In this article, an English as a Second Language (ESL) classroom is used as the context for studying how foreign language learners develop vocabulary. Alghamdi (2019) states that for such learners, vocabulary can be challenging and require significant efforts to master it. The purpose of the article is to understand favorite learning methods that are used by ESL learners and the ways it is obtained in the ESL environment. To make the study more transparent and comprehensible, the author defines such terms as ESL, English as a Foreign Language (EFL), Second Language Acquisition (SLA), and formative assessment.
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The literature review shows that incidental vocabulary acquisition is the most widespread of vocabulary learning among ESL students. The different levels of engagement and task types are considered to be important in SLA, including negotiation, its observation, and meeting new words in context. The use of a dictionary, vocabulary notebooks, and extensive reading are examined by several scholars, who stress the importance of these methods (Alghamdi, 2019). The author of the chosen article uses purposive sampling technique to enroll participants to apply such procedures as class observation and questionnaire.
The results indicate unpredictable outcomes since it was expected that ESL learners obtain the majority of words outside the classroom. On the contrary, it is found that 44% of participants learn vocabulary during reading classes, 28% – from outside the classroom, 17% – from writing and listening classes, and 11% – from speaking classes. Group work allows students to learn most frequently, while dictionaries are the second favorable method. These results show that teachers should implement different activities, such as making new words practical, using visual means to engage ESL students, and encouraging them to work in groups. It seems that teachers should also examine their students’ favorite methods of learning to integrate them in SLA.
Alghamdi, H. H. (2019). Exploring second language vocabulary learning in ESL classes. English Language Teaching, 12(1), 78-84.