Language And Language: The Influence Of Language

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Humans are social creatures. We seek approval from those around us and conform to society through language. Language allows us to speak, to teach, to act, and to reflect. Communication allows us to change our perspectives, influencing us throughout our lives. But who gives us this ability: our peers or our family? Although family teaches the basis of language, peers - friends, colleagues, and mentors - ultimately influence a person’s language the most; peers occupy most of our time and pressure us to conform Time spent with a person is key to developing language. When a child first enters school, their environment drastically changes; they now spend over 6 hours with their peers. Continuous exposure to similar kids breeds similar thought and language, especially with a standard curriculum. Time spent with peers only increases as the child grows up. During adolescence, children learn to challenge their parents and become independent. They try to form new, stronger relationships with their friends and develop their own interests, drawing time away from their parents. Even…show more content…
While parents have a large influence early in childhood, peer influence later in life outweighs the impact of parent influence. Parents only teach the barebones of speech, providing the block of language that a person uses. Peers refine that block, adding new slang and colloquialisms and correcting for egregious errors. School polishes the block, teaching the nuances of language and how to wield its many forms. My life exemplifies this process. Even though I primarily learned Chinese early in life, I quickly exchanged it for English during elementary school to fit in with my peers. My friends taught me the slang of American language while school taught me the rules. Spending twice the time with my friends than with my family, I chose to speak English instead of Chinese. I chose to communicate with my peers than with my

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