which we interact with one another (Oxford 2009). Possessing this ability to communicate through the use of language is thought to be a quintessential human trait (Pinker 2000). Learning a language, know as language acquisition, is something that every child does successfully within a few years. Language acquisition is in itself the development by which humans acquire the ability to perceive, produce and use words to understand and communicate....   [tags: Language Acquisition]

Better Essays
1370 words (3.9 pages)