Hey kid! You think learning English is tough, don’t you? But why? Simply because you study in a vernacular or regional-language school? Or, because your well-wishers like parents, teachers, uncles, aunties, and big brothers have told you so? Ask me, and I’ll say “NO”. In fact, speaking and writing in English is pretty much fun.
It’s easy, simple…
Over 350 million people around the world speak English as a first language and more than 430 million speak it as a second language. No wonder English is considered to be an international language or lingua franca.
Following its growth and development for almost a millennium on the British Isles, English language went places, around the world, by the hands of the sailors, soldiers, pilgrims, traders and missionaries of the British Empire. And, by the time a language policy was formed, English had reached all corners of the globe.
But is this the only reason why most peoples in the world speak English? I say: it’s easy, and that’s why. And this must be a strong reason why English has for long been accepted and welcomed as the most widely spoken and written language.
English — a binding force between races, cultures
English language has always remained the greatest connector binding a wide variety of peoples, races, communities, cultures, etc. spread over different geographies of the world. Even in this new age when the internet and social media constantly and strongly connect all of us around the world, English remains the most powerful medium of communication or connection.
Kid, if you know good English, you can easily chat with an American or a Russian or a Chinese or a Japanese or a French… And, when they tell you interesting stories about their lands and people your joy knows no bound. Isn’t it a delight that you can do the same? Share with them all the good things about your country. And, they enjoy too.
Grammar? Yes. But what is most important?
You understand to learn English or a language well you’ve to learn grammar first. But isn’t true that a great number of kids like you can speak, if not write, English well by just practicing without paying much heed to grammatical details? The truth is grammar alone can’t help you much. To write and speak English properly what you’ve to do is connect your knowledge of grammar with the rest of the language. That’s words. Each word appears in a sentence for a well-defined or definite purpose. So, your storehouse of nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, phrases and idioms, other important expressions, etc. makes what I referred to as “the rest of the language”. And, I fondly call this component of English language “The Princess” or “Ms. Jewellery”. A good stock of words i.e. a good vocabulary, powered with flawless grammar, helps you master the language. You command respect of all English-knowing people. And, you emerge a winner in career and life.
Let me explain this to you with an example. You know that engine is the most important part or component that drives a train forward. And, to play its part properly the engine has to be faultless. Better if it’s not only faultless but also strong and powerful. But even that’s not enough. To pull all of us sitting in different compartments of the train towards our destinations, the engine has to be connected with the rest of the train i.e. all these compartments. Similarly, in English language too, there’s a connecter. This connects grammar i.e. the engine of English (or any other language) to “Ms. Jewellery” i.e. the compartments of the language. I fondly call the connecter “The Commander”.
Speaking or writing of correct English is a combination of correctly constructed sentences. Sentences may be short or long; simple or complex. But what’s most important is correct construction or formation of sentences. And, that’s where comes the Commander, the all-important connecter between grammar and Ms Jewellery. So who’s or what’s the Commander?
Practise, practise and practise
Don’t think it is all over and stop after you understand the Commander fully. You may still be making silly mistakes and that too in small sentences. Have you written yourself or seen any of your pals write: “I was go?” It’s wrong, isn’t it? Or a blunder! What’s the correct sentence? “I went.” Right? So what all of you need to do is practise, practise and practise.
You’re holding your breath to know who the Commander is. Right? But kid, I’m afraid you’ve to wait until I post my next lesson. If you miss it, oops! You miss everything. So keep reading…