Re-evaluating my language learning appraoch

Ximending

I think I’ve reached a language learning plateau when it comes to learning Chinese; since I want to work on speaking, I do not plan to take a Chinese language class next year as I want to focus on more personalized, study so that I can focus on my needs.

My biggest need right now is focusing on speaking and interacting with native speakers at a comfortable level. I like to diversify the amount of sentence patterns I use when I’m speaking, as well as my vocabulary.

For example, there are some sentence patterns that I see in the television that I would have a hard time replicating them unless I make a concerted effort to do so. 

So, here are some major steps I will be taking to:

  • Focus more on language exchanges, but avoid speaking English (skype!)
  • Put more of an emphasis on identifying sentence patterns you want to practice from input; write a list down that you can actively practice. In other words, strengthen the connection between input and output: the feedback loop! 

I realized that it is much easier to do this when I am in a foreign country where I’m forced to speak Mandarin than living in the United States because this feedback loop is much more stronger.

Before I head off to Taiwan, I plan to work on this feedback loop and strengthen it while I’m at home and have access to lots of resources.

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