“I want an English teacher” – “Teaching should be done exclusively in English?”


I have made an account at Linkedin.com. It has proved to be very good, as I have met many serious people, did lots of business and I have seriously increased the circle of my friends here in Romania (and not only). Soon I will write to you more about networking sites and this one especially, but today this is not my point…
Last week I decided to offer to my colleagues English lessons, so as to help them improve their level (making sure that all of them will know better than me…). For this reason I have placed an announcement at several groups, where I am member:
“Searching for an English teacher, to teach my colleagues in my company. At least for 3 months period, starting immediately. We are interested to focus on Business English.”
I have received several replies, most of them by serious professionals, but there was a lady who really shocked me… She replied to my post, with the following question:
“Teaching should be done exclusively in English?”

My mind is already too slow and this answer made it freeze 100%. I could not understand what she meant, so I considered that she was joking. Thus I replied to her accordingly:
“I am sorry, but do you really consider it possible to teach someone English language, using Chinese or French???”

No, I was wrong, she was not joking… I understood it from her reply…
“Well, in this world everything is possible. I assumed that you and your colleagues were Greek and needed somebody who knew greek as well. By the way, how do you suppose Chinese and French learnt English?”

What can I say? Sometimes I realize how small I am comparing to the entire universe of knowledge that exists around me and I feel really confused, as I don’t understand the deeper meaning of the words…

(PS. Yes, she is an English teacher who wrote “learnt”)



  1. Venger Jul 14, 2009

    What is the difference between ‘learnt’ and ‘learned’?
    ( http://www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq/aboutspelling/learnt )

    These are alternative forms of the past tense and past participle of the verb learn. Learnt is more common in British English, and learned in American English. There are a number of verbs of this type (burn, dream, kneel, lean, leap, spell, spill, spoil etc.). They are all irregular verbs, and this is a part of their irregularity.

    The idea is that the English lady teacher used a correct conjugation form of the verb “to learn” 😉

  2. AlexT Aug 3, 2009

    Actually, just as a comment, “learnt” is a slightly outdated, though perfectly orthographically valid, form of the simple past of the verb “to learn”. Mostly used in British English. See http://www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq/aboutspelling/learnt for instance.

  3. Iulia Popescu Aug 8, 2009

    There are several English teaching methods. The one commonly used in the Romanian educational system is one that involves a parallel with the Romanian language. Hence it’s disadvantages it’s a good method to teach children that have not yet developed a strong background in their native language. Maybe the person who gave you that reply only knows this system.

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