Learning a second or a foreign language is more than learning a description of it. It is developing the ability to use the language on habit level. This is true of not only second language learning but also of first language learning. Fundamentally, all language learning involves the processes of listening, speaking, reading and writing. These processes involve both linguistic and psychological aspects. This leads us to understand that all language learning is based on certain well-defined principles derived from linguistic science as well as psychological science. In the following paras, these principles have been discussed.
GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF TEACHING ENGLISH
(Principles Derived from the Linguistic Science.)
The modern approach to all language learning and teaching is the scientific one and is based on sound linguistic principles. The principles discussed below in no way claim finality : they are subject to change in the light of new facts exposed by linguists and language users. These principles are general principles and are applicable to English language.
Principle 1. Give Priority to Sounds: The sounds of English should receive priority. Sounds should be given their due place in the scheme of teaching. Sounds should not be presented in isolation. They should appear in proper expressions and sentences spoken with the intonation and rhythm which would be used by a native speaker.
Principle 2. Present Language in Basic Sentence Patterns: Present, and have the students memorise, basic sentence patterns used in day to day conversation. From small utterances the students can easily pass on to longer sentences. In case of learning mother-tongue, the student’s memory span can retain much longer sentences than those of a foreign language. The facility thus gained in a foreign language enables the learners expand the grasp of the language material in respect of sounds and vocabulary items.
Principle 3. Language Patterns as Habits....