Teach English in KAngjian Xincun Jiedao - Shanghai Shi

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Teaching Monolingual vs. Multi-Lingual groupsWhen teaching english as a foreign language, you are generally faced with two types of classrooms, monolingual or multilingual. They both have their own advantages and disadvantages to the students and the teacher. Is one better than the other? Does one foster a better learning environment than the other? It is a push and pull situation, since, as stated earlier, there are pros and cons for both. First we have the monolingual class room. This is generally a class room in the home country of the students. Generally, every student in the class is of the same nationality and speaks the same native language. Already the class has this is common, along with the desire, usually, to learn english. Each has their own reasons for being in the class; some are there for work, school, parents forced hand, or curiosity. Either way, they are there to learn english. Now a look at the multilingual class room. This type of class is generally held in a native english speaking country. Students have come from other countries to learn and study english. While the motivations or desires are about the same, you may find that most have a stronger desire to learn than in the other situation. This stronger desire comes from the fact that they've uprooted themselves from their home, to make this new country their residence for a set period of time; from a few months to a few years. This is not always the case though, as with the students in a monolingual class, some are forced to go and desire and motivation must be helped generated by the teacher. Looking at the differences in how these classes are taught you see that they are small, but significant. In a monolingual class room, the students will probably have the same problems with english. As they all speak the same native tongue, there is a bigger chance that some words or phrases will be equally difficult for all. I've experienced with Korean students learning english, a common difficultly with the letters 'R' and 'L'; as they really don't have that sound in their language. In the Korean language, they have the character '?' which Romanized is a combination of our 'R' and 'L' sounds. Meaning, in some words you might say 'R' in others you might say 'L'. So for Korean students, you will find that they will sometimes switch the letter sounds in a word, so when saying "Loop" it might sound like "Roop." This is the advantage of a monolingual class, since this problem might arise, the teacher can easily teach the whole class the correct pronunciation. Students may also be able to help each other out easier with such problems, since they all do speak the same language. However, in a multilingual class, the teacher may run into this and other problems from students who are from a different country, with a different native language. The teacher may have to take time to help students with a variety of problems, as opposed to one problem. Multilingual classes do bring something good to the table, that is harder to have in a monolingual class. In multilingual classrooms, you are almost certain that all the students will have to speak english to effectively communicate. This is the advantage. Since most of the students are from different countries, the only common language they know is english; essentially forcing them to speak it. In a monolingual classroom it can be very easy for students to fall into speaking their native language. This can happen in a multilingual classroom as well, but is less likely. Students in a multilingual class are also in a native english speaking country, meaning they will be forced to speak english more often outside of the classroom. These are just a few of the pros and cons of teaching a monolingual versus multilingual classroom. Is one better than the other? Simply put, no. They just foster different environments for their students. It all comes down to good teaching and more importantly, a strong desire to learn from the students. If there is no motivation or desire, there won't be much learning.