Tag: Cross-Cultural Milieu

The Power of Knowing Another Language

The Power of Knowing Another Language

There is nothing more fun than being at the place of a language learner after being a language trainer for more than 3 years. I realized it during my first 2-6 weeks in the US and I am very proud for the possibility to communicate all around.

Every communication reminded me what I was teaching to my formal language trainees. In very few weeks, I could easily locate myself, take a bus or a taxi, and shop. Actually, we are able to do in less than 2 months what took one year to those who had no knowledge of English.

Though my accent could betray my African origins, I am proud to notice that the only difference between an American speaking English and me is pronunciation and the speed of speaking. It looks very funny to always say “pardon?’’ when I have to communicate with one of them. At the beginning it was frustrating but the fact that I am immersed in the language makes it easier.

I also realized the power of combining reading, speaking, actions and demonstration in communicating in a second language. Since the American English is so fast, I noticed that if I don’t understand what they say, I grasp it easily when they use images and actions. Now I remember and understand why my learners used to say “you speak French so fast!”

As I meet other foreigners from all around the world, I come to the conclusion that the accent makes the identity of every language speaker. I could identify a Nigerian, Ghanaian,Cameroonian,Chinese,Taiwan and Indian by their accent. And the beauty of all this is that we can communicate and understand each other.

If you are a language learner, I encourage you to invest your best to develop your language competencies. If you are trainer maybe, you can learn a new language or reinforce the second one you already know; you will easily understand what your learners are going through.

I would like to hear from your own experience as a language trainer who became language learners. For me, I am thinking of learning Spanish, the second most spoken language in the US.

You can read the same article on the same topic: “The Power of Learning a New Language” by clicking on the link: https://seed4future.wordpress.com/2016/03/22/the-power-of-learning-a-new-language/

Keywords: Accent; Communication; English; French; Second Language.

Hervé Boris NGATE, Cross-Cultural Psychologist/ Communications/ Blogger/ Content Marketing