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effective communikation

THE POWER OF COMMUNICATION. HOW TO SPEAK SO THAT WE ARE HEARD? – Why is it so important not only while learning the polish language? (Episode I)

How to speak so that we are heard? Why is effective communication so important not only when learning Polish?

The Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU is a unique place where not only Polish lessons take place, but where we passionately share Polish tradition, culture, and lifestyle. We understand DIALOGUE as effective communication, full acceptance of the diversity of cultures, openness to exchanging thoughts, and the willingness to get to know each other. That’s why we like to talk so much 😊.

That’s all (and so much) about KLUB DIALOGU School. What does sociological research say?

Many sociological studies show that the effectiveness of our communication (i.e., whether we are heard and understood) depends largely on our origin (country, region, family, community) and cultural experiences.

Deborah Tannen is a professor of linguistics and author of many publications on interpersonal communication, which proves that competent people are not always listened to. It turns out that HOW something is said more important than WHAT is said.

Language is not only a tool for communicating information, and learning Polish is not only a verbal statement.

Everything we want to say has to be said in the right way. Therefore, depending on the situation, we adjust the tone of the voice, its intensity, and even the speed of speech. Elements such as addressing the other person directly or indirectly, choice of words, a pause, and even the use of questions or apologies are important. These are cultural signals that not only communicate what we mean, but evaluate us as human beings.

For example, a discreet PAUSE. A pause that appears in a dialogue between two people. In each country, and even region of the same country, it is treated as ‘natural’ in a different way. In NY City, the long pause in speech is unbearable, so people keep talking until their interlocutor cuts in. Meanwhile, in Texas – only a longer pause allows the interlocutor to express his opinion. This slight difference in conversation style can have a huge impact on communication and how we will be judged.

When learning Polish (or any other foreign language), make sure that your style of expression is respected. People from all over the world apply for a group Polish language course, which is why it is so important to respect each other’s communication styles. Italians are said to speak loudly and quickly, which is why they dominate the rest of the group. The Japanese are withdrawn and don’t ‘cut people off’; because of this, they can avoid interactions.

Polish is difficult, and learning Polish as a foreign language can be exhausting, so a pleasant atmosphere during Polish lessons will be an advantage when we want to be heard.

‘Me’, ‘mine’, ‘ours’ – how to communicate effectively and emphasize your own value? Take this also into account when learning Polish

You probably heard often how the leader of your team brags about your joint project saying: ‘My project has received the recognition of the CEO!’.

Deborah Tannen’s research on the style of expression shows that it is mostly men who will use the words ‘me’, and ‘mine’, when it comes to teamwork, as opposed to women, who will judge even their own work as ‘our project’, expecting – sometimes unsuccessfully – that someone else will appreciate them. Ultimately, whoever fights for it and communicates loudly gains recognition and is heard.

You probably noticed that women are in majority in KLUB DIALOGU Polish Language School 😊. It just so happened, but thanks to this, we are a perfectly harmonious and a strong team, which together builds its values ​​and creates its identity. During Polish language courses, we try to praise our students a lot and encourage them to learn. This is important because although self-motivation is the key to success, the incentive of the teacher is the fuel that drives this motivation. Don’t forget to celebrate even those little successes. Talk about them. This naturally affects fantastic development, and learning Polish becomes an adventure and a pleasure!

————————————– THE END OF THE FIRST EPISODE —————————————-

nauka-polskiego

FROM A0 TO THE B1 CERTIFICATE EXAM IN POLISH AS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE. HOW IT’S POSSIBLE? An interview with our real Chinese student.

Zeming (he likes it when he is called Zeminek, i.e. using the Polish diminutive form) is the first student from China who started learning Polish from scratch at our KLUB DIALOGU school. After less than 5 years, in March 2022, he took the State Certificate Examination at B1 level. Students, especially from non-Slavic-speaking countries who take up this considerable challenge, know that it is a great achievement! Congratulations! 😊

That is why we asked ‘Zeminek’ for a short interview about his way through this ‘silk road’!

Hi Zeminek, thank you for agreeing to talk about your ‘passion’ for the Polish language, all the more that all your Polish as a foreign language learning from A0 to the B1 exam took place at the KLUB DIALOGU School 😊. You give hope and faith to our other students that it is possible! So tell me:

Are you a real Chinese guy? How old are you?

Ha, ha – oh yeah! I am a real Chinese guy! I was born in Shanghai, China, and am now 30 years old.

When did you come to Poland and how did your adventure with the Polish language begin?

On the very first day, when I landed in Poland, in October 2017, I thought that it would be worth starting to learn the native language. Different continent, different country, different people, and different letters! Yes, I absolutely had to study it! So I was just surfing the Internet when I found the Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU. It immediately caught my attention because it stood out among other offers. I thought it was a good choice. I didn’t hesitate for long and came straight to the school office. And here I am! ‘I grew’ with you for 5 years! 😊

It’s wonderful that you are with us! So tell me which elements of the Polish language were the most problematic to learn?

Grammar! Horror, massacre! And including: any order of words in the sentence, conjugation and declension, gender: masculine, feminine and neutral and their inflection!, personal pronouns!!, inflection of numerals!!!, oh my God, Vocative?!!!! – nooo – almost everything. And you know how Poles talk quickly …

Even so, Poles speak slower than Italians! 😊 Well, we have to try harder! How much is Chinese different from Polish?

Very! I don’t even know where to start? Of course, you can see the difference in the alphabet at first glance 😉. And then it only gets worse. The Chinese language has practically no grammar, maybe to a small extent, while the grammar of the Polish language is crucial in communication. For example, nouns in Chinese have virtually no inflection. There are no coincidences or even plural – just add a number and you will know what amount you are talking about. Verbs are also not inflected, neither by persons nor by tenses. The appropriate time is indicated in a sentence by time factors such as “yesterday” and “tomorrow”. Also, the counting system in Chinese is slightly different than in Polish. And each part of a sentence has a specific, fixed place in the pattern. Remembering the order guarantees the grammatical correctness of the statement.

Yeah. Chinese seems to be much easier than Polish, although I don’t know if I could remember Chinese characters… And what surprised you the most about Poland and Poles, when you came to our country for the first time?

Many things, but I think the most important are: strong, good beer, generally good looking people, both women and men (ha, ha), that people in Poland are really nice (so far I have not experienced any discrimination), the fact that there are so many beautiful parks here in Warsaw and around it, and of course FLACZKI, which I really like 😊

Could you list 5 cultural/lifestyle differences between Poles and the Chinese?

Hard to say. China is changing dynamically, and cultures and lifestyles even differ between regions in China. One thing is obvious – we eat more rice & pasta than bread & potatoes. But seriously, what I noticed is that the Chinese are a collective society, while the Poles are individualists. This can be seen, inter alia, in discussions during which each Pole must have his own separate opinion. In China, too, not everything needs to be said straightforwardly; people interpret the context more, while in Poland rules and principles dominate. For example: ‘No’ means refusing, and guests don’t refuse. That’s why the Chinese will always say yes. If ‘yes’ meant true ‘yes’ then it’s okay. However, if ‘yes’ means ‘no’, the Chinese will simply not answer our phone, or otherwise signal his different opinion.

The intricacies of communication… 😊 Finally, 2 more questions: Was the State Examination of Polish as a Foreign Language for the B1 Certificate difficult for you? Did something surprise you? Were you very stressed?

Well … I’m not overly happy with the ‘writing’ part. My teacher repeatedly told me to practice writing under time pressure, but I was sure that I would be fine. During the exam, however, it turned out that the time was inexorable and I finished my essay quite awkwardly at the last minute. Luckily, the ‘reading’ and ‘listening’ parts turned out to be easier than I expected. Maybe because my teacher gave me more difficult examples during the Polish language lessons during the B1 exam preparation course. I think that in the end, the Polish as a foreign language exam went better than I expected. It is thanks to my teacher Sandra and the KLUB DIALOGU School, which showed great patience with me and kept my motivation, especially when I was returning to China for a long time.

Yes, of course I was stressing out a lot!

And the last question: Are you going to stay longer in Poland now?

Of course, I intend to stay in Poland. I have no plans neither to leave Poland to another country, nor go back to China. I started my economic studies here at the University of Warsaw, but during the pandemic I had to quit. Now I work in the ‘game & nft’ industry and although it’s still working from home, I like it.

Thank you very much, Zeminek, and good luck! See you at the Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU, because you still have an exam at the B2 and C1 levels 😊
Dorota Maszkiewicz, Managing Director

CULTURE AND LIFESTYLE IN POLAND. Trivia.

This is a corner for those who like to know what is going on around them. And it is happening! Warsaw is teeming with life! You probably still remember that extraordinary night on January 31st? And red hearts distributed in the street. It was played by the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity (WOŚP). For 30 years in a row, this charitable foundation, created by an exceptional man – Jurek Owsiak, collects funds for the purchase of medical equipment. During the 30 Final, over PLN 1.6 billion was raised. The Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity bought and handed over 66,150 devices to health care facilities all over Poland. It is estimated that every fifth equipment in hospitals comes from the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity. According to public opinion polls, the foundation has been the most trusted by charity organisations for many years. There is none like it in the world!

Interestingly? It is from Jurek Owsiak that phrases that have become a permanent part of the Polish dictionary: ‘sie ma’ (hi), ‘Róbta co chceta’ (do what you wish), ‘gramy do końca świata i jeden dzień dłużej’ (‘we play until the end of the world and one day longer’).

What else?

Just in few days, the 24th February, there will be FAT THURSDAY (TŁUSTY CZWARTEK in Polish). It is a traditional Catholic Christian feast marking the last Thursday before Lent, thus the beginning of fasting before Easter. In Poland, we celebrate this day by eating… doughnuts! Doughnuts are yeast cakes traditionally filled with rose or another sweet flavoured jam.

The tradition of eating doughnuts on Fat Thursday in Poland goes back to the 17th century. This day precedes Ash Wednesday, which begins the 40 days fast.

Among bakers and confectioners, Fat Thursday is regarded as one of the busiest days of the year, with many cake shops open from the early hours of the morning after a marathon night of frying doughnuts. Bon Appetit!!

The new year means new opportunities, but first we would like to tell you what happened in 2021!

Did you know that despite the ongoing pandemic in 2021, the Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU opened 260 new Polish language courses, of which 137 were group courses, and 123 were individual courses?! Thanks to the commitment as well as the satisfaction of our students, 573 new people enrolled in 2021, and Polish learning was continued by 455 KD students! These are impressive numbers that we are very proud of! Of course, students also left our school for various reasons (122), mainly due to the unstable pandemic situation (41%), returning to their home country (36%), or for other reasons (23%).

A great achievement of the KLUB DIALOGU School in 2021 was its full involvement in the organisation of the State Certificate Examination in Polish as a Foreign Language at B1 level. A total of 150 candidates took part in the 4 scheduled examination sessions. 121 people participated in the preparation courses for this exam. 139 people obtained a positive result after the exam!

In addition, throughout 2021, we organised 14 events, the most of which being during the summer holidays (7). The Film Friday event (5), which is a cyclical screening of Polish films with English subtitles, was a huge success.

But our success would not be possible without you, our students! Thank you for being with us!

Your activity encourages us to continue to work and make sure that our Polish lessons meet your expectations, are interesting, and even more effective.

From the beginning of the year, we have prepared a new course schedule for each level. Just take our online test or come to our school and talk to a teacher to find the right Polish course for you. We offer Polish language courses in the form of group, individual, school, hybrid and online settings. If you are interested in obtaining a student visa – we have the ‘One Year Program’ for you, and if you would like to intensify your Polish learning – ask us about the ’30 days Around Polish’ program. In 2022, there will also be 4 more sessions of the State Examination for the B1 Certificate. The new year brings new opportunities. Don’t hesitate! Join us!

Join us >>

The pandemic posed many challenges for our Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU, and although it has been with us for 2 years, it is still difficult to get used to. Let us remind you that the school was closed for 3 months in 2020 and all lessons were conducted online. However, soon after, in June 2020, we returned to Aleje Jerozolimskie, glad that we could be face-to-face again. Thanks to modern solutions introduced by KLUB DIALOGU, our students can now choose Polish language lessons online, or at school, or to learn Polish in a hybrid way, which is a perfect solution for people who prefer a full-time Polish language course, but in exceptional situations have the opportunity to connect to a lesson online.

At the same time, the employees of KLUB DIALOGU constantly take care of maintaining the appropriate hygienic standards at school. The classrooms are aired out after each lesson, and tables and other items are disinfected. Each student and each group has a choice whether masks are worn during Polish lessons or not.

All the actions we take are aimed at maintaining our common security in these difficult times. Therefore, we want to ensure that our Polish Language School for Foreigners will function (as before) online and offline, as long as state law allows us to do so. We feel strong in what we do!

KLUB DIALOGU school is 17 years old and this is not the first crisis we are dealing with, but it is definitely the hardest. However, looking at the last few months, we are sincerely convinced that with you we are able to adapt to any situation, and come out of each crisis even stronger. Why? Because we do what we love the most: we share our passion for the Polish language, tradition and culture.

At the end of 2021 we want to say to you: THANK YOU! Thank you for the support you give us.