This is how I will answer #1.
- I would recommend getting a firm grasp on your current language than move onto another, what the “firm grasp” is depends on you.
For me: When I am able to talk easily and understand most things and can speak fluidly and I am comfortable speaking in the Language. At that point I can move onto another. The problem with “Studying” more than one it can get a bit frustrating. So… once those words are activily working in your Active Memory you only need to maintain the language at that point.
For example: I am Fluent in English. I am Fluent again in Spanish now again. Since April I use LingQ to increase/improve my Spanish Level and to improve the vocabulary and I commununicate with People every day speaking in Spanish.
However, I am activily Studying German . I want it up to at least a conversational level again before going back and revisiting my Japanese and Russian. Right now I only have enough energy to re-add one language at a time. Since April I am now approaching where I need to start conversing with people in German. Once I am able to start conversing with them then the German will take off more and I will have to continue to Focus on it still for a few more months until it is at a very fluid level and I can swtich easily between German and English or German and Spanish and of course Spanish and English. At that poing once I am very comfortable I will go onto my next Language.
You will know for your self when you are able to maintain what you have and add another language.
I listened to a Poliglot on youtube in April and I realized he had a valid point. Not an exact quote: " If your goal is to speak five Languages but you only know three; ‘learn one more’. If your goal is to learn five languages but you only know one; ‘learn one more’. If your goal is to learn seven languages and you know six; ‘learn one more’. When you have learned that ‘one more’ and are comfortable with it, then move onto the ‘next one’ and learn ‘one more’ and repeat that process utill you achieve your goal."
- On that note I would say “Yes, I have a problem with that.” I havn’t finished reading your question yet. But I would like to respond right now.
“WHY” would you EVER want to limit your self in a language and only “Read it”?
Ha ha ha Funny… I was just going to say unless you are learning Classical Greek or Latin and I just went back up and figured I better read the rest of the question before continuing to respond. Ha ha ha. I will leave what I said in place and qualify it only with the following word ‘Live’ language.
It comes down to why are you learning the language?
However just in case you might know me in person I will add another qualifyer here ha ha ha. Yes before my head injury two years ago I was studying alphabets for year and approached language learning very differently by learning how to read the alphabet first and I learned to read Russian, and Arabic and Japanese while I was at university and I had a moderate level of speaking in all of the above listed languages that I have mentioned so far. …oh ha ha ha ya… I forgot about the “Knowing me part”… Klingon, and Quenya too… It all started with Tolkien as a child… It was the Quenya script in TLOTR that fasinated me and I learned to read and write that first and of course speak it. Then it was the Klingon and yes there is a script too but most people use the “Latin alphabet”. My point: Unless that language you are learning is not a LIVE language. Why limit yourself to not fluidly speaking it.
Example: As I am learning I repeat outloud everything that I am hearing line by line as they say it. As in they say a line. I stop the recording and say it too. When I page to the next page and my words come up for review. I say outloud all of what I am shown and answer the questions and when that is done of course it takes me back to the next page of the lesson. As I walk around the block pushing against the headache on my daily walk I listen to the lessons, over and over again. But as I am listening I am also reapeating what I am hearing outloud. Some of my lessons it says I have listend to 52 times before I dumped that lesson for space for a newer one.
Yes, reading and writing the language is great and is very important. Because it takes your language to the next level. But you will only become fluent in it by speaking it. By gernerating the words withing your own head and saying them outloud. By having conversations with people in that language and interacting in it. I might add also; What was the process you did to learn your first langauge? Was it learning to read it first? Learning about the Grammer first? Learning about the Sentence structure first? No. You spent the first two years of your life listening to it. You then tried out a couple of sounds and you cintinued listening to it. Then you tried out a couple of words to get the sounds right and within just a few months you were speaking in full correct sentences… but you still havn’t read a single word yet… then you learned how to read it years later once you had achieved a level of proficiency at it.
All three aspects of any language are criticaly imporant in the end. By listening your improve your comprehension and vocabulary. By speaking you improve your vocabulary and fluidity in the language and by reading you improve your sentences structure and vocabulary.
That which you presist on doing becomes easier. Not that it’s nature has changed but our capacity to do that thing has increased. If you want to be a good translator then “Translate”. If you want to be a good speaker then Listen and Speak it.
I hope that you have found this usefil.