Thursday, March 4, 2010

A more complete introduction

My name is Claudio Fleury Curado Sasse, which I find a very long name. Some people call me Claudio, others Fleury, others call me Sasse. My family calls me Claudinho, because I am named after my father, but since I have my mother’s surnames, I am not called Junior. I am 36 years old and I was born in Goiânia. I have been living in Brasilia for 16 years, I am not married and don’t have any kids. My family still lives in Goiânia and I visit them often, although I really feel lazy to drive all the way there sometimes. I mean, I love going there, but the trip bores me. I have two sisters, who are married, and one brother. I also have three nephews. The youngest is only three months old, and he is now a wonderful reason for me to make frequent trips to visit my family.

I love living in Brasilia. I moved here in 1994, to study at Universidade de Brasilia. Before coming here, I studied at Universidade Federal de Goiás. I had already taken three years of Civil Engineering when I decided I wanted to be an Architect. That is why I came to Brasilia. I graduated in 2000, and also worked as an architect until 2005. Nowadays I only get involved with architecture in very special occasions, for my family or friends, for example.

How I learned English is an interesting story. When I was 11, in the 5th grade, I had English and French classes at Lyceu de Goiânia, where I studied. I loved French, and I really was the best student in class. However, I hated English, and simply could not understand it. I almost flunked 5th grade because of English, so I started an English course to help me in school. That was when I discovered English and how easy it was. I learned that it was useful, and back in the 1980s, when there was no internet or much technology available, knowing English was something extraordinary for me. I had always liked to read comic books, and with English I could read American comics without having to wait for them to be published in Portuguese, not to mention the songs I could now understand.

I think if it hadn’t been for the comics I loved, I would not have developed my English skills so much. After some time I was proud to say I could go to the movies and not read the subtitles anymore. Today I am really glad I almost flunked English, because it was a turning point in my life. I simply cannot imagine my life without this language. The first time I taught English was in 1991. I was 17 and it was a very short experience. I come from a family of teachers – geography, history, social studies – and teaching is in my blood. While I was taking Civil Engineering I took a course for English teachers, and had some more classroom experience. Shortly after that I moved to Brasilia.

Already in Brasilia I started teaching English in a language school. While I was in college, I worked as a trainee architect and an English teacher. It was only in 2005, however, when I started working at Casa Thomas Jefferson, that I realized that what I wanted was to be an English teacher. I took the Teacher Development Course, and I soon got involved with technology in education. Technology has always been part of my life too. I got my first computer, handed down from a cousin of mine, when I was 13, and I have been using computers ever since.

I have never studied or lived abroad, and this is something I like to tell my students. You don’t actually need to spend time abroad to learn English, but it definitely helps. This month I am going to take part in a conference for English teachers in Boston. I am really looking forward to it, because I am going to have a presentation about Cyber Project, a course for teenagers, here at the Casa, that develops digital literacy and, of course, English skills.

English teachers don’t have much free time. Whenever I have some extra time, I read books and comics, I surf the net and watch movies; however, I rarely go to the movies, because I feel sleepy. If I really want to relax, I do some crosswords, and I especially like the difficult ones. I love listening to jazz, classical music and some pop. It helps me concentrate when I am preparing classes.

Well, it’s time I finished this. I did not intend to make this a long introduction, but I really wanted it to show you a bit about who I am and how I got here. Thanks to your questions, I had a lot to write about.


Socorro said...

Hi Claudio, it is good to get to know a little more about you! I like your introduction a lot, but in my humble opinion, it's a bit too long and too personal. Usually people on the internet get bored easily and won't read very long texts, even if they are about interesting issues. I would summarize it and even remove some stuff like the marital status of your sisters or the fact that you get bored with the trip to Goiania, or details about your youngest nephew. I would also summarize your English learning experience, it is interesting but there are too many details. Right now your introduction is three pages long. I would suggest that you reduce to one.

Socorro Borges

Claudio Fleury said...

Thank you, Socorro. I agree with you that it is lengthy. And you got the idea: we need to find a balance between the information we want to give and how we give it. And we have to make sure the information is relevant.

After other participants comment on this 'looong' introduction, I will post a final, edited version.

Your comments are a perfect example of what we call 'peer review'. It is always a good idea to have someone read our production and give ideas as how to improve it. Thanks again.

Marcia Pinheiro said...

Hi, Claudio ! I like your introduction even though it's too long. You shouldn't have written so many details about your relatives neither your experience in learning english. I agree with Socorro when she says we need to find a balance between the information we want to give and how we give it. I think the readers of a blog expect to find relavant information about its owner rather than if he has got a married sister and how old is his nephew. I mean, write about who you are, your interests and/or intention of creating the blog and very little about your family -in case you feel you must mention it.

Carla said...

Hi Claudio,
I´m Carla and I really like your introduction.I graduated at CTJ ten years ago and now I´m back to improve my english.I´m still very afraid to write I hope you can help me.