1 The components of language
If you studied science at school, you will remember that you can take a micro- or macroscopic perspective on nature, looking at it from near or far. You can investigate the subject in question by looking at smaller and smaller parts, for example by looking at the human body, then the organs within it, the organ tissues, their cells and the atoms they are composed of.
But you can also explore the surrounding environment by looking at bigger and bigger contexts, for example an ecosystem, the planet, the solar system or the wider universe.
In a way, studying language is really no different to this. Learning to master a language requires skills and knowledge that relate to the big picture, as well as the smallest details. Imagine a camera lens – you need to be able to ‘zoom in’ and ‘zoom out’ to look at things in different ways. Activity 1 will check your understanding of the components of language and their relative sizes.
Activity 1 Components of language
Order these components of the written language from smallest (1) to largest (6).
Using the following two lists, match each numbered item with the correct letter.
- 1 = e
- 2 = f
- 3 = a
- 4 = d
- 5 = b
- 6 = c