Language is not
only a spoken or written communication method. Word is a human system of
communication that uses arbitrary signals such as voice sounds, gesture and
written symbols. Language is a unique human capacity that includes
consciousness, sociality and culture identification. The study of literature is
called linguistics, who defined language as a system of communication using
sounds that enable us to express feelings, thoughts and experiences. The style
consists of symbols that represent meaning plus using rules for combining those
symbols that can be used to generate an infinite variety of message (Nordquist,
2017). Everyone can speak their native language fluently, which they learned as
a child, but it is difficult for many people to grasp in a second language.
There are some differences in acquiring the communication between children and
adults; this is because the environment that children receive the style is
different from adult’s environment. Also, there is a period in human life,
which makes it difficult for a person to acquire the language after the early
teens. The Second Language Learner could
not profit from instruction delivered from the second communication because his
skills are limited and will be a language minority student. For example, an
English language learner has a limited English proficiency, fluency as a native
English speaker because he has a lack of facility or linguistic competence in
English. Second or Foreign Language Acquisition investigates the human capacity
to learn languages during late childhood, once the first language has been
acquired. Children acquired their native language and stored it from their
early childhood, and take a time for their input. This paper aims to answer
three questions; why the adult second learner could not reach the linguistic
competence in English relative to a fluent native English Speaker, how an adult
could acquire a second/ foreign language, and what are the implications for the
classroom to reach the level of the native speaker.
could not grasp a second language
1. Critical Period
not understand a second language acquisition because of the signing period.
Critical Period hypothesis assumes that there is a critical period in the human
life from early childhood until puberty that influences his language
acquisition. Oingxin (2012) said, “The ability to learn a language is
limited to the years before puberty after which most probably base result of a
maturational process in the brain, this ability diminishes.” (p. 1). Before puberty, the brain is flexible and
could acquire the language easily, but after puberty, the brain becomes divided
into two parts, left and right. Each part has its functions and makes it hard
to acquire a second language fluently and proficiently. An experiment was done
to one of the students in an English university in Qatar; the age of 10
introduced his English teaching. The subject was given some written tasks to be
completed focusing on the irregular plural and irregular past tense. When the
subject was asked for the plural of mouse, he answered, “mouses”.
Also, when he was asked about the past tense of taking, he answered,
“taken”. According to Oingxin (2012) and the experiment, there is
critical period make it difficult for the second language learner to acquire a
new language quickly.
Anxiety is one
of the reasons to acquire a second language acquisition. Affective filter is
one of Krashen’s insight of receiving a second language. Krashen assumes that
the rate of acquiring a language could decrease under stress and anxiety.
MacCaul (2016) mentioned that children are different from adults in acquiring
the language; most children have a stress- free language learning environment
between their family and friends. But for the second language learner, the
classroom could be a stressful environment affected by way of receiving and
processing comprehensible input. Also, when a child learns his language, he has
time to acquire before producing the language, because the language is not his
objective and the level of stress and anxiety will be low. Second language
acquisition depends on the stress that the learner face during his learning
3. Cultural Identification
identification is one of the important things that teachers should take
consideration while they teach the second language. Altugan (2015) defined
cultural identification as the individual’s knowledge, experiences, beliefs,
values and skills from his social life. Everybody hold his experiences from his
social life to introduce a new community through its language. Teachers of the
second language should treat every individual according to his beliefs, to make
him motivated for learning. People are different in their experiences and
beliefs that affect their emotions to the language and how they will receive
it. Children are different from adults because they have time to concentrate on
their culture, store it in their mind, and produce it when they need, while
adults need a psychological and emotional shift from one culture to another to
receive and produce the second language. Cultural identification is one of the
reasons that it is hard for adults to acquire the second language.
Could Acquire a Language
1. The Input Hypothesis
hypothesis is one of Krashen’s theory for acquiring a second language. Krashen
mentioned that it is not essential for a person to learn the grammar of a
language to produce it. Krashen describes the input hypothesis as (i+1), which
means that the individual should understand the meaning of the vocabulary of a
language and store it as he takes it from his teacher with its verbal and in
verbal messages to know when he produces it. Nobody could create the language
without understanding it; so Krashen (1985) summarises the input hypothesis in
three sentences; speaking is a result of the acquisition and not its cause,
input should be understood to produce a language, and after that grammar will
be automatically provided. The input Hypothesis is one of Krashen’s five ways
to acquire a second language.
2. The Silent Period
period is the period before a person could speak and produce a second language;
it is the period of preparation. The main characteristics of this period that
the individual gives himself time to understand the language before he produces
it. Everybody needs the silent period such as children to take their time
before they can speak. Second language learner needs time to store the language
before using it. Children save their mother tongue language before they speak
without conscious about the rules of the language. The silent period is
essential for the second language learner to store the language.
3. The Monitor Hypothesis
hypothesis means that the learner should be conscious of the learning when he
produces the second language. The learner should know and understand the simple
rules of the language to reach the correctness. Krashen (1982) mentioned that
there are three conditions to meet the accuracy in producing the language.
First, the time where the learner thinks and uses the rule in conscious. Also,
the learner should focus on the form to figure about correctness, and finally
to know the rule. It is not essential to learn each rule that the learner wants
to expose, but he should understand the simple rules and use it in conscious to
reach the correctness efficiently.
use Krashen’s theory to reach the best in acquiring the second language. There
are some implications that teachers could use to benefit from Krashen’s theory;
1) Interestingly teaching the language by
hearing it from native speakers with its expressions.
2) Reduce the anxiety from the classroom,
and do not ask the learners to speak until they are ready for speaking.
3) Teach the language as a child and give
a time for a silent period to store the language. Learners need some time to
acquire the language and understand it. They need the silent period to input
the language and store it to be confident to speak, so the teachers should not
ask the learners to talk until they are convinced to speak.
4) Lessons should not be based on grammar,
and even if teachers use it, the grammar should be comprehensible and
straightforward to give the confidence for the learner to use it and practice
second language is a complicated process because it is not easy to understand
and produce a second language. Adults who learn a second language have grown in
other environment and culture, they have time to learn and understand their
native language, but they have no time to learn the second language. It is not
easy for an individual to learn a second language with its expressions because
language is not only a written or speaking the language; it is verbal and
nonverbal symbols that the individual gains from the beginning of his life. The
native speaker who learn the language before puberty could store the language
without anxiety because he wants to use it in his daily life in the environment.
Intervention could help in acquiring the second language by teaching it like
children; do not ask them to speak until they are ready for that, do not
concentrate on grammar because it will automatically come and keep the
classroom without anxiety to understand the language with its meanings and
expressions. Learners need time to understand the language and produce it.