by Stewart Glen
Translated by Anna Liang
The English version is below. ⬇⬇
大家常問我們：「你們教小孩嗎？」 簡短的回答是：「沒有」 詳細的回答是：「從不，但是我們會訓練訓練你如何教你的小孩。」
然而他們也沒錯，台灣的確產出世界上最優秀的學生。因為對於自律與細節的注重，讓台灣只經過兩個世代，就從農業社會升級為中產階級社會。 然而，只要在網路上簡單的搜尋，你就可以發現台灣在英文的這個舞台上並沒有太好的表現。年復一年我們在英文上所做的投資（平均 10-20 年的時間），考試的成績還是在亞洲國家的後段，更糟的是大多數的學生還是不敢用英文。為什麼在世界上名列前茅的學生，在英文卻無法得到相對的成功呢？
這個問題的答案正是 Infinity Key 的原動力。 我們將台灣學英文的教育體制放在顯微鏡下 仔細地檢視進而研究，找出並解決台灣學生面臨學習英文的一些常見的核心問題。同時，我們發現第一步就是要轉換思維。
這個思維根深蒂固地建立在虎媽虎爸身上。 如果今天你的小孩帶著 89 分的成績單回家，大部分的家長會更加強在嚴格的學習習慣與紀律。同時帶著『你可以考到95分甚至100分的！』的想法，總是把焦點放在他們做不足的地方，學生壓力會逐漸地增加，年復一年，恐懼也扎根越來越深。當然，持續貫徹害怕錯誤的這個觀念是台灣之所以能產生優秀學生的原因，他們投資在讀書的時間遠遠超過其他的國家的學生。然而英文並非一個可以透過不庭的讀書所學好的， 也不應該透過不停的考試來評斷學生的英文程度。
認識我的人都知道我很愛打冰上曲棍球，我目前是台灣最年長的冰球員。如同許多加拿大的男孩一般，我 8 歲的時候就開始練冰上曲棍球，但 12 歲的時候，我變得非常討厭打曲棍球所以就放棄了，一直到 30 幾歲之後才又再拾起球棍。我放棄的原因是因為我父親求好心切，但同時讓這個過程變成非常不愉快經驗，在練完球或是球賽結束之後，從球場到回家的路上是我最討厭的時光，因為他會不停地唸我哪裡表現得不好、細數我犯了那些錯，讓我覺得我一無是處。我這一生當中沒有太多的後悔，但是小時候放棄打曲棍球讓我很後悔，而唯一讓我放棄的原因就是因為我父親不支持（或沒有看到）我的努力。
學英文就像是學習玩一個運動，球員需要團隊的支持、教練 認真地督促他們練習，球員的能力才能全面地提升。 這就是 Infinity Key 所創造的，我們設計好每天不同的練習，來幫你創造屬於你的英文環境，全方面地提升你的語言能力。
大部分台灣的孩子都會在課後參加英文補習班，不只補習班的費用很貴，他們也浪費時間。 學習通過考試並不會幫助他們成為一位自信的英文使用者， 透過我們全新的虎媽訓練計畫你會學習到如何將投資在英文上的時間最大化，以體驗取代死背硬記。Infinity Key 會訓練你，讓你在家就可以訓練你的小孩流利地說英文。
We are often asked, “Do you teach children?”
The short answer is, “no.”
The long answer is, “never!”
However, we usually add, “But, we will coach you how to teach your children.”
At first, this was just a throw away answer. We never expected anyone to take us seriously beyond that. After all, our business model is not designed for children, although, they are the ideal players. More on this later. It’s just that we’ve been focused on building the best damn training platform for busy adults that money can buy, so we’ve never really considered how it could be applied to younger learners. Ostensibly, it should be easy to convert the source materials to match any level or age, so why not train kids?
To be quite frank, parents get in the way of success. In many cases, parents can be the biggest obstacle learners have to overcome, and, sadly, many never do. This is odd to us. There seems to be a major disconnect. Taiwanese parents groom the best students in the world. They wear the Tiger Mom badge with unlimited pride and confidence that being stern about study habits and test results is the very best way to contribute to their offspring’s future.
And they are not wrong. Taiwan does produce the finest students in the world. This attention to discipline and detail has lifted Taiwan out of the rice paddies and into an ever-burgeoning middle class that is the envy of Asia, if not the world, in a matter of 2-3 generations.
Some basic research will reveal that Taiwan is not competing on the English world stage. Year after year, comparative test scores continually place Taiwan at or near the bottom of non-English countries. This does not make sense. How come the best students in the world continually fail at English?
The answer to this is the impetus of Infinity Key. We have put Taiwan’s education system (as it pertains to learning English) under an extremely powerful microscope and have examined and resolved the common core problems most Taiwanese students face when attempting to tackle English. We’ve identified several areas that require a complete paradigm shift in approach.
One such area is rooted in the Tiger Mom phenomenon. If young Johnny comes home with a less than perfect test score, most parents will then set to enforcing rigid study habits. Discipline and, yes, shaming, are all part of the process. The pressure the student feels mounts. Fear festers. Of course, this fear of failure, continually reinforced, is the main reason why Taiwan produces such amazing students, They study harder than any other students from other countries. However, English is not something that can be studied through memorization. Nor is it something that should be tested in the conventional means.
Language is Art. The first thing any parent hoping their child will become fluent in English must understand is that the approach to learning must be akin to learning to play a sport, or learn a musical instrument. Simply put, success comes from practice over time.
Let me relate a personal story that illustrates my point. Anyone that knows me knows how much I love playing hockey. I am currently the oldest hockey player in Taiwan. Like many Canadian boys, I started playing hockey at 8 years old. By the time I was 12, I hated playing and quit. I wouldn’t start playing again until my mid-30s. I quit because my father made it completely unenjoyable. He would chide and ride me constantly. The drives home after games and practices became something I would hate as my father would yell at me for my mistakes and make me feel useless. I took up skiing and immediately got better at it than my father could ever hope to be. I have few regrets in life and giving up hockey is chief among them. And the only reason I quit was because my father was wholly unsupportive of my efforts.
I will always wonder how far I may have gone with the game if my father had created an environment whereby my mistakes had become lessons. If I was taught to embrace little failures and to improve through them, I wouldn’t have missed 20 years of the game I love.
Learning English is just like learning a sport. The “player” needs a supportive team behind him/her and a coach dedicated to creating practice drills that will holistically improve the overall game. This is what Infinity Key has created. Daily Environments designed to improve all aspects of language learning, the generosity of time without pressure to “play the game” and coaches that understand the difference.
So now when we tell eager parents that are interested in our system that we will train them to teach their children, we can back that up. Introducing our latest program, Tiger Mom Training. This is an intimate and extensive program designed for Tiger Moms (and Dads) that will force them to shift their paradigm and then give them all the tools they need to set their children on the right path, on a journey that is both effective and efficient.
Most kids today attend some form of after school English class or another. Not only are these schools expensive but they are a waste of time. Learning to pass tests does not an English user make. With our new Tiger Mom Training Program, you will learn how to re-purpose the time spent studying into time spent experiencing. You will learn how to raise children that speak English with confidence and flair. Infinity Key wants to teach you how to coach your children in English at home. It is our mission to change the way Taiwan learns English and that starts with closing down the test mills that do nothing to foster confidence. The only way to achieve this lofty goal is to get to the parents directly, to shift the paradigm, one family at a time.
Become one of our first adapters and give your kids that competitive edge that fluent, confident English provides. Book your Unlocking Infinity Workshop today.