BETWEEN PRAGUE AND VIENNA – Goodbye boat.
I’m writing this week’s Vitamin V from a train.
Outside my window are green fields and a grey sky.
For the last week I was living on a boat in Prague.
But now I’m travelling east for a few weeks until I go home for Christmas.
Why did I leave Prague?
Well, there are new rules that make it difficult for me to do simple things like work in a cafe or meet a friend for dinner.
In other words, the government says, We want you to get the new vaccine. And if you don’t, life will be uncomfortable.
And I don’t like like.
The Word Of The Day Is…
The word of the day is “coercion.”
That’s a nice way of saying “force.”
If someone coerces you to do something, they force you to do it.
Personally, I think vaccines are wonderful.
And I also think coercion stinks worse than a homeless person’s underwear.
Does Coercion Work With English?
Were you coerced in school?
My teachers told me: “Study these rules. Learn these words. Read these books.”
And then they coerced me with the promise: “Or else you will be punished!”
No wonder so many adults learn to hate English, or math, or science….
In a recent podcast, A.J. Hoge talks about how Russian children are made to read those big, long Russian novels at a young age. And as a result, when they grow up they hate all reading.
What a pity!
Now compare the traditional approach to how these children are learning…
Tom Dyson and his family lead a very interesting life.
They don’t have a home: they travel the world.
And their kids don’t go to school: but they’re always learning.
They read. They go to museums. They meet people…
Tom calls it “worldschooling.”
And guess what? Their kids love to learn!
LAWS OF ENGLISH #5
My fifth Law of English is, “Love it or leave it.”
This means, when you’re getting your daily input of English, if you don’t love what you’re doing, stop it and find something else.
And I don’t mean like — I mean LOVE it.
Because the difference between liking a book/podcast/TV show and LOVING it is a few boring minutes a day vs. many enjoyable hours a week.
And spending many focused hours instead of a few bored minutes will make you fluent one day.
So don’t coerce yourself!
Do it because you love it.