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Enhancing Vocabulary Acquisition through English-Wolof Cognates

There are core areas of language instruction that no practitioner willing to teach effectively can reasonably disregard. These areas include the four skills, vocabulary, grammar, phonology, etc. When it comes to side or sub issues like the role of cognates in second/foreign language acquisition, deciding how much attention they deserve in a lesson plan is often determined by parameters over which classroom participants have little or no control. Class time allotment is another example. In this article, I share part of my short experience with English-Wolof cognates, which I have been indexing over the past 3 years. I start with a brief historical inquiry into the record of linguistic intermixing between Senegalese and Anglo-Saxon cultures. As this common legacy alone cannot account for all the similarities between the two languages under study, the inquiry has also explored other leads such as the unquestionable influence of technology and what James Lane calls “the pervasive soft power of US culture.” A discussion follows over the different forms a cognate may take and meanings it may bear, in light of research results as shared in the literature. The paper finally shares a practical role-play activity that enacts the trickiness of false cognates.


Auteur(s) : DIAGNE Cheick Sadibou
Pages : 273 à 285
Année de publication : 2019
Revue : Literature, Social Sciences and Didactics – Women, Education and Social Challenges
Type : Article
Mise en ligne par : DIAGNE Cheick Sadibou