Oct 23, 2015
Episode transcript below:
Hey! How’s it going?
‘Why is it that I can understand some native English speakers and not others?’
This is a really common question that I’ve been getting over and over from you, members of the Go Natural English community.
And I think it’s a really good question to discuss in this episode.
Don’t you think so?
So, why is it that you can understand some native English speakers, like me.
I know that a lot of you while I’ve received many, many, many emails saying, ‘Oh my Gosh, this is so exciting!
Gabby, I can understand every single word you’re saying.’
Or ‘Wow, I can’t believe I understand 70% of what you’re saying.
This is amazing. I’ve never felt this way before.
I feel so good when I listen to your English, Gabby.
But why when I listen to other native English speakers, can’t I understand them?’
So, let’s talk about that.
Today, we’re going to solve this problem, and I’m going to share resources, suggestions with you on how to fix this problem.
This is some big deal, because you don’t want to feel left out of native English conversatione.
It feels horrible.
It feels really horrible when you cannot understand some native speakers, but you can understand others, because it makes you wonder is this your problem, is that the native speakers’ problem, is there something wrong with them or is there something wrong with you.
It’s embarrassing when you’re in a group of native speakers, and maybe you can understand some of them, but not others.
Or maybe in the morning, you’re watching a Go Natural English video or listening to the podcast, and then in the afternoon, you go to talk with your native English speaker friend or your colleges, and you can’t understand some of them.
So, in this episode, we’re going to solve that.
So first of all, natives talk funny.
Native English speakers have different ways of talking.
I’m a native English speaker.
I was born and raised in United States of America, and I speak a very standard kind of American English.
I was born in Minneapolis, so some people who are really, really good at English know that sometimes, there’s a tiny, tiny, incy-wincy hint of that kind of regional accent in my English.
But not so much.
I tend to speak standard English, because as I was growing up, I actually moved to different states.
I lived in Minnesota until I was ten, and then Hawaii until I was thirteen, and then Indiana, until I was fifteen, and then Maine until I was twenty, Massachusetts until recently.
So anyway, I’m a very good kind of even English.
So anyway, my English is really clear, because I also have over ten years of experience teaching English as a second language, travelling the world and working with English-as-the-second language speakers.
Other native English speakers don’t have the same experience, they’re not English teachers.
So, in order to communicate with people, they just speak like they would speak with other native English speakers.
I’m speaking to you right now like I would speak to my native English-speaking friends.
What I mean is I think I’m more aware of speaking clearly, I annunciate my words.
People that work on the radio or in broadcasting, or on TV also speak very clearly whether they’re English speakers or not.
Other people that are used to working all day every day with other Americans speak pretty quickly, and they might combine their words more.
So, for example, I might say, ‘Don’t you know how to understand native English?’, and they might say, ‘Don’t you know how to understand native English?’
‘Don’t you know?’
Which is also vert Minnesotan of me to say.