As language teachers it’s always important that we keep learning new languages to avoid the Curse of Knowledge.
Seeing as I’ve finished the main part of vol. 13 and that I’m in Russian for workshops in September I thought it’s a great chance to spend a couple of weeks learning Russian – in amongst everything else I have to do of course!
Russian is brand new for me, the only word I know is “hello” and best of all there is a Michel Thomas Russian package – yeah! 🙂
I bought the full Pimsleur Thai programme in April and as although it’s certainly not bad, after just one hour with Michel Thomas you can say things like “I’m not thirsty but I’m very hungry. I know there is a restaurant here, but I wonder if there is a cafe not far away?” Not bad for an hour eh! ( With Pimsleur you’re stuck with “I speak a little Russian” after an hour.)
I also got the Earworms Russian, which is OK, but not really an “earworm” as there is no melody. It’s good for on the subway though when you can’t be repeating with the Michel Thomas course!
Learning with Nursery Rhymes?
As English Nursery Rhymes still seem to be popular amongst teachers (although personally I think they are a very bad idea for language learning!) I also thought I should at least try again. So I downloaded a “Learn Russian with songs” audio book. But yeah, it’s the same thing, a combination of “all Russian” without explanations and old fashioned language (“The more we are together”) that you can’t really use really doesn’t change my opinion of nursery rhymes for language learning – it’s great for feeling like you are doing something, but you’re not actually learning any language skills. A structured programme like Michel Thomas is so much more efficient – and confidence boosting – it’s a shame it doesn’t work with kids!
Anyway, let’s see how I go, the tricky part is trying to make more than an hour a day for learning!
I’ll leave you with a Ninja Tip: Pick a language you’ve never learnt before and try it out, it’s amazing the insight it will give you into how your students are learning – or maybe not!