In the process of teaching English as a second language, you may encounter different types of students based on their attitudes and inclination towards the language. In this article however, my main focus will be the attitudes of successful students towards the English language. The last time, I decided to undertake a quick survey on my successful students in order to obtain information about the reasons for getting excellent during examinations. To achieve this, I asked them questions about their interest in English, their methods of studying and practicing of the language. Also I tried to obtain information more about their general performances in other subjects.Based on my findings, I noticed that my successful students are divided into
two groups. The first group are those who are passionate and motivated to learn the language while the second group are those who are obliged to learn the subject because they are already having excellent in all other subjects. Now
let us look at the characteristics of each group separately.
Passionate, Motivated and Successful Students
To be truly acquainted with the characteristics of the real successful students let us take a look at their attitudes towards ESL.
a) Passion for the language – These students love the language for it self and they are always interested to do what ever it takes to achieve their goal of progressing in it. You find them very active in and out of the classroom in as much as English in concerned. They always do their home and other activities on time.
b) Mastering language skills Because of their interest in the subject, they are quick to master the language skills. Firstly, they do not limit themselves to the Course book; but explore other avenues such reading other books and listening to audio programs. They are very eager to engage a native speaker in conversation so as to practice the language. They often watch English programs on TV and listen to radio programs therefore they acquire excellent communication skills. When they learn vocabulary they do not do so only for the purpose of passing examination but to gain excellence in the
language so they do not forget easily.
Obliged Successful Students
a) Lack of true passion for the language– It was observed that these students have no real passion for the subject but the effort they exert is only for the purpose of getting excellent grades in examinations. The reason for this is
that these are smart students who usually obtain excellent grades in all other subjects, and as such they dislike having poor marks in English as this will definitely affect their overall performance.
b) Lacking Essential language skills Since their goal is only to pass examinations; it is observed that these students lack essential language skills because they limit themselves to the course book. Anything other than that is not of interest to them. They are not motivated to practice the language by reading other books or by conversing with native speakers. They neither watch English programs on TV nor listen to radio programs related to English. Because of these, they do not
make significant progress in learning the language.
In conclusion, the students that will make real progress are those who immerse themselves in all aspects of language learning and acquisition and these are the truly successful ones. What type of students do you have? Are they passionate about English language or are they obliged learners? You opinion with regards this issue will be warmly welcomed.