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snozle
Newbie
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4531 days ago

16 posts - 16 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto

 
 Message 129 of 278
03 June 2008 at 2:07am | IP Logged 
I've been using Assimil Spanish with ease for a little over a week now and I have a few questions.

First, there have been several posts stating that the author does more than one lesson per day but they haven't elaborated on their success with this method. Is it detrimental to do more than one method per day?

I'm going to Spain this summer to take an immersion course. I'll be studying for nearly 2 months and staying with a family. I've done the introductory Michel Thomas course in preparation and would like to progress a decent amount in Assimil to familiarize myself with the language a little before going. Would it be unreasonable then to do about 3-4 lessons per day?

I have been inputting the entire sentences into a SRS (spaced repetition flash card program) instead of focusing on reviewing previous lessons. This way I let the software determine when I review and I can move forward without worrying about forgetting previous lessons. Has anyone had any success with using Assimil in conjunction with a SRS? Also, presumably the use of a SRS would reduce the need to spend a lot of time on each lesson as it is constantly reviewed, no?

Finally, I cannot seem to find the audio version of the Spanish with Ease course available anywhere (Amazon is currently sold out). Would anyone be willing to sell theirs?
1 person has voted this message useful



fanatic
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
speedmathematics.com
Joined 5314 days ago

1152 posts - 1814 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, French, Afrikaans, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Dutch
Studies: Swedish, Norwegian, Polish, Modern Hebrew, Malay, Mandarin, Esperanto

 
 Message 130 of 278
03 June 2008 at 2:41am | IP Logged 
I would say that using your SRS program will undermine much of the benefit that Assimil offers unless you use it as well as reviewing previous lessons. The idea is to learn the language (vocabulary) in context. Coming across the new words in context and learning the structure of sentences is much better than just learning a vocabulary. Much of the benefit of review is to understand the dialogue as you hear it and read it.

I learnt two or three Spanish lessons a day but I had already learnt French and knew a fair amount of Italian. Had the language been entirely new to me I would have settled for one lesson a day. So, it depends on whether you can comfortably cope with2 or 3 lessons a day. Four sounds too many but, if you are already acquainted with the language, it might be fine. I would simply say, see how you cope.
2 persons have voted this message useful



lamanna
Newbie
Australia
Joined 4441 days ago

27 posts - 31 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: Italian

 
 Message 131 of 278
03 June 2008 at 6:13am | IP Logged 
I stopped using Assimil in January and got up to lesson 50. But from around 20 onwards I spent very little time on the lessons. Now I'm looking to get back into it but not sure where to go from here. Should I just start from lesson 20 again? Or should I go from 50 and do the active phase also?

Thanks
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snozle
Newbie
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4531 days ago

16 posts - 16 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto

 
 Message 132 of 278
03 June 2008 at 12:59pm | IP Logged 
fanatic wrote:
I would say that using your SRS program will undermine much of the benefit that Assimil offers unless you use it as well as reviewing previous lessons. The idea is to learn the language (vocabulary) in context. Coming across the new words in context and learning the structure of sentences is much better than just learning a vocabulary. Much of the benefit of review is to understand the dialogue as you hear it and read it.


Thank you for your reply. I must not have been clear in my question though. I am inputting the entire sentences into the question field of my SRS, not simply vocabulary. That way I am still learning vocabulary in context.

Basically, I was counting on the SRS to bring back previous lessons, albeit not the entire lesson at once, but individual sentences from each, at recurring intervals. The SRS was intended to be a replacement for reviewing previous lessons. Do you still think that reviewing lessons in the fashion outlined in Assimil is more useful than using a SRS even when entire sentences are inputted into the SRS?

Another question that I thought of while doing Assimil is how well to internalize each lesson. How exactly do you go about studying the lessons? You mentioned that you do them in nearly identical fashion to what is outlined in the instructions. However, the instructions do not say how to go about learning each lesson, just how to progress.
1 person has voted this message useful



fredmf
Diglot
Groupie
United States
Joined 4631 days ago

43 posts - 51 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: German, Spanish

 
 Message 133 of 278
03 June 2008 at 1:33pm | IP Logged 
I actually just started "Spanish With Ease" also, and it's a little frustrating that there's such a lack of direction
(n.b.: Assimil, your products would be that much more valuable if they had better editorial standards). The
same is true for Assimil's "Using French," for which there are almost no directions at all -- unconscionable.

But I do have the experience of using Assimil's two French programs. First, I listen, just to see what I may or
may not catch. If I catch a lot, I listen again to see if there's more that I can catch. Then, I listen while reading
the English. This at least helps me know what is being spoken. I do this a few times. Then, I listen while
reading the target language. Then, I listen to the audio alone.

Based on how this goes, I modify -- if I have a good handle on it, I'll listen to the audio alone more. If I don't, I'll
continue to look at the text -- maybe looking primarily at the target language while glancing back at the English
for a word here or there. (I think all these procedures will vary greatly according to individual preferences, which
might help to explain Assimil's reluctance to be clear about it.)

I then listen to the dialogue throughout the day -- which only takes a couple minutes here or there -- and
before I know it, it has been internalized. At some point, I do repeat a couple of times, but I try not to get too
bogged down with this.

fred


1 person has voted this message useful



ficticius
Pro Member
United States
Joined 4275 days ago

23 posts - 24 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: German
Personal Language Map

 
 Message 134 of 278
17 July 2008 at 12:30pm | IP Logged 
I made it to the active wave of Assimil German. Things are going okay but I wanted to know if others have experienced some of what I have.

While I recall a lot while translating back to German from English, I still miss some of it. I'm getting concerned with translating the more advanced passive wave lessons as well.

I'm a bit dismayed that I am not progressing more.

Has anyone experienced this? Please advise.
1 person has voted this message useful



Rollo the Cat
Groupie
United States
Joined 4202 days ago

77 posts - 90 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Italian, Russian, Ancient Greek

 
 Message 135 of 278
17 July 2008 at 8:00pm | IP Logged 
ficticius,

This is one reason many people don't do the second wave as the book describes. The translation isn't very literal
and can be difficult to translate from directly. Remember also, that there are multiple ways to translate something
in any language. You may have the right idea, but it may be different than what is on the page.

Did you shadow repeatedly? I mean 30-100 times? If so, you may be able to translate from memory. If you used a
different method in the first wave, then I would suggest translating the best you can. Checking your work,
correcting your errors, writing out the correct answer and repeating it slowly a few time. Don't worry if it isn't
perfect the first time. This is just a flaw in Assimil, in my opinion.
1 person has voted this message useful



TreoPaul
Senior Member
United States
Joined 4498 days ago

121 posts - 118 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German

 
 Message 136 of 278
19 July 2008 at 7:39am | IP Logged 
Rollo the Cat wrote:
ficticius,

This is one reason many people don't do the second wave as the book describes. The translation isn't very literal
and can be difficult to translate from directly. Remember also, that there are multiple ways to translate something
in any language. You may have the right idea, but it may be different than what is on the page.


This has been my dismay with the German language Assimil. Not only are the English translations not literal, I've found errors in English grammar, and more. Once I understand the German, I edit the English to more accurately reflect the German. It helps.


1 person has voted this message useful



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