English is a tough language to learn if you don’t learn it as a child.
I have just come to realize how difficult it is since I’ve been teaching English as a second language at Vida, here in Topeka.
Like, who knew that the past tense of regular verbs varied in pronunciation.
Think about it:
- “walked” is pronounced as though it ended in “t;”
- “added” is pronounced as though it ended in “id;” and
- “smell” is pronounced as though it ended in “d.”
So you can imagine the blank looks and frowns I saw on my ESL students as I tried to explain all this.
Until I said, “let’s play a game!”
We divided into teams and played a “College Bowl” type game in which teams took turns pronouncing past tense of English regular verbs.
Within minutes the room was filled with chatter, laughter, smiles, and . . . learning!
Suddenly, people were willing to take a chance. When someone pronounced “worked” “work-id” and lost a point, we all laughed. But we will also all remember how to pronounce “worked” in English.
Our slogan here at Laugh2Learn “A classroom without laughter is a classroom without learning” is probably not always true. But there can be no doubt that laughter is a powerful teaching tool.
Vomos a jugar!