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Senior Member
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Speaks: French*, English, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
Studies: German, Arabic (Written), Turkish, Mandarin

 Message 217 of 278
02 August 2010 at 12:35pm | IP Logged 
T'was better in good old times, don't thou thinkest ?
Kids don't work as much as we did.
They are impolite nowadays.
Ther used to be seasons.

I don't really know wether old Assimils Linguaphones etc are better or worse o r just as good as the new ones.

I will only say that it is probably difficult to compare them if you're only one person. Once you've done one , your judgement about the other will obviiously be altered.

And I , and we always tend to think older teaching methods, , programs , washing machines etc were better.

I have used semi-old "sans peine" and recent (2005) programs for Spanish (Le nouvel espagnol sans peine and l'espagnol) same for Italian, same for Brasilian POrtuguese (recent 2009 edition. I hardly can tell wether one is better.

One nice feature in the new ones is the dictionary which helps you find a word of course but above all find the lesson it was taught in. Hence the context.

Now ol'timers like to say ol' times were better. But even in old times , there were older times.

I recommend a book, bilingual French Latin book by the way which shows ancient Romans already said "it was better before, yougsters used to be better educated etc... latin/dp/2266160788

"Cet ouvrage propose une sélection de textes très actuels en cette première décennie du IIIe millénaire : Violence à l'école (un enfant de sept ans frappe son professeur) -Violence au stade - Insécurité - Embouteillages - Corruption des politiques - Rivalité pour le pouvoir - Destruction de la nature - Catastrophes naturelles - Afflux des étrangers - Moyen-Orient- Regret du bon vieux temps - etc.Or ces textes ont été écrits par des auteurs latins (Plaute, Cicéron, Salluste, Tacite, Sénèque, Ovide, etc.) il y a environ 2 000 ans... Sont ainsi remis à leur place aussi bien les enthousiasmes excessifs à propos du passage au IIIe millénaire que les pessimismes exagérés des prophètes de la décadence, par un ouvrage qui montre que l'homme reste l'homme et que ses comportements n'ont pas changé, et propose un relativisme amusé qui n'exclut pas l'indignation ou la réprobation morale là où elles s'imposent. "

In Googlish (slightly amended):
This book offers a selection of texts that were present in that first decade of the third millennium: School Violence (a child aged seven hits his teacher), Violence at the Stadium - Insecurity - traffic jams - Corruption of politicians - Rivalry for power - Destruction of Nature - Natural Disasters - Influx of foreigners - Middle East-Regret the good old days - etc.Or these texts were written by Latin authors (Plautus, Cicero, Sallust, Tacitus, Seneca, Ovid, etc.). there are about 2000 years ... Are put in their place and both excessive enthusiasm regarding the transition to the third millennium as exaggerated pessimism prophets of decadence, a book that shows that man is man and that his behavior did not change and offers a fun relativism which does withold indignation nor moral disapproval where needed.

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Joined 4129 days ago

81 posts - 82 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Latin

 Message 218 of 278
21 August 2010 at 8:35am | IP Logged 
Sorry to revive this thread, but it was a question on Assimil:

I just looked at the first lesson to see what i will be doing in my intensive study later in the year, and went
through it.
- Read over the Italian, reading the translation
- Listening several times following the Italian
- Repeating allowed with the audio
- Pausing after every line, and repeating it clearly outloud
- Listening to it to see if i can understand it.
- Reading the English and trying to say it aloud in Italian (translating)
Is this what i'm meant to be doing?
It's slightly memorising but without direct ROTE, and it seemed to be effective for that lesson, but is this
It took about ~15minutes (i'm sure first lesson is the easiest).

Edited by vexx on 21 August 2010 at 8:37am

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Senior Member
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352 posts - 414 votes 
Speaks: French, Dutch*, Italian, English, German
Studies: Arabic (Written)

 Message 219 of 278
21 August 2010 at 9:36am | IP Logged 
Yes you're right.
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Senior Member
United States
Joined 4559 days ago

36 posts - 47 votes
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish

 Message 220 of 278
21 August 2010 at 4:14pm | IP Logged 
vexx wrote:
Sorry to revive this thread, but it was a question on Assimil:

Below are the instructions from the Assimil Dutch instructions that someone on this forum posted recently (I wish I could give them credit for originally posting this). It may have even been within this discussion thread. I found these instructions to be very helpful:

1. Listen to the text with the book closed. It does not matter if you do not understand what is said. You will gain a general impression of the sounds, hearing the pronunciation without being influenced by the spelling.

2. Listen to the recording a second time while looking at the English translation.

3. Read the Spanish text aloud (with the aid of the phonetic transcription if necessary). Be sure you understand the meaning of each sentence, comparing it with the translation as required.

4. Now read the Spanish text again, but this time without looking at the translation.

5. Listen to the recording twice, once while looking at the English translation, and once while looking at the Spanish text.

6. Listen to the recording again with the book closed. At this point you should understand what is being said.

7. Listen to the recording once more. Stop the machine after each sentence, and try to repeat it aloud.

8. Carefully read the comments several times. Examine the Spanish sentences being explained. These notes are very important.

9. Read the exercises. Repeat each sentence several times. The exercises review material from the current lesson and from preceding lessons. If you have forgotten certain words, consult the English translation.

10. Examine the examples of sentence structure. They show how words and phrases are combined in Spanish, which is not always the same as in English.

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Joined 4129 days ago

81 posts - 82 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Latin

 Message 221 of 278
22 August 2010 at 1:49am | IP Logged 
^ Thank you Bob! That is going to be exactly how i will do it next:)
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561 posts - 655 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, Spanish

 Message 222 of 278
25 August 2010 at 6:01pm | IP Logged 
Is there going to be an Using German advanced Assimil or will I have to learn French just
to get it?
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Senior Member
United Kingdom
Joined 4476 days ago

938 posts - 1837 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French, German, Latin

 Message 223 of 278
25 August 2010 at 6:04pm | IP Logged 
Doesn't look like it: ID=21963&PN=1
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United KingdomRegistered users can see my Skype Name
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Speaks: SpanishB2
Studies: Mandarin, French

 Message 224 of 278
26 August 2010 at 12:30am | IP Logged 
Hello professor,
I like Assimil and tried your method of shadowing. Here is my experience;

Relying on what I already knew I could advance the first 20 lessons quickly and easily.
Mosquitoes and rain hamper the shadowing. I had to get a waterproof cover and earphones for my ipod. (MP3 is best because you can leave the book at home and not struggle to turn pages in the waterproof cover) MP3 - you only get target language but can have each sentence repeat itself over and over automatically which is great.
I struggled and became disheartened when the lessons became harder and could not do the one lesson a day. I think you said do the lesson live as you walk. No can do.
Now I do half an hour of input all the characters (we are talking Mandarin) on Pleco (ask me if needed - it is awesome!) flash cards using the Assimil character book (any clarification pls ask) then an hour going through the lesson. Then after a break I walk to my lectures (20 mins) listening and repeating. Same on return. Then in evening write out the dialogue and breeze through the exercises. I review weekends and listen to last 3 or lessons. Here I see that you go through some lessons many times? Well that has changed the dynamics somewhat - for the better. Thanks for all the excellent hints.

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