This article is about a child who finds the English language difficult. It happens only in India.
(Arey baba English nahi aati aapko. Very Bad.Mere child to fine fine English bolte hai.)
India is a country, where a language is an identity of your knowledge and skills. India had a very long past of slavery under the Britishers. Many Indians are paranoid about their great English-speaking capability. People are concerned about their knowledge of English grammar. A good thing for perfection but not at the cost of their native language. We proudly judge the people of India on their knowledge and understanding of English. I am not prejudiced against any language or culture.
Just trying to explain my difficulties in a judgmental-based society, where people used to predict knowledge by your language speaking ability.
Here, I am writing down one of the hilarious incidents of my life. I was in the 5th standard. My parents completed their education in Gujarati medium school. So, they decided to put both of their children in Gujarati medium. I was a brighter student (Just assume for a while) but never got ranked in the top 15 positions. From the beginning, my parents told me about the English language and its importance of it. I am not able to understand, why they are emphasizing getting a ranking in the English language?
They never forced me to excel in the Gujarati language subject.
In the beginning, I am confused about the pronunciation of English words. Like I used to formulate anyone’s name in English (of course a Gujarati name). I was a little bit confused about English spelling and its construction. Let me explain it through an example. I used to spell cat as “KET” because I used to write a Gujarati name Ketan as Ketan.
Have you understood my problem?
Today, it is just a matter of jokes or fun for you, but that’s the biggest concern for me. Now you have some clarity about my struggles.
Let me take you through my horrible experience. I still remembered the day I cried. It was a day before our English test in the 5th standard. Our school was very liberal in English subjects, so they gave us important topics before the exam. Our English teacher told us about the short note, which had a higher chance of presence on the question paper. The short note was about a hungry fox trying to catch grapes from a tree. Even I had a very clear idea about that story in Gujarati. I started mugging up the story at night and suddenly cried out loud. The reason behind that was funny. I did not know the meaning of a hungry word. The height of insanity. Since childhood, I cannot mug up things but, I am profound in making sentences and stories in Gujarati. Here, it’s English. I don’t know any aspect of grammar and spelling. My whole concentration was taking into mugging up the spellings. So after a certain point of time, I just felt exhausted and burst into tears. My sister was sitting next to me. She just laughed at me and started doing mimicry of mine. I felt very humiliated. My grandfather was good at English literature, but I didn’t listen to his pieces of advice about seriously studying English. My father came and told me to sleep but I didn’t want to. After a classic melodrama, my mom came and told me to not take a bit tense about the exam. She told me that no one will scold me for getting lower grades in English subject. I slept with tears in my eyes. Next morning that short note was there in question-paper, but not present in my mind.
Language should not become a barrier to gaining knowledge. English is a language. Don’t make people believe that without English their life will be devastated.