About learning English and STANAG 6001

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mikhael

Level 7 Valued Member
Ok, I have another question: What should I read? I finished The Hound of Baskerville's few days ago and now I'm confused. I don't know what to read next? Any suggestion, advices?
I was thinking about The Hunger Games or The Giver but it could be too difficult for me.
 

Mark Kidd

Level 4 Valued Member
Ok, I have another question: What should I read? I finished The Hound of Baskerville's few days ago and now I'm confused. I don't know what to read next? Any suggestion, advices?
I was thinking about The Hunger Games or The Giver but it could be too difficult for me.
If you can understand Hound of Baskerville, then Hunger Games and Giver should be a breeze. Start with Hunger Games first. Giver has a higher language difficulty (not too much) and has a bit more reading between the lines.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
What should I read?
Consider reading a magazine or a newspaper, particularly since these are available online (although I don't know if they're available outside the US online). The New York Times has a web site, and the New Yorker Magazine includes a short story in every issue.

-S-
 

mikhael

Level 7 Valued Member
Thanks for advice.
Here is another writing task from the military exam according to STANAG 6001. It is little different style of writing, more formal. I have never wrote a report like this one below, so, it is my first but not last. Please read and correct if you want.

The Task

Write between 120 150 words.
While patrolling an Afghan town, you saw a house on fire. Write about the event. Include the following points:

  • time and place of the event
  • people involved / victims
  • rescue operation
  • (possible) causes of fire
  • how the Polish unit can help the victims
The Report
TO: CO John Rambo
FROM: Cap XXX
SUBJECT: A house on fire during the patrol
DATE: 23th December, 2016

Introduction
The aim of this report is to describe the accident which happened during the patrol on 20th December, 2017.
Circumstances
Firstly, my platoon had been patrolling an Afgan town for two hours before we noticed a house on fire located in north district. There were about fifteen people on the street whose were forced to leave their flats due to the danger.
Moreover, there was high possibility that in the house are still a woman and one child trapped by the fire.
Secondly, my platoon secured the area and I ordered to call the support. The fire brigade appeared in ten minutes and started fight with the fire directly.
Finally, a woman and a child have lost their lives and they were only victims the accident.
Conclusion
In conclusion, it is obvious that this kind of situation could happen in the future. My recommendation is that the Polish unit should supply the platoons with fire blankets.
 

Mark Kidd

Level 4 Valued Member
Whose should be who.

The fire brigde arrived in ten minutes and started to fight the fire directly.


Looks good brother.
 

mikhael

Level 7 Valued Member
I found a book and I'm considering buying it.

Guide to Effective Military Writing by William A. McIntosh.

Could you give me a feed back about this book? Is it worth of buying?


 

Frank_IT

Level 4 Valued Member
Kind of late to the discussion, @mikhael, but being Italian and having learnt English practically on my own, I would like to share what I've been constantly doing for over fifteen years now.
  • Listen to music - to me, the hardest part in speaking the language is not knowing the words, but being able to understand a fluent speach, picking words distinctly and effortlessly. If you can do this listening to music, you're pretty much set for most conversations.
  • Watching movies (applies also to any other form of media in which there's a spoken exchange between two or more people) - this is like listening two poeple having a chat, and it's again mandatory to learn fluidity.
  • Read books - you can read a book at your own pace (which is a commodity you won't have in music and movies) and it's much easier to elaborate on written material.
  • ...This is going to sound odd... When on your own, repeat, and I mean repeat, try to reproduce the traits of the conversation (emotions, ecc.) lots and lots of what you've been listening and watching (music / movies) and read your writings of choice aloud. You'll probably think you're crazy, but this is the single most important things to do, trust me.
  • Years ago I'd have said write on your own, but with today's Internet evolution, there's really no need to do it by yourself and you can also come here, for example. :) SF Forum's going to be very specific, but it is general wrinting practice anyways, and it helps a lot.
My English is not perfect, but by doing what I told you and seldomly opening a book, I glided through Italian Superior Midlle Schools (not bragging but I was a Demigod for my Teachers), passed three, Collegge level exams of English language and I can get high scores in many of the test that I've seen. I've talked to many native English speaker in my life and all of them hve asked me how much time I had spent away from Italy, which I've never been for more than 14 days in 2004.

Anyways, any language has to be practiced to be learnt, both in spoken and written form, there is no other way around. :)
 

mikhael

Level 7 Valued Member
Thank you for your advices @Frank_IT . What I can say about all of four skills is that:
1. I am reading a lot. I have read two books since I have started learn English and aiming in the military exam. Some articles form news and of course the Strong First Forum.
2. I am listening mostly news from BBC and CNN.
3. Speaking is the hardest part of learning English due to lack of speaking partner.
4. I am confused about writing. Many of you said I write quite well, although when it comes to write sometimes I have a big black hole in my mind. Mayby is a part of learning process?

One thing I am certain I have to read, write, listen and speak a lot if I want to confidence in English.
 

Frank_IT

Level 4 Valued Member
@mikhael
About speaking: repeating as I told you is the most you can do for lack of partners. I'm on the same boat and, even if it's definitely not near as effective as having an interlocutor, it does a good job. Also, let's keep in mind that fluidity has a lot to do with self confidence (which will go up along you speaking abilities) and the emotional state you're into.

About writing: it's normal, don't worry about it. :) You do write well, and the black holes are really a common thing.

@elli, being my wife (hi, sweetheart), made me remember something I should have told you in the first place.
While watching movies, my field tested method was this one:
1. Watch the movie with English subtitles;
2. When you feel you can go without them, understanding most (or even all) the sentences and picking the words, switch them to you own language;
3. When, again, you'll seem to not need them anymore, take them out completely and test yoursel.

This was my go-to method.
 

elli

Level 9 Valued Member
@mikhael
About speaking: repeating as I told you is the most you can do for lack of partners. I'm on the same boat and, even if it's definitely not near as effective as having an interlocutor, it does a good job. Also, let's keep in mind that fluidity has a lot to do with self confidence (which will go up along you speaking abilities) and the emotional state you're into.

About writing: it's normal, don't worry about it. :) You do write well, and the black holes are really a common thing.

@elli, being my wife (hi, sweetheart), made me remember something I should have told you in the first place.
While watching movies, my field tested method was this one:
1. Watch the movie with English subtitles;
2. When you feel you can go without them, understanding most (or even all) the sentences and picking the words, switch them to you own language;
3. When, again, you'll seem to not need them anymore, take them out completely and test yoursel.

This was my go-to method.
Well done hubbie! Guess what I do for living;)
 

mikhael

Level 7 Valued Member
Ok, I think I undarstood everything. Let me summarize it:
1. Write, write and againg write
2.Read a lot
3. Speak to myself by reading out loud
4. Watch movies with/without subtitles.

Am I got it right?
 

elli

Level 9 Valued Member
Ok, I think I undarstood everything. Let me summarize it:
1. Write, write and againg write
2.Read a lot
3. Speak to myself by reading out loud
4. Watch movies with/without subtitles.

Am I got it right?
speak and read more than you write.
But: you are right.
 

mikhael

Level 7 Valued Member
Only few days have left before the exam. Here is another sample of my writing. Is someone would look at it I will be grateful for that :)

TASK
There have been some problems with the delivery of new equipment to your unit. Write a report to your CO informing him what happened. Write between 150-200 words.

REPORT
TO: CO Jason Bourne
FROM: Cpl XXX
SUBJECT: Delivery delay
DATE: 21th January, 2017

Introduction
The purpose of this report is to inform you about the delay of equipment which should arrive on 18th January. The possible cause of the delay is known.

Circumstances
Firstly, the order of new equipment was made on 18th January and it includes one thousand M4 assault rifle, two hundreds F1 grenades and five hundred bullet proof vests. The request was confirmed by the Brigade Commander, Col John Novak and was sent to the local facility.
Secondly, on 19th January our request was accepted by the manager of the facility and a notice was received regarding exact date of a convoy arrive.
Unfortunately, the convoy have had an accident on the main road. Another car have hit them with a high speed thirteen kilometers before the destination point. There were one heavy injured casualty, who was token to the nearest hospital by a helicopter.

Conclusions
In conclusion, we were assured that we will receive our order in next week due to the accident. Moreover, another convoy will drive a different route to avoid a traffic in the main road. Therefore, the manager estimate that the time of the convoy will be last longer.
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
Mike..
Looks really good. I made a few minor changes in bold
Also I removed a few words

Introduction

The purpose of this report is to inform you about the delay of equipment which should arrive on 18th January. The possible cause of the delay is known.

Circumstances
Firstly, the order of new equipment was made on 18th January and it includes one thousand M4 assault rifles, two hundred F1 grenades and five hundred bullet proof vests. The request was confirmed by the Brigade Commander, Col John Novak and was sent to the local facility.
Secondly, on 19th January our request was accepted by the manager of the facility and a notice was received regarding exact date of the convoy arrival
Unfortunately, the convoy has had an accident on the main road. Another car has hit them with high speed thirteen kilometers from the destination point. There was one heavily injured casualty, who was taken to the nearest hospital by a helicopter.

Conclusions
In conclusion, we were assured that we will receive our order next week due to the accident. Moreover, another convoy will drive a different route to avoid traffic on the main road. Therefore, the manager estimated that the time of the convoy will be longer.
 
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