jueves, 17 de mayo de 2012

How To Learn English

Kaplan Academy has released this infographic about different ways to learn English. Have a look at it and answer their question, What, in your opinion, is the best way to learn English? Here are my thoughts about it:
  • traveling to an English-speaking country. I know that in our school some of our students travel to countries where English is the native language -they do that mainly in the summer to attend summer courses - but, at school, we have the excellent student exchange programme with Tibble Gymnasium in Sweden and quite a few of our students have taken part in it since it started in the year 2000. English is not an official language in Sweden but everybody speaks it fluently so we can include it in this group of countries. Can anyone share his/her experience -from the point of view of learning English- about his/her trips with us?
  • watching TV programs in English. From what I learn in our classes,  instead of programs, we could say "series" because that is what students are really into. In this sense, I must accept the fact that "Series Yonkis" has done more for the English language in Spanish than all the English teachers together. I do not know, though, which are the favorites among teenagers...
  • watching films in original version. Some years ago, when it was not easy to  watch films in original version on TV, borrowing films from the school was a good way to practise and showing them in class with some sort of projects or work done by the students was really entertaining and educational. Right now I have the feeling that students -generally speaking, of course- are less keen on movies than in the past. I remember showing Dead Poets Society to 1ºBAC students and Real Women Have Curves to 2ºBAC students and I have the feeling that everybody learnt a lot from those films -and not only English
  • listening to music. I learnt English listening mainly to The Beatles and Simon and Garfunkel and singing along to their songs. Whose songs´lyrics do you learn and sing along to?
  • playing computer games. There are a few gamers in my classes, I know. I don´t want to mention any games because most of them are quite violent, but my students´faces (mostly boys, just for the record)  light up when they talk about them. As for the English they learn from them, "to shoot" and "shot" are two words all of them know.
  • reading comics. I do not really hear students talk about comics that much, but I do not know it it is because I just don´t hear about comics (meaning, since I am not too interested in them, maybe I just don´t pay enough attention) or they do not talk about them...

I miss, in the infographic, one method which is certainly not the best but it is the most frequent in Spain: classes of English with Spanish teachers....Many students have learnt English with just that: homework and classwork. It does´t sound fun but it helps.

So, dear students, which method works best for you? I am looking forward to reading your answers

Infographic: How to learn Englishvia Kaplan Blog

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