Thursday, January 27, 2011

Through the Open Window: A Manifesto for Approaching Language Study with an Open Mind

(This is a cleaned up version of a Manifesto I wrote for one of my English classes, the previous which got me a 98/100 from my very tough grading teacher, hopefully a sign of the paper's overall polish. Though it may rub you the wrong way at some points, please enjoy it and let it reveal my take on language study)

The language were raised with is shaped by grammar, colored by vocabulary & powered by culture, a word strongly tied to the stuffy and snooze-inducing aspects of our world-for example, the guy who turns his nose at those not into musicals or fine wines.

However, as culture can be manifested by a tea ceremony, so can it manifest through Causal Fridays & riding the bike trail to Border's with your friends every Saturday, all 3 a way of doing things cultivated through shared values & beliefs. When grammar, vocabulary & culture work in sync, our thoughts gain life & let us interact with the world how we want to, even if we've never seen it before.

You may be wondering how this relates to learning a language, and to that I say this: In understanding this you not only uncover the key to learning a language, but the key to learning it as your language.