This post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 4 – ‘unlocking your superpowers’ – finding out what you are good at and what you like.
It is really easy for me to talk about what I like. I love learning foreign languages and am fascinated by analysing how they work, where languages differ and where they overlap. (Over the years, I have learnt French, German, Japanese, Biblical Greek and Hebrew). I also love investigating how culture is reflected in languages but most of all I love conveying my passion for languages to others and seeing them also becoming enthused by learning this new skill. I guess that means that my greatest passion is for teaching languages. I particularly love teaching Japanese and explaining about Japanese culture. I include a five minute culture spot in my lessons and find that my students really enjoy this and it stimulates some great conversations. I hope that through my lessons people are encouraged to visit Japan and to build strong friendships with the Japanese people that I love so much. Some of my students have recently written some fantastic reviews on my Facebook page – Jacqueline Matthews Language Tutor so I feel encouraged that I am inspiring people and helping them to achieve their goals, whether they are learning a language for business, fun, the challenge, for family or travel purposes.
I also love conversing with other people. I feel privileged that in my work as a language tutor, I often have the opportunity to talk to young people about their goals and aspirations for the future. I think that I am a good listener and would be thrilled if some of the comments I make during these discussions help the young people to gain a clearer picture of what they would like to do in the future – sometimes that includes languages and travel and sometimes they have other aspirations, nevertheless these conversations are uplifting and enlightening.
I also enjoy doing research and writing up my findings. I enjoyed doing my PhD and my research led me to have interesting conversations with a whole range of people from different walks of life. I have had a couple of posts at local universities engaging in compiling literature reviews, and collating empirical data – both quantitative and qualitative. The skills I learnt in these posts, I now apply when doing the research for my lessons.
Finally, I love giving presentations. I have recently hosted a few Japanese cultural events at schools, youth groups etc and love them. It is a further opportunity to share my passion for Japan and it is interesting to hear the young people feedback on what they have gained or learnt during these sessions.