Check this out! Some great examples of our students’ progress, and how we at LOS “accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative, latch on to the affirmative and don’t mess with Mister In-Between” (Bing Crosby). Error correction is obviously an important factor in language teaching, but nothing fires up a student like a well-timed and heartfelt pat on the back.
Jarda H. takes a ROUND TRIP when he travels between his holiday cottage, the local town and back home again – probably mixing in the best circles.
Jarda V. explained the reality of business through the medium of Abba: “THE WINNER TAKES IT ALL!” Unfortunately he sang it as well!
When Petra doesn’t like something, it’s not her CUP OF TEA. Can you get more English without being the Queen?
Jarda managed to slip PRIMA DONNA into our conversation. OK, I know, that is Italian, strictly speaking, but used by native speakers of English all the time in reference to people with a difficult temperament. As a bonus, when I asked who he was talking about, he went all POLICE DRAMA on me and replied NO COMMENT!
Míša used a linguistic term CHUNK when talking about a phrase or group of words that can be learnt as a unit.
Jarda described the Czech economy as being ADDICTED to Russian gas. Irrespective of the politics, the register of English is very high.
Petra described what she would do in a particular situation as her APPROACH to that situation – metaphorically, and poetically, walking towards it. This sounds so good to the native ear.
When Petra reduced a potentially problematic situation that is under control” (8 words) to NO BIG DEAL (3 words and an idiom to boot), she moved ever closer to native speech as well as making her teacher a very happy man!
When talking about the organisation of a particular set of circumstances, Petra employed the noun SET-UP, which nicely packaged a number of considerations into one word, which could then be re-used in context without re-listing all the individual circumstances.
Petra put most native English speakers to shame when she referred to one of two options as the MORE IMPORTANT rather than the more common, and grammatically incorrect, most important.
Jarda and I were discussing what athletes do when they retire from their chosen sport, when he volunteered that in the Czech Republic we have a lot of SPORTSPEOPLE in politics. This was a very interesting observation expressed in perfect English, even down to the gender neutral term which shortened the sentence to a nicely manageable length.
Petr now regularly uses the following phrase when thinking about what he’s going to say. He used to say things like “Maybe this way” and “Maybe like this” but now uses “HOW SHALL I PUT IT?” which is as English as the Queen!