Diction, Precision and Tact: Watch how the English language was taught in colonial Ghana
The diction of some people or how they speak a language might be less important for many people, but it does not negate the fact that getting it right is still a big deal.
That must have been the motivation behind how the English language, Ghana’s Lingua Franca, was taught in the colonial era, even into the early years of post-colonialism.
In a never-before-seen video that has been shared on Twitter, it shows a typical open-air classroom mostly filled with elderly people, sitting behind their wooden tables and chairs and paying attention to their tutor.
The people who make up the students of this class are dressed in their traditional clothes over their shoulders.
The 2:20 video also has the teacher demonstrating and teaching his students such things as “This is me,” and “That is you,” all followed up by hand gestures.
At another point, the teacher walks up to one of the students, and demonstrates the lesson, “This is his head” while tapping his (student’s) head to indicate what he means.
The students then imitated exactly what he had just shown them.
It is worth mentioning that being a former colony of Britain, the English language being taught to these colonial-era Ghanaians was the British language.
The video also conveys a lot of nostalgia and a great sense of pride.
See it below: