First Language vs. second language acquisition Over the years there have been a number


Over the years there have been a number of scientific studies done on language acquisition and understanding the human mind. Language acquisition is the learning of a native language and or a second language. In turn it is part of a child's physical, social and cognitive development. First and second language acquisition have many differences as well as some similarities. First language acquisition involves child learners of a native language where second language acquisition involves more adult learners of a second language.

While developing cognitively children use their experiences, interactions in social situation and surroundings to change and modify their language usage. They are growing and developing physically and mentally and one does not interfere with the other. Their use of language gives researchers an idea of how much children do understand and comprehend native language. When children are learning their first language there tends to be very little instruction or lessons needed. The child learns from their surroundings and interactions with others. The child develops an understanding and begins to make their own corrections while speaking. Each child progresses at different stages however; the first language is mastered with great success by native speakers. Most countries around the world tend to teach their youth to be bilingual at a young age. Where here in America most school systems don't start teaching their youth a second language until high school in most states. There is a gap of several years that are crucial for learning a second language that is missed by the learner.

While developing an understanding of a second language, most will not be as fluent as their native language. The reason for this is that most people who are learning a second language are in adult years. Because here in America English is the native language and there are so many immigrants, that many people are adult learners. This doesn't mean that they won't be successful; their chances are higher than most because they live in a country where you need to understand and know the native language in order to survive. Very few succeed in completing or mastering a second language. The learners of a second language tend to vary at all different levels of learning and success in the process. Not all worry about not reaching a goal of accuracy or fluency of a second language. This will play a role in how successful learners are of a second language. When the topic of grammar come up second language learners are often unable to form positive judgments when first language learners have clear thoughts of correct grammar. Researchers feel that this is why adult learner is more concerned with grammar rules than becoming fluent in a language. Constant corrections and structure of lessons are needed for a second language learner to successes, however first language learners tend to correct themselves.

The topic of language acquisition is complex in how the human mind works. Studies continue today mostly focusing on children and how their minds develop and comprehend language. I feel that with out the influences of their surroundings some children develop an understanding more slowly than others. It is also important to start children at an early age with a second language, this way it will be retained and the chances of understanding are greater. As for adult learners it is, it is hard to develop an understanding of a second language but sometimes it is crucial to survive.

Works Cited

Cook, Vivian. 'First and Second Language acquisition'Comparing First and Sceond Language Acquistion by Vibian Cook. 1969. 8/6/2006

Gaiasso. 'First Language Acquisition.' 8/6/2006. www.csun.edu/- gaiasso

'Language Acquisition.' 8/6/2006. www.bartleby.com/65/la/languag- ac.html