You’ll Never Need Legal English Terms and Vocabulary – Way Too Specific!
- Video Transcript Below - Hi guys, hello boys and girls and welcome back to Robby's English Harmony video blog or alternatively in case you're listening to this as an audio file on iTunes or on my blog, welcome back to English Harmony podcast! You see, the thing is that not all countries can view YouTube content. I know one of such country which is China where YouTube isn't actually accessible, but any blog visitors from China can actually read my blog and listen to the podcast. So the podcast is the alternative to watching a video. But the content is the very same. What I'm doing is I'm recording a video and then I'm producing a video file for YouTube and then, after that I'm producing an audio file for iTunes. Simple as that! Anyhow, today let's talk about legal language. And let me tell you right up front that legal language is very much different from normal English that you would use on the street when speaking with people at work, and at school and so on and so forth. And why is it different? (more…)
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Fluency Star Case Study: Sergi and His English Fluency Improvement
Hi guys, as you may know, I help my fellow foreign English speakers improve their fluency via Skype, and here you can watch a video with one of my students. His name is Sergi, and we’ve been working on his fluency for quite some time now! VIDEO TRANSCRIPT BELOW: Sergi: Welcome back to English Harmony video blog. This is Sergi and this time round Robby is not the one who is introducing the video, so it's me! Robby: Yeah, and thanks Sergi and for everyone who doesn't know Sergi and I would imagine that none of our audience is actually familiar with him. He is my student from Barcelona and we're - we've been doing the Fluency Star coaching program since... when did we start exactly? Sergi: Well, we started in the early beginning of December last year. Robby: Oh, yes. Yes. Yes. So it's been half a year now, right? And would you mind telling our audience a little bit about yourself, where you come from, what you've been doing and so on and so forth? Sergi: Of course Robby. So as you already told I am from Barcelona and well, it's the capital of Catalonia in Northern-Spain and now I would like to give you a little background to the audience of who I am. Robby: Yeah, go ahead. (more…)
Don’t Try to Figure Out What Something Means in English Grammar Terms – It Serves NO Purpose!
One of the main principles of the English Harmony philosophy is not to fall into the habit of analyzing your speech from the grammar standpoint. The very same goes with reading. You may find yourself trying to figure out what this or that particular sentence in a book or newspaper represents in English grammar terms, and the funny thing is that sometimes you just end up confusing yourself instead of gaining something from it! You’re reading a sentence and the analytical part of your brain automatically starts analyzing the syntax: “Hold on, is it a Passive or Active Voice construct? I’d better Google it up and see if I can figure it out!” So off you go browsing forums and spending your time just to satisfy your curiosity! And you’re not alone. There’s millions of English learners asking questions on forums trying to figure out WHAT ROLE certain words and word groups play in a sentence, what grammar tense is represented by the sentence in question and so on. Sometimes I come across those forum threads when validating my English collocations (read more about how I do it HERE) and it just doesn’t cease to amaze me that there are folks who are quite literally wasting away their lives asking questions such as: Is this clause a predicative expression or is it not? or What exactly does “would have” mean in the following sentence “I would have thought that the unemployment rate is on the rise, but it’s actually the other way around”? It looks like a conditional sentence, so does it mean that the person who speaks doesn’t actually think that the unemployment is on the rise but would think so if certain conditions are met? The moment I see those questions, it instantly brings me back to when I used to analyze everything I was reading or hearing, and needless to say, that’s exactly the reason why I couldn’t speak fluently in the first place! My mind was gone into a permanent analytics mode and I was under the false impression that if I were to become proficient in terms of English grammar, I would also become fluent. Little did I know at that time that it was completely false logical reasoning. Just think about it – how being able to DEFINE what a particular group of words represents is going to help you REPRODUCE that phrase or sentence when writing or speaking? It won’t – that’s the thing! ;-) You see, it’s all because most English learners can’t distinguish (and it’s all because of the traditional way of teaching English at school!) between the following: Theoretical KNOWLEDGE about English grammar and syntax, and Practical SKILLS and ABILITY to use English when speaking or writing! Many of us believe that KNOWLEDGE directly translates into ABILITY – but nothing could be further from the truth! Ability to SPEAK, for example, is all about you being able to REPLICATE correct speech patterns and the best way to go about it is by simply REPEATING and MEMORIZING a specific sentence. When you speak with real people in real life, does anyone care about the sentence being a conditional or not? NO! All that matters is your ability to SAY IT OUT LOUD! (more…)
Update on My Personal Situation: Why I’m Doing a PC Course
Group Communication: Why It’s Different From One-to-one Conversations + Tips & Tricks!
There are plenty of social situations when you’d be speaking with a group of other English speakers as opposed to just one person. Just think about the following situations: Having a lunch break in your work or college café with your colleagues; Having a cigarette with your work colleagues or schoolmates; Sharing a car ride with your friends. So, what do all these situations have in common? Anyone? That’s right! What they have in common is SOCIALIZING IN A GROUP, and it’s very important for you to understand that group conversations tend to be much different from one-to-one conversations :!: When there are two people having a conversation, you have more control over the whole process, whereas in a group your voice will oftentimes be quite literally drowned out by others. Does that mean you should avoid group conversations and wait till you get a chance to have a face-to-face conversation with some other English speaker to practice your English? Not at all! As a matter of fact, if you avoid such situations, chances are – you won’t get any opportunities to get to know other English speakers and as a result you’ll end up being alone. The best way to go about it is by knowing WHEN and WHAT to say during a group conversation in order to minimize your chances of being ignored and maximizing your potential for English fluency improvement, so keep reading this article to learn from my experience having lived in an English speaking country for 13 years :!: (more…)