Who are the people behind Lingoda? Well, we have our teachers, our content designers, our language experts, our product managers, our student advisers, and more. We’re back with another Lingoda teacher. This time we meet Ariel, an English teacher from the USA.
Ariel, please tell us a little about yourself!
My name is Ariel, but you can call me Ari if you prefer! I grew up in Chicago but have bounced around ever since! I went to university in Florida and studied Applied Linguistics.
I’ve been teaching English since I left university. I have lived and worked around the world, including countries such as: Ecuador, Kuwait, and China. My favourite thing to do is travel to a place I have never been before and eat something new.
Besides teaching for Lingoda I help create interactive homework activities and content. I am a passionate teacher and writer who believes the future of education is online!
What does the average day look like for you as a Lingoda teacher?
I am a morning person! I wake up around 6am every day and have several cups of coffee. I live in the mountains and love nothing more than sitting on my back porch and watching the day get started.
I teach many lessons every day, usually around 5-8! I always prepare the day before, so during the day between lessons I’m almost always reading some book on Applied Linguistics. Working from home allows me to stay in my personal library and get to personal research throughout the day.
What is it that you like the most about the platform?
I’ve taught on several other platforms (and in countless classrooms) and I can honestly say I enjoy Lingoda because of the convenience. I don’t need to worry about a commute to a classroom, or about the quality of the lesson plans. With Lingoda, I can join my classroom from my home office, and my students can do the same! I also know before I even open the lesson plan the day before that the lesson will be high quality and appropriate for the class time.
What is it about learning and speaking other languages that you enjoy?
I have studied and learned languages for as long as I can remember! Besides learning practical skills in languages like Spanish, Mandarin, and some dialects of Arabic, I have also always enjoyed studying the puzzle of languages. What are the building blocks of the grammar? What parallels can we draw between languages? How can we best prepare students to perform the actual function of language: communication? These are the questions that keep me up most at night! I would love to hear your opinion.
Why do you think people should learn languages?
The world never stops moving, and we have to run right along with it! Our world is getting more connected and learning a new language allows us to connect with many more people. If we are able to learn a new language, we should take the opportunity and continue to grow our own personal world.
What do you like most about the English language?
I love English grammar! Which I know puts me in the minority. It is at times frustrating, almost always contradictory, but always a fun puzzle. You’ll see me often in grammar classrooms helping students grasp the never-ending complexities of phrasal verbs and prepositions.
But most of all, English to me is about communication. Especially with the increasing inter-connectedness of the world, English is a tool which we can use to understand each other better and unite.
Why do you think people should visit, or even live in an English speaking country?
The opportunity to speak English with native speakers will not only increase your knowledge – it will also increase your confidence! There is nothing more exciting than ordering that first coffee or meeting a new friend in a foreign language. If you have the opportunity to travel or live in an English speaking country, you should do it! Your skills will improve more quickly through constant use and your confidence will shoot up.
Ariel, if you had any tips or advice for a language learner, what would they be?
Don’t get discouraged! There are so many rules and vocabulary words to remember, it can seem overwhelming! But every time you express something in your new language you are improving. Don’t focus on being 100% perfect 100% of the time. Instead, grow the skills that you already have while adding in new skills over time. The best advice I have for you is to use your language every single day! Even if you have to speak to yourself in the mirror.
What words of wisdom do you have for anyone who may be thinking about taking the leap into language learning?
Buy a journal! Not for serious note-taking on grammar forms, but for writing down those words and phrases that you find especially useful. Language learning is about communication, so you need to highlight what is especially useful for yourself. I suggest writing it down!
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