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I am not gifted at languages…

ascolta e poi leggi mentre ascolti, have fun.

I started studying English when I was 6. My mother bought me “Magic English”, a trendy video tape for children with weird cartoon characters talking in English. The first time I watched it I hated it.

After that first encounter with English, I studied it again in middle school. I was not impressed.  Honestly, I don’t even remember the name of the teacher.

Then, we get to high school.  Here, my downfall into the world of the English language began.
I hated the teacher, and of course, the teacher hated me. I remember once, to skip a test, I pretended I was sick, she sussed it and gave me a 4. In that year I had N/A or “not applicable” in the first semester.

Another time, I was on a school trip. We were a whole class on a bus and, my friends and I were singing in English, the song had some swear words in the lyrics. The teacher rushed to grab the driver’s microphone and in a high pitched voice said: “All those who sang this song will fail my class”. She actually did it! For real! (This teacher was evil, she was one of those who would go in the bathrooms to catch the students that smoked and then she would proudly take them to the principal office to get some sort of spiritual reward for her hunting skills)

Apart from this, she was also awful as an English teacher. She probably didn’t even actually know the language. She never talked in English in her lessons, she just played a cd and made us sing “feel” by Robbie Williams, but not just once, the whole school year.

After two years anyways she changed school, what did not change though were my English language skills.

When I was at university I took an English test just to get some extra credits. I passed, but I did better at the Spanish test, having studied the subject for only six months in my life, ironic isn’t it?

Now when I go abroad I’m hopeless. I never talk, I even avoid talking when I am by nature very talkative, words just don’t come or come and make no sense. I once was in London and made a fool of myself when a man asked me something in English and after he hadn’t understood my answer, he laughed and told me he had immediately figured I was Italian. Anyways, when all is said and done, I hope not to end up like one of those who give up and say:  ‘’you know ,I am not gifted at languages’’.

I just keep in mind the old saying: if at first you don’t succeed….try and try again.

This story was kindly donated by my amazing student Plotino Lullo Linguadoca, all rights reserved. Of course the song is copyrighted so I hope Robbie is ok with it. Last but not least Magic English really existed, made by Disney. I am not gonna lie, I am not a fan but please watch this and let me know what you think.

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