Are you a citizen of the world?
Think about this: Do you know someone who lives overseas? Do you speak more than one language? Do you use a phone to call or text someone overseas? Are you interested in news from around the world?
Those of us who use computers, tablets or i phones, can send a message at the touch of a key to friends and family and perfect strangers around the world. This makes the world like a village where news, ideas and images travel instantaneously to far-flung parts of the globe, as easily as walking next door and gossiping with a neighbour.
It appears to be a feature of this ‘global village’ that English is increasingly the main language spoken. This does not negate the richness, beauty and necessity of one’s mother tongue, but just gives us the means to communicate further afield than the mother country.
Let me make a confession now. Unlike many of you, I can only speak one language and I am the poorer for it. I believe it is an act of friendship to learn the language of another, but factors such as low motivation, lack of opportunities to practise the new language and maybe even an aging brain, make it difficult. We at PIMD fully acknowledge the obstacles our teachers face to learning English.
It is hard to deny however, the importance of speaking English in today’s world.
The questions we encourage our teachers to think about are: Have you given much thought to why you teach English in your schools in Sri Lanka? Have you considered why we from PIMD constantly encourage you and put strategies in place, to help you develop your English skills? Do you think it is important for you to speak and, to a lesser extent, read and write English? Are you a citizen of the world?
Helen McLeod, Senior Consultant, PIMD