Saturday, December 08, 2012

you are thinking too much

This is a blog where I post my views about learning languages.  My views are not main-stream, and there are plenty who would disagree with me. Plenty of those people are also better language learners than I am, however, I do not automatically assume that those people know more than I do. In fact, I think that very very few people know how languages are actually learned. Even if they are able to call themselves fluent in foreign languages, it does not mean they recognize how they learned those languages.

One point is grammar.
Even if you studied grammar rules and know all the rules and then became fluent, it does not necessarily mean that you use any of those rules. When people talk or listen, they do not have the time to think about rules and how those rules are applied. Essentially, the rules are not used. You learned how to speak your first language without any rules and I believe the same is possible with second languages.

When one is small, one has no words and cannot think about rules of language. So, how does one learn a language? We learn abstractly. That is, we associate feelings to language.  I don't know what this would be called, but I want to describe it as feeling-memory.  A feeling is very abstract. You know the difference between soft and hard through first-hand experience. But we can't express a feeling because we are not telepathic, so we have words. We associate words to feelings to learn our first language. It works.

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