LingQ Update-Tutor Selection

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On this Podcast, Mark and Jill discuss an important new LingQ feature. Plus and Premium members are now able to choose their own tutor.

Mark: It’s Friday, November the 9th here at the EnglishLingQ Podcast; Mark and Jill joining you again. Hi Jill.

Jill: Hi Mark.

Mark: We’re kind of excited today because we’re heading into the long weekend and we’ve got some exciting travel plans this weekend.

Jill: Yes, Chris and I are just going up to where he grew up where his parents still live and it’s about a nine-hour drive actually from Vancouver, so we’re flying there and it takes about an hour to fly.

They have a lot of snow already or at least some snow.

They had a lot of snow last week.

It warmed up, so I think maybe some has melted.

But, yeah, we’re just going to spend the weekend eating a lot because his mom is always forcing us to eat and baking stuff for us.

Mark: And playing in the snow.

Jill: And playing in the snow, yeah.

Mark: That’s great.

Jill: So, it’s going to be fun, yeah.

Mark: I’m jealous. I’m pretty confident it’s going to be nice and wet here in Vancouver for the weekend, although we see bits of sun out there now I think it’s just teasing us.

Jill: I think tomorrow afternoon is supposed to be nice for a few hours.

Mark: Oh yeah?

Jill: Then Sunday is supposed to be miserable again, so.

Mark: Yeah, but what do they know.

Jill: Yeah, you never know.

Mark: The weather people; they’re always wrong.

It’s going to be bright sunshine for two days.

Jill: Especially when your kids are playing soccer.

Mark: Especially when they’re playing soccer.

That’s why I like the hockey.

Did I mention that before?

It’s indoors, yeah.

Jill: Except for we love being outdoors. You love being outdoors too, it’s just to stand around in the rain in the fall is not very fun.

Mark: If I was playing soccer, no problem.

My friends and I play touch football all winter on the weekend.

We’ll play, whatever, one hour, two hours, 3 degrees and raining; it’s great.

Jill: Oh wow, that sounds so unappealing to me.

Mark: What are you talking about?

The best is when it snows; the snow games, the snow bowl, that’s just the best.

We don’t have enough snowy days, but when it does snow it’s nice.

Jill: The snow is better. The snow is nicer than rain.

At least you can walk around in it; it’s pretty, it’s fluffy, it’s brighter.

When it’s rainy it’s just darker and gloomier, so I would prefer that we got more snow and less rain.

Mark: Although it’s pretty slippery when you’re playing football in the snow.

You can’t hold on to the ball and you can’t stand up.

If the field is frozen then your cleats don’t dig in and you just slide.

Jill: That’s why you guys like it though, right?

Mark: If there’s enough snow it’s good; if it’s just a thin layer or if the field is frozen, if it’s just cold…

Jill: Just enough to break a leg.

Mark: Well, you don’t break a leg, but you have no traction because the ground is too hard and your cleats don’t dig in.

You’ve got cleats on still, so your feet just slide.

Jill: It’s kind of like you’re skating.

Mark: Kind of, except you don’t have skates on, but it’s all good and we only play in the wintertime.

When the weather gets good we don’t play for some reason; I don’t know why.

Jill: So, there’s something about the lousy weather that actually is fun for you guys.

Mark: That’s right; pretty much; I don’t know why.

Jill: It’s boys being boys, you know.

I think boys always like playing in dirt and mud from the time they’re little kids.

Mark: Could be, but you know, I really like running around on a nice day too.

Running around in the grass on a nice day is the best.

I guess in the spring we play softball, which is less fun and less exercise, but it’s mixed.

Maybe it’s that the ladies won’t play in the wintertime or want to play in the springtime, so we have to change the game because they won’t play football with us.

We don’t want them to.

Jill: I’m sure that they’re not begging to either.

Mark: You know, we have enough trouble getting anyone to play with us because as guys start to get older they just get hurt a lot.

Jill: And it takes much longer to recover.

Mark: It does. Most of you probably don’t know football very well, but it’s essentially a fair bit of standing around with full outbursts.

You know, you stand there and then the ball is thrown and then two guys are running as fast as they can and then you stop and you stand there.

You stand around and then there’s another play and then another couple guys are going as fast as they can, so there’s no sort of constant level of activity to keep you warm and, of course, we don’t warm up very well.

There are a lot of pulled muscles and a lot of guys that have been out one or two times that have never come out again.

Yeah, our numbers aren’t very good for touch football, but lots of fun.

Jill: Maybe you should change it to tackle; maybe there’ll be more people showing up.

Mark: There would be less. Why would you think there would be more?

Jill: I don’t know.

Mark: A chance to tackle people?

Jill: Yeah, don’t men like to hurt each other?

Mark: Well…

Jill: Maybe not when you start to get into your mid 30s and 40s and you get hurt easily.

Mark: Well yeah, not that it’s not fun to tackle guys, but nobody likes to get tackled.

Jill: Well yeah, you just have to be the one doing all the tackling.

Mark: That’s right. But then, yeah, that’s true. I’ll mention that to the guys this weekend.

Jill: See how it goes over.

Mark: Maybe if we change this to tackle; as it is there are guys whose wives won’t let them come.

Jill: Because they get hurt and then they can’t help out for three weeks.

Mark: There was one guy that came out and he was playing fairly regularly and he snapped his Achilles, which is pretty serious and it was like the week before Christmas.

Jill: So, she wasn’t happy.

Mark: So, he couldn’t put up the tree and whatever; like he was just on the couch, right?

He had surgery and he couldn’t do anything and he couldn’t go skiing.

Then the same guy, like a year later, finally came back and played again and hurt his knee.

Like maybe the first or second time back he did something to his knee and thought he was going to need surgery.

Jill: Oh my gosh!

Mark: Oh yeah. Anyway, he’s not allowed to play anymore.

Jill: Well I can sort of understand that.

Mark: Yeah. Well some people I think are more injury prone than others.

Plus it’s one of those things where if you do it regularly you’re okay, but if you aren’t that active and then go out and try and play…

Jill: …you’re going to hurt yourself easier.

Mark: Yeah, try and play like you did when you were a kid or younger and you aren’t used to it that’s when you hurt yourself.

Jill: Yeah, very true.

Mark: Better than sitting inside watching TV though.

Jill: That’s for sure, but you can also just go for a walk,

Mark: A walk? That’s no exercise.

Jill: …which is better than sitting inside watching TV.

Mark: A walk is not fun.

Jill: And then you’re not getting hurt either.

Well, you can go for a hike or a jog or whatever.

Mark: Oh, that’s not fun.

Jill: There are lots of things you can do without getting hurt.

Mark: Playing a game is fun.

You’re getting exercise and you don’t even realize it because you’re playing a sport.

Yeah, I’ll pretty much play a game anytime; nothing better for me.

You don’t know what you’re missing out on.

We’ll let you play.

Jill: No thanks. Don’t do me any favors, okay?

Mark: So yeah, otherwise, we should move on now to talk about LingQ updates this week.

We didn’t have anything to tell you about last week, so we skipped the LingQ update segment.

But this week, hopefully within a few hours, we will have our new Tutor Module up or at least the ability to choose a tutor, which for all you Plus and Premium members means you’ll be able to pick your tutor who will be the one to write you your monthly report and to answer your questions on the forum and, basically, the person who is going to follow your progress.

Jill, I guess you’d be one of them; one of our tutors. Who are the others?

Why don’t you name all the tutors who will be…

Jill: Well for now I guess in English there will be Tracy, Carrie, Tammy, Julie, Katie and perhaps myself.

I’m not sure how many we need right now, so those are the people we’re going to start with.

Mark: And we do have tutors in other languages also.

Jill: Yes, there is Maryann for French, Ruth for Spanish, Miro for Portuguese, Anna for Russian and possibly Sylvia for Italian.

Mark: Right. Well that’s good.

Jill: Actually, there’s some Japanese interest as well. It’s just that you can’t really write in Japanese yet.

Mark: But there are already events.

Jill: Yes, Hosio has scheduled some events.

Mark: Right, in Japanese. I almost signed up. I should sign up I shouldn’t be so lazy. I should go sign up for a Japanese event.

I saw Miro was signed up, but his time wasn’t good for me, it was like four in the morning for us.

Yeah, no, I saw that and I thought to myself that I should get on there just like you should get on in French.

Jill: Yes, really I should.

I should talk to Maryann.

Mark: That’s right. Have you ever spoken with Maryann in French?

Jill: I haven’t, actually.

If we’re speaking in English if there’s something that she just can’t say in English or she can’t think of I’ll just tell her to say it in French and then I can understand and then I’ll tell her the English, but she rarely does that.

Mark: Because many of our listeners might not know this, but Jill is fluent in French. She went to school in French her whole life.

Jill: Yeah, there’s a difference between being fluent and even after having spent so many years learning a language, I don’t even think I would call myself fluent.

I mean I’m fine, I’m decent, I certainly have a good working knowledge of the language, but I make a lot of mistakes, need to learn a lot more vocabulary obviously and…

Mark: How many weeks on LingQ do you think it would take you to become fluent, two, three?

Jill: Weeks? Oh, I don’t know. Probably, if I… I would think if I studied regularly for a couple of months, you know, an hour a day that would probably be all it…

Mark: You’d make a big improvement.

Jill: Yeah. I mean sure, there would still be more I could learn and more vocabulary, but I think that would help a lot.

Mark: Because you really haven’t spoken much.

I mean, yeah, you went to French Immersion, which ends up being less and less as you get older in high school and then you probably haven’t spoken much since.

Jill: In university I majored in French.

Mark: Oh you did?

Jill: Yeah, so I had university courses every semester that were in French, but not all my courses.

I mean, I studied other things too, so it’s not like I was immersed in it all day.

Mark: Right.

Jill: Since I graduated five years ago, over five years ago, I basically haven’t used French at all; haven’t read it, haven’t spoken it, haven’t listened to it, so I’m a little rusty.

Mark: Yeah. I mean, in a way, that’s a bit like me too.

I understand a lot of French, but I don’t think I’ve ever spoken it very much at all; like I’ve never been in a situation where I’ve needed to speak it.

Like you, I didn’t have as much as you, but I certainly had it in high school every year as a subject and I took it in university too.

I don’t know, you do hear it, like the French channel on TV here, but I’ve never been anywhere where they’ve spoken French.

I mean, I visited, but not for any length of time, so I’ve never had the opportunity to really try and speak it.

I should get on in French.

Jill: Join a discussion with Maryann, Julie is.

Our tutor Julie, our English tutor Julie, she’s become a paying member and she has already signed up for one discussion with Maryann.

Mark: Good for her!

Jill: So, we don’t have any excuse.

Mark: We really don’t; we really don’t. Well, why don’t we do that?

I was also thinking that we should get, you know, Julie or Tracy or Carrie, our tutors, on our podcast here; talk to them.

Maybe even next week we can try and start to do that through Skype.

I think a lot of our listeners would get a kick out of that.

Jill: Yeah, having some guest hosts.

Mark: Anyway, getting back to our update, you will be able to go to the settings page, as I said, hopefully later today, if not today then tomorrow, go to the settings page and at the bottom of the settings page you’ll be able to pick a tutor.

Of course, only Plus and Premium members will actually receive reports and be able to ask questions of their tutor, but you can all certainly pick a tutor and see who the tutors are and, hopefully, be inspired to upgrade your membership so that you can receive reports and get feedback from a tutor.

Besides that, I don’t know that there is… For those of you who are Japanese listeners who’ve been on the Japanese forum, we fixed the bug with long strings of Japanese text being broken up by the three dots.

Those of you who have been on the forum will know what I mean.

That was a bug and it will be fixed in our next update, so sorry about that and thanks for your patience there.

Otherwise, I think we’ll also have our activity score showing now, which will be a measure of how active you’ve been on the site in the last month.

We will use that activity score in the future for comparing your activity to other members and giving out prizes to our most active members.

There is a whole range of fun things that we’ll be bringing in related to the activity score, so anyway, for now you can see it and I guess just see a reflection of your activity.

Jill: And be aware that it’s there.

Mark: I think it will show up in your progress snapshot on the overview page.

We’ll be putting out guidelines as to, you know, what an active score is so that you’ll be able to judge how active you are.

Hopefully, that will inspire some of you who aren’t recording all of your statistics to do so.

Yeah, anyway, those are some of the things to watch for in our new update.

As always, let us know how you like things; let us know if you have any questions.

Of course, we always want your questions for our podcast or suggestions for topics; let us know what you think.

With that, I think we’ll get ready for the long weekend.

Jill: Alright, have a nice weekend.

Mark: Alright.

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