ERIC Number: ED350885
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
Myths and Misconceptions about Second Language Learning. ERIC Digest.
ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics, Washington, DC.
Research on second language learning has shown that several myths about how children learn languages exist. Among these mistaken ideas are that: (1) children learn second languages quickly and easily; (2) the younger the child, the more skilled he will become in acquiring a second language; (3) the more time students spend in a second language context, the more quickly they learn the language; (4) children have acquired a second language once they can speak it; and (5) all children learn a second language in the same way. Teachers need to be aware of these misconceptions and realize that quick and easy solutions are not appropriate for complex problems. Intuitive assumptions are often mistaken, and children can be harmed if teachers have unrealistic expectations of the second language learning process and its relationship to the acquisition of other academic skills and knowledge. Second language learning by school-age children takes longer, is harder, and involves more effort than many teachers understand. Educators should focus on the opportunity for language learning and cultural understanding that cultural diversity provides. Diverse children enrich our schools and our understanding of education in general. (MSE)
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics, Washington, DC.