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Yvonne/[ɪˋvɔn,i:-]/ n. 伊冯(f.)...

澳大利亚WSL教师一席谈

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1、Australian ESL Teacher Presents His Viewpoints

Lixin: Mr. Shaw, as an experienced ESL teacher, how long have you been in China?
Mr. Bill Shaw: I've been in China for nearly five years. I just finished teaching in a college and was invited to PEN (Patrick English Network).
Li: What kind of subjects do you usually teach?
Mr. Shaw: English, mainly spoken English, specializing in conversation. I think it's a big disadvantage of Chinese students. They all have very good written and reading capabilities, but when they come to speaking and listening, they get dumbfounded. Unfortunately, Chinese students don't get enough practice. I find that very hard because the students all learn English, but they don't tend to get together and talk English to each other. But they have to speak English, and only in this way they learn a lot faster. For the students going overseas to study, they have to practice more because they'll need to survive straight away in English.
Li: Yes, they have to do so, but that requires extensive exposure to the English environment. What should our Chinese students do then?
Mr. Shaw: Yes, that's true. Because most of the students that are more advanced here in China with their spoken English have had good exposure by working for foreign companies or have had the experience of traveling overseas. But they do seek out good English magazines such as your English Salon and read them regularly. Besides, they also seek out English corners and practice their English a lot.
Li:Just now you mentioned that you teach spoken English, specializing in conversation. Could you say something about it?
Mr. Shaw: You know, I teach my students how to start a conversation and how to keep the conversation going, but at the same time, keep it short and simple, so the person you are talking to wouldn't be bored. To start a conversation with a foreigner, for example, there is a right way and there is a wrong way. The wrong way is to walk up to a foreigner and say, “ Hey, can I teach you Chinese and you teach me English?” Ha! That happens too many times. You know, the right way is to go along and say to a foreigner, “ Oh, good morning or good afternoon. Welcome to Beijing.” And then a nice polite introduction will go a long way. That person will think, “ Oh, this is a nice person.” and will say, “ Oh, good morning. Nice to meet you too.” The next thing is to introduce yourself and ask questions, such as “ Where are you from?” In this way, the conversation goes along very good. Actually, the Chinese students are practicing their English with far more polite manners. Furthermore, instead of walking up to a foreigner and say, “ Hey, let me show you Beijing.” , you can say in other ways. Always remember, politeness accounts to a lot.
Li: But for politeness, there is a different criterion in China.
Mr. Shaw: Oh, for sure. This is something that I teach in class. I teach them the common thing is that you shouldn't keep others too long from what they are going to do. As an example, the children from central Java in Indonesia who can speak English use the same method. They go to the tourist spots and talk to the tourists, but they don't talk to a tourist more than five or ten minutes. They politely say, “ Thank you very much for your time. We hope you enjoy your stay here.” And then go on their way to find another tourist. While for Chinese students, they've got to learn not to be shy. I'm trying hard in my class to teach them to overcome their shyness, because a lot of these students are going overseas to study. In a new place, they tend to be too shy to make foreign friends. They very quickly go looking for Chinese friends.
Li: For most language learners,they may find it difficult to choose the right style to begin a conversation.What do you think?
Mr. Shaw:Yes,here in China I find people are quite open with the questioning.I have to teach my students that you cannot ask that type of questions to western people, because we would turn around and say, “ Hey, that's not your business.” I teach them the basic rules,such as: you don't ask a lady her age.We don't discuss money even among the best friends.And the other thing is we never discuss anything about religion or politics.These are all common things to know.For Chinese students,they'll have to bear in mind that when you go away,you are not just another person, you are an ambassador for your country. So,if you give people in another country one bad impression, you give all of your people a bad impression.That's why politeness is very important.
Li: So for Chinese students, they have to prepare to fit in a western culture before going overseas.
Mr. Shaw: Oh, yes. They have to prepare for the culture. That's why we spend a lot of time discussing about culture shock so that my students wouldn't feel lonely at a new place facing a new culture and could get used to the culture as soon as possible.
Li: Mr. Shaw, may I ask what other skills do you teach in class?
Mr.Shaw: Well, I teach them listening skills. For those going away to study or work in an English environment, they have to learn to listen, because they need to know what is bouncing back to them so as to reply. Sometimes, what bouncing back to them is so quick, they are shocked, “ Oh, what did he say? ” They are not prepared for a very quick reply. I always encourage my students back home to watch television. I encourage them to listen to the English programmes on TV and in radio as much as they can. One thing with listening skills is trying to listen as a questioning to make sure you have comprehended. Here I want to mention that don't rely on an electronic dictionary, find a good dictionary and use it wisely. By wisely I mean to read all the meanings instead of the first meaning. A really good dictionary with many meanings and many phrases can show you how to use the word, while the electronic dictionary doesn't.
Li: After the English learners having improved their listening, what would you recommend them to do?
Mr. Shaw: I would recommend them to buy good English storybooks and read them. But novel is a challenge, few people could really finish a novel, while for a magazine, one can easily finish one article a day. The variety of a magazine provides the readers with an important cultural experience. I think, short and simple article with good facts can help English leaners as much.

澳大利亚ESL教师一席谈

李昕:肖先生,你是位很有经验的非母语英语课程教师,请问你在中国待了多久了?
肖彼尔先生:我在中国待了已快5年了。我刚在一所大学完成了任教期,后被聘到张士柏英语网(PEN)任教。
李:那你通常教哪类课程呢?
肖:英语,主要是口语,偏重会话。我认为这是中国学生的一个大弱项。他们写和读的能力都很好,但一到听和说就手忙脚乱了。很可惜,他们没有足够的练习。我发现这种情况很难解决,因为这些学生都学英语,但他们却不常聚在一起用英语交谈。但是他们必须开口说,只有这样,他们才会较快地学好。那些要出国留学的学生,就更得多练,因为他们得在海外用英语立足生存。
李:对,他们是得这样做,但这需要广泛地接触英语环境。中国学生该怎么做呢?
肖:是啊,这倒不假。因为在中国,那些口语比较好的学生中,大多数都有好的英语环境,要么在外企工作,要么去海外旅行过。但他们都挑选好的英文杂志经常阅读,比如你们的《英语沙龙》杂志。而且他们都设法找到英语角去多多地练习讲英语。
李:刚才你提到你教英语口语,擅长教会话。你可以就这方面谈一谈吗?
肖:你知道,我教我的学生们如何开始交谈以及如何使交谈进行下去,但同时要教他们做到谈话简短,这样与你交谈的人就不致于厌烦。比如,同外国人开始交谈,有正确的也有错误的方式。错误的方式是,走近一老外,说“嘿,我可以教你汉语,你教我英语,行吗?”哈,这种情况太多了。而你知道,正确的方式是走上前对老外说,“噢,早上好(或下午好)。欢迎来到北京。”接下来有礼貌地认真作个自我介绍,这会大有好处的。那人就会想,“噢,这个人还不错。”于是会说:“哦,早上好。我也很高兴认识你。”然后就是介绍你自己,还可问一些诸如“你从哪儿来”等此类的问题。这样,谈话就会很好地进行下去。实际上,中国学生是在用非常礼貌的方法练习口语。此外,也不要直接上前对老外说,“嘿,我领你转转北京吧。”你可以改用别的说法嘛。一定要记住,讲求礼貌是非常重要的。
李:但礼貌的标准在中国是不同的。
肖:哦,那当然。这正是我在课上所教的,我教给他们通常的道理,那就是你不应占别人太多时间,他们还有事儿要干呢。例如,在印度尼西亚的爪哇中部地区,那里会讲英语的儿童就是用这种方法练习口语的。他们去旅游景点,找游客说话,但跟一位游客谈话的时间从不超过5到10分钟。他们会有礼貌地说:“谢谢你花时间跟我们谈话。祝你在这儿过得愉快。”然后再去找另一位游客谈话。而对中国学生来说,他们要学的就是不要羞怯。我在课上尽量教他们克服羞怯,因为他们中许多人是要出国学习的。而到了一个新地方,他们往往太害羞而不去交外国朋友。他们会尽快去交中国朋友。
李:对大多数语言学习者来说,选择合适的谈话类型是很困难的,这你怎么看?
肖:是的,我在中国发现人们什么问题都要问。我得教给我的学生们,某类问题不能问西方人,因为我们会转身说道:“嘿,这跟你无关。”我教给他们一些基本准则,如:不要问女士的年龄。即使在好朋友之间我们也不谈论钱。另外就是我们从不谈论宗教和政治。这都是些要知道的基本常识。对中国学生,他们得记住:当你只身在外国时,你不仅仅是一个人,你是代表你们国家的大使。因而,如果你给别人留下了坏印象,你就给你们国家的人民留下了坏印象。这也说明了讲究礼貌的重要性。
李:所以对中国学生来说,他们在出国学习前得准备好适应西方文化。
肖:是的。他们得准备适应西方文化。所以我在课上花许多时间讨论文化冲撞。这样我的学生在一个新地方、面对新文化时就不会感到孤单了,也就能尽快适应新的文化了。
李:肖先生,请问你还教给学生们什么技能?
肖:哦,我教他们听力技巧。对那些要出去在英语环境中学习或工作的人来说,他们就得学会听,因为他们得明白别人说了什么才可以做出反应。有时,别人的话回得很快,他们呆住了。“噢,他说的是什么呀?”人家回答得很快,他们没准备。我常鼓励学生回家看电视,鼓励他们尽量多听电视和广播里的英文节目。有一个听力技巧是带着问题听,可以确保你听懂了。我还想一提的就是不要依赖电子词典,找本好词典,用时还要择义恰当。所谓择义恰当,我是说要读所有的释义而不只是头一个释义。一本真正的好词典,一个词有许多释义、许多短语和词组,能告诉你如何用一个词,而电子词典是办不到的。
李:英语学习者的听力水平提高后,你会建议他们再做些什么?
肖:我建议他们去买些好的英文小说来读。读小说可是个挑战,很少有人能真正读完一本小说的;而杂志呢,人们很容易一天就能读完一篇文章。杂志广泛的内容给读者提供了重要的文化体验。我想,简短而有健康内容的文章,对英语学习者是大有裨益的。
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