Reading Passage 15


Online Reading Comprehension Articles 15 - Mother Tongue

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Answer the questions according to the reading passage.

Mother Tongue

First language, also known as mother tongue, is generally the language a person learns first. However, one can have two or more native languages thus being a native bilingual or indeed multilingual. The order in which these languages are learned is not necessarily the order of proficiency. Incomplete first language skills often make learning other languages difficult. Often a child learns the basics of his or her first language or languages from his or her family. The term mother tongue, however, should not be interpreted to mean that it is the language of one's mother. For instance, in some paternal societies, the wife moves in with the husband and thus may have a different first language or dialect than the local language of the husband. Yet their children usually only speak their local language.


1. According to the passage, first language skills ----.

A) take a very long time to develop
B) play an important role in learning a new language
C) are not transferable to the second language
D) can also have negative effects in foreign language acquisition
E) can aid children only in the beginning stages of learning a second
        language

2. We understand from the passage that ----.

A) most bilinguals don't have a dominant language
B) the acquisition of a first language is the most complex skill anyone ever          learns
C) most children have learning difficulties in acquiring their first language
D) one's mother tongue might not be the language of the parents
E) it is very rare for bilinguals to have equal competence in both their
        languages

3. One can infer from the reading that ----.

A) one cannot be a native speaker of more than two languages
B) very few children throughout the world learn to speak two languages
C) it is possible for a bilingual to become more competent in his second
        language
D) bilinguals use their two languages for different purposes and functions
E) only a few people learn to speak his or her mother's language like a
        native

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