It was, I don’t know the precise time, but I remember the moment when Bang Al said “eh, kalo gua udah di rumah, gua speaking sama siapa ya?”.
“Ah, diem lu bang. Udah cari anak-anak aja dulu. Ngebut dong!” I said to him as we lost Algi and Fajar. We just visited Alun-Alun Kidul and would like to go to Titik-0 Jogja.
“Seriusan dong. Lu si mending, ada si Vitas.” He replied.
“Ya aku sih biasanya nonton serial, film atau ngobrol ama temen. Lu di rumah ada TV kabel ga? Mending nonton apa aja deh, yang lo suka.” I said, cringed and tired because we lost the boys. Damn!
I know that one of the obstacles we have after we had great great great time in Pare is that we can’t keep the habit. Long story short; I’ve been to Pare and stayed for 1 month.
Staying in Pare is good experience because it’s not only about the learning system and the ambience, I find new family there. But this post is not about me, it’s about Bang Al, and maybe other people that struggling after they leave Pare.
I call it Post-Pare-Syndrome; a moment when your life turns to grey because you lost the people that give colors to your life while you’re there.
I am the one who lucky because I have long-live-partner that has good ability in English. At least, I have sparring partner to talk or even brain-storming about a thing or two – in English. But Bang Al, Amin, Eja, and other friends must be hard to keep their English after they leave Pare.
I hope you guys read it. Or you, stranger, I just hope that this post will help you to keep your English well even though you don’t have partner, friends, or people to talk in English as daily-conversation.
Things You Can Do to Keep Your English Awesome after You Leave Pare
Based on my experience, these are the things that I do (actually, I’ve done it before I went to Pare in order to improve my speaking skill) to keep my ability in speaking English on my daily life.
Watch TV Series
This is the thing that I do every day, literally every. single. day. I have in-house internet connection, which is actually for work, but I use it as entertainment as well.
Watching movies will help you to keep you English because it helps to improve your listening, pronunciation and understanding the daily-life-conversation skills at the same time. It’s a good way to learn their culture through movies. So, it’s not only about the way they speak to each other, but it’s also about the way they use expressions, idioms, or even slang-words we’ve never heard of. You can watch it online for free in fmovies or if you have credit card you can try Netflix and chill.
My suggestion is that you need to find a TV series or-movie-is-okay that you like and watch it over and over again. It’s okay if you use Indonesian Subs at the first, but make sure that you focus on your ear. Don’t forget to replay the movie and watch it again without Indo-subs or you can use English-sub. Or you don’t have to use any Subs at all!
It depends on you. But trust me, re-playing a movie you like without Subs will help your English skill sharp. I’ve watched 5 seasons of New Girl maybe 4 or 6 times per season since 2012! What I’m trying to say is; you don’t need to watch it every day, just do it when you want to do it.
Here’s the rule:
Make your learning-time fun to keep you motivated. Never try to force yourself to learn something. Just let it flow.
In this case, the point is to make yourself get used to English, so you will familiar with the way native American talks, does and expresses their feelings.
Read Online Magz
I know it’s hard to find peer-group that has the same-level English skill in speaking. And when you’re alone, reading could be a skill that you need to improve by yourself.
What are you up to? What do you like? It depends on you. Reading is not mandatory. You’re lucky if you have interest in reading because it helps you to keep up to date with the latest news and many experts said that reading is good for your health too .
In my case, I like to read Entrepreneur, Elite Daily or even fishy thing on 9gag. Remember the rule; Make your learning-time fun to keep you motivated. Never try to force yourself to learn something. Just let it flow.
So, just read anything you like. If you like sports, read sports-magz. It will help you to improve the vocabulary. At least, you know something new.
Start to Write!
I’m sure that everybody can write, but not everyone can make a good story. That’s okay. But, writing is a skill that needs to be mastered, period.
So basically, it’s okay if you can’t speak, but at least you can write. Got it?
I’m not forcing you to write a long post just like this one. Just write anything you like. But if I may suggest, I’d like to recommend a thing; make diary, write it yourself, in Past-Tense. I believe on the day-10, you’re already understood the concept about Past-Tense.
Or one thing I usually tell to Vitas is to re-write the news. I searched Indonesian article and told her to make the English version of it. You can use Google Translate if it helps, that’s okay, it’s learning session you need anything to back you up.
Writing is a cognitive skill for children. But in this case, when you’re learning English, it helps you to memorizing new vocab and how to write it properly. After it’s done, you can read out laud to offset your pronunciation skill.
Talk to a Cat, or a Bird, or whatever..
I talk to myself, a lot.
I’m weird – all my friends said so, because I talk to myself. I’ve been doing this since I was a kid. In my defense, I’m not weird. I need expert advices and out-of-the-box ideas, that’s why I talk to myself. *humblebrag*
At first, it’s hard to find a friend that can speak English well. So I talk and make up conversation between me and me, on my way go-to and back-from school – every morning since maybe I was 1st grade of High School. In the beginning, I was just singing a song until I found out that myself can talk too!
Also, I start telling a joke to myself and I laugh by myself. It’s super weird and awesome at the same time because I’m happy while nobody around. I know it’s weird, but hey, it works! Hahaha~
At home, when nobody was around and I was bored with myself. I started to talk to my cat who kept meowing at me. Neither of us understood about what the hell we’re talking about.
I call it as cat-versation.
I don’t know if you want to try it or not, but I assure you that when you can’t find out the person that can help you; then it’s You that can help you.
So, it’s up to you. Either talking to yourself, or you can talk to a cat, or a bird, whatever…