- English as a foreign language differs to a great extent from any of the Indian languages in various respects. So a special method is required for its teaching. But for a long time there was the want of the right kind of method for the teaching of English and this made the teacher’s task very difficult.
- With the introduction of various subjects in the reorganize pattern, and change in the medium of instruction, the time available for the teaching of English has been very short. Moreover, since the other subjects in the curriculum are too bookish and theoretical, more time is required for their teaching.
- In most of the cases the teacher has no clear idea about the standard of achievement in the subject. He does not know what type of work should be done and what method should, be followed at a particular stage. The standard to be aimed at is generally pitched very high. As a result, there is an unnecessary wastage of time producing most disastrous result.
- The old speech habits in the mother tongue generally interfere with the formation of new speech habits. So it is very difficult to form the new speech habits in the children. In reading or speaking English, words are pronounced in the peculiar way in which the words in the mother tongue are pronounced. So it is very difficult for the pupils to practice pronunciation, phrasing, accentuation, intonation etc, peculiar to English.
- The modes of expression in the mother tongue sometimes influence the modes of expressions in English and as a result the pupil has a tendency, to fall back into vernacularisms e.g. leg-fingers for toe. He says good English for he speaks good Hindi- which are very difficult to eradicate.
- Though we follow different modern process and method to read and write but the natural sequence and opportunity that the students avail in acquiring their mother tongue will not be observed in case of learning foreign language by innumerable students. That is why, in reality we see that at the first stage of learning English we cannot move a single step without the help of mother tongue. We are reminded of Tagore in this respect, —profound knowledge of Bengali would only be a great assistance in learning English [translated). He used to think that, if writing in mother tongue becomes easy, ‘and then if, other language is acquired in due course, it will not be difficult to pen that down confidently. It is not necessary to prepare a covering carefully with the general English usages. Tagore has expressed in various contexts that learning of mother tongue comes first and then foreign language would be taught together with the assistance of mother language.
- Pupils should be given enough practice in acquiring a particular skill so that the repeated exercise of a learning bond may increase its strength; the lack of exercise will decrease it.
- Pupils should be given ample scope for application of the newly learnt skill which will lead them to perfection.
- Students should practice correct forms of the language.
- The principle of Transfer of Training has a definite place in teaching English in that the mother-tongue and English have may identical elements in them.
- There is still a great dearth of specially prepared text books containing suitable subject matters, vocabulary and sentence patterns with proper gradation and arrangement.
- The defective system of examination encourages cramming in the children and forces the teacher to discard the modern techniques of teaching and fall back upon the stereotyped method.
- The strength in the class is generally so large that it is practically impossible for the teacher either to give individual drill or to correct the composition work of the children.
- The standard of achievement in English, specially is rural areas, is very low and in most of the cases the unqualified teachers in the hands of whom the task of teaching English is placed in the early stages, are greatly responsible for it.
In light of our experience, the common difficulties we face in teaching English to our pupils: the psychological principles applied to the teaching of English
An English Teacher; M. A.(English) , D. Ed., B. Ed., UGC- NET Qualified
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