This is from another Forum where a language learner talked about the overwhelming influence of her native language on her ability to remember what she had read in English. She recommended that the learners try to explain what they have just read in the language they are learning. A good idea no doubt, but not something I would do. Maybe I am just too lazy.
Michele,A most interesting post. I am no scientist but here is my experience. 1) I do not like to try to remember what I have just read in another language and then have to answer questions on it. I have never done that willingly. I do not believe most people enjoy doing that. It is too much like school 2) I would rather read more content, and learn more words.I want to read and listen to interesting content. That is something I can do daily and enjoy. In doing that I will improve. 3) I strongly recommend listening. In The Linguist system we always have both the audio and the e-text version of all content. Read and then listen to the same content. Do it over and over. 4) You need to work on learning the words and phrases, but do it in a way that is connected to the content you are reading and listening to. Again, that is what we do at The Linguist. 5) If you do all of theses things in a concentrated way for a period of a few months you will build up the new network in your brain you need to process the new language. You need to continue to train that capability 6) I was recently in Europe where I bought audio books in German, Swedish, Italian and French. I found a site where I could download audio books in Spanish. I have been enjoying these over the last few weeks. When I go back to listening to Chinese or Korean CDs, I understand better. In other words listening to foreign languages trains the ability of your brain to process all foreign languages. Anyway that is just my experience.
Steve “Man does not belong to his language or to his race, he belongs to himself alone, for he is a free being, a moral being.” Ernest Renan, Sorbonne 1881