Introduction to Fluent English

Good morning, Good afternoon and good evening depending on where you are. How are you?
“I decided to jump on the bandwagon.”
Have you heard that phrase before? To jump on the bandwagon? It means to join in with something fashionable.
For example, “Many people are giving up alcohol for January, I’m going to jump on the bandwagon and do it too”. It’s a pretty useful phrase.

Now, because this is the first ever podcast, I want to take a little time to explain who I am and what my plans are. My name is Ross and I’m an English teacher from the city of Glasgow in the UK. You might not know Glasgow, but it is the 3rd biggest city in the UK. It is in Scotland and although the weather is often bad, it is a very lively city. Normally. Just now most of the shops, restaurants, bars, museums and other attractions are closed because of the coronavirus pandemic. So now, all we have left is the bad weather!

I have been teaching English for many years and have helped students from all over the world to improve their level of English. Of course, I believe that it is important to use textbooks and traditional methods to learn a language, but I also think we should learn in context too.

When babies learn to talk, normally they don’t use grammar textbooks. They learn from the adults around them – their mother, father and families. They gradually improve their understanding by listening and repeating words. They learn new words in context and, over time, they build a full understanding of the language. 

Of course, babies have some advantages. Usually they don’t have to go to work so they can dedicate a lot more time to their language learning. Additionally, they don’t have to worry about all the things adults worry about. They don’t have to do housework or chores. They don’t have to catch up on a netflix series or soap opera either.

However, adults also have some advantages. Most of us are smarter than babies and can choose how and when to practise our language skills. We have smartphones and can listen to podcasts on the way to work, in the car, during classes at university or whenever we want. This is where the theory of “Comprehensible Input” comes in. 

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