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Monday Night Owls - 25 June 2018 - The benefits of working in your second language

NatashaTNatashaT Posts: 1,047 Teacher
We read an article which talked about the positive side effects of working in your second language:


Vocabulary Top 10:

slip - a small mistake

silver lining - something good that can be found in a bad situation

add an extra string to your bow - to add more than one idea, skill, plan, etc., that you can use if it is needed

emotional engagement - a personal connection based on emotions (either positive or negative) between someone and something else

strain - a feeling of stress and worry that you have because you are trying to do too much, are dealing with a difficult problem, etc.

deflect - to keep (something, such as a question) from affecting or being directed at a person or thing

taxing - requiring a lot of effort, energy, etc.

fall into a trap -get into a bad position or situation from which it is difficult to escape

pitfall - a danger or problem that is hidden or not obvious at first

bearable - possible to bear : able to be accepted or endured

Do you work in your second language?
Do you agree with the author about these benefits?


  • BassaBassa Posts: 103 ✭✭✭
    Hi @NatashaT ,
    Sometimes happen to work in my second language and yes! I can confirm that you are less emotional engaged but I think this is why the first effort is to be understood by the other person (a client in my case )
    I think also that when you are spoking in your mother language knowing a lot of therms sometimes you go complicating the life by yourself trying to use a difficult vocabulary ;
    Or, also, when you are in disagree or fell really angry the “bad world is behind the corner”...so you have to pay attention especially in the formal situations !

    Instead when spoking second language , you have obviously a limited vocabulary so you try to better use the limited worlds package in your pocket avoiding strange terms.....also you feel like that this limited vocabulary can be understood and well accepted by your interlocutor because he knows that you are trying to do the best !

    About benefits I don’t know onestly !
    Surely learn a language is an excellent training for your brain :)!
  • filauziofilauzio Genoa ( Italy )Posts: 1,919 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I don't work in a second language, so I can neither confirm nor deny the article's statements; my only experience is when I'm being asked for informations by tourists in my town.
    The like happens when I'm a tourist myself, visiting abroad.

    In such situations, I test my little English on the field.

    I admit, my first experiences abroad, dealing with a language not my native one, were rather awful and embarrassing.

    I still recall asking for a serving of ' meal ', when I actually meant saying ' meat '.

    On another episode at the restaurant, I struggled trying to pronounce the word ' sausage ', ending up trying to describe the food as a curved piece of meat ( maybe I said meal this time too though... sigh).

    So, maybe, the calm analytical attitude comes from the time it takes to skim, in your mind, over your grasped vocabulary so far.

    You have to enlarge it as much as possible, in order to accelerate your second-language response, to grow nimble-minded as your mother tongue colleagues.

    This way you can eventually make it to kind of juggling with three/four synonims or equivalent ways to express whatever in your mind, fitting the circumstances.

    You add an extra string to your bow, as the article said.

    I read that children are able to grasp different rhytms, pitches, sounds of voices since their first months of life within their mother.

    A baby still in utero, develops functional auditory system from the third trimester on.

    At this stage, the loudest voice the baby can hear is the mother's, whatever the language spoken.

    They develope an attitude to grow bilingual, supposing the mother's language is not the same as the one they will be taught in school.

    Therefore, we should encourage this ability of children to grow bilingual, from their first years of life onwards.

    Being bilingual, I suppose, comes among the necessary skills of the future; it gives you the magical ability to switch from one task to another, at just the snap of your fingers, possibly even faster than your phone's app.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
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