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Saturation vs High Concentration. Does it depend on the individual?

An advisor once told me that I shouldn't turn the page until I profoundly understood the page I am on. A German teacher told me that I should structure my environment to have language all around. What are the benefits of each? Are some people more suited to gain super vocabularies?

November 9, 2017



An advisor once told me that I shouldn't turn the page until I profoundly understood the page I am on.

Always turn the page; you can easily go back to it if you find that you don't understand subsequent pages, and often information on subsequent pages will serve to make the original page more understandable by providing additional context or rephrasing an unhelpful explanation. It will also probably tell you the relative importance of whatever was on the original page you didn't fully understand.


Language learning works differently and stimulates different areas of brain when compared to subjective reading. In language learning program you need to get used to of the sounds and their use. Observe kids, they don't understand the expression per say but they learn to speak the language with great ease than the older counterparts. So sometimes just doing everything quickly and turning pages is ok in language... play it like a game...with relaxed mind and fun, stress makes it even harder to learn. About your teacher who said that structure your environment... it is very good trick to feel the language and imbibe it to the core. My teacher once said (when i was learning English) that you should start think in english... i could not understand how to think in english :D that time but then over the period i could actually get what she meant. Today English and Hindi has different compartments in my head. this is how the environment effect your thinking and your thinking makes compartments in your head for a particular language in longer run :) More suited is the matter of practice


You'd never finish a book in your own language, let alone a second or third language, if you didn't turn the page until you thoroughly understood what was on it. The goal OUGHT to be to read naturally, which to mean means you pick up words through context (admittedly, sometimes you're wrong), start by trying to understand the story line WITHOUT translation, and gradually move on to understanding the nuances. You can always reread. Even with texts, this technique doesn't lead to a long term learning, in my opinion, it's better to skim the information, then skim it again, then go back and (if your class requires it) memorize those parts you need to memorize. I think the not turning a page till you thoroughly understand it would lead to boredom and a tendency to drop the subject quickly.


Thanks for all the great comments with a lot to think about. I'm glad I asked.


I agree with both. For example, when you're reading a book in a foreign language, I'd suggest underlining the words you don't know and the looking them up in the dictionary. You can even sort them alphabetically in a word document so that you may revise them later on. That should increase your vocabulary tremendously. But I also agree that you should have the language you're learning all around, because it forces you to intake the words and phrases used in everyday life. However, this is difficult to do unless you're in a country which speaks the language you're trying to learn.

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