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MOTHER TONGUE AS A MILITATING FACTOR IN SECOND LANGUAGE LEARNING AMONG COOU STUDENT OF ENGLISH
A language is the most powerful tool of learning. Language is a creation which every human is endowed with or blessed with; a unique gift of language is used naturally as one tool of expression consisting of different sub skills. There is a considerable linguistic confusion on the part of a learner of a second language, as he thinks in his mother tongue but tries to express himself in a second language. A language is a second language when it is chosen as the official language of a people who have other languages. In several countries of Africa, including Nigeria, English is an official language, the language of government, education, administration and general national and international transactions. It also, in these countries, serves as the language of the law courts, the mass media and commerce. In many of 'such countries, it did not become important by choice. Text books have remained in English especially in countries like Nigeria where there are numerous indigenous languages which deter curriculum planners from providing texts in so many languages. In many African countries today, there could be no serious interchange of professional knowledge, no education beyond the primary school level, without the English language.
In a politically, socially, culturally and linguistically diverse society, the learning and usage of a second language becomes very necessary not because it makes possible mutual interaction. In our Nigerian society, such is the situation because Nigeria has a geographical and political entity as was colonized by the British who were from a different linguistic background but English was adopted as a medium of communication and interaction. This innate disposition enables one to acquire a first language and learn a second language.
Learners of English despite their different backgrounds, face difficulties where is found to be so because of the nature of the Igbo article systems and its influence on Igbo English learners. It is found that the cause of such problematic issues is due to the effect of mother tongue,that is the effect of the learners' native language on second/foreign language learning. Therefore, it is found that the Ibo language interferes with Ibo learners of the English language, especially when it comes to using English articles. Due to the differences between the Igbo and English article system such problems arise.
The use of a particular form of a language by an individual reflects the individual s social status. Before the advent of British traders, missionaries and colonialists, indigenous Nigerian language defined every aspect of the speech community from its religious, cultural, political, Economics, social to whatever else that can be through of the language functioned effectively to deal with every thing relating to the day existence of the people. The arrival of the British, concomitant with the English language provided a language contact situation with an attempt to a language shift in the population.
Where English language sentences are made, they are characteristically uttered with variation in pitch often referred to as intonation. This is often an area of difficulty for second language, users of English language who have tonal Language as their first language. This is one of the major problems encountered by learners of English language. Other areas of problem encountered are Sentence and word stresses, vowel sounds and English supra segmental of pitch. The study intended to identify mother tongue as a militating factor in Second Language Learning among Coou students of English. In a politically, socially, culturally and linguistically diverse society, the learning and usage of a second language becomes very necessary not because it makes possible mutual interaction. In our Nigerian society, such is the situation because Nigeria has a geographical and political entity as was colonized by the British who were from a different linguistic background but English was adopted as a medium of communication and interaction. . Human beings have an i innate disposition that enables one to acquire a first language and learn a second one. When we listen to most students of English in Coou,traces of mother tongue interference are observed. If we listen to some students and also listen to a monolingual student who is a speaker of igbo, we notice an obvious difference. We realize a considerable element of English in the student of igbo origin. Linguistically, the effect is located at the phonological level When we also listen to the student of English Coou at the phonological level, we hear how sounds in Igbo are reproduced in terms of English; mother tongue interference occurs. Here lies the problem which this study seeks to investigate.
This research is to investigate the effect, causes , characteristics of mother tongue as a militating factor in second language learning among COOU student of English. It has been discovered that English students of Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University uses the mother tongue for expression in commmunication, and these has become a problem in learning of the second language. This study enables us to find out the level at which mother tongue effect the learning of second language among COOU stsudent of English..
Language cannot be studied in isolation from the society, because men make up the society and the importance of language to man has remained unchallenged by any scientific linguistic research. Also, the importance of a second language that has almost assumed status in the society cannot be dismissed with a wave of hand. This research is mother tongue as a militating factor in second language learning among COOU Student of English.
It is based on the available result gotten from assessment of Coou students of English and Books, Journals etc relating to the teaching and learning of the english language . This research work will attempt investigating the effect of mother tongue on the learning of the second language among the Coou student of english, focusing on the state capital.
It is imperative to properly define the terms that make the heading of the research topic under study. This will go long way at giving direction to the research work.
MOTHER TONGUE: The native language one first learns to speak before other languages. Mother tongue, or first language or native tongue is the first language or dialect that a person has been exposed to from birth or within the critical period In some countries, the term native language or mother tongue refers to the language or dialect of one's ethnic groups rather than one's first language.
The first language of a child is part of that child's personal, social and cultural identity. Another impact of the first language is that it brings about the reflection and learning of successful social patterns of acting and speaking .Research suggests that while a non-native speaker may develop fluency in a targeted language after about two years of immersion, it can take between five and seven years for that child to be on the same working level as their native speaking counterpart.
INTERFERENCE: In this context, interruption of a language by another especially in pronunciation and intonations.
ANGLO-XASON: A person whose ancestors were English. (2) An English person of the period before the norman conquest.
This research is guided by the following questions;
a . Are there noticeable differences when these students speak another language outside their mother tongue?
b. Will students notice the transfer of their indigenous language intonation patterns while speaking their second language?
ss. Does mother tongue actually interferes in the learning of English language of Coou student of English?
The formulation of these questions was based on the consideration of the linguistic socio linguistic features among Coou student of English.
Ho1 Mother tongue dose interfers in the learning of English language.
Ho2 linguistic environment is the major component in mother tongue.
Today, it is not uncommon for English language teachers to complain about the extremely poor standard of students in English language. On the other hand, there are a few of the students whose written and spoken English hardly reflect their educational attainment. For instance, it is not uncommon to hear a secondary school pupil say: my little brother is eating his big finger , when he actually means my little brother sucks his thumbs . One of the causes of such short coming could be traced to the problem of English language coming in contact with the mother tongue where English is the L2. As noted by Weireith (1968), he said that when languages come into contact, they are bound to influence each other positively or negatively. In a case of languages coming in contact, it is expected that the first language (L1) or mother tongue will, in many ways interfere with the acquisition of the 18 L2.what usually happens is that the pattern of L1 tends to be transferred unconsciously into the L2, which in this case is the English language. In this chapter therefore, the research will review the available literature on Mother Tongue in the acquisition of the English language as a second language , and the likely factors responsible for such interferences.
2.2Brief History of Development of Teaching and Learning of English Language in Nigeria.
from British. How ever, English began was spoken in Nigeria as far back as the early 1800, due to the large British naral presence who had been sent in an attempt to halt the slave trade.
A detailed The term English is often in its most sense referred to the language of England and of southern Scotland from a historical view point. it is commonly known that during the 5th century AD, the entomic tribes invaded Britain whose tribes comprised the Jutes, Anglos and the Saxons.Later, Anglo-saxon civilization came into existence from the word Anglos, two other words, English and English were derived. This English originally meant the language of the Anglos and their kindred tribe (Baugh 2005.52).
English became the official language of Nigeria on October 1st 1960, when Nigeria gained its independencestudy of the history of the English language shows three main stages, old English, middle English and modern English.
A rough guide, one may see the historical sketch as follow: AD 430-450, the earliest period of the cuts and the Romans; AD 450-800; the old English of saxon, Vikings/davies, AD 1100-1500, the middle English of the Nornman; As 1500-1828, modern English. This greatly enhance by Dr. Johnsons Dictionary (1755) and Noah Webster’s American Dictionary (1828) Tempte (2006).
A point Worthy of note is old English and middle English were characterized with understandable, Homogeneity, Amstrang (2006) put it, middle English period for instance, was the time when English men spoke English and English was the language of them. Numbers of speakers were min and although the population grew during the period from 3 (three) million to approximately 4.5 million, it was of the same order of size throughout. The English speaking population extended from North of Aberdeen to the Aeron-Corwall boarder with a few groups of outhiers, but not enough to after the character of an essentially single and lomogenous community in a fairly uniform environment.