Our client was about to make a major life change by moving to a new country to pursue their professional career. The job itself would rely upon their natural language skills, but the country was English-speaking, and our client wanted to feel as comfortable meeting new people and making new friends as possible.
This client lacked confidence especially, and being new to the area, we made asking questions a priority, being as polite as possible.
Excuse me, can you help me find…
Hello, maybe you can help me, I am…
Good morning, do you know where I can find…
Pardon me, can I ask you a question? I need…
We focused on directions (go right, walk until your reach the corner and then turn left), descriptions (do you have something smaller / larger / less expensive / more colorful), and prepositions with phrasal verbs (I need it to… / I need it for… / I am looking for… / I’m interested in…)
English speakers also tend to rely on the use of the verb “to get” which can difficult to learn and use, so we reviewed the many varieties of use: Where can I get it? How do I get there? I don’t think I got the meaning, could you explain? What can I get for this amount?
The second part of our course was based on friendly conversation (small talk) and how to meet new people. This required a review of talking about simple subjects for which the vocabulary can be specific:
It is really raining right now. It is always this cold? When does Summer usually begin? Does it snow a lot here in Winter?
I like to watch Hockey. Did you see the game last night? Latvia beat Russia by 3 points! The went into overtime, but they pulled it out in the last minutes. They play America next. I hope they win!
I enjoy reading. I’ve read a lot of books since I have arrived, but I haven’t found a good bookstore. Can you recommend one?
Our client still has a ways to go, but is showing great improvement and confidence. With continued work success seems to be a certainty!