If, like me, you are married to someone who speaks English as a foreign language: Have you ever tried to teach them your native tongue? Until last week I would have said that it can't be done. But then we had a brainchild:
My husband is a bit of a ham. He's had video training to gear up for TV interviews, and is interested in learning how not to make a complete fool of himself when they home in on him and ask unpleasant questions. I was trying to make a "talking head" video for a project of mine on cellphones, and he saw me and said, "Let's do it together. You call me, and you'll film yourself and I'll film myself using the cameras on our laptops, as we speak on the phone." And that's what we did. We thought up a phone scenario together and scripted the dialogue. Then we went into separate rooms and each of us set up our laptops. Each of us had a cellphone in hand and told the camera what we were doing, and then I called him and we went through the moves, and he called me back. We then compared the two films (and laughed our heads off) and then did it again (he actually put on a tie to make himself feel like he was at work), and this time he had some food for thought about his expression and tone of voice. After that, satisfied, we decided to call it a day. But if we'd wanted to create a "product" and not just a "learning experience", we could have recorded the scenes until we and they were perfect, then cut them into one film using moviemaking software (we have Macs with iMovie; on a PC you'd use Windows Movie Maker), and then published the finished film to YouTube. I might just do that with a class one day.
Anyway, he's hooked, we had lots of laughs and a good think, and I think we'll be doing this again. Oh, and I've got a new shtick for one2one classes :)