Pay attention! Do stuff!
Today I have learned something interesting from a book The Third Ear about language learning that are quite different from what I have learned in school. Remember that English teachers of school always said that how to do to learn English, however, as with me, most of the students who was learning English didn’t have chance to do English, which is foremost.
In the past, I believed that if I want to learn English well, then I need to remember nearly all of the vocabulary and phrases. But when I passed CET 6, I still could’t communicate fluently with foreigners who speak English. I even never had audacity to desire that I could master this language.By now, I’m aware of the reason for my failure. I took the wrong approach.
The author of the book told us that if we want to learn a second language effectively, we need to ‘Pay attention! Do stuff! What does ‘Pay attention’ mean? It doesn’t mean to look very hard at something or to force your brain to do something it doesn’t want to do. Just pay attention to recognize patterns naturally when you are hearing, and if you pay attention to what you are hearing, your brain is able to identify patterns automatically. You just need to pay attention to the patterns on the conscious level.
What does ‘Do stuff’ mean in the book? It means that when you have recognized patterns, do things, don’t just know the patterns. When you have discovered the patterns by paying attention to what you are hearing, practice it until they are totally natural to you.
In school, we didn’t recognize patterns, we memorized the grammar rules that English textbook told us, and there was no opportunity for us to do deep processing to make the rules a part of our lives. Large amounts of vocabulary overwhelmed almost anyone. In fact, we can learn language easily, just like children. We can learn from children, just start with hearing, then pay attention to recognizing patterns, and then do stuff, practice the patterns.