Hey guys. So, before we dive into pronunciation, I just wanted to give you a little bit of background about our teaching philosophy and approach to English.
So, my name is Foster. If you haven’t learned that by now, I’m Foster :)
I’m originally from South Carolina, a little state in the Southeast of the US. Super redneck. But super beautiful.
So, like most Americans, I studied a little bit of Spanish in high school but didn’t really learn anything.
I was using the traditional method of using textbooks, learning vocabulary and grammar, and I “knew” a lot of Spanish, but I couldn’t really keep a conversation or understand native speakers.
Then, in university, I travelled to Spain and got really serious about it.
So I continued using the traditional method, and after 4 years of intense study, three trips to Spain, a 40-page senior thesis about immigration in Spain, I still couldn’t speak fluently.
I could read and write really really well, but that wasn’t my goal. My goal was to make friends with Spanish speakers.
So fast forward a few years, and I went to Brazil for a master’s program. This time, I knew that the traditional method wasn’t going to work.
This time I decided not to use any textbooks or study grammar, and 100% on the sounds of the language and speaking to people.
So I listened to a ton of Brazilian music. I trained all of the most difficult sounds. And then I talked to everyone I could.
Using this method, I was conversationally fluent in more or less 4 months.
Furthermore, it was easier for me to make friends, learn new vocabulary, grammar came more naturally, and general, the entire process was a lot more fun.
So, long story short. I recognized that language is about sounds and people connect through sounds. So I started applying this new idea to my English classes and eventually it developed into what is now our language learning philosophy: English for humans.
In the next video, we’ll dive into exactly what that means.