QUICK CLASS 3: How did you learn English? – B2/C1

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What are the most typical ways Brazilians learn English?

What are the biggest challenges to learning English as a Brazilian?

 

 

Hello, welcome to the English show! My name is Matthew and I have taught English to foreign students for 8 years in Brazil.

 

And I’ve had the pleasure of having many conversations throughout the years with English teachers who are not native speakers of English about how exactly they got to speak the language so well, as they do. And I’ve collected a few stories that I would like to share with you.

 

My colleague Bianca is now 42 years-old, but she has only been an English teacher for the past three years. Before that, she was an accountant working at a business consultancy company. She decided to give it all up after spending two months in South Africa to study and perfect her English. That’s when she found her true calling, which is teaching. But of course she was already fluent before that. So how did she do it?

 

Well, when Bianca was a teenager, she started studying English at a school in her hometown. She was the best student in her class. And when it was time to decide what to study in college, she opted for English language. But when she graduated, her father, who had a small accounting firm, became ill and so she decided to take care of the business. She then got a second degree in accounting at a university in the United States. That’s where her English skills really reached their full potential.

 

But not everyone needs to study abroad to learn English. Andrea, who’s twenty-eight years-old, is now a manager at an educational company, where she gives training to other teachers.

 

She has never studied abroad and she is mostly self-taught, which is really impressive!

 

Now my friends Mario and Julio have actually lived abroad, working in various services mostly in the accommodation sector. So they spoke English every day for years.

 

And then there’s my best friend Rogerio, who although has never even been abroad, he speaks English with hardly any accent. He says that his mother was an English teacher so grew up in a very bilingual environment, where he picked up English effortlessly.

 

Rogerio has been a translator and a teacher for well over ten years now and has plans to open his own school.

 

But do you know what they all have in common? A passion for a world in English! They get a lot of the news they read in English, they know a lot about the culture in English-speaking countries, they listen to music in English, watch movies without subtitles and generally have a healthy dose of English language in their daily lives.

 

And how about you? What steps are you taking to improve your English?

 

 

ACTIVITIVES

  • Listen to the audio two or three times and answer the following question:

How did everyone mentioned learn English? (Bianca, Andrea, Mario, Julio, and Rogerio).

 

  • Match the words and their correct definitions:
a)     To give (it all) up1) During; from beginning to end.
b)     Calling2) To learn something without formal instruction.
c)     Throughout3) An urge to lead a particular way of life; vocation.
d)     Ill4) To stop making an effort or doing something.
e)     Self-taught5) Requiring no mental or physical exertion.
f)      To pick up6) Having acquired knowledge on one’s own initiative.
g)     Effortlessly7) Sick; unwell.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answers: a-4; b-3; c-1; d-7; e-6; f-2; g-7

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