Teacher Diaries: Mr. MacDonald – Love Speaking

When thinking about skills we learn when acquiring a new language, perhaps speaking is the one we can make the biggest impact with. While it might be considered a good personal attribute, people will rarely comment “Oh, that person is such a good listener”‘ in regard to their second language ability. Likewise it’s very uncommon for others to first hear of you through your writing. Consequently, it often falls to speech to make your first impressions.

Speaking confidently and being willing to give it a try is a gateway to new experiences. While living in Hong Kong, I’ve been fortunate to travel to several different countries. Although impractical to learn a whole new language for a short trip, learning the basics and being willing to give it a shot goes a long way. You’ll end up getting yourself into places and eating new foods that you wouldn’t necessarily otherwise try. I’ve found being a good listener helps here too. Using your other language skills as feedback to improve your speaking is a sure fire way to make quick progress.

My advice is not to be afraid of new experiences, to speak up and be heard and that will open up the world to you.

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