Welcome back to #ELSAStory! This week, we interviewed Thi Nguyen, someone who attended ELSA’s offline event and has been very interested in what we do here!
“Ever since Vu Van came to Saigon to talk, I became more interested in ELSA. I’m also going to the ELSA offline meeting tonight!”
- Where are you from, where have you lived?
- Answer: “I’m from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and have lived here my whole life”
- In a few words, describe how being an English Language Learner has affected your living on a daily basis.
- Answer: “I learn English every day, but I don’t use it everyday. We don’t speak English much in Vietnam, but speaking English has given me the chance to meet a lot of people and I’ve given talks here and communicate with a lot of people from different countries. Before I spoke, people didn’t understand me much, but as I focused more on my pronunciation, people understood me better.”
- Tell us about one time when not being confident and great at speaking English severely affected you
- Answer: “There are cases when i speak and people don’t understand — it’s very embarrassing. I’ve tried to spell out the word, which makes me really sad.”
- What have you done to improve your English speaking skill and gain your confidence? Have you succeeded?
- Answer: “To improve, I’ve been using a lot of different applications, especially ELSA. ELSA helps with pronunciation, and some other applications as well. The combination is awesome. My English has gotten a lot better.”
- Do you think you’d be more successful if you were better at English? If so, then how?
- Answer: “Of course! There’s no doubt! If I was better at English, I’d be more confident, and it sounds cool if you master a language. Being bilingual is really cool.”
- Was there ever an embarrassing situation when you said something and someone misunderstood you because of the way you pronounced the word?
- Answer: “I think only when people don’t understand me and have to repeat myself. It’s always embarrassing when I mispronounce words multiple times in a row and have to spell out the word.”
- Do you have any advice for other English Language Learners?”
- Answer: “I think from my own experience, I would say when they start learning English, try to learn pronunciation first. It’s like the best thing ever. THe first thought should be pronunciation. Words and grammar are ok, but it doesn’t mean anything when you can’t pronounce them correctly! That’s the problem with education here in VN — we know the words, but we don’t know how to pronounce them and we can’t understand native speakers!”
Thanks so much Thi for your participation!