How vital is language?
"Economic strength of a country depends on the literacy/illiteracy level of its people".
Keith Wright (International Language Academy Australia) pointed out this line several times and stressed out its meaning repeatedly to the audience of the English Pronunciation Seminar last night.
I was stunned, not because of getting startled by the meaning of the quote, but because of the way he stared with his bulging blue eyes to the audience; to me. He seems so energetic and passionate to trigger people’s awareness on how important English Language is to our life; to our world.
Australia has always recognised as one country that has spent a huge amount of money for education, and yet he mentioned, the level of literacy for its people is relatively low if compared to what they have invested.
Why is this happened?
The methodology that being implemented was not effective enough to put the people into one satisfying level of achievement. Learning English is not too hard with the right method, he said. The concept is simple; learn to know the rule, understand the rule, and then just follow them.
How if there’s no rule applicable?
“We create one!” he answered so passionately.
“Walk your index and middle finger on the table like this and repeat what I say”, he exclaimed and forced everyone to do the same.
“When two vowels walk together, the first vowel speaks first”, he shouted while his two fingers keep doing the ‘walk’ on the table. The audience eagerly repeated that sentence while doing the same walking-action. He then continued with different funny act for different rule.
“Everyone stands up now, walk like a robot and say this line too, like a robot” he instructed while imitating a robot move and voice out this line, “W sends a warning to be wary, as the sounds and symbols may vary”. Once again, the hall shook off with laughter when audience started acting like a robot while saying out the sentence the way a robot does.
Vowels are vital. Pronunciation is vital. Words can change from noun to verb because of the position of their accent. The noun is stressed on the first syllable; the verb on the second syllable. "Combat" if you accent it on COM i.e. COMbat, it's a noun. If you accent it on BAT i.e. comBAT, it's a verb.
Well... the rule goes on and on till we completed the two hour talk with joy. It was the first time I saw people enjoyed so much in an English class that teaches you the rule of vowels! So hilarious to see everyone acted like a child and did not hesitate to be treated like one. Nevertheless, this was just an icebreaking session to trigger ones interest of enhancing their English literacy level.
As for me, I was so thankful to Keith for giving out some materials for free. He put some condition though. Whoever receives the materials has a responsibility to share them with others, and this is a MUST. (Baik sangat la tue.. hihi)
So, dear folks, you are free to download them on the below list. Enjoy!
#4S In Brief.Pdf
#4S Introduction to 4S-AEP Methodology 2009 - 2010.pdf
#4S International-English Phonetic Chart.pdf
#4S Thirty Characteristics of English.pdf
#4S Keys to Understanding Pronunciation and Spelling.pdf
#4S Pronouncing Nouns and Verbs.pdf
#4S 150 Helpful Hints for Grammar.pdf
#4S 100 Wrongly Pronounced Words.pdf
#4S 21 Selected 4S Keys to Understanding Pronunciation.pdf
#4S 20 Common Speech Habits.pdf
#4S Business Management Lexicon 2010.pdf
#4S My Personal Lexicon.pdf
#4S ESL - Colloquial Sayings.pdf
#4S Difference - Advantages.pdf
Aspen School Holiday Program, SHoP (III)
Private orchard at Sg. Buloh
14th March 2010
Part of the activities:
6.Collect leaves/plants for collage