It's all a matter of 'comfort zone': the native language is the supreme example of 'comfort zone'... Well known vocabulary, well integrated grammar structures and all the unspoken cultural rules that accompany communication. All of the above disappears when faced with learning a new language.
After many trials and errors I began to realize some essential knowledge that applied to acquiring English that no one had taught me. And then I realized that the same principle applied to learning Japanese, while teaching Japanese to Americans. Here are 6 tips for learning Japanese:
Having been born in Germany, lived in Moscow and Kuwait, and studied languages at university, I believe that learning a language is a powerful launchpad for understanding a different culture. It helped me develop a curiosity about other people and an interest in being understood by others that still stands me in good stead today.
The policeman comes into our room. It's almost 10pm, and we have been at the hotel for five hours, but it is clear that there is something he needs urgently. He says a few things to us in Chinese. We give him our now well-practiced blank stares of incomprehension.
Just 5 weeks ago I wrote about how hard it was to watch them struggling each day. Since then they have moved with unexpected ease from a 9 - 1.30pm day (summer hours) to a 9 - 4.30pm day. Even the 5 year old who had only ever been to playschool in Ireland until 12.30 has been thrown in the deep end. But they have coped admirably.
On all my travels I note that children globally can speak up to four languages as their norm. Why are the UK's youth the worst at wanting to and being able to speak not only good English, but any other language?
Apart from distinguishing between substance and style and respecting different modes of communication, the piece offers many practical tips on how companies can boost employees' confidence through building language education into the working day.
A staggering 21 European languages are facing 'digital extinction', according to a new study. Researchers from the University
It’s not just Del Boy who has trouble with speaking French it seems, as two in three Brits have admitted they can't speak
Education and class have nothing to do with fluency. There are waiters across Europe who speak English infinitely better than most British university professors speak French, German or Italian.