2011年5月10日火曜日

there are no shortcuts

I was in the supermarket checkout line talking to Amy. Well actually having quite a weird conversation where I smile and talk in my nice voice while strictly forbidding her in quite strong words from climbing under the chain to the unmanned register next to us, hanging off the back of the shopping trolley or leaning around the register to see what's on the other side of the screen (impending the operator's ability to scan stuff in the process....) you know, just the usual....

So the register operator exclaims 'wow!'and asks Amy if she understands what mummy is saying. Poor Amy thinks the register operator has been understanding the whole conversation and looks a little shocked. She pouts and says yes. And miraculously stops doing everything I was asking her not to do. This gives the register operator a chance to ask how I taught her English.

Just talking to her, the same way she learnt Japanese.

Hmmm.... I was thinking of buying that CD...

CD?

You know the one Ishikawa Ryo uses? You only listen 5 minutes a day and you can speak English....

Ohhh...Speed learning?

Yes! What do you think?

This conversation always amuses me. I'm an English teacher. I teach right here in the village. That fact is quite well known. And yet I often seem to be asked my opinion on various English learning devices. Usually those promising maximum results for minimum effort.

If I have time I get on my soapbox and go on about a holistic approach to language learning, active learning versus passive, use it or lose it etc etc.

If I don't have time or think my kids will go nuts if I go through my "English learning takes effort" speech again I just smile and say:

"Oh, sorry, I have no idea- I haven't used it."

And as for Ishikawa Ryo? He's a pretty impressive golfer, a cute kid and has confidence in bags so I'm sure he'll go far. His English though?


There are no shortcuts!

4 件のコメント:

jojoebi さんのコメント...

and after 13 years here, I still can't pronounce that Ryo sound!

Clare Maree さんのコメント...

Great find. I see the ads for that English system on the alc website every day, and I've often wondered what his English is really like. My husband's best mate said he tried the system, but gave up in disgust after about a month. The extent of his English is saying to my kids "I cannotto supeeku ingurisshu. Pureezu tiichi me." That was nearly four years ago and my kids still laugh about it.

bastish さんのコメント...

Thanks for making me feel like a looser!

I hate hearing about people in their teens or twenties who are much more accomplished than me. There should be a blog-feed filter that protects against that!

Cecilia さんのコメント...

I love it that he is so confident with his English - such a great role model for Japanese kids who don't grow up with a whole lot of English around them and think they can't speak if they aren't perfect. Such a refreshing change from Matsui who I don't think I have ever heard speak English.