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پادکست All Ears English

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What to Do When You Can’t Learn Anymore

Lindsay: This is an All Ears English Podcast, Episode 52: Wisdom Wednesday, “What to Do When You Can’t Learn Anymore.”

[Instrumental]

Gabby: Welcome to the All Ears English Podcast, where you’ll finally get real, native English conversation. Now here are your hosts, Lindsay McMahon, the ‘English Adventurer’ and Gabby Wallace, the ‘Language Angel,’ coming to you from Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Hey guys. In this episode, we’re gonna (going to) talk about three effective strategies to use when you hit that wall in English and you just don’t know how to keep going.

[Instrumental]

Gabby:

Hey Lindsay. How’s it going?

Lindsay:

Doing good Gabby. How are you? We’re hanging out here. It’s really raining hard outside.

Gabby:

Yeah, we’re having a crazy thunderstorm here in Boston today.

Lindsay:

Yeah. So anyways, what are we talking about today?

Gabby:

(Um) today we’re talking about what to do when you feel you can’t learn anymore so when you hit a wall, when you reach a plateau, what do you do? And Lindsay, I know you have some really good advice that you shared on your English and Culture blog, (um), so maybe you could share that with us today.

Lindsay:

Yeah, sure. So over on my blog, I wrote about this about a year ago on my blog englishandculture.com/blog and so we started out with one idea. Okay guys, listen this is the deal. What we suggest –these are three ways that you can actually get out of the plateau that you’re on and start making progress again. First way- get away from your native language.

Gaby:

Yeah. (It) might seem obvious, but, (you know), we tend to gravitate towards people of our same culture, same language, because it’s comfortable. So to get out of your slump, you really need to get away from your native language, (you know). Try to spend more time with people who speak English, (um), spend more, spend more time listening to English music, watching English TV, reading English books and so on.

Lindsay:

Or if you have to move, then move. If you’re living in a house where everyone in your home – obviously if you’re living with your family, you can’t move out.

Gabby:

Well, maybe.

Lindsay:

It depends. But if you’re living in a house full of roommates (uh) from your home country, then, (you know), maybe it’s time to look, to (uh), for an opportunity to live with native English speakers… Gabby:

Yeah.

Lindsay:

…or other students of English who speak, (um), at home or get an internship, volunteer in English.

Gabby:

Yeah, there’s (there are) a lot of ways that you can get away from your native language, but just keep that in mind because it could be holding you back.

Lindsay:

Awesome. And then we have another suggestion. Gabby.

Gabby:

Choose a more challenging learning method. So maybe the problem is you’re just not pushing yourself enough. (I mean) be honest.

Lindsay:

(Hm). Yeah, and so how are you currently learning? (I mean) are you actually going out and implementing what you learn, what you listen to with this podcast?

Gabby:

Right. (Um) challenge yourself, set up goals and have maybe a friend or a teacher make sure that you’re accountable for your goals.

Lindsay:

Or if you hear a new vocabulary word or three or four new vocabulary words on this podcast when you get together with your teacher or language exchange partner, actually try to use them. Don’t just go back to the old phrases that you use every time.

Gabby:

Yeah. So challenge yourself to learn more. (Um), I would say, (you know), it’s not only challenging yourself with more difficult (um) lessons or more difficult materials, but (you know), making sure you have supportive material (like), (I mean), we do offer transcripts for the podcast and that’s a way that you can challenge yourself, but support your learning so that you’re getting what we’re saying here on the podcast.

Lindsay:

Yeah. And the last one is to work with a teacher who pushes you. So if you’re at this upper intermediate level that we know a lot of you guys are, you’re at a point where you need someone special who’s going to actually move you, help you move, whose job it is to move you to the next level.

Gabby:

Yeah. Your teacher should understand where you are and where you can be or where you want to be and really push you to get fluent and keep learning. (I mean), I know that most teachers are very motivated and motivating to their students, (you know), but, but make sure that, that your teacher’s doing his or her job.

Lindsay:

Absolutely. And your teacher should be giving you alternative ways of saying things.

Gabby:

Yeah.

Lindsay:

(Um) you guys are at a level where you know one or two ways to say something but you want five different ways to say those things.

Gabby:

Right. Right.

Lindsay:

So make sure that you’re getting those from your teacher… Gabby:

Yeah.

Lindsay:

…and you’re practicing them.

Gabby:

Well, and, and let me go back and say it’s not, it’s not only your teacher’s responsibility to push you. You need to ask for your teacher to push you. (I mean) he or she, they might think that they’re pushing you, but if you don’t feel like you’re being challenged or pushed, then ask for more.

Lindsay:

Yeah.

Gabby:

It’s your responsibility as a student.

Lindsay:

Don’t be afraid to ask.

Gabby:

Yeah.

Lindsay:

That was great.

Gabby:

Yeah, Lindsay, those are great tips and thank you so much for sharing something that you’ve already made (um) on English and Culture.

Lindsay:

Aw, you’re so welcome.

Gabby:

Yeah.

Lindsay:

Thanks for listening.

Gabby:

Thanks guys.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: Gabby what was that sound on your computer?

Gabby: [Gasps] I just got an email from All Ears English!

Lindsay: Really. Oh, that sounds awesome.

Gabby:

Oh it’s so awesome. I can’t believe they wrote to me.

Lindsay:

Oh my god and so what did they say?

Gabby:

(Um) he said (like) they have (like) tips and they have a free e-book for me… Lindsay:

Oh, that sounds so cool.

Gabby:

…and they have a question for me too. They wanna (want to) know what I think.

Lindsay:

Oh my god. That sounds awesome. How can I get that?

Gabby:

You can get on the All Ears English email list at allearsenglish.com.

Lindsay:

Yeah. So guys we’re joking around here, but (uh) we just wanna (want to) let you know… Gabby:

I wasn’t joking.

Lindsay:

Oh, you weren’t joking. I was joking. So we just want to let you know that you should go ahead and get on our email list because we’re gonna (going to) be having some great conversations with (um) people on the list over the next few weeks. We’ve got something exciting coming out.

Gabby:

Yeah and we’ve already been having great conversations. I wanna thank you guys if you already are on the email list and thank you especially if you’ve been responding to our questions ‘cause (because) we love having that conversation with you. So if you’re not in the conversation, you can still join it. Come over to allearsenglish.com and join our email list.

Lindsay:

See ya’ (you) there.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: Thanks for listening to the All Ears English Podcast. We’re here to help you learn English and you can help us by leaving a five star review on iTunes. See you next time.

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