Why Aren’t Japanese People Good at English? Part 4 of 5









もちろん基本の文法や単語を勉強することは大切ですけどそれは最初のステップだけです。大きい“Missing Piece”がまだあります。

 その“Missing Piece”は何でしょうか?

その“Missing Piece”はOUTPUTです。INPUTというのは知識を頭に入ることです。OUTPUTというのはその知識を使うことです。僕の英語を教えている経験からINPUTとOUTPUTのバランスがとても大事だと気がつきました。



アクションプラン:ネイティブスピーカーの話し方をよく聞いてください。“How are you?”や“What do you do?”や“What do you like to do in your free time?”とかの基本の質問をどうやって答えるかをよく聞いてください。色々の答えがあると気がつくと思います。映画やドラマやYouTubeを使ってください。

ネイティブから聞いた表現と言葉を使ってください。もし出来ればNatural Englishを上達します!

***Read Part 1–>
***Read Part 2–>
***Read Part 3–>

これは英語の上達方法です。これはEnglish 2.0です。英語のOSをアップグレードしましょう!






In Part 1, about why Japanese people aren’t good at English, we talked about Shy Personality as the first reason. In Part 2, we mentioned “Physical Challenges” as the second reason. And in Part 3, we discussed “Katakana” as the third reason.

In Part 4, I’d like to introduce the fourth reason which is “Test Mentality.”

 What does “Test Mentality” mean?

“Test Mentality” is how most of us learned foreign languages in high school. In other words, we were studying English (or in my case Japanese) for the single goal of passing a test. We were not taught how to communicate but instead we were taught how to construct the language. In short, we learned “How to MAKE” but we did not learn “How to USE.”

 Why is studying for tests bad?

Of course there’s nothing wrong with studying for a test but for most of us, that is not the final goal. We want to be able to use English as a tool for international communication.

Studying for a test creates 2 very dangerous mentalities which are: One Question, One Answer and Fear of Making Mistakes. In English communication, one question usually has many possible answers. Therefore the One Question, One Answer mentality is HARMFUL to English communication learning. Fear of Making Mistakes affects our confidence and limits our practice which is also HARMFUL.

 But studying grammar is important, isn’t it?

Yes, of course it’s important to learn basic grammar and vocabulary but it’s important to realize that it’s only the first step. There is still a BIG missing piece.

 What is that missing piece?

The missing piece is OUTPUT. INPUT is knowledge going into your brain. OUTPUT is using that knowledge in a meaningful way. Over my several years of teaching and learning foreign languages, I’ve come to the conclusion that a balance of INPUT and OUTPUT is extremely important in all activities.

By cramming for an exam, we are just entering information into our brains for the purpose of getting a good score. In other words, we were not trained how to use this knowledge for Communication.

 How can I overcome “Test Mentality”?

Your Action Step is to observe native speakers when they speak. How are they answering standard questions like “How are you?”, “What do you do?” and “What do you like to do in your free time?” You will find that there is more than one way to answer these types of questions. You can use movies, TV shows, YouTube if you need some resources.

Use what you can by observing natural speech. If you do this, you will be one step closer to NATURAL ENGLISH!

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