Tuesday, 9 October 2012

How important is Monty Python in teaching English?

Something I've heard many times since I've been in Hungary is "Oh English people love to discuss the weather" and I feel that they could have only have learnt this from there various English teachers or classes, not that I'm biased but I'd like to think we have many other things to discuss than the rain, yes us English love to have a good moan about the bad hand we were dealt in the weather department but sometimes it's just easier to have a conversation around something so mundane and simple because you know you'll defiantly be understood, but that's not all we have to say right?!
Yesterday I had a conversation with a 12 year old boy named Marti who's parents I work with, they asked me if I wouldn't talking to him because he's never spoken to a native English person before, of course I said this would be no problem. It turns out that after nearly two weeks here now, Marti and I had one of THE most interesting, complex and longest conversation I've had with anyone here so far, Marti is what I can only describe as a child genius in my eyes, he was translating jokes of the top of his head, explaining is love for English novels such as Sherlock Holmes and Harry Potter, he'd even read the Eragon series. He wasn't just speaking in English in a certain pattern for example "hello", "how are you?", "I am fine thank you", he was jumping from one subject to another easily, to the point where I didn't know if my English could keep up...but what astounded me most  of all was, he understood sarcasm, and the dry whitty humour of the British, that SO MANY people (including Americans) misunderstand and why was this...he said he loves watching Monty Python films!
Though I have so much admiration for anyone that has learnt a second language (something I still haven't got the hang off after years of trying to give it a go) I was flabbergasted that someone finally understood me! and that I didn't have to be careful about which words I choose, or how to phrase certain sentences.
Which leads me to think, should films such as the carry on...films or maybe even something like Top Gear could be used to teach a more modern sense of the language?

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