Site icon Nora McNamara

Smelly cat

The past two weeks I’ve been teaching 3 women new to Africa some language learning techniques, the same ones I’ve used.  They’re practicing using these methods on French before they move out to a village to learn the language they’ll be working in.

Today I was bonding with them after class. We were watching an episode of Friends where Phoebe teaches Joey how to play the guitar-by practicing in the air.  He questioned this method, and she said something like "No touching a guitar!" 

At this point, one of my students turned and looked at me. 

Great.  I’m teaching language acquisition like Phoebe taught guitar. 

Ok, there are certain parallels.  It’s a strange technique to them, they’re not using textbooks, a teacher, or any traditional methods, and I’ve asked them to delay doing a lot of talking in their sessions for the first few weeks.  But, um, I speak a few languages slightly better than Phoebe plays the guitar?  The methods are based on solid research with proven results?  My hair isn’t blonde?  Help me here…

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