Enquiry on vocab learning strategies and the best of "how to be fluent" books from beginner Persian learner

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Talha
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Enquiry on vocab learning strategies and the best of "how to be fluent" books from beginner Persian learner

Postby Talha » 2017-08-28, 10:41

Hey all, I've been posting on the Persian forum in a personal accountability thread I created for my self-learning of the language (viewtopic.php?f=73&t=51749).

I've learnt Arabic to degree level and have family background in Bengali (though my spoken negligible; understand my parents; no reading/ writing) and GCSE French (none remembered except a few phrases). I will starting MA History in September focusing on the Islamicate world hence the Persian.

I used post-it notes on my walls for the Arabic - plus I was learning as part of formal studies so quite easily absorbed.

I have paid a Persian teacher in my home city London for ten hours in advance when I will need her.

My aim with the Persian is to finish an overview of the Farzad book by the 15th ("zero hour") - ten days before start of term - and do a very little daily with another text course during my masters. My short term goal after Farzad is to make a YouTube video of myself giving the "Hey, my name is.... I like blah blah" spiel.

I know vocab is best learnt in sentences and in clusters. I was thinking organising in meaningful groups and sub groups e.g. Home>Kitchen>nouns: Spoon, fork, knife, plate
Home>Kitchen>verbs: to eat, to drink, to cook
Home>Kitchen>adjectives: hot, cold, sweet, salty

I sense there is already a lot of content out there on this issue of vocab learning - though no specific thread found via forum search e.g. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/ed ... ulary.html

Though I was sceptical about this:
Avoid opposites
It might seem logical to study opposites together: hot/cold, expensive/cheap. It isn't. A learning hiccup called 'cross association' can occur, when you learn two words so closely together you end up mixing them up. If a Spanish student learns 'always' (siempre) and 'never' (nunca) together, they might later draw on one word when they mean to use the other. Instead, study the more common word first (eg: deep) and, once it’s retained, learn its opposite (shallow).


I hear about Anki. It's expensive for the iPhone. Question for you: what is the best derivative version in your experience? Would like one I can type up on laptop and sync with phone and Kindle tablet.

Duolingo doesn't do Persian but have found Memrise project.

Finally, there are a few books out there on "how to get fluent quickly". Alex Rawling and Gabriel Wyner come to mind. From your own personal positive experiences tell me which one worked for you.

Thanks for reading and responding.

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Luís
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Re: Enquiry on vocab learning strategies and the best of "how to be fluent" books from beginner Persian learner

Postby Luís » 2017-08-28, 16:06

Talha wrote:I know vocab is best learnt in sentences and in clusters. I was thinking organising in meaningful groups and sub groups e.g. Home>Kitchen>nouns: Spoon, fork, knife, plate
Home>Kitchen>verbs: to eat, to drink, to cook
Home>Kitchen>adjectives: hot, cold, sweet, salty


Not sure about clusters, but learning vocabulary in context seems to help.

Talha wrote:Though I was sceptical about this:
Avoid opposites
It might seem logical to study opposites together: hot/cold, expensive/cheap. It isn't. A learning hiccup called 'cross association' can occur, when you learn two words so closely together you end up mixing them up. If a Spanish student learns 'always' (siempre) and 'never' (nunca) together, they might later draw on one word when they mean to use the other. Instead, study the more common word first (eg: deep) and, once it’s retained, learn its opposite (shallow).


Yeah, me too. You should probably experiment and see what works for you, because different people have different learning styles.

Talha wrote:I hear about Anki. It's expensive for the iPhone. Question for you: what is the best derivative version in your experience? Would like one I can type up on laptop and sync with phone and Kindle tablet.


Anki is worth every cent, especially if you use it everyday. The desktop version is free, so you can try it first to see if you like it or not.

Talha wrote:Finally, there are a few books out there on "how to get fluent quickly". Alex Rawling and Gabriel Wyner come to mind. From your own personal positive experiences tell me which one worked for you.

Thanks for reading and responding.


I would stay away from that kind of thing. IMHO, most of these "celebrity polyglots" are nothing but snake oil salesmen.
Quot linguas calles, tot homines vales

Talha
Posts: 72
Joined: 2017-07-31, 8:38
Gender: male

Re: Enquiry on vocab learning strategies and the best of "how to be fluent" books from beginner Persian learner

Postby Talha » 2017-08-28, 18:04

Thanks for your thoughts. I think "what works for you" is really what it is but you need 1. to know of all the techniques out there 2. experiment with trial and error 3. benefit from experiences and wisdom of veterans on these kind of forums.

Summer is free for me before start of term so want to cram in as much as I can.

Thank god for TedTalks and YouTube to sort out the chaff from the wheat.
Image

I also found this from Gabe Wyner: his illustrated vocab learning guide - a free pdf.
https://fluent-forever.com/your-first-625-words/

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eskandar
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Re: Enquiry on vocab learning strategies and the best of "how to be fluent" books from beginner Persian learner

Postby eskandar » 2017-08-30, 2:55

I'm a big fan of Anki personally, though it's not for everyone. The web version is free so if you don't want to pay for the iPhone app, you can use the free desktop version to type and then access the web version from tablet and phone.
Please correct my mistakes in any language.


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