on Monday, 5 July 2010
Is it a given that you're supposed to speak to each other in English if you're TESL students?

Probably you're not supposed to speak in English but I'm sure if a situation should prompt you to, speaking in English shouldn't be a problem right? At least there shouldn't be any impediment to use the language when needed.

I'm not going to bear the responsibility of proving that you must speak in English the majority of the time if you're speaking to another English graduate. I'm sure if you find someone who is of similar native tongue, I'm pretty sure it comes naturally to speak in that native tongue.

Would it be weird then since it's not a blatant rule to speak in English to each other that English graduates never speak in English to each other?

Of course, we're dwelling from one extreme end to another but I can't help thinking of a situation whereby the native speakers of a certain language become so natural in using that language to converse that they might actually never utilise English in their conversations. Even when discussing about tasks that are related to the language.

Having said that, is that alright? I'm sure it's not going to hurt anyone and I'm certain it wouldn't affect the quality of the work if the parties involved are already very proficient and efficient in what they're doing. Just the idea that English isn't the choice of communication seems to make me feel a little bit...

... un-English.

Based on my own experience, I had good and great friends who were in the TESL department that didn't really speak in English to me. These people still managed to complete their tasks and we were able to cooperate with each other without any problems when doing a task. It's not really going to hinder or compromise the end-product but the process to me is just as important. I'm sure a lot of English graduates will agree with me saying that the final essay/assignment/thesis doesn't shroud the importance of the time and effort taken to get it done. The grueling debates and discussions, burning of midnight kalimantang and all the researching is very enriching even if the end product did not arise.

So... based on that, it is important to review the importance of communication during the task completion process. The words, vocabulary, style, and language is of utmost importance to ensure that we also gain something from that experience of using English. In fact, what I try to enforce onto my students is the discussion and everyday conversations should be in English. I said there's no point presenting something out in English when the wholesome process of discussion was 100% in their own native tongue. I think there's a lot to lose if they do not try to use that time to speak in English as well...

... then I took a step back to review my past experience.

I don't think my course-mates and I did that completely too.

*slaps face


Anonymous said...

it seems i know where this idea come from..hihi

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