What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

General discussion about learning languages
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Stefan
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What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby Stefan » Sat Sep 15, 2018 11:58 pm

Some of us (that's me) probably spend a bit too much time reading and watching videos on language learning instead of studying. So I'm curious to know what you've learned in the last two years and applied to your language learning routine. Does it justify the time you've spent?

I guess one of the issues is remembering when you learn something new. I had a quick look and I've liked at least 311 forum posts because I found them to be of value but it's difficult to remember months later. I had to cheat by skimming my log to see what I have learned:

- That TL subtitles might be really useful.
- That Assimil's books and audio might not match.
- That Kindle is an amazing tool for reading books in foreign languages.
- That MediathekView and rePlay.fr exist.

Going back even further, I spent a lot of time reading about FSI, FIA and Subs2srs.
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby Xenops » Sun Sep 16, 2018 12:00 am

Learning a language takes a lot of work. :roll: :lol:
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby eido » Sun Sep 16, 2018 2:17 am

I second @Xenops.

I didn't know anything about language learning until I started investigating it last August or earlier. I found out about people's opinions mostly, not concrete objective facts. I found out that there are many methods, but they all lead to the same place, and sometimes all methods can be considered the same one if you squint hard enough. We have "Speak From Day 1", "Input Only", and a mix that may be closer to @iguanamon's way. And we have a lot of debate surrounding what you should do and how you should do it. I found out I used to to semi-LRing as a younger girl with my favorite Spanish-language songs (and that's what I like to do best, I think).

I found out I don't know what I want. I probably never will. This can be seen with the love-hate relationship I have with k-pop. The more time I spend listening to it, the more comfortable I feel listening to Korean, but like a strange or difficult work colleague, I don't think I could tolerate learning it to fluency even though I see the opportunity to help people by learning it. It's too optimistic, to the point it's forced. It's kind of like how I made myself get to know different types of rhetoric and viewpoints in high school when that's the last thing I wanted to do because it made me uncomfortable. But the whole reason I got into k-pop was because it made me squirm. I felt it was a chance to become a better person by becoming more tolerant. Did that experiment work? I guess you'll just have to get to know me.

You can also see it by my inability to pick other languages to learn, or stick to only Spanish for life. It's a personal decision that I can't seem to want to keep personal. Icelandic, Japanese, Polish - they all have their influences and beauty, but...

I've also learned a bit about myself, though perhaps it could be just reinforcing what I noted about myself as a teenager. I need structure, I need familiarity. Maybe I need someone to believe in me, push me. I can't be the person that provides all those things. And I shy away weirdly from people who try to get too close, thinking I don't deserve the praise when I get it (if I get it). I also was reminded how petty I could be, hating people for doing them, accomplishing while I struggle.

Needless to say I constantly re-evaluated if I ever really wanted to learn Spanish or what kept drawing me back to the forum and linguistics in general, but like I mentioned above, I don't think I ever found out. But I'm still here, ready to be educated. Or as the cool kids say, 'guided'. Remember, children, teachers can't do the learning for you, or make you apply it! (*cringes* Reading that was a shock to my system as a graduate of the American education system.)
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby Ani » Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:09 am

That listening is really important, and a much more powerful early acquisition tool than it's usually given credit for (thanks Reineke).

Also that you don't learn languages just by wanting to. :-/
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby patrickwilken » Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:59 am

Something practical: Awesome_TTS is an amazing extension for Anki that allows you to add audio to all your cards.
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby Kamlari » Sun Sep 16, 2018 9:39 am

1.
It's nice to know a language or two.
2.
Two new words: Dunkeldeutschland and Lügenpresse.
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby brilliantyears » Sun Sep 16, 2018 11:08 am

If you put in hours, you will see results.

What kind of results you'll see and how quickly you progress of course depends on how efficient your studying is, but still: hours = results.

Just daydreaming about becoming fluent in a language doesn't cut it :lol:
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby Mooby » Sun Sep 16, 2018 11:21 am

What have you learned about language learning in the last two years? A lot.
Have you actually learned a language? Ask me again in two year's time.
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby rfnsoares » Sun Sep 16, 2018 12:23 pm

In the last 2-3 years I've learned a lot. :)

- Don't rely too much on textbooks, but they are important as a "bridge" to native content; (I believe that was my biggest mistake in the past. Now I use them as a comprehensive grammar guide)
- Don't wait too long to start increasing your vocabulary by reading; (yes, vocab is all that matters!)
- Save new words in order to review them later; (I confess that I haven't been diligent)
- Listen to audiobooks (that might help a lot increasing your listening comprehension at low-intermediate stages)

Still learning :D
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Re: What have you learned about language learning in the last two years?

Postby devilyoudont » Sun Sep 16, 2018 1:46 pm

1) Establish a habit where you do some studying, even a small amount, every single day.

2) Find ways to have fun in your target languages. Allow yourself to sometimes just have fun without particularly studying.
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