Привет! I'm Inna and I teach Russian with Natural Approach. It means I don't focus on consious grammar studying but on meaningful communication providing large amounts of comprehensible language input.
What do we do at the lessons?
- I speak Russian all the time, drawing, using gestures, manipulatives, illustrations, maps, sharing the screen, even acting - anything to make myself understood without translation.
- I speak slowly and clearly, adjusting the vocabulary and sentences structures to your level - in a parentese form of speech.
- No English from me. English is limited to about 5-10% of the time, in case of emergencies or administrative questions.
- No grammar. I'm not against grammar. But it feels right to me to experience the language before/instead of learning the complicated theory (especially as Russian grammar is very confusing). It's like playing a table game - I prefer figuring out the rules in the process. If it makes sense for you, Natural Approach might be something that fits you.
Very short 5 seconds grammar explanations may pop up though quite rarely especially on your demand. If you really love grammar, then I’d recommend having a mass listening experience and having internalized some grammar intuitionally first and then turning to grammar (not learning!) to check yourself or clear something up.
- We speak on any topic that naturally emerges in the conversation. Life, personal stories, movies, music, art, food, society, science – anything that adults usually talk about.
- You start speaking little by little giving short answers to simple questions at early production stage extending the answers and your own messages gradually at a natural convenient pace at following stages.
- Delayed reading. I recommend delaying reading at least until the speech emergence stage. Reading is pronouncing written messages. Therefore, it will be far easier to read when you have internalized enough vocabulary, pronunciation and have a stable mental and audial picture of the language.
- I allow recording the lessons. That will double, triple or quadruple your listening experience.
How to start speaking?
If you want to start speaking Russian naturally, you need a language parent who applies the following principles during the sessions:
- Effortless and voluntary speaking
After the silent period of the pre-production stage a language parent creates opportunities for effortless and voluntary speaking emerge gradually and progressively from short answers of the early production stage to simple intelligible messages of the speech emergence stage and then to complete detailed messages of intermediate fluency stage. The language parent tolerates the learner’s silence, slow speed speech and mistakes, and works to understand the learner’s messages.
- Comprehensible input
The language parent makes the language input comprehensible (by drawing, illustrated stories, pictures, manipulatives, realia, gesturing and even acting out) and adjusts to the learners level (simplifying, repeating, rephrasing, slowing down the speech) with (almost) no grammar explanations, corrections and translation.
- Meaningful communication
A language parent focuses only on meaningful communication working to find common interests, relevant, interesting content and to create positive emotional interaction that makes the learner acquire the language naturally and deeply, eliminating the need for motivation.
What methods are used at the lessons?
Any kind of comprehensible input based methods and techniques may be used at the lessons:
- Drawing, realia, gesturing, manipulatives, illustrations, maps
- Parentese form of speech - simplifying, repeating, rephrasing, or slowing down speech
- Story Listening
- TPRS (Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling)
- TPR (Total Physical Response)
How often should you have lessons?
You have lessons to practice speaking. The more often you speak the faster you progress.
I’d recommend to speak all day long every day. You will definately tell me that you don’t have so much time. I’d recommend to have one hour conversation session every day then. You may tell me that you are not able to sustain such rhythm.
Just have lessons as often as you possibly can.
I'm a certified full-time native Russian tutor.
My professional and personal experience has always been related to interacting with foreigners. I got used to it and it became a meaningful part of my life.
I studied to be a Russian teacher at Moscow State University in Moscow in 2012 with traditional learning methods. But when I discovered the Comprehensible Input hypothesis by Stephen Krashen it felt so right that I applied it in my practice immediately. I could see how well it worked and I rebuilt my program completely to fit the CI-based Natural Approach.
Previously I worked in tourism. I'm married with a French, I have a 4 year old daughter and I currently live in Moscow. I understand quite a lot and speak a bit of French and I'm still learning it. In general I'm a peaceful and friendly person. My interests are laying mostly in arts, science and dear-friends-meetings.
Book a trial lesson - try me, try learning Russian with Natural Approach. It might be something that fits you.