https://www.duolingo.com/fgarkisch1157

That Moment Where Everything Clicks

I have been learning French for four and a half years now through school, and I just had one of those moments where everything finally makes sense. I was reading an article online and I came to a paragraph about the specific topic I had intended to initially look up, and usually something that often hindered my progress of learning languages was getting frustrated by keywords that I had often neglected to remember from past experience. But now, even though I didn't know the exact meaning of everything in the paragraph, I was still able to get through and get the full message by using context and other skills that I have acquired and honed in through greater study of my native language as well as learning new ones. That feeling to finally be able to accomplish something that had long frustrated me is so incredibly fulfilling, and it's something that I aim to repeat with other languages that I will seek to learn in the future.

With that in mind, I would like to offer a word of advice for anyone who has been in the same situation as me, stuck on phrases and sentences and generally struggling to understand key aspects: it's okay. We all have those moments. We all start out as beginners, and everyone has to go through the same processes in order to perfect their target and even native languages. If you feel discouraged from learning a language and feel that it's not worth it, that's okay. Give it some time and come back motivated, ready to learn. With the right attitude, you might surprise yourself at the results you will eventually be able to yield.

6 days ago

13 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/milanezi
milanezi
  • 25
  • 22
  • 16
  • 35

In my opinion the biggest hurdle for non-experienced language learners is not yet realizing you have to change your learning methods once you reach the early intermediate level. You can't learn to drive in hectic traffic if you stick to cruising on the parking lot forever. To get that "click" you need a large vocabulary that you can attain only by bombarding yourself with content, at first through reading and later by listening as well. By reading you acquire words and contexts and by listening you do the same but only once you really start discerning those words and thoughts. Then all of a sudden the natives don't sound "too fast" which we can call a "click", the "aha" or "Eureka" moment. It feels like all of a sudden but actually it's not, you've been gathering puzzle pieces for a very long time, it's just that now that puzzle's become very dense with pieces that you can actually see the actual picture forming. So the gist is - you have to gather the thousands of pieces, and you need a lot of time for that. Time better spent with bombarding yourself with words and contexts than slow paced classes and app lessons that give you negligible advancement.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Camilla-danesa
Camilla-danesa
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 20
  • 17
  • 12
  • 10
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1218

i love the images you use, it is very aptly described! I can picture it: "parking lot" and "bombarding yourself with new words".

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

And the other thing is while you are still learning you get good days and bad days. I've sat in a meeting with people talking across each other and understood 90% of the conversations. Another day I cannot understand even basic sentences directed at me.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mafatu

Very true. I have had that experience reading well, sometimes I look up nary a word, sometimes every other word, even words that I have looked up several times already

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/M4R-KU5
M4R-KU5
  • 22
  • 10
  • 10
  • 9
  • 7
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 2
  • 76

Awesome encouragement. Glad you had a break-through. People sometimes want it all to come so fast, but when we start a new language we're just babies, really. And even native children are not really fluent for the first five years - and even still have difficulties with pronunciation, right?

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Camilla-danesa
Camilla-danesa
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 20
  • 17
  • 12
  • 10
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1218

my five cents: it is worth paying attention to pronunciation from the get-go, and lay down good habits, because otherwise one can become good at speaking, yet still have the habits of the not-so-good pronunciation. So as you start out in a language, listen to the sounds, embrace them, make them yours. And then build out from there.

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MaryAnne993219

Thanks for sharing your experience. I am about 4 years in and I have recently been elated to realize I understand most of the words in French TV broadcasts. I still need to work on my instant comprehension, but I am very pleased to be making progress.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gail705316
Gail705316
  • 18
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 90

So true! That was very encouraging. Thanks!! :)

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/iklingzt

I had the same eureka moment when I started to read french definitions for words I didn't understand & could workout what the english word is

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/frenchsavior

wow!

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/j.ulliel
j.ulliel
  • 17
  • 15
  • 13
  • 11
  • 8
  • 6
  • 498

Yes, this is a good reminder and congrats on your breakthrough! Lingot for you~

4 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lutay_
Lutay_
  • 21
  • 17
  • 14
  • 9
  • 8
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 38

Sometimes I have a moment in French when everything clicks, I know it's a satisfying feeling. But then I run into new problems and then after some time they click into the things I already learned. I have been learning French for more than 4 years now. I talk rather slowly and my vocabulary isn't very diverse. But I'm confident it will be fine for me and everyone :)

3 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Pailinh

Love this.

1 day ago
Learn French in just 5 minutes a day. For free.