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26 August 2011 @ 01:29 pm
The Art of Easy Learning  
A little while ago, when I was learning a foreign language I said that I can’t translate. This was the conversation I had with someone. At that time, the thought of not being able to translate was inside my head, and when reading books it would certainly be very necessary to look up the words that I couldn’t understand. When reading, I surely had to look them up in the dictionary. Often most of the people feel comfortable when understanding the whole meaning to some extend, and won’t look up the meaning of the words they don’t understand. If  these words come up four or five times, then they feel like they can’t help but look them up anyway. But this is something really bad. When speaking about why, if they would have looked it up right the first time, then the 22nd, 23rd, 24th and 25th time would have become a revision, and they would have memorized this word in the end. When looking it up first on the 25th time, you have lost the chance for revision 24 times already. Therefore by looking up all the words I didn’t know, I managed to read the book in a little less than 3 weeks. During this time I wrote the words I didn’t know in my vocabulary book more than 1000 times, and in the end I memorized almost all of them.      [omission] Regarding the success of your studies, the hours you spent studying is by no means proportional to learning itself. At the time you start studying, learning the vocabulary turns out well, but  after that comes a kinda flat/steady period. Many people think “Aah, I’m no good. I’m not suited for learning foreign languages” or “I’m not a genius.” when this period comes, because they don’t feel like making any progress at all. When they give up on it in their hearts it feels like no matter how much they studied, there wasn’t much improvement. But it’s not like that. Because if you can get one step passed this flat/steady period that comes after a short time, you will become really good. If you remember how a jigsaw-puzzle is done, you can understand it by this image I think. Several pieces turn into little clusters, but don’t connect yet. But if you can bridge the gap even in one place only, a bigger cluster can be formed at once. Then it turns into a cluster, which also connects with other pieces and this way the whole thing can be put together. Like this, several words and expressions, which are scattered inside our memory suddenly come together, and depending whether they can connect or not, we are able to become better with one step. From there on out, we become better not with a progress over a short time, but with another step. Because this is repetition. (translated excerpt from: Péter Frankl ‘The Peter Way of Easy Learning’ – Iwanami Junior )
feeling: cynicalcynical
Create Your Realitycourt1429 on August 27th, 2011 04:57 am (UTC)
What a great post! And so timely for me because I am going to begin a Spanish class in a few weeks. Just once a week at a learning center, so not intensive at all. I love the visual connect to a jigsaw puzzle. Thank you! I mean, gracias! ;)
so watch as I start to smile...: gakky !!!gerbyl on August 27th, 2011 06:22 pm (UTC)
Como estas ?

hehe, that's about all the Spanisch I know....aside from Gracias!!
I used to be one of the people who thinks it is okay to not get the meaning of all the words, and with some minor or super special words that aren't used often, it's okay. I still don't look up every single word, but the essay is true about learning words much faster if you look them up everytime you come across them. So if it's an essential word to understand the story, I do and I memorized lots of words like that easily.

I hope you have fun in your spanish class and wish you lots of success with learning Spanish!!