This is the first semester that I am taking Spanish 1. For my major, I must take 3 semesters worth of a language (which to me, is pretty much fluency) and I plan on taking them quickly and consecutively. I just had to write a page and a half paper regarding my family. In it I was to write about their ages, their birthdays, physical descriptions, character descriptions and some likes and dislikes. I have a large family and it was obvious from the beginning that I would be “trimming” it down so to speak, but that didn’t stop the apprehension I had as I began to write. In English, this would seem like a relatively juvenile assignment. Actually, I wrote it in English first and it took me five minutes and it sounded rather young to begin with. As I then transferred to thinking Spanish, I began to realize that it’s hard. I was always told that Spanish was the easiest language to learn, but when it isn’t your native language is it ever easy?
I would imagine that for non-native English speakers that our language can seem pretty frightening. There are lots of “rules” and wordage that can often seem strange. I am sure that many students are afraid to speak because they are afraid they will say something incorrectly. That is exactly how I feel in Spanish class every-single-day. My own fear, however, allows me to understand non-native speakers on a whole new level. I understand how nervous they must feel and hopefully I can recognize this and make them feel more comfortable while they are visiting the writing center.