New blog entry here: http://haisell.net/2016/01/13/my-lingq-work-flow/
I tried to write this with new users in mind, don’t know whether I succeeded. I thought it was an interesting topic because everyone uses LingQ differently, and it is not immediately obvious to beginners how powerful LingQ can be.
My LingQ Work Flow
One of the really powerful things about learning languages with LingQ is that the system is very flexible and each learner uses it in a different way. It is not a structured set of lessons or exercises, but a set of tools that enhance your own learning. Here I set out how I use LingQ at the moment, and the thinking behind what I do.
- Open a new lesson.
I have only begun to learn French so I am finding all my lessons in LingQ’s large free library, but later on I will be importing my own material.
- Review the blue words.
The words highlighted in blue are words I have not encountered before. I start by going through the lesson just looking at these unknown words and deciding whether they are (a) words I need to learn, (b) words I already know, or (c) proper nouns or words in a different language that I can ignore. Words of the first kind I will turn to yellow, creating a “LingQ”. Every instance of that word will now appear as yellow in all my lessons. Everything else turns white and is no longer highlighted.
- Review the yellow words.
I now work through the lesson again just looking at the yellow words (the highlighted “lingqs”. These are a mix of (a) unknown words that I have just turned yellow, (b) old yellow words that I am learning and (c) phrases. At this point I ignore the phrases. If I am feeling more confident about the meaning of a yellow word, I will bump it up a level. All yellow words start on level 1, a bright yellow, and then move up to level 4, getting paler until they reach level 4, turn completely white and are considered known.
- Read and highlight phrases.
With all blue words turned yellow, and all yellow words reviewed, I am now ready to properly read the text. Starting at the beginning again I work through the lesson. As I do so I highlight phrases (making “lingqs”, turning them yellow). I am very generous at this point, highlighting any group of two or three words that hasn’t already been highlighted. Why do I do this? I am trying to pay attention to how words combine with other words. The grammar and syntax of the language. If these are common and correct phrases, then I will keep seeing these highlighted, and will gradually learn these relationships. This is really important, and is the most powerful tool at LingQ. It is how I learn grammar and complex vocabulary - contextually.
For example, I may know the word “ticket” and the word “office”, but I will highlight the expression “ticket office” and gradually learn the contexts in which this expression is used. I know the prepositions “in” and “on”, and the nouns “taxi” and “bus”, but by highlighting the expressions “on the bus” and “in the taxi”, I will learn not to say “in the bus” or “on the taxi”. I know the pronouns and the verb “to make” but by highlighting “I make” and “he makes” I will learn not to say “I makes” and “he make”. To reiterate: highlighting phrases is the most powerful tool at LingQ.
- Listen and read.
I now read through the lesson one more time, but this time listening to the audio as well. I have got all those highlighted phrases to help me keep up with the dialogue, and if I notice anything else I might add a few more.
- Download the audio to listen without the text.
Did I enjoy the text? Was it interesting? Was the audio clear and nice to listen to? If so I will now download the audio to listen to on the go. But I will only do this if I think I am going to find it interesting and enjoyable to listen again. And all that reading and noticing is going to make it easier for me to hear those new words and phrases.
Do you use LingQ? How do you make the system work for you?