How is your foreign language study?

China
April 18, 2009 7:41pm CST
Jack of all kinds, master of none. It is me! haha Someone asked me to translate a Japanese instruction book of a sony product that was far too difficutlt for me. However, I didn't want to make a real pig of myself and then I learned to deal with it. Not until I checked almost every word, I gave him the translation version of mine. Shame on so many levels. Well, What are you doing? How is your foreign language study? Are you still doing just so so after studying a foreign language for many years? Now I wanna talk a little about language study. It is the ability to speak (and understand) the foreign quickly and easily...without translation, without checking every word just like me. In order to speak and understand instantly,there is only one way to get it,I guess.You must have a lot of understandable repetitive pracitcing. If you don't understand it well, you learn nothing. You will not improve. For example, some people try to listen to the VOA news everyday. Actually, they didn't know what exactly the speaker was talking about. It didn't make so much sense.So to speak, understanding is only half The formula that is far from enough to make it. If you hear a new word only once, you will soon forget it. At least, it happens to me.You must hear new words and new grammar many many times before you will understand them instantly. That's why you must listen to the materials many times. 20 times is just the bottom line. After months, your speaking is faster and better. It happens automatically. There is no doubt about it. Good luck and take care
3 responses
@nannacroc (4049)
19 Apr 09
Sad to say that I only know a few words in French and German. I couldn't have a conversation in any language other than English. I admire anyone who can speak and understand more than one language but, like many English people, I am lazy and so many people from other countries speak English well that we don't try very hard to learn other languages.
• China
21 Apr 09
There is a saying! Haha What do you call someone who speaks 3 languages? A trilinguist. 2 languages? A bilinguist. 1 language? An American! Americans or British people don't have to learn other language. I think it is a lucky thing anyway. It is really not necessary
@nannacroc (4049)
21 Apr 09
I like that saying but would still like to try other languages. I'm just too lazy.
@maezee (39822)
• United States
19 Apr 09
I'm learning Japanese right now too! ??????????????? I'm pretty horrible at it..But I have been learning it for 4 1/2 years in school. How long have you been learning it? And I don't blame you for not being able to read that instruction manual, I'm sure they use a very advanced vocabulary in it! Other than Japanese, I'm learning Russian and Swedish too, although I'm mainly passionate about learning Japanese & studying there in the near future. I agree with you. My Japanese teacher in high school made us read one article in the "asahi" Japanese news-website every day - and she said it would help our "text handling" skills by reading material where we both DO and DON'T know some of the words. Personally.. I was so horrible at this! I don't think I improved very much at it at all. *sigh*. Good discussion.
@maezee (39822)
• United States
19 Apr 09
LOL it wouldn't allow me to put Japanese characters in my post (hence the question marks). What I said was: Nihongo o narau no ga ski desu ka?
• China
19 Apr 09
Well, I don' know weahter I like it or not! Haha, sometimes, it is just that I guess, um, ... Oh, it is very complicated. Let me think it over.
@stephcjh (32327)
• United States
19 Apr 09
I tried to learn a bit of Spanish when I was in junior high school. I didn't learn a whole lot. I remember some of it.
• China
21 Apr 09
I guess Spanish is second only to English! So, lots of people want to learn it. To be honest, I don't like to Spanish! Have a great day!