One of the readers who reads my blog asked me this question the other day.
“I’ve been taking English lessons at English conversation school for many years, but I still cannot speak well. I’m very disappointed and not sure if I have to continue my lessons.”
I totally understand how she felt because I had the same feeling before, and I thought it was not her or me feeling like this. A lot of Japanese people are still having trouble speaking English although they go to school to be able to speak English fluently.
Why is this thing happened?
There must be some reasons for that. So today, I’m going to talk about two major reasons why your English has not much improved although you’ve been taking lessons at school for a long time.
Your time commitment is not enough.
One of the two reasons is that your time commitment to speak English is critically low.
How long is your English lesson? How many times do you take lessons a week?
How much do you get to speak in your lessons?
Some of the people taking English lessons tend to think as “I will be able to speak English fluently someday because I’m taking the lessons.”
I would like to tell them “THAT IS NOT TRUE!!”
I’m not saying that taking English lessons is bad idea. What I’m trying to say is that it is not enough to take English lessons without committing a lot to speak English.
If one lesson is 50minutes, do you speak English for the whole time? I guess the answer is no.
Your English teacher asks you some questions and you answer the questions. If you could use the whole 50 minutes only for yourself, that would be nice but the classes are usually group lessons so you have to wait when your class mates speak to the teacher. That means you don’t get much time to speak English although you take lessons to speak English…
English is a communication tool, so it is good to communicate with your teacher and class mates in English, but only a little bit of communication is not enough.
If you want to be able to speak English fluently, the only way to success is to SPEAK A LOT!!!
If I say something like this, many of you think “yeah, I know what you mean. I total agree with you.” But only one or two of you actually listen to me and start speaking. (So which are you?? I’d like to know..)
Don’t wait, don’t think. Just do it!!!
I was not be able to speak English fluently when I started to study English. (of course…) I wanted to be fluent in English, so decided to take lessons at English conversation school. I had lessons for two years but my English was far away from being fluent. I was very disappointed at that time, but at the same time I knew what I have to do. I had to practice more!!
I took some lessons at school. I was a student. So I know how the students feel about learning English, and also I have teaching experiences at school. As I have experienced both being a student and a teacher, there is one thing I’ve found out. A lot of students expect teachers to talk to them and wait until they get to talk to the teachers.
I was one of the students waiting for teachers to talk to me, hoping that my teacher would find me and help me how to speak English.
And I found a lot of my students were waiting for me to talk to them in lessons.
Of course your teachers will help you speak English because that’s what they do, but what if they are busy and don’t have time to talk or help? In this case, you don’t have to wait at all.
Although no matter how busy your teachers are, if you go talk to them and ask them for help, they will happily make time to help and talk to you.
You don’t have to wait when you speak English. If you want to talk, just talk! Don’t wait!
You don’t have to think when you want to talk. If you want to talk, just talk! Don’t think too much!
Thinking sometimes stops your acting. A lot of Japanese people think carefully about English grammars or making errors, but don’t worry about those things. Grammars and errors can not be collected in your head. They will be collected by talking to others.
The time you commit to speak English is closely related to how fluent you can speak English.
So if you would like to be fluent in English, don’t wait and stop thinking. Just do it!!