As we celebrated International Mother Language Day yesterday, NT KURIOCITY spoke to youngsters to know why it is important to speak, read and write in one’s native language; how one can learn the language outside school and college and what should be done to improve students’ spoken and written knowledge of the languages
I believe that reading and writing in one’s mother tongue is very important as it defines and gives one a unique identity. Apart from schools and colleges we can learn these languages by interacting with people and communicating in the native language. In order to improve students’ knowledge they should be exposed to such languages from childhood.
Vishwajeet Shetgaonkar, Agnel Institute of Technology and Design, Assagao
In this diverse world it is our mother tongue that keeps us connected to our roots. Learning to speak, if not read and write, is essential for the language and culture to stay alive. Several apps such as Multibhashi are easily available if one doesn’t want to adhere to the routine of classes.
Shraavani Nayak, Goa Medical College, Bambolim
The first and most important step is to provide students with books. They are lacking a reading environment and we choose to blame them for the lack of reading that is happening. I think, somewhere, we are failing to provide the sort of reading environment that we were provided with by our parents.
Gauravi Khaunte, assistant professor of English, Parvatibai Chowgule College, Margao
A mother tongue is a language that makes you feel comfortable as you can express your emotions correctly by speaking and communicating in your own language. It helps in second language learning and also connects culture and people. We should respect every language to avoid racism and promote unity. Also, loving your mother tongue does not mean disrespecting others.
Shruti Govekar, Agnel Institute of Technology and Design, Assagao
We often come across heated arguments on primary education in mother tongue, the sole reason being better understanding of the language. That being said it is important to learn as many languages and not just one’s mother tongue. A language should never be a barrier, but always a means to promote culture. To improve students’ knowledge of languages, spoken interactive means like the mass media, movies, books, skits and plays can be employed as entertainment grabs attention better than rote learning.
Anusha Naik, Goa College of Pharmacy, Panaji
Language is pathway to express our feelings and emotions. We prefer our mother language when we need to express our emotions. According to me that is why it is important to know to write, read and speak in the mother tongue. Reading book and newspapers is the best option for students to improve their knowledge of the languages. Another way is by listening to persons speaking in the language. Therefore, interacting and speaking is the best way to improve knowledge of languages. Diary writing is a very good option too.
Gourang Gokuldas Naik, Government College of Arts, Science and Commerce, Khandola
In Goa, Konkani is the language that is spoken by all but read and written by a few. Schools are the basis for learning a mother language. Improving a students’ knowledge should be done by a teacher, the parents and then society in the right manner. Parents must encourage their children to learn, read and write in their mother language.
Divya Dinesh Naik, Goa Engineering College, Ponda
It has been seen that every child understands and learns to speak in the language it hears. Speaking the mother tongue connects the child to its culture and helps it grasp knowledge and skills which help in overall development. Education in the mother tongue helps the child learn faster and in a better way. It also helps the child take interest in various activities and also shows increased self-esteem. Apart from school and college one can learn the language by speaking with family members or with those in the neighbourhood. Also reading books, articles and newspapers published in native language can help.
Nitin Shetye, Agnel Institute of Technology and Design, Assagao
It’s really important we know our mother tongue as it can help us connect with our culture and people. It can also be beneficial for commercial purposes. Speaking your language at home with family members and also having it as your subject in schools and colleges can help you know your language better.
Shannon Sequeira, Govind Ramnath Kare College of Law, Margao
Learning to speak in the mother tongue is the first step of education and mother tongue helps one communicate in a better way. Home is the first school, so parents are first teachers who teach children their mother tongue. Parents should speak in the mother tongue to facilitate better learning.
Vaibhavi Ambe, Maria Bambina Convent High School, Cuncolim
The diversity in India’s spoken languages is very vast. With English being a global language, the stress on speaking in English is viable. But who says you should know just one language? It is scientifically proven that primary education done in your mother tongue forms strong roots for a child especially in maths and science. To add to your vocabulary you can always read novels and biographies by famous writers in your mother tongue. Parents should also stress on speaking in the mother tongue at home because that is the best practice. The usage of mother tongue should be exercised as and where possible because many of our regional languages are on the verge of becoming extinct. And we wouldn’t want that to happen to our mother tongue, would we?
Janhavi Shriram Athalye, Goa Engineering College, Ponda
It is a known fact that a child learns the best in his or her mother tongue. Reading is one of the most important things in anyone’s life. It is through this habit that one can not only improve language but develop creativity and new ideas. It is therefore important that one reads not just syllabus prescribed books but other literary works in one’s mother tongue as well as other languages.
Kalanand Bambolkar, artist, Ponda