Classrooms and bad inputI

Today, at my (horrible) english class at school, one of my classmates had to (try to) speak about what we’ve (or better, they’ve, :slight_smile: ) been studying lately, namely Jonathan Swift and Samuel Richardson, and his spoken english was so bad that I covered my ears with my hands and hummed a song to protect myself. But in any case, the classroom was small, so I was exposed to bad input still. That’s why I covered my hands. This, allow me the term, tragedy, repeats itself 4 hours a week.

So I want to know what are your views on this topic.
When I study at LingQ, all my input activities feature authentic content and native speakers talking, so I’m never exposed to badly spoken language (ie. A French man trying to speak Bahasa Indonesian). And this increases my chances to succeed in learning the language.
Everyday I’m thankful to have discovered LingQ and its method.
Once again, at least from my point of view, LingQ beats the classroom.

I would not go to a class to learn a language. One hour of listening and or reading to content of interest is worth 4 hours in the classroom.

i think he has to attend class, being a school-goer. Is that right, Adalbertolito?

I would not attend class if it was not mandatory for some greater worthwhile goal (in most language/letters based subjects, actually). At the same time, listening to garbled English is not going to infect you or ruin your acquisition. Listen actively; try to mentally correct his mistakes; listen for single words that he uses that you don’t quite know, then try to guess their meaning.

It’s a compulsory class, in italy high school students can’t decide what to study

“his spoken english was so bad that I covered my ears with my hands and hummed a song to protect myself”

That’s hilarious. I wouldn’t worry about it too much. Is bad English infectious? Maybe, but I’ve never seen it discussed in the New England Journal of Medicine.

My French teacher in high school had a strong American accent. It didn’t ruin my ears.

Maybe you can help your classmate improve by suggesting LingQ to him.

@ RQ

I did, but he is not interested. I even suggested him to go to the bookstore and get some books in english (as I do). I don’t blame him, I understand that people may not be interested in languages and willing to pay to do so.

My hypothesis is that one, in learning any language, must seek situations where it is spoken/written correctly

Actually I think sitting in class with people speaking poorly is bad for language learning. It is also distracting and, to me, annoying. The cumulative effect is negative on pronunciation. One example is French immersion in Canada where anglophone children learn each others’ poor pronunciation. I think my grandchildren pronounce French better when they begin and listen more to the native speaker teacher, than later when they have listened more to each other.

One of the silliest exercizes in class is to have everyone take turns reading. Agony for most, readers and listeners. I guess teachers have to find something to fill up the classroom time with.

However, as long as the teacher is good at… teaching (whatever that means - giving good feedback, explaining grammar points and so on), I can ignore non-native pronunciation for the moment and listen to other content on my own. I’m not stupid.

I mean, how much does a few lessons a week add up to regarding “audio input”? Not much, I suppose. You don’t listen to the teacher all the time, right? Now, the class might have too many students, but that’s another thing (and beyond your control, especially if the subject is mandatory).

I like language classes for the most part, as weird as that may be. Teachers explain a lot of grammatical concepts and word usages that I never would’ve figured out otherwise, and the assignments are how I create output and put to use what I have learned both inside and outside the classroom. I do agree the accents of some of the students can be painful to listen to (one kid in my German class actually speaks German with a Russian accent, it’s really funny ;D), but I dunno, I guess I’m patient. Classes, Lingq, and some FSI every once in a while is working out really really well for me.