Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Learn English from native speakers

No doubt there's great benefit in learning English by talking with a native speaker. But most people don't realize that talking to native speakers may not be the fastest way to study English for everybody. Here's some discussion posted to a language study forum six months ago.


I don't completely agree with you on "当然是和母语英语的老外或外教学口语效果最好". It's not true in all cases. My friend is the president (or school master) of 若亚语言学校 ( She told me many of the students in her school started to change their preference a few years ago from preferring foreign teachers to Chinese teachers, because they slowly realized that in Chinese teachers' classes, they actually improve their English faster.

(I have no connection with that school. I mention it only because the president was my school mate.)

> interesting point, is that a general case, or specific to that school only?

I don't have statistics. But I believe it's a general case in most language schools in China. It should not be a rule that applies to English study in general. Suppose you do have a long-term close relationship with somebody fluent in English and that person is e.g. your spouse (so he or she is infinitely patient!!), then almost definitely it's better if he or she is a native speaker.

Judy, creator of 若亚语言学校:


我接触过不少学生,为练习口语花费不少精力,效果却不尽相同。关于是否需要和母语的老外练口语,我个人觉得不能绝对。如果有大把时间,而且又遇到文化和教 育程度都不错的母语老外,那么,恭喜你!不过,真实的语言环境中,比如雅思考试、BEC考试或者对外贸易的交流等,经常会遇到不同口音的英语,让听者一头 雾水。所以,我建议练习口语还可以考虑多听不同的录音,然后跟着相对专业的人士练习---无论他是否是母语的老外.经常的情况是:如果一个非母语的人员说 一口漂亮的英语,他/她一定有独到的体验,这种陪练者会更加的可遇而不可求.