People’s language abilities greatly influence their every day lives and their capacity to learn. In school, good language foundations help students acquire the essential skills for reading, writing and math.
What are the necessary elements of language?
Phonology: Phonology is the study of the sound system of a language and the rules that govern how phonemes combine into words. Phonemes are the most basic unit of sound. For example: the word back has three phonemes: /b/, /a/, /k/. The ability to identify and manipulate the sounds within a word is essential to reading and writing. People who have good phonic skills know that the /k/ sound in back is spelled with a ck. Students who struggle with phonological skills will most likely experience difficultly learning to read and write.
Morphology: Morphology is the structure of a word. Words are comprised of base words, prefixes and suffixes. The combination of the different parts of a word will impact its meaning. For example, if you add the prefix un to the word done it will change the meaning of the the base word to its opposite meaning: done vs undone. The suffix ed added to a verb indicates the action has already happened: cook vs cooked. Mastery of morphology has a significant impact on a person’s ability to read, spell and comprehend.
Semantics: Semantics is the study of the meaning of words. To master semantic skills, students must develop knowledge of vocabulary and the functions of language that convey meaning. Students must understand that a word can have multiple meanings. For example: the word bank can mean the building where a person goes to withdraw money from their account or it can mean the land along side a river.
Syntax: Syntax refers to the rules that determine the order and functions of the words in a sentence. It includes grammar and requires knowledge of the mechanics of different types of sentences. When writing and speaking, proper sentence structure and punctuation will help convey an accurate message.
Fisher Hill’s literacy workbook series: English Reading and Spelling for the Spanish Speaker, English Reading Comprehension for the Spanish Speaker, English Writing Composition for the Spanish Speaker and English Vocabulary for the Spanish Speaker provide the necessary skill practice for Spanish-speaking teens and adults to develop knowledge of these different elements of the English language.
Visit our website at www.Fisher-Hill.com to obtain information about our literacy workbook series and other series that are excellent for Spanish-speaking teens and adults who want to learn how to read, write and speak English.