Hi All, just signed up for LingQ yesterday, really loving it. I have been doing input based learning on my own without knowing this tool exists. But now this is great.
I’ve just started learning Italian, it’s been about three weeks and I can make my way through a news article with 75-80% comprehension. Below is the process I use:
1)Duolingo - I know there is some debate on this subject, but I find duolingo to be so trivial that the grammar lessons and the translation exercises are a breeze. I do my duolingo as I’m sipping on my coffee and it takes me about 15 minutes to complete each session. I look at it as a warm up to get my brain “thinking” in that language. Think of it like stretching. I used to also use Babel but the danger with all these apps is that you feel as if you are actually making progress, but you’re really not (that’s the best way I can explain it.) You could never learn a language through one of these apps.
- LingQ - I’ve imported a few Italian children’s book lessons - with audio (available to everyone) so I’m working my way through those at the moment. Currently I finished Little Red Riding Hood. If you import new content here is the process: STEP 1: Go through all the blue words turn them into yellow, in the beginning there will be a ton of yellow, don’t worry about comprehension but do glance at the definitions. STEP 2: Go through sentence by sentence and add any “phrases” you want to keep. This stage takes the most time, and can be done in multiple 15 minute segments. Break each session up into smaller chunks. STEP 3: Read the article for comprehension, again break this up into multiple 15 minute segments if necessary.
ON THE WAY TO WORK
3) Listen to Assimil dialogues. Again, some controversy over the Assimil method, I’ve gone ahead and condensed all the audio lessons into 3 lesson segments, and removed any extra audio that I don’t need. Listen to these on repeat over and over, until I form my own understanding. I will reference the text a little later.
- I love tech podcasts, so I found a few in Italian and listen to these in the background as I work. I don’t understand much yet, but a few phrases are peaking through. I’m not “actively” listening, but think of it as exposing myself to as much language as possible.
5)Either continue to turn blue words into yellow from the AM session, or read on LingQ something that I’ve already gone through and yellowed. 15 minutes or so.
ON THE WAY HOME
- Assimil dialogues. - about 15 minutes.
- I will do one or two more 15 minute sessions of LingQ reading something I’ve added or work through a text turning blue into yellow. At this point I will do 15 minutes of the actual Assimil method where I look at the translated text to make sure that I have full comprehension. I don’t do any exercises, glance at the notes. I pick one or two lessons when the timer is up I’m done.
On weekends I’ll spend some extra time adding in longer content that I feel would be interesting to read and review. Currently, I’m really into children’s books.
I will also utilize HelloTalk and write some basic dialogues, this really takes a lot of time so the conversations really don’t go far on my end, but it does make me practice writing basic sentences out.
I use HelloTalk mostly for having my writing corrected and posting recordings of myself reading dialogue (either Assimil or my own) so I can have my pronunciation looked at.
I’m really enjoying the process and feel that this moves all aspects of the language I want to learn forward.
And that’s about it, repeat the next day. I’m curious to hear about your process and how it is similar or different.