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The Natural Approach in Learning English as a Second Language

Among the methods used to teach English as a second language (ESL) is the natural approach wherein strategies in teaching focus on the learner’s communicative skills instead of knowledge in grammar and correction of student errors. Many people believe this method helps facilitate second language acquisition better than any other teaching method does. However, some people do not agree with this. They believe that establishing a learner’s foundation in English through learning grammar rules and production of speech is better.

Those who support the natural approach in teaching ESL say that the goal of most ESL learners is to communicate well in English. Very few learners are interested in learning formal writing, so there is no need for them to learn the language’s formal structure.

Also, the natural approach puts less pressure on learners because interactive methods are used in teaching. Students learn English through stress-free methods such as the use of situations that are inherently motivating to students — making the learning process enjoyable, unforgettable, and meaningful.

People who believe in the natural approach say that it gives learners an immediate opportunity to use English in various real-life scenarios. Through role-play and conversations, learners learn by speaking and listening. The practical application of English in the lives of the learners speeds up the development of their skills in using the language.

On the other hand, those who oppose the natural approach say that second language learners process everything in their native language when learning a new language. They use their knowledge in the structure of their native language as a framework for understanding a new language which can be more confusing. That is why ESL learners must first have a solid background in English grammar and structure before anything else.

They also say that the natural approach is only applicable to beginners or very young learners. Sometimes, to reduce learner anxiety, language instructors who use the natural approach fail to design a curriculum. Also, due to its interactive nature, the natural approach can be exhausting for adult learners who want a more straightforward method of instruction.

Finally, critics of the natural approach do not agree that such method is stress-free for learners because it puts them on the spot. They are forced to listen and speak in English even though they did not receive formal instruction in properly using it. The method may intimidate learners which, in the end, may discourage them from learning English.

질문&어휘 문법TIPs 해석
questions

Summary:
Many people believe that the natural approach helps facilitate second language acquisition better than any other teaching method does because it is stress-free. Where do you stand on this approach?

Supporter:
1. The goal of most ESL learners is to communicate well in English.
2. The natural approach is a stress-free method that allows students to enjoy while learning.
3. It gives learners an immediate opportunity to use English in various real-life scenarios, making language acquisition easier.

Critic:
1. The natural approach does not give language learners the foundation that they need.
2. It is only applicable to beginners or very young learners.
3. It may intimidate learners because it puts them on the spot.

vocabularies

facilitate 용이하게 하다/


acquisition 습득/

interactive 대화형의, 상호적인/

inherently 본질적으로/

framework 체계/

straightforward 쉬운, 간단한/

intimidate 겁을 주다/

자료제공 EDU TIMES EBS english 컨텐츠 제공

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