Foreign language education in this country is abysmal. It makes me want to scratch my eyes out. These horrible, horrible "teachers" are ripping people off. I've always said that too many English teachers in Brazil think that teaching English means "reading the answers and phrases in the book in a formal voice." Oh, and it helps if you've got some American and British flags hanging up.
Here, have a gander at a program on Canal Cultura (like PBS in the US) called "Inglês com Música". This program was apparently started in 1969, and no one has thought to reexamine teaching theories since then.
Once you get past the singing part, which seems fun enough, the "cheecher" comes out you can see the program for what it really is.
The worst part is that the teachers I had to watch at the English schools I worked at used methods that were very, very similar: i.e., they talk out of their asses about nothing in particular, throw in some cutesy English phrases and immediately translate them into Portuguese, and the students stare silently and politely. Sometimes the teacher spontaneously pauses after saying an English phrase and expects the students to realize that they need to repeat it. Some figure it out and parrot the phrase back to her, with no idea of what they're saying. Hooray for rote memorization and the outdated audiolingual method!
Then the teacher hands out some useless and non-sequitur worksheet that they printed off of the first website that came up in their Google search for "English class activities", without explaining anything or letting the students speak in class. Then the students silently complete the worksheets while gossiping among themselves in Portuguese. Then the teacher corrects them with a bunch of Cs and Xs next to each answer (C for correct and X for incorrect) and hands them back the next day with no more practice or explanation.
And my students wonder why they've had a hard time speaking English.
OMG this video is depressing.
Are you a Brazilian who has studied English with better teachers and better methods?? Please, say so in the comments. Show me that English education here is not completely hopeless.