Maisarah Abdulai?LNG1100 (#6)December 6, 2017   ???Growing up with two language (English & Hausa) I was born and raised in Ghana. During the early 90s, my parents migrated to the United States whiles I was left in Ghana to live with my grandmother, I had the privilege to learn English since English was taught in school. As Hausa being my native language and also the most common language spoken in Ghana. I was very glad to learn English as I knew that I would be joining my parents soon in the United States. I came to join my parents, four years after they migrated. I knew starting school would be a challenge not because I didn’t know how to speak English but learning something new.

 I was able to speak fluent English, even though I did not understand most of the things that were said to me. By the time I reached High school I had already gotten used to American English and also my accent wasn’t as strong as it was in Middle school, so I will say I adapt to American English since I can understand what they are saying now.  Growing up with two different languages and accents was very hard because I had to decide between the two. Sometimes when I speak with my friends I see myself using my Ghanaian accent, but then switching back to my American accent right after I realize in order to fit in with my friends. At home, when my parents speak to me in my Mother’s tongue I make sure I reply in the same dialect. Anytime that I go back to my country, I find myself running back to my Ghanaian English accent because I feel like they may not understand what I am saying. One advantage of speaking two languages is that it makes me feel like I fit in because anytime I am here in the united states I can speak clearly as long as going back to Ghana.

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Even though my parents speak Hausa with me at home, I still feel like Hausa helps me understand something in English because let say I don’t understand something in class or a math question I start to talk to myself in my native and figure it out. Hausa also helps me memorize stuff and remember it quickly. The advantage of growing up bilingual is the easiest, fastest, and the most effortless way to learn another foreign language.

 shows that people two or more languages are more likely to succeed because there are jobs now that only accept bilingual people so it could be easier for the people who can’t speak or understand English. Also, it helps you work in another country, interact with people while traveling. The disadvantage is that you can’t really speak your language in front of people because some might make fun of you or look at you weird. Also, you can change your personality when speaking the different language. As time goes on, both language can confuse you at some point.

I focus too much on the English language because it is a universal language and you could get a job everywhere you go but as for Hausa it is not a controversial language like the English language. I preferred English better than my native language, because I feel like as for Hausa I know how to speak. As for English, I want to know more about united states is a place where communication and speaking was everything no one will give you anything you have to speak frequently another to get or gain something. Growing up with two languages, it helps me balance both languages because I know when and where to speak it, but sometimes it is challenging because I have to keep up with Hausa in orders to remain fluent. Also, I like the fact that languages don’t change meaning both English and Hausa doesn’t change so I can still hold on to it.A study shows that bilinguals are better at multi-tasking because children’s/young woman who grow up learning to speak two languages are better at switching between tasks than people who only speak one language. Speaking two languages makes you more open-minded and sensitive to other because they understand other bilingual people.

Another study shows that growing up with two languages enhance your listening ability. The same study shows that growing up as a bilingual your often also bicultural. According to this article ‘Advantage pf being Bicultural pro-François Grosjean stated that having a greater number of social networks, being aware of cultural differences, taking part in the life of two or more cultures and also understand other people who also grew up speaking two or more languages. ?In Conclusion, learning American English was a challenge when it was first introduced to me, but now I have overcome that challenge. I am able to defend myself in the outside public world of English with no shame at all. I now understand how fortunate I am to know another language different from my own.

For me, it is important to still have my first language because it is a way to retain the African culture. It is just the way I was raised to believe.   ???


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