The importance of studying language arts

Language arts form the foundation for all effective communication. They constitute an individual’s ability to comprehend, construct and communicate meaning through critical reading, thinking, writing and speaking, in many different forms.

Language arts form the foundation for all effective communication. They constitute an individual’s ability to comprehend, construct and communicate meaning through critical reading, thinking, writing and speaking, in many different forms.

by Marilyn Eisenberg — 

The fundamental need to exchange meaning and share human experience is the special province of the language arts. All people share this need, including students, who learn language best when it is frequently addressed in their schooling and when they are invited to explore it effectively through literature.

Language arts form the foundation for all effective communication. They constitute an individual’s ability to comprehend, construct and communicate meaning through critical reading, thinking, writing and speaking, in many different forms. These skills are essential to the health and quality of our culture and are becoming more critical with the modern explosion of communications media.

Devices like computers and telephones allow us to exchange information more quickly over greater distances, but they can be used effectively only when we are skilled in the basic language arts.

The study of language helps students control their lives by becoming more effective thinkers. Students must become engaged as active learners to develop good thinking strategies. They need to practice language skills and receive frequent quality feedback across all areas of study in order to improve.

Parents, teachers and other adults must continually encourage students to maintain the level of interest in language they had when they first entered school. A challenging language arts environment creates an enjoyable student experience, while stressing essential skills as a central component of their lives.

Collectively, the language arts — reading, speaking, thinking and writing — constitute both a discipline in its own right, like mathematics or science, and a means of communicating about all other disciplines. Without a proper command of these essential skills, it is impossible to explain, consider or understand the other disciplines.

 

Marilyn Eisenberg, MFA, is director of public relations and marketing for The Sonoran Science Academy, 4837 E. McDowell Road, Phoenix, AZ 85009. 602-244-9855.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 24, Number 4, August/September 2005.

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