Hello Luca, I am a 17 year old living in the U. One goal of mine is to learn a new language, or possibly more. German is probably nummber one on my list. I have seen your videos, and your method has really interested me, and seems to have worked well for you and for many others. I have some setbacks though, everyone where I live just speaks English and also when I try to get started with a language I lose focus and hardly achieve a few phrases. I was wondering if you had any tips to overcome these problems.
Also when using your method how should I start using it the most efficient and effective way? I apologise if the answer to this question is obvious to many but it is one that I am keen to find the answer to.
In the elementary phase where do you source the dialogues from? Do you need a specific audio file which is accompanied with a transcript so that you are able to reference the accuracy of your translations? Or do you simply not worry and listen to anything you can find on youtube or a radio station in the target language and go ahead and attempt the exercise? I have copies of books with parallel texts but there is no audio file. I started learning English when I was a seven-year-old.
Then, when my family and I moved to the United States about three years ago, when I was seventeen. The score meant that I had reached an intermediate level in the language, and it automatically put me in an advanced level of college French. But I stopped to think if I really wanted to continue learning French at a college level.
That fact is that, after having watched several of your YouTube videos and read some of your posts, I realized that, if I do earn a college degree in French, I may not be able to speak fluently, or at least not be able to communicate with native French speakers. To me, French would be the harder language, although not too hard now that I have a background. Afterwards, when I finish both courses, I will continue with Pimsleur. Hopefully, by doing this, I will get good results in the long-run. Have you ever heard of the Michel Thomas Method? Thank you!
At the moment I watch and listen a few times to very short dialogues on simple topics in Spanish, delivered by native speakers speaking normally. I usually try and copy the speaker as well. Then I translate form Spanish to English, and keep the sentences in Anki, a spaced repetition program that is like using flashcards. I see the English sentence come up and have to translate this into Spanish, and the program tells me how correct my translation is, and whether I need to see that card again or not to remember it.
If you had any other suggestions, that would be great. Your advice has really helped me improve the learning of many of my students studying Japanese, so thank you again! Hi Chris.
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Ciao Luca, ti ammiro moltissimo non solo per il tuo talento con le lingue, e anche per il tempo che dedichi al blog e per la tua modestia. Io dopo 11 mesi di studio, non sono in grado di farlo , anzi sto ripetendo il libro da capo e commetto ancora tanti errori. Volevo chiederti un consiglio: ritieni utile a questo punto integrare lo studio con un altro corso.
Se non riesci ad aspettare il libro, ti posso spedire privatamente un messaggio con tutte le informazioni. Bonjour et bravo pour ce super blog! Hello I am new here,and it is wery interesting,but I do not understand haw can I read for example Franch if I dont know anything? You are the best my teacher and motivator.
At the beginning of my English study I used the very similar method that you described here and it helped me a lot. But I lost that way because lots of people where avouched that this is wrong way. Finally I agreed with them. Now, if you have the time, I wonder if you can answer a question of mine. I wonder how you first start learning a new language. I have studied some Spanish and Italian at the University but I do not really know how to go about it on my own. And I do not have the accompanied reading material so I do not know how to start learning to read and write in Russian.
How did you start? Perhaps reading out loud along with listening to the audio book version would be a beneficial multi-faceted absorption approach? It sets your facial muscles mouth-throat-lips apparatus in motion. Generally, learning how to read properly is the first step towards speaking with the right intonation. The more varied your activities are, the better.
It all comes down to finding a good balance between passive and active activities. As time goes by, you can speak and write more and more, because it becomes easier and more enjoyable. Ciao Luca, My problem is retaining a language that I do not practice regularly or at all since I learned it. Nor can I practice it in the U. It is very hard for me to find people with whom I can practice.
I am forgetting almost everything relating to Italian and I was only able to practice it with real Italians just last year when I went to different cities in Italy.
I noticed I used to be able to write essays fairly easily after learning, but now I can barely keep up with a conversation. Also, I found one of those essays and there were parts I did not understand. My question to you is, how do I go back to the level of proficiency I used to have?
Most courses, books, etc. I find are very simplistic and are designed for beginners. If it is too easy for me, it bores me.
Do you have any suggestions for me? PS: I believe I am not as dedicated as you in learning because it is hard for me to do something every day, or create a routine of some sort. You can find a lot of interesting stuff in Italian and above all you can choose the podcasts that interest you. In my opinion it would be especially helpful to prepare a list of activities to practice and to master a daily life topic with vocabulary on it. Can you prepare a list of real life topics in order of importance for yourself with a detailed plan to master each topic by developing your listening comprehension, speaking, reading, writing and vocabulary skills?
You can make a plan of issues list main ideas or key concepts to cover each topic comprehensively in terms of its content. Always try to think of potential situations and issues connected with a topic that may be important to you or you may encounter and how to best express your thoughts. Luca, i have been learning spanish in a different way mostly by reading books, and watching movies, and i have progressed in a sense that i can understand the language without much effort.
I like your suggestion of translating back and forth. But for me who have moved through the first stages of learning not by your method and who has quiet a gap between speaking and reading and listening ability, which level of complexity of texts would you suggest? Should i translate newspaper articles? Will it suffice that i only read and listen to reach to a good level of fluency?
I am thinking whether should i incorporate into my activities something new. Please help me. I have the same problem with english. I wanna ask you about back forth translation.
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You use usually bilingual books to start, italian and the target language. Instead, I use the book with English version English-the target language I learn. I grab the meaning of the target language through English, a language I already know. So, what is your suggestion? And how does back-forth translation work in my case? Greetings from a country where thousands of islands lie off, hundreds of tribes and ethnics exist, and hundreds of languages are spoken, Indonesia.
Keep going through with your Assimil, and translating the L2 to the L1 English , and then translate back again to the L2. Because most of the materials online and books are available in English. Thank you for the great post and insight on non-native language acquisition. My goal is to go to study and live in Europe in the next year, so this year I began studying German to increase my chances in finding a good work there and also because I have always wanted to learn German.
What do you think about my method, does it sound ok? Do you know any program that I could get to live in Germany in order to study but also with a work that I can sustain myself there? Thank you so much, I love foreign languages!!! Learning any language takes time and patience. Try different methods to see what works best for you. Or do you mean studying grammar, doing exercises, taking classes….
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I have a question or two , though. Should I look at the original text on any other days in order to revise it, especially after day 3? As for my second question — when is your book due? I have recently taken an interest in learning German. I am a beginner and have not began learning yet because I do not want to start learning the wrong way. Should I look for a language learning application on my phone, should I buy a book, should I listen to lectures or stories through my phone, etc.?
I have enjoyed watching your videos and I am truly inspired by what you are doing. Any type of answer would be much appreciated!
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