“I love teaching, and I love English, I am thinking a lot about teaching English abroad after college!”
“I know, you told me.”
This conversation happens a lot with me. Perhaps it has even happened between you and me. 😀
Now, today, the beginner level students informed me they cannot understand me when I speak.
It was not my tempo. It was some other element. I asked Angie about it, and she very helpfully and kindly told me these insights– I must speak with simple, basic words, and not tell long stories. I laugh at myself: how funny, how bad! She is right, and I will have to watch myself. Of course has been hinting at this to me before, but I wasnt getting it. Sorry Angie.
She also suggested to just think about how I learn a foreign language, and what types of things are confusing to me when I am learning.
Well, in my experience of foreign language learning…
Reading Italian and Spanish for me? Easy. Listening to native speakers? Near impossible, because they go too fast, or, because they go on too long. It takes hyper focus to comprehend a foreign speaker, and long stories are exhausting. It becomes easy to loose the thread of meaning, misunderstand, or get a sort of glaze over your ears.
Learning has occurred: Speak simpler and speak shorter. Im going to have to focus on this. Its hard for me when I get going…
Also realized for future career navigation: it is going to be best if I speak the language of my learners, and that the best teachers I have had of foreign languages are the ones with personality, that do lessons on the board or overhead interactively, and have the ability to tap into the class sense of fun and motivation.