Reading time

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guiguixx1
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Reading time

Postby guiguixx1 » Wed Jul 17, 2019 8:38 pm

Hi all!

I'm currently reading in French, English and Italian daily for a challenge on a website with people addicted to reading, for each X pages read, you get points, so that I'm encouraged to keep reading, something I didn't do enough last year.

Ever since a previous post on how to maintain languages, I've read an article on Luca's website where he explains how he maintains his 13 languages, and he does so mainly by organizing his life around them, and so he tries to use them regularly, on a daily/weekly basis.
I therefore feel like I'm wasting my time reading in languages I already master AND that I already use enough on a daily basis. So I'd be tempted to stop reading in these languages. However, I read books in these languages which interest me, I don't read novels or books for the sake of reading, but I read to learn new things, and the books I read happen to be in French/English. So I feel like I am wasting my time AND doing something useful.

Has this ever occurred to anyone? Do you think I should only keep reading in languages I want to improve (Dutch, Spanish, Italian)? Reading in French and English already takes time, time I'm not investing in other, weaker languages, and that's the problem..

Thanks a lot for your opinion on this matter!
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Re: Reading time

Postby Cenwalh » Wed Jul 17, 2019 9:14 pm

If you feel like you could learn more reading in a different language, then sure go for it.

I would say though that whatever you're doing, if it gives you enjoyment and fulfilment then it is certainly not a waste of time. No one could ever justly bash you for reading, learning new things, and having a good time doing it.
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Re: Reading time

Postby golyplot » Thu Jul 18, 2019 2:36 pm

Ultimately, the point of learning languages is to use them. So don't feel bad about it.
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Baeticus
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Re: Reading time

Postby Baeticus » Thu Jul 18, 2019 3:03 pm

Well, I'm spending my summer reading novels of García Márquez and Hemingway. I'm a Spanish native speaker (and supposed to have an fluent level of English). Should I start reading French authors, since that's my current target language? Maybe, but I'm enjoying myself at this moment and actually don't see any reason to stop doing this.

Besides (this is just a personal opinion based on my experience), extensive learning is only a enjoyable experience once a reasonable fluent level in the language has been acquired. Because of that, probably the best option is to combine fun (extensive reading in the languages you feel comfortable) with specific learning-focused material in your target languages.
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Re: Reading time

Postby coldrainwater » Sat Jul 20, 2019 5:32 am

My plan would be to keep reading what I enjoy and wait with bated breath until all books that I might pick for language acquisition/maintenance can optionally be reproduced as audiobooks with high quality narration. For me at least, since I have tons of listening hours available (5-10 hrs/day if I wanted), but much more limited reading time, that would open up several maintenance slots that I could use each day.

It took me some time to learn to appreciate audiobooks to the extent that I do now, but it was time well spent for me learning Spanish and I see the skill as a big part of my future. The natural bifurcation for me will likely come with resources that specifically need to read rather than listened to and require a visual text(book). Those will get my reading hours each day and the rest will be slated for audio time.
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Re: Reading time

Postby Brun Ugle » Sat Jul 20, 2019 6:02 am

I find that if I don’t read in my higher level languages, even my native language, I lose the ability to express myself well, even though I may use these languages nearly every day. Speaking, texting and other everyday uses of language tend not to expose you to much sophisticated or infrequent vocabulary and structures the way reading novels does.

I also like to read for an hour or so before bed without screens (so no e-books) and it would be awkward and ruin the relaxation aspect of it to need a dictionary, so I do that only with books I’m pretty sure I can read and enjoy without needing to look anything up. That means they have to be in languages that are fairly easy for me, or they have to be books that are not likely to be difficult (graded readers, YA/children’s books) if they are in more intermediate languages.

Besides, when you start feeling that every moment has to be dedicated to improving your languages, this becomes less of a hobby and more of an obsession. And that’s when I usually break down and stop studying languages altogether for months at a time.
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Re: Reading time

Postby Storyling » Tue Jul 23, 2019 3:50 am

coldrainwater wrote:My plan would be to keep reading what I enjoy and wait with bated breath until all books that I might pick for language acquisition/maintenance can optionally be reproduced as audiobooks with high quality narration. For me at least, since I have tons of listening hours available (5-10 hrs/day if I wanted), but much more limited reading time, that would open up several maintenance slots that I could use each day.

It took me some time to learn to appreciate audiobooks to the extent that I do now, but it was time well spent for me learning Spanish and I see the skill as a big part of my future. The natural bifurcation for me will likely come with resources that specifically need to read rather than listened to and require a visual text(book). Those will get my reading hours each day and the rest will be slated for audio time.


I'm a fan of this approach. 8-)
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Re: Reading time

Postby kmurphy930 » Tue Aug 06, 2019 1:52 am

Have a random question that's kinda related: Does reading the same book in multiple languages give some superhuman comprehension? Like, if I read 7 Habits of highly effective people in 7 languages, would I become some sort of demi-god?
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lichtrausch
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Re: Reading time

Postby lichtrausch » Tue Aug 06, 2019 2:16 am

kmurphy930 wrote:Have a random question that's kinda related: Does reading the same book in multiple languages give some superhuman comprehension? Like, if I read 7 Habits of highly effective people in 7 languages, would I become some sort of demi-god?

No and no.
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Re: Reading time

Postby Deinonysus » Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:57 pm

lichtrausch wrote:
kmurphy930 wrote:Have a random question that's kinda related: Does reading the same book in multiple languages give some superhuman comprehension? Like, if I read 7 Habits of highly effective people in 7 languages, would I become some sort of demi-god?
No and no.
Well I don't know. I've read the first chapter of Harry Potter in three languages and it might just be a coincidence but I was able to put in all of my air conditioner window units by myself this summer, and one of them is really heavy.
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