Effortless English Archives

Automatic English For The People

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Tony's Blog

by AJ

I just had a discussion with Tony, a longtime learner with The Linguist. Supposedly I was the tutor/coach and he was the student, but really it felt like the opposite.

Using The Linguist over the last two years, Tony has become fluent in English. He is a native Chinese speaker from Taiwan. During our conversation, we chatted about my efforts to learn Spanish and he gave me very good advice. He discouraged me from jumping into a book like "Harry Potter" at this time, instead encouraging me to seek out easier content closer to my level. That's great advice.. the same advice I give my students.

I don't know what it is, but I often forget basic principles as a student. As a teacher I will give excellent advice. But as a student, I often ignore that advice. I get impatient or frustrated and try to race ahead too fast. In the end, of course, that only makes me more frustrated. But its so much easier to be wise and rational when you are a teacher... because you don't have a lot of emotions, goals, and ego tied up in the learning process. You can see things more clearly.

And that is a very good role for the teacher... to help the student see clearly and choose learning strategies that will be enjoyable and productive IN THE LONG RUN. We can help students take a longterm view that will lead to true mastery.. not just a good score on a semester test.

Tony would make a great teacher. He not only encouraged and help me with my Spanish efforts, he also encourages and helps other Linguist students with their English learning process. He regularly writes a blog in both English and Chinese, to chronicle his English learning journey and provide support for others who are learning English.

Check out his blog at:
Tony's Blog

San Francisco, CA