Explain the significance of the acquisition and development of language to the learning process. "The spoken word is the most important form of communication between humans" -discuss.
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The majority of us use language everyday, and have done for centuries, to communicate with others. The spoken word is a skill which has been developed to allow us to share our thoughts and feelings with others. It is hard to imagine a world without speech, as it is probably our most important tool for communication, but it is not the only one. I aim to discuss the significance of the spoken word, the process of language development, factors affecting language development and how such factors may be overcome.
Language acquisition is the process by which language develops in humans. The process of language develops in stages, and begins even before a child utters their first word. This is referred to as the paralinguistic phase, where a child has the ability to discriminate between various language sounds.
By around eighteen months a child has a vocabulary of around five to twenty words, increasing to one hundred and fifty to three hundred words by around twenty four months. At four years of age a child will often talk aloud as he or she carries out activities, and will also have most vowels and consonants well established.
The first language acquisition comprises of the language development in children, whereas the second language acquisition also takes into account the development of language in adults. There are many theories which try to explain language acquisition, most referring to the importance of both biological and environmental factors, and how they intertwine with one another. Behavioural, nativist, cognitive and social theories all focus on language development.
The earliest theory about language development assumed...