English as a second language can be learnt at any age. Whether you are a fresher in a college or a corporate employee , or a stay at home person the good time to learn English is now. Young Children however outperform adults in the pace of learning a new language. They also develop accents quite easily.
Children’s are more sensitive to acoustic information they acquire and organise the same with a good speed. Adults are known to take more time with unfamiliar sound recognitions . This does not mean that they cannot learn a language easily.
Neuroscience research has proven that the brain develops elasticity and gains more neural connections when an individual attempts a new activity. Solving Sudoku, puzzles, crosswords etc makes the brain expand at any age. The expansion is defined in neurological terms as the formation of synapses. Synapses are circuits that allow you access to a specific information in the future. Each activity you do has a specific neural pathway or synapse guiding it. By learning a new language and putting it into practice you can avoid forgetting the same.
Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh used an incremental method to teach Japanese speakers to distinguish between “L” and “R” sounds in English. Right and wrong answers were shown on the spot while exercises became increasingly more difficult. Within a one-hour training session, students could detect these differences with 80% accuracy even in rapid, slurred speech. Spontaneous feedback helped students improve faster.
Learning new vocabulary and pronunciation comes before grammar . Once you expand your vocabulary this will help you create more synapses in the brain which will aid you in conversation. Remember that an accents looks good however they are not a benchmark for success. Focus on appropriate pronunciation rather than speaking with an accent.