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English and other languages: Is it really a world of difference?

Written by: Anna Czebiolko
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6 min read
Anna Czebiolko, Head of EAL at Cockburn John Charles Academy, Leeds Children who are new to the English education system can perceive English as a ‘foreign’ language that has little or nothing in common with their native dialect. This article will explore how the explicit teaching of language families can help students to make connections. Similarities between English and some of the Latin languages will be analysed, thus demonstrating that by finding connections between languages and exploring prefixes and suffixes, hundreds of foreign words can be remembered and understood in a very short period of time. By using English words of external origin, the development of both English and students’ mother tongues can be simultaneously achieved. By gaining knowledge about other languages, the belief that English is a ‘foreign’ language can be unstereotypically changed. It is well-known that a significant portion of the English vocabulary comes from Romance and Latinate sources.

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