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Aug 30, 2020

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Transcript (only the interview without the intro and outro: 

I was born in Moscow and I've been living here in Moscow for all my life, you know, So, English is not, the first language that I learned the first language that I intentionelly learned was German and, I reached the C one level. And after reaching it, I decided not to move to Germany. And so, 10 years left and, I can admit that I have already almost everything forgotten, you know, and one year ago I decided to, learn English because it's the, the most popular, the most spoken lingua franca yes in the world. And so, I took free intensive language courses, in the language school here in Moscow.

And then I understood that, it's not enough, go to the courses and to learn that English, we should like, you know, immerse ourselves in English as much as possible. And at this moment, I started watching a lot of series on Netflix, YouTube, videos, Ted talks that is written, a lot of writings, articles, newspapers and so on.

and then I realized that, my ability to speak is not really good in order to solve this problem, I decided to, To start learning, like, study language, with a native speaker. I think when you reach, a high level of any language, it's better to learn it, with native speaker because only they can feel, this deep meanings in phrases. Yes. or something like this.

So that means It was kind of your idea. You got the idea to take lessons on itutaki. Is that right?

Yes, exactly. And, so at the beginning of this year, I started learning English. So is, It's Udemy? And Italki. Exactly.

So how many lessons did you have on Italki?

I've had about, 20 or 30, lessons with, with, uh,a tutor yes, something like this and what's interesting there are lots of tutors there on by talking and it's relatively hard to choose, someone whom you can work with. Yeah, because everyone expects, diverse, things.

Yeah. Expectations, Someone wants to learn like drama. other people want, to improve their writing skills. other people just want to, have, conversations with people and, when you leave. in a country where English is not official language, and people don't really speak English well, then, these platforms, like Itakie or something else, they can really help you to find someone and especially someone who is qualified to teach, English as a foreign language.

How exactly did you pick your teacher? One that suits your learning style?

So, yes, as I said, it was difficult because, I saw about a hundred profiles. It's not a joke.

Did you watch the introduction videos?

Yes. so on I talk to each, teacher, each tutor, has, his profile page.

and in this page you can find some description about, this tutor. You can find some information about how experienced they are and they also provide their like video introducing about themselves they tell us, which approach they have , how they teach us English and.

So I didn't want to find just someone who I can speak with, because, so it depends some people can learn any language by speaking. it's not about me at all. I need to read a lot, I need to write a lot. and I need, like, you know, Like, prepare, something, before the fall lesson and after watching about a hundred profiles on Italki, I choose about four or five tutors, that I found interesting from him. and, so I started. Nowadays I have one tutor that, is perfect for me.


okay. So, so first you took lessons with several teachers and then you decided and picked one, is that correct?

Or yes, exactly. I had, so first, trial, you know, trial lessons with, three, different teachers. and, I chose one . Italki provides, an opportunity to take like trail lessons, with, with a tutor, it costs less than usual, lesson with them.

And, what is the teacher doing that you can improve in your language? I mean, does he correct you? How can we imagine a lesson?

Okay. So I chose a tutor who sent me, like a homework. Usually it is, an article from a newspaper or it could be also a video and with this material , He also , sends me like questions. Yeah. I need to work on this material. So, so, for example, let's imagine that it is an article, any article. So I read this article. I. Underline some words, some phrases that I don't understand or I'm not quite sure, what it means and, when we start our lesson we discuss, I tell him, like a summary about this article, what I think about, this, topic. generally, then I ask some questions what a have about, particular phrases, words. he explains me, and, yes. And, throughout our conversation about this, he also provides, some explanation, when I, tell him something wrong like mistakes and so on. yes. And, like, and in onothher part writing, so, he sent me, questions on. On these materials and I helped to write, some text. it doesn't matter how long it will be. So it depends on me. and, we discuss the texts.

We find together, some mistakes and he explains why I was wrong in this place of text or, how to say something better. Nice. So this is Allah ordinary, lesson. And

could you give instructions to the teacher? I mean, maybe you wanted to have things in a certain way or was it that the teacher has his style and he explained to you how the lesson works and then it, happened like the teacher wanted it to be, I mean, do you have a say in it how the procedure goes on?

Or of course, so, yes, you can always adjust your lesson and approach that. you and your teacher, have throughout this lessons, you can, for example, you can choose a topic that you want to discuss just cause, or you, you can ask it.

So, basically you can ask everything you want. Yes. It's about language you can ask any questions. And if this question doesn't relate to the topic, it doesn't matter. So, first of all, secondly, yes, you can adjust, the lesson and approach, that you have. for example, I asked my tutor, that we have more conversations throughout lessons and no problem.

could you improve your language skills drastically after the 20 or 30

lessons you had.

I can tell you that, I became more confident about language. so as I understand this process of learning language it's a matter , of your immersion in language.

You can immerse yourself, in English with, or without a teacher. It doesn't matter. but a teacher can help you to make it better and more quickly and so I think that after this amount of lessons, I became more confident at least.

Okay, great. And, are there , other tricks you want to give to language learners? I let's say you, you find a teacher for three bucks. would you say it is more wise to go for a more expensive teacher you know, I think it's like personal thing. Yeah. you can like someone. just because of voice or appearance or something like this. I don't think that it's the best thing because if you're, if you feel comfortable with someone is better. Certainly. so what I will suggest, first of all, you have to watch a profile of teacher. you have to understand, which approach they have because so basically , there are a lot of tutors there, who like speaking.

Yes. They think that, speaking and having conversations is, the essential thing. , but by learning a language, it's, it's true. But, you can have conversations with, with any person you want. It's not necessary that this person will be a tutor or a qualified teacher.

Yes from qualified teacher, I expect that they have their own, approach how to teach, people better. And. So I, I think that if you just want to have conversations, There are, tutors who are not qualified is just, people who, want to speak, who maybe they also learn, for example, your language and two, you can like, exchange, your knowledge yes.

Between, languages. But if you want to start there, so choose a qualified tutor.

Okay. What about the VIDEO what happens after the lesson? Do you keep it,you save the video files from the lesson to learn from it or. It doesn't matter at all.

So usually I don't record, our lessons. sometimes I do it, and, I do it, if the topic is important for me.

or if I feel that I'm not really well like seasoned, in this, on, on this topic and, The reason why I record will be like, I want to listen it later on and I understand my weaknesses. So usually it's about this because, each mistake I make, each, mispronounced, pronunciation.

my tutor will suggest me. How I should say this or this thing. And so it doesn't turn the matter, but, it's quite a useful if you want to realize your weaknesses. Okay.

Okay. And do you think, is this method also good for shy learners? I mean, taking lessons online. Or is it a, maybe be a problem? I mean, you are there with a foreigner and there is the camera. do you think it is never the last, a good method for that? So Orwell, they feel awkward.

You mean if it doesn't is shy? Yeah. maybe, maybe, but, what, Oh, what I can say about this or that qualified teachers? They usually, . They usually experienced, working with shy people. Yes. And they can, and they can, like improve their self esteem or self esteem of , students. And I think first of all, for, for shy people, if you start start, your lesson online and do you feel like you're completely. A disaster, you can always switch off.

Okay. so I will suggest, you'd better try. Yes. And if you feel, that it's not your thing, then maybe it's better to go to some language school, or

do you remember any awkward situation in a lesson. And maybe with your first teachers,


in the trial lessons maybe, or, or anything that was funny or an anecdote or something that comes to mind, maybe not, but, I'm just asking.

so it's all this, really. How to describe this. It's like, you're always a bit self conscious when you speak a foreign language.

And therefore if you don't know a simple word that is really simple in your language, or like, I don't know, like smartphone. Yes. If you don't know this word is, it's always like, Oh, my God. What's wrong with me. Yeah.


And, but so we have to realize, we have to understand that, language doesn't come into our brain by, on their own or on its own.

we have to just to start it to start the heart. And so they're very them. Will be, no situation that we, , may or can feel, , like embarrassed maybe. Yeah. It's just a learning process.

I took several lessons, , actually on Italki,


that is about some years ago. And the funny thing about is that I felt more comfortable with a Chilean teacher who, who taught me English, you know, it's, it's just a funny thought, I think because, well, it is a non-native teacher, but for me, he was the best teacher. And because for me was not like a lesson . It became like a friend, you know, we, we talked a lot. We had the Skype conversations, but it was not like, like a English lesson. It was just like talking together with, with a friend. So I remember that that was awesome.

I ended up, I think it's sometimes happens when , it's huge and the student became friends. it could be, it could be,

yes. Yeah. And what about your future, or do you have any plans? Will you stick with this plan and take more lessons online or where is your language journey taking you?

so I don't have a really particular like goals. Yes. In this. I just want to improve my English and. like not only into the language, but also into the culture, this American culture, or maybe British culture. so, so my plan is to, to learn step by step at yes. At not really fast pace of just ordinary.


that sounds like a great plan to me because I don't like the notion or, three, learn a language in three months or so. I don't like that

because yes, of course.


First of all, it's impossible to learn any language in three months. we should admit it.

Thank you. See you. Bye. Thank you very much. Bye.


Upbeat Party by Scott Holmes is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial License.