sábado, 18 de octubre de 2014

How to Learn a Language Like a Kid Learns His/Her Native Language ::

I guess this is the very first post about a hopefully-useful tip in my blog, since most of my posts narrates about my experiences (which maybe considered not-so-interesting by some people)

well, I'm a language freak since I was in elementary school. I love to learn foreign languages and I use several common methods from cramming a grammar book to speaking with native speaker. Not only common methods but also some self-discovered methods. Actually I have no idea about whether someone out there has already used this method or not (most probably yes). But the important thing is that I find this method really works!

We all already know how we learn our native language when we were toddlers. We didn't study the grammar through the books, right? Instead, we learned grammar and all other aspects through repetitively practising with people around us (especially our parents and siblings), and then getting corrected right after we made mistake (if we made any). And the method I'll describe here is quite similar with how children learn their native language

so... How?

Supposed you're already familiar with language X which may be your native language (It doesn't matter if it's not as long as you can understand it well) and you wish to learn or practice language Y which is your target language. First thing you should do is to find a film/ episode of series which is available language X and language Y dub. So you'll have 2 videos of an exactly same film/episode but with different dubbing (in X and Y). For example, you already know English and you want to learn French and use this video for english

and this video for French 1. After downloading them (you can do streaming instead of downloading, but my suggestion is to download), open both videos at the same time with 2 different media players.

2. Play the X language version first just for 1 or 2 sentences, then pause for a while.

3. While the X language video is paused, try to guess how would the same character say the same thing in Y language. You can use dictionary or translator to get some help figuring out the word you haven't known yet

4. Try to pronounce your guess clearly (don't speak only in your mind, involve your lips, tongue, and vocal cords as well)

5. Play the Y language video to find out whether you are right or wrong about your guess you've just made. Stop before the video reaches the scene you haven't seen in X language video (so you can get immediate corrections if you make any mistake)

6. Replay the paused X language video to make another guess and so on

Yes I know perfectly this is such a time consuming and tiring effort. Once I've tried to finish up a movie whose duration of about two hours and this method lasts about 6 hours non-stop. But if you do this regularly (several times weekly for example) eventhough it's only couple of minutes for one try, I'm quite sure you'll start thinking in Y language in several months :)

I don't recommend this for those who are completely newbie in Y language. So, at least you have to know a number of words and expressions as well as basic grammar rules. But don't worry, this method will dramatically increase your vocabulary, your understanding about how grammar works, and even how to pronounce properly.

One advantage worth to note is that you'll also learn the X language. For example, I'm an Indonesian native speaker and I found this method beneficial for my english skill since it's really hard to find movie/series which available both in Indonesian and the Y language dub

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