2023. 2. 2.(목)


English is the language, not a subject.

[873호 13면, 발행일 : 2017년 11월 22일(수)] Do you feel scary speaking in English or to the native speakers? Is…

By editor , in Globe , at 2019년 7월 23일

[873호 13면, 발행일 : 2017년 11월 22일(수)]

김다연(영어교육학과14학번)

Do you feel scary speaking in English or to the native speakers? Is English difficult for you? Then, I want to tell you something. There is a short story that I read on the Internet. A Korean went on a business trip to an English-speaking country, but he wasn’t good at English. Although the companies which he worked with hired their own translators, he couldn’t get their help when he moved to other cities. He had to go to the terminal B. Because his English wasn’t good, he used a dictionary, the Internet, and translation apps to make a sentence ‘does this bus go to the terminal B?’ By reading it, he could take the right bus. While waiting for departure, he heard that natives spoke only one phrase. He wondered how they communicate with only one phrase, and he listened carefully. The phrase was ‘Terminal B?’
As you can see in the story above, for communication, you don’t need to make a perfect sentence. You even don’t need to make a sentence. Remind when you send a message to your friends in Korean, for example asking to have a meal or schedule. Do you send a full sentence? Do you follow the grammar rules perfectly? If you don’t, do you have any problem to communicate? No, you may not. Remind of one more situation when your foreign professors or friends speak in Korean. Do they speak perfect Korean? Mostly not. But, do you think their Korean is bad? Perhaps, it would be opposite. It means that you accept Korean as the language which mistakes or errors are not big problem to communicate but English as the subject which you should use perfectly. English is not a subject. Many Koreans face English as a subject rather than a language. Because it was a subject, Koreans think that they must not make mistakes or errors and must be perfect to win the good score. So did I, and I think most of you who are reading this article have similar experience. However, English is the language just like Korean. It is the language. Languages exist for communication, which delivery meaning matters the most. When you need to use English for specialized reasons such as business or to enter graduate schools, you should use higher level English. However, you only need to know about 2000~3000 English words for daily life. Remember that you memorized about 100 words for a day in school days. In that condition, it only takes about a month. Then, you may wonder how you should do to improve your English. First, be confident. Koreans learned English at least 10 years during school days. English knowledge stored for 10 years is in your brain. You would underestimate your English because most of you think to be perfect, but human cannot be perfect. You don’t need to be perfect. Even natives make mistakes as we do in Korean. If somebody is perfect, be careful. S/he is God, not human. Second, speak. We learned our mother tongue by speaking and trying many times when we were young. Language exist to use, not to display. Making foreign friends and speaking with them is an effective way to improve your English. If you think it is not easy in Korea, there are many apps and websites for helping you to learn and practice English. In Jeonju university, Global Lounge can help you to make foreign friends and improve your English.
Don’t be scared. As you accept the foreigner’s Korean, native English speakers accept your English. Just try. I’ve never studied in abroad, but I wrote this article. As I can do, you also can do. If you are still scared, come to the Global Lounge. We will help you.

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