Home Schooling on Eyes

Posting by Ade Tuty Anggriany | 11:16 AM

Nowadays, home schooling has become even more popular as an alternative to regular schooling. Many parents, especially mothers, are now seriously considering this form of schooling for their children. Most children undergo home schooling do so because of many reasons. For example, a family whose breadwinner is always on the move may need to transfer homes on a regular basis. Proper education will never be achieved by the children because of the disruptions of their studies every time the family needs to move away. As a result, the family may consider home schooling as a great alternative. Just like regular schooling, home schooling has both its advantages and disadvantages.

Here are some advantages on home schooling:

(1) Our kids will learn things we want them to learn. We have control over the information and lessons our children will acquire from the lessons. Unlike regular schooling, we will be there to monitor what our kids are learning;

(2) No more cafeteria food, with our own kitchen serving as the school cafeteria, our kids will have access to healthier and more fulfilling food. They no longer have to endure oversaturated meat products and unhealthy consumables from the school cafeteria. Now, we can serve our children with whatever food they desire, a luxury compared to regular schooling. Think of it as another incentive why we should consider home schooling;

(3) Our kids will develop naturally, unlike regular schooling which allots only a limited period of time for children to learn, home schooling allows us as a mother and a teacher, to control the pace at which our child develops mentally and emotionally;

(4) There is no more need to force children to grow up at a hurried pace. With home schooling, our kids will discover their skills and inclinations on their own;

(5) No more pressure for our kids. With the absence of nerve-racking exams, our children will not feel pressured or forced to achieve or over-achieve. Because our children know that we accept their limitations and strengths, they can feel more confident about themselves and develop better personality traits. They will eventually learn how to set goals of their own and be systematic in dealing with pressure.

Those advantages that caused most of parents consider home schooling for their children, but some parents don’t want to consider this form of schooling for their children because of its disadvantages. They are:

(1) The lack of social interaction. With our children not immersed in social groups and activities, they can become shy when around other people. To prevent this from happening, we can contact other mothers and arrange for play-dates occasionally to help our kids learn and master their social skills. Remember that man is a social being and interacting with children of their own age is crucial for our children to develop into wonderful adults;

(2) A less-structured environment. Our kids may have difficulty adjusting to 9 to 5 work hours because of the laid-back environment in our home. Introducing a pre-determined timeframe and schedule will help us teach our children to make the most out of their time. Our kids will also learn to be more punctual and aware of theirs and other people's precious time;

(3) Discipline may become an issue. Unlike a regular class, our children may look at us simply as their mother and not a teacher. This can lead to a loss of discipline especially if we allow them to continue with their actions. A set of rules should be set in place with you explaining the importance of following rules. Make our children understand that we are also a teacher and that they need to treat as such. Instilling discipline in them is a very important factor in securing their future.

By these advantages and disadvantages, parents should be more aware of the good and bad sides of home schooling. Although it is not a perfect system, home schooling provides children with the opportunity to learn about the world they live in from the comfort of their homes. For parents, this type of educational system gives them the chance to develop special bonds with their kids. Both sides must be weighed and thorough consideration must be given to each and every advantage or disadvantage.

Chinese Learners and English Plural Forms

Posting by Ade Tuty Anggriany | 11:56 AM

Liu Jing, Evie Tindall and Deanna Nisbet

Regent University, Virginia, U.S.A

In “Chinese Learners and English Plural Forms”, Liu Jing, Evie Tindall and Deanna Nisbet explore the challenges that Chinese students encounter in the formation of English plurals. Thus, they (a) examine linguistic features of Chinese and English that may affect plural formation in English, (b) highlight specific areas of challenge for Chinese learners, and (c) present an array of recommended instructional practices.

Liu Jing, Evie Tindall and Deanna Nisbe said that there two aspects of the Chinese language that are pertinent to the formation of English plurals, they are the ideographic writing system and the morphological and syntactic structure of the language. These aspects are markedly different from those of English. There are also some areas of challenge for Chinese learners, they are omission of the morpheme -s/-es, over-generalization of rules and count and non-count nouns. Regarding to these problems, many Chinese learners encounter challenges in regard to the formation of English plurals. Knowing this, teachers can anticipate difficulties and support students’ learning of English plural forms through various instructional practices such as teach key differences in forming plurals between Chinese and English; teach English rules for plural formation; teach the commonalities and the distinct differences between Chinese and English regarding count and non-count noun; teach students language learning strategies with an emphasis on learning vocabulary; and teach students to develop their own resources.

Liu Jing, Evie Tindall and Deanna Nisbe’s findings are supported by (Brown, 2000; Lightbown and Spada, 1999). They said that language transfer, or the incorporation of patterns from the native language into the target language, is a common source of errors among learners of a second or foreign language. They also add that prior knowledge of Chinese language patterns may notably affect their acquisition of English. I also agree with them because as I know that every language has its own rules in spoken or even in written forms. Moreover between Chinese and English, they have their own rules in forming the singular and the plural form of a certain word. As I have learned that English has many rules in word plural formation so that sometimes it is found that it is common for students to make error when they learn plural forms of English. Whereas in Chinese, context is a primary means of addressing the plural form. So that’s right that native language has a great influence in foreign language learning or target language learning.

In short, this article provides an overview of the linguistic features of Chinese and English that may affect formation of English plural forms and pinpoints three major sources of difficulty for many Chinese students. To address these highlighted areas, the authors have recommended a number of instructional practices. The primary focus of these practices is to develop independent language learners. Specifically, for teachers, it is suggested to use the foundational information and the five instructional practices presented in this article to equip Chinese learners to be strategic and resourceful as they address the challenges of English plural forms.