Gl academy – Notes on Second Language

A disproportionately large number of enrolments in selective schools come from students whose family come from overseas. The reasons for this are uncertain. It may be partially because established Australian families are more likely to send children to private schools, reducing the competition for selective placement. But there may be other reasons.

 

Children whose families speak a foreign language at home are regularity given extra English lessons at primary school, even if their English is already satisfactory or above average. This extra tuition may give them an edge. All written exams depend on language skills. No matter what the topic a student must be able to write proficiently in order to do well on an exam. The foreign student with extra English coaching probably performs near their potential on any written exam, hence their ability to do well on selective tests.

 

It also seems that learning a second language is beneficial for intelligence. There are a small number of activities that seem to increase an individual’s IQ score; learning a second language and become proficient on a musical instrument are two of these activities. The benefits to intelligence seem legitimate, but the amount of effort requires for language and music proficiency is considerable. Nonetheless, individuals required to learn a second language by their circumstances will have an edge over the average person. This may account for the larger number of dual language students in selective schools.

 

IELTS Tutoring

We are all individuals, we learn in different ways and have had distinct past experiences. A private IELTS Tutor can be a great advantage in finding the particular needs of a particular student. If a university of career position depends on a good IELTS score it is worth investing in some IELTS tutoring.

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Myths About Second Languages

Children who learn more than one language will get the language confused.

This is basically never a problem. Children’s minds seem to keep the two languages as two separate systems. Some research shows that some subtle changes in pronunciation occur with second language use, but these do not seem to be a hindrance. And children do seem to benefit greatly from the second language- they have a broader cultural experience, tend to be more tolerant of diversity and it may increase their general intelligence.

There is a critical period for learning languages in childhood.

This is a partial truth, but much misunderstood and debated. Children not exposed to some language early in life find it very difficult to learn language (or anything else) later on. But it is hard to separate language exposure to social exposure. The lack of social exposure might be the real cause of the problem.

There are accounts of children learning one language in childhood, only to replace it with another language later on. It seems that as long as some basic skills are leant or activated as a child it is always possible to use language, or learn a new one, with at least some proficiency.

 Children learn a second language without effort.

We all spent many years learning language as children, we tend to forget how much effort it took at school. Learning a language at a younger age may not be as quite difficult as learning it latter, but learning a foreign language is a major challenge at any age.

An exception here is the pronunciation. Children who learn a language will almost always have a native pronunciation with no accent. Adults tend to find this difficult, but exceptions do occur.

 A Second Language is never spoken like the first one.

A partial truth for people who learn a second language later in life, they tend to have some accent and not speak like a native. But they can be quite capable of communicating well with native speakers, and all studies strongly suggest that an individual is better off for having learnt a second language. After considerable study some find they can write academic level essays indistinguishable from the work of a native language user.

Immersion is the best or only way to learn a language.

Immersing yourself in a culture that speaks the language is an important part of learning the language, but not the whole answer. For one thing daily spoke language is only part of what you need to learn, it will not help much if you need to write an essay; daily spoken language tends to use contractions and slang that are only appropriate in some contexts. And there is no guarantee that the language you are socially exposed to is any good, you might learn a lot of mistakes.

Simultaneously undertaking multiple ways of learning a foreign language seems to be the best approach. Think of how you learnt your first language- you spoke it at home and you learnt it at school. IELTS courses, Sydney GL academy for example, work on this principle. IELTS tutoring reinforces, fine tunes, and sometimes corrects the language you are learning through exposure.

A little background information

A little background information to help understand the Procession of the Holy Spirit

The Enlightenment was an intellectual movement in the mid-17th to later 18th century that sought to replace faith, superstition and the acceptance of divine rule with rationality, the belief in one’s own intelligence and a more empirical approach to the world. This brief explanation it inevitably misleading as the enlightenment included a diverse range of thinkers and lasted many generations.

Early Enlightenment thinkers such as Descartes and Isaac Newton had strong connections to the church; some later thinkers such as Voltaire and Spinoza were critical of religion; yet all emphasised rationality. The enlightenment overlapped with the Scientific revolution.

Liberal Christianity developed in the later 18th century, influenced by the rational ideals of the preceding Enlightenment. They tended to disregard miracles and factual views of the Bible; they saw the scriptures as a record of what the Biblical authors’ of the time believed rather than an accurate record of what actually occurred. The teachings of Christ were valued as the potential basis for an improved society, with love, charity and social justice strongly emphasised; superstition, belief in miracles was seen as backward and discouraged.

As the word ‘liberal’ is applied to many political movements, political parties, social reforms and religious ideologies it is easy to get confused. Even in the 19th century Liberal Christianity was confused with political liberalism, and the Pope had to clarify the issues as parishioners were being discriminated against because of their political beliefs. Similarly, liberalism should not be confused with progressive Christianity. The names of movements are often misleading.

It is a little strange that liberal movements that purportedly advocate rational thinking could result in greater religious diversity. Of course liberalism fits with diversity, especially as no one authority is accepted as the source of all beliefs. What is strange is that so many different views can all consider themselves rational. The premises for different perspectives are different, even if the structure of the developing logical arguments were the same. Intelligence is no guarantee that different minds will come to the same conclusion. Something other than rationality is at work here. Different individuals and groups come to arrive at different opinions; each makes sense to then mind that follows them. At least with liberalism we are expected to tolerate the different views, and understand that they are also the product of at least some rational thinking.


*Today’s blog post has been supplied to us by The Procession of the Holy Spirit submitted to the UCS University of California for completing the degree of Master of Theology.

HSC Tutoring

The HSC is designed to test what you have learnt and your practical ability to effectively explain it in a written form. It is hard to avoid absolutely every pitfall that ties to written test, as one inevitable finds one’s handwriting, ability to handle stress, and other factors are all tested with the actual subject matter at hand. Nonetheless, it is possible to better understand what an examiner what and notable improve exam results. Tutoring is about optimising ability and getting individuals to reach their potential. There are no tricks, just a more accurate approach.

Clear communication is always a factor, probably the most prominent factor, in any essay in any subject. English is basically the only compulsory subject because written language is ubiquitous. Even if the emphasis is on another subject entirely it is impossible to learn it, let alone communicate it, without fundamental English skills. The ability to perform well in an exam is even more dependent on this. Subjects like mathematics and music are only partial exceptions; poor English will hold back students in these subjects too.

The key to good essay writing is under our noses. We prefer something written clearly, that allows us to understand with minimal effort. But we are tricked because we think this is too easy. We don’t always appreciate the effort behind effective and clear prose. It can be difficult for an author to make things easy for the reader. On the rare occasion where we compare an initial bad and confusing explanation to a clear and well-structured account we can appreciate the difference. We can see it was the poor written account that was the problem and not the subject matter itself. Yet we can often miss this.

It is a mistake to think of dense prose as profound, or verbose terminology as far reaching insight. Unless you are trying to hide your meaning and trick the less alert members of your audience (lateral thinking question and puzzles) deliberate obscurity is a mistake. Ask a student is they prefer the dense textbook that took several reading to understand (it must be hard, it took forever to grasp) or the well written, well-structured explanation (oh, so that’s what it meant!) and they start to see the point. HSC examiners are in the same situation, only with several years more experience. The essay that gets to the point, is accurate and is clear and persuasive, gets a solid grade. Answering the question is enough to get a good result. Connecting the facts and making an original insight is even better, without compromising your answer to the set question.

HSC tutoring is not about tricks. It’s about optimising your approach and performing to your potential, understanding the matter at hand, seeing the connections between facts and showing how is all fit together. Improved results are a combination of a genuine increase in understanding and an improved ability to communicate that understanding.

For HSC tutoring Sydney’s Global Language Academy is highly recommended.

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Public Debating Tuition

There are various forms of learning. Some concentrate on the accumulation of facts, others on developing analytical skills. The better ones foster originality and creativity. Debating is something taught in a different way to most skills. Public debating tuition is about helping an individual find his or her own voice. Individuals are taught to engage with the topic at hand, but to analyse both their own reaction to it as well as the various other possible reactions afforded by others. Debate is about the ability to argue, but to argue persuasively, to show there is more to the topic than the first impression. Individuals are assessed on their ability to be persuasive, but this is a complex matter, and includes the ability to construct solid, even airtight presentations that are difficult for opponents to refute.

There are several career paths that benefit from debating skills. And the more advanced the education the more likely it is that debating, or at least public presentation skills, will prove useful. Competitive fields or any progressive endeavours often encounter questions with no definite answers. New scientific discoveries have possible uses and consequences; new medical breakthroughs have ethical considerations; political matters are always the subject of debate. The ability to successfully and respectfully debate the opposing opinions of other, and to accommodate conflicting perspectives in oneself, is paramount to problem resolution, progress, and sometimes just the acceptance of matters as they are.

The Public debate tuition Sydney’s North Shore Debating provides is applicable to so many areas of life. Even without entering the public forum debating enhances personal growth. Debating requires engaging with a real issues, and hence some part of the real world. It prevents the stultification that may result from relying on a detached perspective by making an individual apply their knowledge or potential to learn, and makes one experience the multiple aspects of a subject not provided by detached facts or a limited textbook education. Debating is about application and pragmatism, and a pragmatic attitude is always useful in life.