Method and Tricks
The method is appropriate to all clients who want to use their language skills and start speaking without any hindrance. The teacher keeps pushing a client to speak. The teacher helps the client to improve his/her language skills and to do away with his/her psychological obstacle to speak a foreign language.
I will not promise “English without work and fast.” It is said: no cross, no crown and I could say: no cross, no English. I can promise that your level of English will increase in direct proportion to your time investment into the language, under my consistent professional expert supervision and with my continuous support.
You can expect me to give you as much homework as possible – I consider filling in exercises, which you can easily do at home, being a complete waste of time during our lesson, expensive for you on top of it. We will check our homework in our lesson and I will answer your questions if you have any.
Following my kind advice concerning your homework and swatting up idioms and phrasal verbs will be in your (English) best interest. BBC programmes and translation method will help us enormously with the task. I will shoot Czech sentences at you and your will translate them, not work for word, into English using idioms and phrasal verbs. The method will be also useful for our grammar practice when I occasionally fall on you with an inexorable drill.
Another part of my lesson is reporting news about anything that had caught your attention, of course in English. This is a way how I save money – I don’t have to buy a newspaper :-).
I can promise you discussions about interesting, sometimes even controversial, topics to make you speak as much as possible. We will talk about things that are interesting for you. Your English will thrive in the friendly environment where you do not have to worry about saying nonsense.
Singing students will be definitely happy to support and develop their English with English songs. I learnt about plenty of songs through my students when we were discussing and singing their favourite songs.
We will build your personal vocabulary tailored to your needs and we will test its knowledge in our lessons :-).
Before we start:
Contact me to discuss your needs and my timetable. I will send you a test and ask you to fill it in and mail it back to me to get a rough idea of what your level of English is before our first lesson – our first English interview. I will assess your spoken English during our first lesson and we will go through "Needs Analysis." We will select the most suitable materials for you and discuss what you expect from the course. Choosing the most suitable high-quality textbook for you is fundamental for your successful studies as well as a balanced mix of speaking, listening, drill and homework. Extra materials will help us tune the course according to your individual needs.
I will produce my master’s diplomas (Mgr. and MBA) and proficiency certificates (CPE) during the first lesson or anytime later when requested.
At the end of the school year adult students who complete a course get Certificate while children get Vysvědčení with a written assessment.
Tricks how to enhance your English as much as possible:
Join the students that have understood the fact that they themselves are responsible for the key regular practice and that a lesson with a teacher is mainly for revision, new input information and checking your direction. My son plays the violin and one could say the case is rather similar there. He needs to prepare for his lesson and he understands that he cannot make any progress in music without practising at home, ideally on a daily basis. And this is the same with a new language. One cannot see a substantial progress without homework. The more homework you do the better results you get.
Turn English into your hobby (love it) and give it a high priority (respect its importance). Plan your “meetings with Lady English” in your mobile. The Lady must be VIP for you and you should cancel or postpone a meeting with her only in case of emergency! The more time you give her, the more she will blossom and thrive. Planning and changing your schedule is necessary for learning a language. It is similar to building a new house. You also need to prepare a budget and allocate time to building and mastering a new language. The more time you put into studying the language at home, the less money you will have to spend on the course. It is great to be talented and talent for languages does make studying easier but it cannot spare you the necessity to invest a decent amount of time into studying and to do it regularly. Both regularity and time pave the way to mastering the language. Set achievable goals what you want to manage in English and when. Your goals do not have to be Cambridge exams but just realistic planning and not cancelling meetings with Lady English could make a good enough goal (“only serious illness or death can be an excuse” :-)). Consistency will lead you to victory.
Air your meeting room for English well because oxygen supports you brain activity. Do not lie down so that your head is not in a sleeping mode. Turn off all your background sounds (TV, radio, other members of your family if possible ) because they automatically divert your attention and pointlessly reduce the efficiency of your study.
It is always better to go to English classes and keep “brushing it up” in order to retain as much of your active English as possible, than to let go and be slowly drifted back to the depths of passive knowledge or even forget most of it . But there are students like this. These students do not have regular meetings with Lady English at home and the outcome of their studies sadly corresponds with the situation. During our lesson we do try to prevent their English from drifting back to the passive state and we do what we can. We can move forward very slowly in case students are able to remember more than what they forget. It is a pity that students cannot take pleasure from any more significant progress.
An individual lesson plan, individual pace and individual approach to a student make an ideal mix for the most efficient progress in learning a language. The student needs to work hard during each lesson as well as at home. The same applies to the teacher. You cannot find it in big courses full of students. It is difficult to have such drive and be able to keep it unless you fall in love with English. The good news is that it is not so hard to fall in love with it. Identify what you like doing and become better at it with the help of English. Or use English to make your hobby more popular abroad. Set up a club, translate your website… Above all have fun :-). Discover your own motivation why you want to have meetings with English and learn more and more words. The more words you learn and the more “little hooks” you get with them, the easier it will become for you to remember other new words. It is like making a train go. It is not easy and it is slow at the beginning but once set in motion, you will find it easier to push the train and the train will be going faster and faster.
When you choose an English teacher, ask them about their qualification and ask them to produce their diplomas and certificates. It is often the case that a cheap lecturer = cheap qualification = cheap and low-quality performance. Do not let yourself be taught by teachers who pride themselves on a bit higher level of English than that of your own. Do not let yourself be taught by native speakers without teaching qualification, without deep knowledge of grammar and without a sound lesson plan. Such teachers come unashamed and unprepared to waste a whole lesson in a pointless conversation. You’d better spend your time with them speaking for free in a bar or restaurant.
Plenty of links from "Useful links" section will help you find somebody who has the same hobbies like you do and who would be happy to go out with you and chat in English. Or you can as well stay at home and chat with someone from the other side of the planet over the Internet. If you find the right motivation, you will not have a problem to an English partner to chat with. Ideally your life partner although you might already have the best Czech partner for your life you could ever wish for and thus you might not want to change this happy state :-). Do not worry - you will not look silly if you do not understand everything at once. Everybody is learning things and everybody is making mistakes, even native speakers :-). It is natural, tolerable and common.
Fondly set up your personal vocabulary book. Its size should correspond with the size of your pocket or bag so that your little friendly vocabulary could be always with you and close at hand and it could entertain you every free minute you have. For example, when you are waiting at the doctor’s or going by metro. Vocabulary is important building material for your English. When you learn new vocabulary, say it aloud and write it on scrap paper or tap it out on the keyboard of your PC. You will memorize correct spelling when you repeatedly write new words down and you will practise correct pronunciation by saying words aloud. You can record your voice and play to yourself what your English sounds like to other people’s ears. Do not be taken aback by a different pitch of your voice because you hear your own voice differently. To be also written down in your vocabulary: idioms, collocations, phrasal verbs, specific prepositions used with some words, even whole sentences as examples of usage for more difficult words. Mark words that are difficult for you to remember and revise them more often than the others. Revise new words both ways: cover English words and try to remember them and then cover Czech words and try to remember Czech words. When you say whole sentences aloud, swap sentence elements for other words to practise your promptness and pronunciation. Reread your textbook articles (or any other articles) aloud because this is also the way how to remember collocations and improve your pronunciation and fluency. Your reading an article aloud may not be very fluent at the beginning but when you read the article for the fourth time, it will be a different kettle of fish and you will definitely sound a lot better.
We need to forget and remember each word several times until it gets into our brain and stays there more permanently. It needs to be turned from our short-term memory into our long-term memory. Forgetting things is normal and healthy. This is the way our brain gets rid of unnecessary information to avoid being overloaded. We just need to persuade our brain by repeated revision of a new word that we do need the new word. The process of forgetting things applies not only to vocabulary but to grammar, too. You do not have to be afraid of the fact that you have not mastered one thing and you are being flooded with new information. Trust your brain; it will cope with the information flood if you expose it to a regular English pressure :-).
Tune yourself up to be optimistic and praise yourself for every little progress you make. Do not feel depressed about a film or an English presenter you don’t understand. It is natural to be a bit disappointed but do not give up. Give yourself a chance to listen to English as much as possible and absorb its rhythm and sounds of English words. In the course of time you will make out more and more words and eventually you will be able to understand the film and the English presenter if you accept and follow my advice given above. Time and assiduity do wonders for your English.
At first you will be able to understand what you read and hear - this is passive knowledge of English. But only after this, you will be able to express yourself in English – this is active knowledge of English. Regular practice and revision will take your English from the passive state to an active one. Regular self-study, ideally on a daily basis and combined with regular English lessons, will take you, step by step, the furthest. A series of regular shorter studying sessions is a lot more effective than one extra-long study. Run quickly through the things that you have covered with your lecturer before you go to the next lesson to “loosen the soil” a bit for the coming “seeds of English.” Thus you can also prepare questions about what you don’t understand and you can use the lesson most effectively for yourselves.
There is nothing like a stay in an English-speaking country for a long time and without any Czech supportive friends. This is not something anyone can afford to do.
But everybody can make up his or her own mini England around them. Surround yourself with English films, English news and English books. Find an English speaking friend. Stick post-it notes with English words around your flat, especially on the places you often look at. You do not expect to understand 100% of everything you see when you go abroad to an English-speaking country so you cannot expect to understand 100% of everything in your mini England at once. It makes sense . But you will settle down in your mini England and step by step your consistent stay will bear its fruit there.
First watch a film in English without any subtitles, then with English subtitles and finally with Czech subtitles if you still do not understand the story. If you do it the other way round and you start with subtitles, you will practise reading (subtitles) in the first place and reading will suppress your concentration on your understanding of the new listening. There are not a lot of people who will play subtitles to what they say when you meet them in person and their subtitles will not be, most likely, in Czech :-). Czech dubbing is nice but it is not very helpful when it comes to learning a new language. Reduce your dubbed films only to Mrazík (Jack Frost) and films with the gendarme Louis de Funès, all excellently dubbed into Czech.
Visit interesting lectures in English (and uninteresting ones, too, if you have enough time ) and when you are on a plane, take only English newspapers to read. You will look cool and well-travelled and you will learn something, too :-).
Use videos and listening that comes with your textbook. Let them get to your body and brain at home and in your car (only listening in the car, of course). Have the listening in your mobile phone and listen to the recordings over and over again wherever you can. This listening together with your lovely friend Vocabulary will fill in your free minutes when you are waiting for something.
Buy yourself a reader and download English books into it. If you don’t understand a word when reading, you just tap on it and an English-English dictionary will pop up with explanation to help you. I presume one can also download an English-Czech dictionary into the reader so that you could read Czech translations of the words you want to know. There is also Vocabulary Builder available in Kindle reader. The words you have tapped on are stored there and thus you can go back to them and learn them later on. After you learn them, you can either delete them or move them to a folder with the words you have mastered.
Borrow books graded to your level of English when you go to your public library (graded reading).
Realize what kind of memory you have and what works best for you when you study.
People with visual memory learn words by the place where they saw the words („it was in a green frame at the top on the left “). These students „hypnotize” new words and try to engrave them on their memory.
Our memory usually consists of more kinds of memories, like haptic, taste and olfactory memories which can help us with a bit limited vocabulary (smooth - hladký, prickly - pichlavý, sweet - sladký, sour - kyselý, musty - zatuchlý, humid – vlhký).
If you have made it here and you are reading these lines, you have most likely digested all 9 pieces of advice stated above about looking after your English field and using good quality seeds for sowing in order to maximize your crop. If you follow the advice with all your heart, I do believe that your English plant will be extraordinary and you will be proud of it … and so will I :-).
5 reasons why to choose me:
- Enthusiasm for English – I use my reason and my heart as well.
- Consistency, accuracy, idioms and phrasal verbs.
- High qualification, friendly and highly professional attitude.
- Friendly and highly professional attitude.
- Continuous education