Straight from the Horse’s Mouth
As a teacher, I often find myself giving students advice on how to learn languages. This makes sense, I mean after all, I have 20 years’ experience as a teacher, I have studied language learning and I am a language learner myself.
On the English Students Worldwide Facebook page we have been asking people to give their tips for how to learn languages more quickly. We have had lots of responses from teachers, but that is not really enough.
You see, everybody is unique. There is no one perfect way to learn a language (believe me, if there was I would be a rich man by now). What works for me, might not work for everybody else.
This is why, in my classes, I always try to find some space to encourage students to share their ideas and language learning strategies. Sometimes I hear things that I think would never work for me, but they obviously work for that student, so why couldn’t they work for another learner?
I call this space in my classes the ‘Horse’s Mouth Time’.
There is an expression in English: ‘Straight from the horse’s mouth’. It means you have some information that has come from a reliable source because this source is involved with the business. In this context, it is my students who are directly involved in the business of learning a language.
The advice comes straight from the horse’s mouth. So here at Online Language Center, along with English Students Worldwide we would like to hear from you, the horses… err… the students, the ones who know what works for them and what doesn’t.
We’d like to run a worldwide sharing session to allow students to share their stories about how to learn a language. We’ll show them on Facebook, include them in blog posts and who knows, if we might even collate them all into an e-book.
Feel free to leave your advice here or on the Facebook page and we’ll be in touch to talk about sharing the best ones.
A note from Rob:
I want to join Stephen in inviting everyone to join in with our project. Just a bit about English Students worldwide. I started this a few months ago as a way to help students and teachers share ideas, tips blog posts and the like. We are over 2200 strong in over 150 countries now and growing daily. Many thanks to the hundreds who have been sharing their posts and tips with us. But we want more. For a group to really work well, we need more student input, hence, Stephen’s idea for study tips from students. Please join our community of sharing, caring and learning so we can all help others with their quest. Post a comment on the ENGLISH STUDENTS worldwide page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/englishstudentsworldwide/
Stephen Greene has been a language teacher, teacher trainer and materials developer for 20 years with experience of teaching in Poland, Taiwan, London, Russia and Brazil. Before travelling around the world he came from Birmingham in the UK. He holds an MA in Linguistics, as well as a Diploma in Teaching to Speakers of Other Languages from Trinity College, London. He writes about his experiences of teaching at tmenglish.org and what life is like bringing up a bilingual son in Curitiba, Brazil at headoftheheard.com.