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Learning English (Adult Education)


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Not sure this is the right section. I'm in the UK, my girlfriend in Thailand wants to improve her English, and I'm fully supportive of that. At the moment, the aim is just to improve her conversational English, rather than reach a specific standard.

She signed up, super enthusiastic, to a local language "school", run by an elderly Thai who is multilingual (all Western languages, Russian, Japanese). He's had a stroke or something, and is grubbing out a living tutoring from an office. His course was a 50 hour 25 day challenge sort of thing. I thought this was pretty intensive, along with holding down a job (2 hours in the classroom, and daily homework, and then your day job), but everyone learns at a different rate. She writes English fine, its just pronounciation and grammar, which is 80%+ of a language I suppose, where she struggles.

Not sure what I expected would be the end result after 50 hours. She's more confident in trying english, speaking to her shop customers more, so she says. The 50 hours are drawing to an end, and she wants to continue with online lessons with the old chap, as she likes him (I think, in Thai speak, she pities him, fetching him his saline packs and wound patches. He's paralysed down one side and obviously has mobility issues, after watching his lessons). She says she is finally getting to understand his point (ie. the penny dropped).

I can see the method in the homework; learning verb usage by repetition. While I have an academic background, it doesn't involve teaching a language. My gut feel is to move to maybe a couple hours classroom/zoom type teaching, once a week, with more repetitious homework to ram home the point. Pronounciation I am not so worried about; there will always be words that are "difficult" to pronounce if not seen before. But to avoid sentences that start "Me". Homework will present structured learning, which she can do at a time better suited to her (currently, its been school for a couple of hours in the morning, work, and get the homework done before sleep, 7 days a week).  My thinking is maybe this more relaxed approach, then in 6 months, another intensive session, perhaps working on pronounciation.

Anyone with a teaching background have a view. She's in her 40s, she has learnt Japanese before, after 6 months technical training in Japan, and she is positive about learning a new skill, but like all of us, that becomes more difficult later in life.

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