English teaching in China is highly test-oriented and the emphasis is put on reading academic essays and grammer. Most of us lack basic training.
I'm a product of such teaching approach. I can understand hard and lengthy academic articles but always have difficulty understanding simply everyday talks and comic strips for children.
Honestly , I find Harry Potter(the book) not easy to finish reading. *blushes* It's just because I have never been taught "simple" English. Our English teachers just crammed "difficult" English into us from the beginning.
Sometimes , judging from what I write, some native English speakers thought my English was ok. But they were wrong. The simpler the reading material, the more difficult it is to me. (You may find this ridiculous)
So I'm thinking maybe I need to read some basic reading materials, like UK or America's grade school textbooks. But how to get them? In America, textbooks belong to public school and they're not for sale. What is the case in UK and other English countries?
Or are there ideal substitutes for grade school textbooks?
And if you teachers have any good advice on learning, please share.
Many thanks in advance:)
First, I don't think your problem is ridiculous. It seems to me that you got used to a specific kind of language, and for this reason aren't familiar with everyday speech which surely is different from academic language.
Why not try some novels or books for children? I think this would even be better than reading school books.
Some time ago we had a discussion about recommandable novels (general member disucussions). I remember that "A Spot of Bother" (author's name?) was highly recommended there.