My Seven Secrets to Learn English
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My Seven Secrets to Learn English

Posted by Oksana

I have always been fond of English. My first memories go far into my early school years when my Mom was assisting me to repeat vocabulary.
Well, what has helped me to approach my dream which implies good command of English? I decided both to analyse my experience (even for my own benefit) and to take the Challenge #25 at the same time.

One Ukrainian proverb says: "Any work has never been easy." This many times prevented me from frustration. And also this helped me to outlast it, for effeciency hardly ever has been apparent immediately. Time! Good work requires thinking, and thinking requires time. In turn, thinking is the main work of a language learner.

I have never expected that studying would be absolutely effortless for me. Once I read that learning the language is like learning to dance. Just different groups of muscles are involved. But actually in both cases you are supposed to acquire certain skills associated with muscle training. When speaking your native language everyday you sometimes even don't think what and how to say. It happens because of muscle memory. Well, and muscle memory still remains to be memory, hence it dwells in the very same place which we are trying to teach some new words. Absolutely, any memory dwells in our mind. Thus, repetition is the first of two main keys when speaking about learning a language.

Once I was told about one interesting interview with the first teacher of music who had taught singing to one of the most popular Russian singers. So, she was asked about the criteria or how she had chose whom to teach. Was it excelent hearing or voice? No! For a wonder, she answered that the most important criteria was the ability to think logically and to grasp the way and the reason of doing something.

Since the Challenge #25 requires telling the Seven Secrets, here they are a few extracts from my experience.

1. Teach your muscle memory. Be a dancer! (Repetition is a clue here).
2. Don't learn the grammar. Try to grasp the logic of the grammar instead. (No rules, the logic rules!)
3. Read out loud, read in phrases. This will impel you to think of item no.2 and no.4. Yes, this will prompt you to listen attentively how the passage should be read and request the grammar why namely these two or three words are joined into a phrase.
4. Pay attention to pace and inflections of intonation while listening to audios. Needless to say you ought to listen a great deal.
5. Be proactive and realise your curiosity. It's like a travel abroad. Launch your big curious nose everywhere! (I've got the similar one ;^) ) 6. 6. Enjoy the learning process!
Learn to defeat your dread. Despite it, try to make mistakes speak. At the beginning you will make many mistakes. Then you will start to notice your mistakes. But believe, in some time you will forget to make so many mistakes if you... start making them today in spite of all your hesitations.
7. Be ready to pay. Your dream takes a lot (energy, time, determination, nerves sometimes, etc.). Your dream is worth this credit.

The title of one book I have read reads "You can't be taught a foreign language" (by Nikolay Zamyatkin). The passive voice doesn't succeed. So these suggestions above are rather hints than the immutable prescription. The work, the choise and the benefit are yours. You can teach yourself.

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I'm aware I'm not perfect. If any mistakes, please let me know. I would be happy to learn them, frankly!



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