Jun 15, 2009

英語に自信をなくした理由

I didn't know why but I was not in a mood to use English lately, and I almost lost confidence in my English ability. I know it's terribly awkward to mumble like this, I can do many things in English, listening to podcast, watching youtube, talking to my friend in Utah and mailing to some friends in US and Canada... That's great, isn't it.
However, It's a different story once your English competence is measured by the standard of Japanese English education.

I took an English test, TOEIC, the other day, and I didn't do well as much as I expected partly because my back started to ache being forced to sit on a fixed seat for two hours, so I couldn't concentrate, and mostly because it was not allowed to write down any marks on the question sheet. I found it terribly difficult to remember the important parts of the story or the names. If I were to put some marks on the sheet, it would be much much easier to pick up the correct answers. sigh...

Furthermore, I have a chance to read some Japanese English textbooks for high schoolers and it was sooo difficult. Of course I can understand it easily, but I doubt it that I would ever be able to write such complicated sentences...phew

So these experiences made me doubt my English ability, but now I know the reason why I ended up losing my confidence.
Our English ability is measured only by the correctness and the amount of knowledge about language itself in Japanese education system.
But I'm able to use English not because the knowledge but something like my characteristics. My English ability wouldn't be measured properly unless my characteristics such as aggressiveness or curiosity is somehow included into the test. There is no room for me to show my strong points.

というわけで、このところ私の英語ってお粗末だわ、勉強してないんだから、あたりまえかー・・・みたいに悲観モードでしたが、こうなった理由がわかってきたので、復活です。
つまりですね、学校英語で評価しようとしている英語力は、正確さと知識量。
でも、私の場合は、英語の正確さや知識量はないけれど、好奇心とか、ほんの少しだろうけれど、英語的思考回路ってもので、英語を使えているわけ。
わかってみると、くだらないことで悩んでいた・・・

9 comments:

ひまわり said...

emmieさん、お久しぶり・・・
一気に読んじゃった。そして、結論部分に、 i quite agree with you でした。 ああ、emmieさんと、またいっぱいおしゃべりしたいな・・・

雫 said...

Hi emmie san!
I enjoy to write journals lately and I thought my terrible writing was teased someone until nowadays.
I can't right to write journals now and I would have a lot of mistakes. but I write journals little by little.
I glateful My friends helped me and they posted cheerful comments.
If I got only corrections,I wouldn't write journals.

あのぉ、この文章もだだだと書いたので、まつがいが多いです。たぶん。
とうとう英語を書いた雫を褒めてやって下さい…(^^ゞ そしたら育つので(笑)
でもね、ネイティブの人でも間違っているのを例のところで見たら、気が楽になりました。なんだーって。添削だけでなくちゃんと交流できていることが嬉しいです。
私は書くことで交流できると思ってなかったから。
emmieさん、私はぼちぼちしかついていけませんが、皆さんの英語の応酬を楽しくいつも見ています。
わけのわからないコメントになったけど、また飲みましょう!(結局そこかい)

Mrs. Malone said...

わーい、ひまわりさんだあ、こんにちは。
ねえ、せにょさんとこ行くの、また打ち合わせしようよー
えー私は少しですが、学校教育の現場に身を置くことがあるでしょ、だから縛りがとれたと晴れ晴れしたかと思ったら、また引き戻されちゃうんですよね。
あ、あと英語が書けなくなっていたもう一つの理由には、日本語のくんだらない本ばかり読んでいるというのもあったりする・・・
今日も数冊届いた・・・しょせん私には、こんな本がお似合い。

Anonymous said...

Hello, emmie san.

Thansk, thanks lots.
I have the same opinion with those on your blog.
Now I think there have never been absolute rules in English ever.
Use, use, use, use, and use English. So we can get a new and wonderful one in the future! Not so far from now.
First, only using English starts our new world in English.

As Shizuku san said, native speakers or writers always don’t use correct English.
I wanna speak many things such as books and films with everyone.
As Himawari san said, I’m looking forward to talking about discoveries of using English with everyone.
P.S. Anyway my big resolution is to break my weird English gotten from study and create another.
Please tell me about enjoying many things. See you everyone again.
みなさん、これからもよろしくお願いしますね。
With love,
Hyde

Mrs. Malone said...

Hi 雫-san,
nice hearing from you in English!

To tell you the truth, I'm quite relieved to know that you've started your journal so soon, becaseu I was almost making a biiig mistake to make an unnecessary advice about English writing, introducing some how-to books. Those books are the last things Tadokist need...
yeah, we Japanese are not good at prasing people, but it can be a stong incentive that we can get encouraging comments from friends time to time.
mmm, I wonder I should put a sigh, No correction, please, in my blog. ha ha
Oh, one more thing,
I left a message in アルムおんじsan' blog saying "I'm really looking forward to seeing you in Tokyo with 雫-san. I know a good place to have an off-meeing, it's called "the abby road," a live house in Roppongi, and we can enjoy beautiful sound of the beatles copy band..."
I know he can't say no to my invitation...he he

Mrs. Malone said...

Hi Hyde-san!
Thanks for your heart-warming passionate comment! I thought it might not be so bad to feel stuck time to time, because I have such wonderful friends like you who don't mind visiting my blog and cheering me up when I'm down.
you know, when I'm with Tadokist, I can be so free and believe I can do anything with my English. But the moment I mingle with some teachers, my mind goes to freeze and lose the sight what I truely want to do.
As for school, there are so many works and practices that students are expected to do, and I feel so sorry for the studens. Many of the hard works are meaningless or even totally wrong!
well, I maybe write a new entry about the strange practices of 受動態 in the textbook.
BTW, we're open on 20th and 27th at high school, so if you're free, come and enjoy reading!

Anonymous said...

Hello again, Ms. malone.

I can hear your hot heartbeat now!
If everybody meets and finds the real English, I believe there is absolutely nothing meaningless not only for the human being but also for the history thereof. As the wall is higher, when we are over it, we can catch more valuable things. Your effort will become a big fruit.
…Unfortunately I can’t attend your class because I won’t be in Tokyo during this term. After coming back, I wanna go!
P.S. You’re a prolific inventor of English lessens, aren’t you?
With love,
Hyde

雫 said...

呼ばれてもないのじゃじゃじゃじゃーん♪ Hi Hydeさん!
私、行きたいかも!
27日(土)は旦那がゴルフだから早くから起きるしな~。
私が隅っこの方でお邪魔して、少し(ほんまか?)ORTなんぞ読ませてもらうのは良いのでしょうか?
受動態…学校で習ったことを思い出そうとしたら難しいけど、書く時は、わかったよ。
便利だからバンバン使ってます(笑)
数打ちゃ当たる、雫のwriting。

Mrs. Malone said...

雫さん、どうも。
27日は、1年生の多読講座です。
47名もいて、収拾つかない状態になりますが、片隅と言わずお楽しみください。午前の授業に参加のときは名前が必要になるのでメールで教えてください。(私、知っているはず?)掲示板に書くかなあ。
今日は、多読講座やっている大田桜台高校へ邪魔しに行ってきます。