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Why Making Friends in an English Class is Important

Why Making Friends in an English Class is Important | ITTT | TEFL Blog

Native English speakers sometimes take the requirements of the language for granted. English is part of the European language family and most of its words come from Ancient Greek and Latin, which are common in other languages spoken in Europe. However, for students learning the language, English is very hard to learn. It is even more surprising the fact that other countries made English their second language, such as Singapore, Norway, Finland, and Denmark to name a few. In many parts of the world, English is spoken more fluently compared to American and British speakers. To give a few examples of how confusing, contradicting, and difficult English is, many foreign speakers learning the language always question: why does hamburger have no ham? Why is there no pine or apple in pineapple? And why is it taught the past tense of teaching, but the past tense of preach is preached and not 'praught'? Most of the time, native speakers of English do not question why the language is so illogical. Though, to someone learning the language, through self-study or in a classroom setting, everything must be questioned, especially the things about a confusing language.

This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Heather P. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.

Unanticipated Problems

Because of how complicated the language is, and how many unspoken grammar rules there are, some teachers teaching English as a foreign language will often feel intimidated no matter how many years they've taught. It is always daunting to remember the unnecessary rules that English has, and how to implement the various structures of the language in a way that students will understand. If we are too excessive with exercises and drilling, it will more than likely overwhelm, which will cause students to lose motivation quickly. Any teacher knows that the only way to teach a good class and succeed in teaching students is to go at a pace that's suitable for every learner, not too fast or too slow. It's of utmost importance that we be watchful of students that are lagging.

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When a teacher's voice or teaching method isn't reaching the student, it's good that those learning the language always have an acquaintance or a friend they can rely on. It is proven that studying in a group and quizzing each other over material helps you learn better because you're not only going over and learning, but you're teaching it to your peers which will help you gain a solid understanding. Sometimes it is more helpful to have someone besides the teacher that you can turn to for help, especially if you have a common language, both your native and the one you are learning. Students will have a sense of unity and feel more confident that way. Without friends or even peers with a common goal in mind, it is easy to feel discouraged, unmotivated, and even bored in the classroom setting. When students from different languages learn together, side by side, it helps the students feel valued. And when a student feels valued, it gives them a boost of acceptance, confidence, and pride. That's at the root of learning.

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