LOI English Teachers: Jonathan Johnson
In my opinion, the most interesting thing about learning English with native teachers is the possibility to speak English with people from different anglophone countries. The different accents and the multicultural aspect fascinate me as an eternal English student, that is why I loved the talk I had with Jonathan Johnson, one of the LOI English teachers.
Natural from Cape Town, South Africa, Jonathan lived in Rome and Milan, Italy, and now is residing in Paris, France. He is passionate about different cultures and is learning French. He is also fluent in Italian and Afrikaans, besides English, of course.
Jonathan works with students from all over the world, but the majority is from Brazil, Japan, Spain and Russia. According to him, everyone has different strengths and should use the language in their most comfortable way to be able to communicate. But one thing is valid for every student: training grammar, writing, speaking and having as much contact with the language as possible will build up their confidence and constantly develop their English skills.
Jonathan said that the use of gestures and pictures, referring articles and his communication skills help the interaction with students. He has been teaching English for more then 10 years and has a lot of experience with job interview preparation, university level courses and preparation for presentations.
About the concept of teaching English online, Jonathan told me that he has a cultural experience every time he teaches a class and that, in reality, the only difference between teaching online and teaching in a classroom is that there is no physical contact. Nonetheless, the teacher has the responsibility to guide the students through the hour, slowly working the students and building their confidence to make them feel that they are able to have a conversation in English.
During our conversation, Jonathan confirmed something other teachers already told me, the majority of English learners translate instead of thinking in English and that shows in sentence construction. That is why the most important tip that Jonathan gives is to keep it short and simple, that will give you control over what you are saying and control over the conversation you are having as well.