This is the third in a new series of podcast episodes about brain-friendly language learning. When I began teaching English as a Foreign Language, I intuitively used my coaching skills so I began research language coaching. Just before the USA went into lockdown due to the Coronavirus pandemic, I enrolled in Rachel Paling‘s course to become a certified Neurolanguage Coach®. In May of 2020, I talked with other Neurolanguage Coaches about their approach to language coaching. In this episode we discuss the benefits of one-on-one and group language coaching.
About Petra Navel
Petra has been working as a self-employed Neurolanguage Coach® since 2005. She and her husband founded English2Business which offers onsite or online English language coaching for professionals engaged in global business.
In this conversation, I asked Petra about her experience working with a group of people at the place where they work. We talked about some of the ways group coaching differs from one-on-one coaching. Here are some of the takeaways.
One-on-One or Group coaching? Each has its charm.
- One-on-One online coaching sessions offer the opportunity to provide personalized attention.
- Group coaching offers the possibility of discussions with a variety of different perspectives and opinions.
Why language immersion isn’t always the best way
- Coaches who study languages begin to see why learners make mistakes. To discuss this creates better stronger connections. Comparing the native and the target language helps the brain connect new knowledge to what it already knows
- Immersion can be stressful. Confusion naturally occurs when we are stressed.
Tips for Intermediate and Advanced English Language Learners
- Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Petra told a colleague that she had a date with her hairdresser. The colleague explained that in Ireland “a date” means a romantic meeting. This lead to laughter and a more relaxed conversation.
- Use language fillers to give yourself time to think and structure your speech. Examples:
Okay, so. . . .
You know. . .
Well. . .
Hmm. Good question. . .
Actually. . .
Believe me when I say that. . .
You know what I mean. . .
At the end of the day. . . (what really matters in the end)