Factors influencing Language and Literacy

Factors influencing Language and Literacy

With the shift to understanding the importance of culture in teaching English as a second language, teachers are faced with new challenges when teaching adults.
Language is complex, far more than just making language and grammar choices. For instance, try translating the phrase “Linguists have been interested in several aspects of language variations” into Spanish, and then translating the Spanish back to English: Los lingüistas han estado interesados en varios aspectos de la variación de la lengua. The translation reads: “The linguists have been interested in various aspects of the variation of the tongue.” That might be quite true because the tongue has a great deal to do with forming words, but it isn’t the phrase that was originally translated. Translation is one of many specific factors that influence language change. What else must be taken into consideration in an analysis of change? An effort will be made to investigate factors such as cultural variation, social networking, ethnicity, communication in a family-unit and technological advances, as they relate to teaching and learning a different language.
Looking back at the history of the English language over the past hundred years, pronounciation, spelling and meaning have changed very little, but the number of words has greatly increased because of the industrial revolution and the advent of a technological society. Also, military history, with wars throughout the 1900s, made military language very much a part of the century (Wilton, 2005). In Great Britain, the variances of language, i.e. accent, dialect, variety and register, are especially evident in different sections of England. American English has its own regional dialects, as well as different spelling, pronounciation and meaning for many English words. In Australia, both accent and dialect, as well as several words unique to the continent, make the English language distinctive there. For people from Asian

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