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How to Learn English

Posted Jan 14 2009 4:54pm

Pearl Alexander teaches English in Japan. She blogged:

The typically unintelligible and extra-syllable-laden speaking tests delivered to me by the students had a lone girl who stood out with nearly perfect pronunciation, however quite imperfect grammar.

I was completely astonished.  Was she taking extra classes outside of school?  If so, why wasn’t she delivering the typically rhetorical machine-gun speech like most of the juku students?

We got to the last question on her test: “What do you like to do in your free time?”  She answered: “I often listen to music.  I like Avril.”

At Tsinghua University, I had a similar experience. One of a dozen art students giving presentations had much better English than the rest. Did you live in America? I asked him. No, he just watched a lot of English TV and movies. Tsinghua students watch a lot of Friends, not to mention Prison Break and Heroes.

I found a Chinese movie to watch ( Together With You ) but in one player there is no sound and in another the English subtitles don’t appear! I listen to a lot of Chinese on my mp3 player but it is pretty boring. I should try to find some Chinese songs I like and get translations.

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