The Fluency Secret Language Schools A Ways Hided From You

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It is well known that some people are actually hiding some things from you in order to keep there business. They try to keep the maximum profit for them even if it means to make you waste time and/or money. This is what happening in the case of the language schools all around the world, they take your time, your money and give no f***ing result. This is because they hide from you a big secret. With it, you could practice on your own and so make them lose money by not enrolling their slow and unproductive classes. Fortunately, as I worked with one of these schools, I will reveal you all you need to know about this secret.

Class conflict

In the class conflict theory but also in real life, we can see different social classes fighting for a bigger slice of the cake. The following illustration give you the classification of all the social classes and what they do (text in red).

pyramid class conflict

In this illustration you can first see that all the floors don’t have the same width. It means that the more we go higher in the hierarchy, the less people there are, so few people govern the majority. On the top you can find the people in the government who rule everyone under them. Then you can see the religious people which, at the time of the illustration, were really powerful. At that time they fooled people around because they were directly related to the rules of the government. Under, you can discover the people who help the government and the religious people to make people respect the rules by arresting, shooting or beating the person under them. One floor under, we can observe the bourgeoisie, living a good life by drinking the best alcohol and eating the best food. And finally, we notice the workers who are working a lot, spending time and money in order to survive and to maintain the economy in the country while other enjoy. This is how the author of the class conflict theory defined the capitalist society and this is how, with different actors, we can still see it today.

You’ll maybe tell me that it’s describe the capitalist society so it makes no sense in our discussion but it actually does. The language schools are built, like all the companies now, on a capitalist model. And here is the version of the Pyramid of language schools system:

pyramid class conflict

For this case, let’s start from the bottom, it is your place. You the student who give time and money to these schools. Above you are the teachers who take a part of the money and have some advantages due to their place in the pyramid. On top of the teachers we can the people relaying the fact that you need the official exam in order to be considered as fluent and to work in companies. Then we can notice the people who are preaching there method to make you fluent and pass the exam we mentioned. And at the end we can find the managers of these schools who are waiting for your money by finding new ways to give more and more expenses all along the process. The worst here is not that you are giving time and money, it could be profitable for you if it has results. The worst is that all they teach you is based on an exam or they teach inappropriate ways to learn a language. Not convinced yet?

Teaching to the test

“Sometimes, the most brilliant and intelligent minds do not shine in standardized tests because they do not have standardized minds.” ― Diane Ravitch

This is a well-known technique already criticized in the domain of public schools but apparently, not yet in the language schools. Some language schools give some courses totally dedicated to review or learn from 0 the vocabulary, the grammar and all the tricks you can find in the exam. Can you see the problem? The exam has less and less value because everyone with enough money and time can actually have it by paying. And the students are good at passing the exam but when they need to apply in the real life situations, they struggle.

I even heard some people lying to themselves and told me: “After few months of preparation, I have the exam, it means I’m fluent”. I have a question for you, do you really think the people who are able to pass the exam are really fluent just because they passed it? or is it because they learn other relevant stuffs around? Teaching to the test is the worst thing possible for a student who’s quest is to be able to think, discuss, write and read in a language because it actually reduce his/her creativity at the maximum to follow the rules of this piece of paper, software or website. Is that what you want for yourself?

Inappropriate ways to teach

“The less he understands something, the more firmly he believes in it.” ― Wilhelm Reich

Due to an industry of language learning which is advertising a lot of pseudo-science, the schools adapt what they provide to the students’ expectations. However, these expectations are based on a lot of articles or videos which are presenting “The fastest way to learn a language” or “How to learn a language in 48 hours”, you know these types of information right? I’m not saying this is impossible but I’m telling you that some techniques they present to you are wasting your time. Furthermore, these people who do titles don’t explain you everything, they hide, intentionally or not, some information on themselves which can explain how they learned a language that fast.

Language schools benefit from all these pseudo-science because these techniques are generally not expensive and are easy to integrate in their curriculum. They will say: “More than teaching you what you need, we teach you how to learn”. As a beginner, you’ll fall in the trap because learning a language for you appears as something impossible or in which you need to put a lot of effort to achieve it. You are right on the later but not on the former. At the end they will finally charge you a lot for providing maybe less than what you could do alone.

The secret

“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.” — Colin Powell

Yes, you understood it, the secret of become fluent is to find the working techniques, work hard and creatively on them and finally learn from your failures. I know you might be disappointed by the answer and you maybe wanted more funny or productive advices. Well, that’s what I want to give to you because you read this article from the beginning to the end.

I’m currently writing a book on how to learn a language, avoid all the bullshit around and just have real valuable experiences. This book is composed by a theoretical part which will explain you what is a language and what is its purpose (you might get surprised). It will give you a little perspective on what fluency means and will then guide you through all the levels, beginner to fluent. This guide will give you real methods and tips, all successfully applied and approved by my language group, in order to improve while enjoying the process because enjoying what we are doing is the most important in every aspect in life.

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Written on March 17, 2018