A TEA LOVER
I know that learning a language can be intimidating. Believe me, I have been there! I hope that by sharing a little more about my story and about why I started InspirLang, I can help you breakthrough to pursue your language interest!
A little more about me…
I was born and raised in southern China and growing up, I learned Mandarin, Cantonese, and Taishanese. I learned Mandarin in school, Cantonese from television, and Taishanese at home. I got my start in broadcasting in middle school (and picked it up again much later in life). I loved broadcasting school announcements and competing in different singing contests.
Moving to the United States at the age of 13 was a huge change in my life. During my first month living in New York, I struggled with learning English and I constantly questioned myself: What am I supposed to be doing here and how will I ever fit in? I was very lucky to meet my ninth-grade English teacher. She encouraged me to sign up for the 2011 Theodore Roosevelt NYC Public Speaking Contest and coached me through it. It was both the biggest challenge (and the biggest success!) of my life to that point.
I spent two months preparing for the contest, spending most of the time just working on pronunciation. Simple words like “three” and “regularly” took me weeks to figure out! My teacher and I worked together and made what sounded impossible become possible. The experience convinced me that anyone can learn a new language, as long as they truly want it. If you say to yourself that you really want to learn Chinese here, I know you can do it!
More recently, over the past two years, I returned to my love of broadcasting and worked as a radio host for a Chinese radio station, teaching Cantonese lessons to native Mandarin speakers. After my friend from business class heard about my broadcasting, he asked me for the website of the radio station. I giggled and told him that the website was in Chinese, so he would not understand it. But, that got me thinking about my experience growing up, about my interest in teaching, and about my belief that anyone can learn any language, even Chinese. I thought, why don’t I create a website of my own to teach other non-Chinese speakers how to speak my native languages? And here I am!
So that’s my story. This year in August, I received my TCSOL (Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages) and TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Speakers) certificates from Columbia University. I am a language enthusiast and love learning languages--I have been learning Spanish for a year and recently started learning Korean. If you are interested in learning a Cantonese/Mandarin/Taishanese, please reach out to me. I love talking to new people and would be happy to answer your questions. You can contact me at Jade.Wu@inspirlang.com. Also, if you have any feedback or interesting ideas for my website, InspirLang, please let me know! Hope to hear from you soon.