Decolonising the English Language in Our Children’s Educational Development


The human society is glued together by language. In fact, language is the only tool that makes the interaction and the togetherness of the homo sapien to be possible. Language is also the vehicle that we use to convey our culture and tradition. This implies that a people’s culture can be fully appreciated through the language of the owners of that culture and that no culture can develop or progress beyond the level of development of the language of the owner. With this strategic importance of language to culture and of course, to nationhood, this paper is of the view that the education of the Nigerian child should be in the language that will reflect the culture of the child’s environment. If the otherwise is done, it amounts to alienating the child from his culture, nay, from his roots. The language situation in Nigeria is a common knowledge of everybody. The English language is generally accepted as the medium of instruction in the country’s schools and there has not been any alternative to this. However, this paper argues that there is the need to indigenise or domesticate the English language used in the Nigerian schools such that it will reflect the environment and cultural background of our children. This, it is believed, becomes imperative if the education of the Nigerian children, and of course, their personality, will not be totally rubbished.