Barely communicative learners attitude towards the

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barely communicative. Learners’ attitude towards the language is also not the same. Learners entering the foundation phase become vulnerable and nervous to communicate in a new language, especially a language they do not understand. Learners at this stage of schooling are still developing their home language and as a result they become confused and afraid when introduced to an additional language, particularly in Grade R and Grade 1. For these reasons teachers also need to consider and accommodate the diverse needs, learning abilities, learning styles and the unique attitudes of all learners when planning and preparing lessons. Furthermore, Phatudi and Motilal (2014), maintain that teachers need to be aware of the factors which influence learners when learning an additional language in context. These factors could help teachers with their teaching as well as make them aware of some possible contextual problems learners may experience when learning an additional language. 1.7.1 Listening The learners’ ability to concentrate when listening to an additional language will determine their ability to successfully acquire language. Listening is the first skill that is carefully developed in children in Grade R as they are trained to listen carefully for sounds to hear language. The more they hear, the more they absorb, internally. Listening to and hearing repetitive words spoken in English enable learners to distinguish sound patterns and gradually decode and process words. Their ability to recall and remember certain words will also improve. Learners, especially in Grade R and Grade 1 must be given maximum opportunities every day to practice rhymes, poems and songs can listen to and familiarise themselves to sounds. Stop and think Why do you think it is so important for young children to hear language? 1.7.2 Motivation When teachers are motivated and enthusiastic to teach a language, they are also able to encourage and motivate learners to learn. As a teacher, you should use innovative ways to teach the language so that learners do not feel pressured to learn an additional language. Make use of positive reinforcements (motivators) to encourage the learners to participate in activities and
FLT3701/501/0/2020 21 guide them to accomplish simple tasks using an additional language. Remember that learners, as young as they are, are mentally active and often rely on motivation to control of their learning and (Schunk, Pintrich & Meece 2008) point out that motivation does affect a learner’s self -efficacy (ability to perform). Furthermore, (Land & Lyster 2015:7) maintain that “If children are happy and relaxed, they will learn better, if they are tense and feel stupid, they will find it very difficult to learn.” 1.7.3 The teacher’s personality The teacher’s personality can also affect a learner’s performance. Learners do not respond well to teachers who are harsh toward them and unaccommodating to their needs. Teachers must adapt their personalities to be more flexible toward the developing young personalities of learners.

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