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College Weekend TESOL
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1st Language Acquisition vs 2nd Language AcquisitionStudies have shown that the innate processes for 2nd language acquisition (L2) are basically the same as for 1st language acquisition (L1). Therefore there is much we can glean in studying these stages in order to facilitate the L2 english learner. As with L1 learners, the time spent in each stage will vary. It is important to note that the learning process, be it L1 or L2, is not linear - rather is zig-zag in nature. Mastery takes time. Formal language instruction facilitates this process, but it cannot accelerate the stages one must pass through. Here I will briefly summarize each stage and give a few ideas to facilitate L2 learners at that stage. There are many resources with additional ideas for each stage. Finally I will share two challenges to be aware of with L2 learners. Most studies cite six language acquisition stages: Stage 1: Pre-production – Also known as a silent period when the student is “receiving” the language, but not able to produce the language. If a student attempts to speak it will be in the form of “parroting” other speakers. This is a natural step that should be encouraged. Teaching ideas: • Use lots of visuals, gestures, acting out •