CELTA - Focus on the Learner.

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The learner is a 35 year old female from France. She is married with two children, and has lived in Oman for five years. The learner's first language is French. It is also the language that is spoken at home.

Learner's profile

The learner's level of English is between pre-intermediate to intermediate. She did not finish high school, and after grade 10, at the age of 16, she completed a certificate in disability studies. The learner studied English three times a week at a French speaking school as part of the school curriculum from grades 6 to 10. She describes her learning experience as consisting of constant drilling and exercises, without much writing. She also wants to learn English so that she can communicate and understand songs and films. Another reason she gave for learning English was that she wanted to do a course that required English as a pre-requisite. She feels that she has a long way to go in fulfilling this requirement. She also said that she wants to learn English simply because she said that she likes the way it sounds.

The learner believes that her L1 has affected that way she learns English. One of the examples she gave was how English words are pronounced differently from French words (See phonology section). The learner's preferred learning method is within a class setting, where she can carry out various activities that covers her needs. She stated that she needs to be corrected when she makes errors in speaking, reading and writing. She feels she does not get enough practice in speaking, reading and writing. She says she needs practice in pronunciation, expanding her vocabulary, and improving her writing skills. The learner needs to be interested in what she is learning or it is difficult for her to be motivated.

General Ability

The learner requires language to be graded and sometimes repeated. The learner has stated that she needs English speakers to speak slowly and in small, non complex sentences. The was evident during my interview when I sometimes had to clarify what I was asking, by putting it in simpler language or giving her examples of what I was look for.

Transcription of example errors (written or spoken).

Written Errors.

_His nationality is the same as me, wich is French Isaac is a tall, slim boy who have strong and fit body_.

Her sentence structure 'His nationality is the same as me, wich is French….' is a bit unusual. It might be how you would say it French. She could say 'We both have French nationality'.

The sentence is also missing a full-stop which is not normal as French punctuation rules are very similar to English. She has a problem knowing when to use _hav_e or _has_.

_Isaac is a clever boy, he can understand things kuickly and pick up many knolege by himself. That his quality, but he also have bad side like beeing hyper obstinate With tHis caracter he can be immaginative or lazy. It depend in wich mood he's_.

The learner makes common spelling mistakes like _kuickly, knolege,_ and _wich._ She has spelled it as it would have sounded. The 'w' in _knowledge_ is silent. And the 'h' in _which_ is also silent.

French learner of English tends to use less common Romance words or expressions instead of a more common Germanic word or expression which is more commonly used by native speakers of English�. For example, instead of using the word 'stubborn', she has used 'hyper obstinate' to describe her son's behaviour.

Spoken Errors

_Sometimes I found English speaker tough with people who don't speak their language._

She has used the wrong form of the word _to find._ She has used it to describe as something that has happened in the past. But it is actually an ongoing event. Instead of _found_ which is the past, it should be _find_, which is the present. When she says 'tough', what she really means is intolerant and not someone intentionally giving her a hard time. She has expressed it this...
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