Ever lived in a foreign country?
What took you the longest to get used to?
In Ireland right now, it’s the light.
The winters are dark and the days short.
In the summer, it’s the opposite.
Yesterday the clocks changed to summer time, and with it a sudden increase in the length of out days. So it’s still light outside when the kids go to bed at 8 pm.
And this IS NOT going down well.
The kids’ve never had to go to bed when it’s still light out. And understandably they’re finding it a bit odd, and don’t want to do it. In fact, they HATE having to go to bed when it’s light out.
The light does change in Japan…
But only a little.
An hour or two either way?
Not much, though.
Well, they’re going to have to get used to it ‘cos no amount of complaining is going to stop the light. Or get me to change their bedtime.
This is the same for language, of course. Learning to speak a foreign language is about more than memorising words and expressions. You’ve got to get used to the fundamental differences in the way people think and behave in the language. Just because you’re used to going to bed when it’s dark at home, doesn’t mean you can do the same here.
Or to put it another way…
Just because something is true in yours, DOES NOT mean it will be the same in English.
In a sense, then, learning to speak a language is actually learning to THINK in a language.
MEFA, of course, accounts for this.
Not on the course?
And you can (and should) get yourself on the Priority Notification List for next time here: