co-founder of "Online-Academy of English».
Common situation: you are learning English for a long time and great build dialogue with the teacher, but abroad for some reason you can not say a word. Even simple situations put you in a dead end: you are not able to speak to a shop or to ask how to get to the museum.
I'll tell you why this happens and how to fight it.
What to do before traveling abroad
Suppose, in the summer you are going to America. Before you pack your bags, do three things: learn the cultural characteristics of the country, Consider a situation in which you have to communicate with the local, and, of course, pull linguistic skills.
1. Overcome the language barrier
To start communicating with foreigners, it is sufficient to know only a few words: you can wave a hand and say hello. But for this you should be comfortable with other cultures. If you stand there and think about how to quickly leave - you the language barrier.
Communication is verbal and nonverbal. Verbal - is the use of words. And when you shake a man's hand, smiling at the meeting - is a non-verbal version. The language barrier is the complexity both in verbal and nonverbal communication in with other cultures.
If this barrier is, no matter how many times you go abroad. Progress in learning English will be slow, or not at all. You can quickly disappointed: what I teach a foreign language, just can not use it?
The language barrier can be broken by itself or during training with the teacher. Better, of course, turn to the professionals - they will help save time and energy.
Ideally, in the first month of training in the linguistic center or language school should start lessons with native speakers. First, let it be very short lessons. You need to get used physically, and stop being afraid of: to sit on the contrary, to wave, smile and say «Hi!».
Practices can not be postponed: the more theoretical knowledge accumulate, the harder it is to start talking.
If you can not find a buddy is offline or do not have the courage to talk to a foreigner in person, you can use special online resources.
Find a service where you can free communicate with native speakers - on Skype or using special mobile applications. Choose those where there is a video - you need to get used to seeing the interlocutor, to hear spoken language, accent and intonation.
Here are some resources where you can practice in communicating with foreigners:
- 6 different applications to communicate with native speakers of a foreign language
Note the two conditions when searching interlocutor:
- He must be a native speaker - British, American, Australian. Representatives of other countries will not be able to give something that gives media.
- It is important what country you are traveling. Want to develop skills across the globe - communicate with Americans, because it is the American version of English has become an international. If you are going to, for example, in Australia, New Zealand or Ireland - communicate with representatives of these countries. They have their own colloquial lexicon and peculiar pronunciation.
2. Put the task on every trip
Learn from mistakes. Analyze your weaknesses, consider the difficulties encountered last time: could not agree on renting a car, To withdraw money from a bank or buy a train ticket?
Develop some standard situations, find words and phrases to them and consider how to build a dialogue. For example, you need to go to the store to buy souvenirs, or go to the market for groceries. Make a sign and write single words, phrases, and in some cases they can be used in it.
Repeat recorded several times - the more, the better. And use the crib, find themselves in the appropriate situations.
3. Learn cultural features of the country
The ability to build dialogue - including non-verbal - it is important not less than proficiency. You have to understand how to operate in typical situations: when going to the store to shop, ask the administrator to fix the air conditioner in the room, or buy tickets for the tour. You can do the right thing, if before the trip to experience the cultural peculiarities of the country.
On the example of America, I will tell you how to behave in different situations.
Imagine you are walking down the street and just make eye contact with a stranger - the Americans in this case it is customary to greet. Usually a person says:
- Hey, how are you doing?
In response should smile and say:
Learn how to make small talk
Americans are used to make small talk - small talks. They will ask, how are you doing, what do you think about the weather, about the evening. This is an easy and effortless conversation without forcing frank.
- How about the weather? (How do you weather?)
- Beautiful day, is not it? (A beautiful day, is not it?)
Refer to the other party on behalf of
All the service sector staff will contact you by name. It is a known technique to place the person to yourself, so do not be afraid to answer the same: the consultants in the store and the staff at the reception always have badges.
When complete the dialogue and will achieve what you wanted, be sure to smile and thank. Americans appreciate it. Also eat the response structure, "please", "do not mention it."
- Thank you so much! (Thank you so much!)
- You're welcome. (You are welcome.)
leave a tip
In Russia it is done at the client's discretion, in America tipping required. More than 10% of the amount of the check post can be less - it is impossible. The waiter low wages, they practically live on the tip and the next time you may even refuse to serve.
If you follow the generally accepted rules of conduct and use a living language spoken, you can go and for "their". For example, my friend knew only a few words, but when you come to the US store, smiled and said:
- Hey, guys! (Hi guys!)
And he asked: "Oh, what an interesting accent! Which state are you from?"
How to expand your vocabulary abroad
Once you have completed all the preparations and sit on the plane, to begin practice. Already at the airport you can get a new experience and knowledge.
1. Get used to the presence of foreigners
Yes, first it will be uncomfortable. But you have to physically get used to the presence of foreigners. For example, just stand with them in the queue at the airport at passport control.
Then take it a rule to go to places where there are many native speakers of shops, cafes, restaurants, museums. Over time, you will no longer feel uncomfortable in the midst of other cultures.
2. Watch and repeat
See how others behave. In America, for example, it decided to welcome the visitor who comes to the store, and ask him how things were going. These are the rules of etiquette, and you simply smile and politely say hello. If you go down and lowered her eyes, not saying a word, it may find it rude. Therefore, do not fuss and watch the behavior of the surrounding.
3. Watch and listen
Look for the familiar the words everywhere on the price tags, signs, signposts, information desks. Try to catch these tokens in the flow of speech. So you learn to hear how they sound in the conversation - and a foreign language will no longer seem incomprehensible gibberish. Repeat the words and copy the pronunciation of native speakers.
The next step - try to distinguish between phrases and sentences. Listen to announcements in airports, subways, railway station - they often repeat the same structure. Listen, how to communicate in a queue at the reception or in the supermarket, notice the manner of communicating, phrases and words. Try to play them with the same intonation, when you will reach to turn in a shop or ticket office.
4. Take the initiative to communicate
Come to reception and say ask the towel, hair dryer, a bottle of water, a spare room key - anything, model situation.
Important! Do not be afraid to make mistakes. From the first, the second and even a third time, you can not understand. Set a goal - to explain what you want, in any way. Show gesture, draw a picture. When you reach your goal, it will be easier to understand where you made a mistake and how to say it correctly.
If something went wrong, you can use a program-translator. But do not abuse the automatic assistants - in their work many inaccuracies.
Finally, I note: to consolidate knowledge and get new ones, is enough only once or twice a year to travel abroad. Good luck!
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