Easy English?

English is an important global language but that doesn't mean it's easy to learn. Many experts have tried to make English easier for students to learn but they weren't always successful.

In 1930, Professor CK Ogden of Cambridge University invented Basic English. It had only 850 words and just 18 verbs. Ogden said most people could learn it in just 30 hours. The problem was that people who learned basic English, could write and say simple messages, but they couldn't understand the answers in real English. It was also impossible to explain a word if it wasn't in the basic English word list. For example, if you wanted a watermelon, you asked for a large green fruit with the form of an egg, which has a sweet red inside and a good taste.

RE Zackrisson, a university professor in Sweden, decided that the biggest problem for learners of English was spelling, so he invented a language called Anglic. Anglic was similar to English but with much simpler spelling. Father became ‘faadher’, new became ‘nue’ and years became ‘yeerz’. Unfortunately, for some students of English, Anglic never became popular.

Even easier is the language which ships’ captains use. It's called Seaspeak. Seaspeak uses a few simple phrases for every possible situation. In Seaspeak, for example, you don't say ‘I'm sorry’ ‘What did you say?’ or ‘I didn't understand’, ‘Can you repeat that?’ It's just, ‘Say again’. No more grammar!

In the age of international communication through the Internet who knows?? Anew form of English has appeared. A large number of the world's emails are in English and include examples of net lingo like OIC, (Oh, I see…) and TTYL (Talk to you later). In another 50 years English as we know it, might not exist.

English is increasingly becoming entrenched as the language of choice for business, science and popular culture. Soon, more people will speak English as a foreign language than speak it as their mother tongue. But why is English rising so far above the Babble of the world’s other tongues. There are no clear linguistic reasons for the global dominance of English. The grammar has more exceptions than it has rules, the pronunciation is eccentric and the spelling peculiar to say the least. But as Professor David Crystal, the author of English as a Global Language, points out logic does not necessarily apply when building a lingua franca.

So what is the correct approach to learn English?

We try to create a full immersion atmosphere as much as possible. English is a language just like any other language: it has to be taught and it has to be learned. The basics, of course, are essential but more importantly, is the use of it. We often say, If you don't use, it you lose it.’ It is scientifically proven that the more you listen to a language, the more you are able to produce it and this is why full immersion is the key to success.

People often say that English has a certain musicality to it. The words flow, one into another. There are different emphasis and stress on words that make it appealing and enjoyable.

Here, at Jump, this is what we do: offer a full immersion atmosphere, learning, sharing, experimenting, bringing it back home and putting it into good use, wanting to become ever more part of this Global English.

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