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PMs TAC 2015 crazy? French course mission

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PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3782 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 297 of 451
23 February 2015 at 6:42am | IP Logged 
Serpent wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:
Serpent do you translate your cards or only use L2?

I'm not fussy about that, I don't wanna impose any unnecessary limits. If it's an unusual way to combine
familiar words, I may leave the answer field blank or use a keyword to summarize the expression. Or
sometimes just include any personal note/remark, even if it has zero linguistic value. If I look up in a
monolingual dictionary I'll paste it, if I use a bilingual one I'm likely to look up the word in other languages I'm
learning too, especially related ones. (if it's too different, I'll make a separate card)

Also kinda related.. if I do cloze deletion, the answer field should always contain the full sentence without a
gap. (And usually with the word highlighted)

What software do you use? Is it even SRS or something more basic?


Hi again Serpent,

I think it's good that you don't impose too many rules on yourself in terms of creating new flashcards. I need
to adopt some of your methods :) I impose a lot of restrictions, rules etc on myself, so it feels liberating now
to let go of one of them- the new card for every new word thing. Mind you some of the rules have helped me
advance in language learning, but probably more often than not they have worked against me. Cloze deletion
is something that i'm definitely interested in. emk mentioned it a while back. So full sentence with word
highlighted on the answer side and full sentence except the word in question on the question side, right?

I use Flashcards deluxe. When initially comparing multiple different FC systems when starting to use them
this program had the best votes, the most flexibility and options and versatility. I'm surprised more on this
forum don't use it. It really is a great program and at times although feeling the ' pull ' to try to use Anki as a
large percentage of members on HTLAL use it, i decided it didn't do any more that FC's Deluxe. FC deluxe
has more to offer except the one option i mentioned above to fortheo of limiting number of new cards by
actual number of cards (as opposed to limiting by time until next review for new cards, or number of correct
for new cards and so on). Thanks again Serpent :)

PM
1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3782 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 298 of 451
23 February 2015 at 7:08am | IP Logged 
Jeffers wrote:
I'm a bit late to this discussion, because I haven't been on HTLAL at all this past week (too
busy with 6wc work and other things). I've defendend flashcards in general, and single word flashcards in
particular. But the funny thing is, I haven't touched mine more than a few minutes for about the past 4 weeks.
I think they are useful for cramming in the most common words to prepare you for when you come across
them, but there is obviously a limit to how many you need. I think Luke makes an interesting disctinction
between dense sources (e.g. native materials) and sparse sources (e.g. flashcards). A lot of repitition of
native materials has broader benefits: you learn the vocabulary, but you also repeat common structures,
become aquainted with the native mindset, etc. Repeating flashcards only does one thing: help you learn
whatever you've put on it.

When I started studying French (3 1/2 years ago?) I intended to ignore flashcards and use more "natural"
methods of developing my vocab. But when I was 2/3 of the way through Assimil I found I couldn't read an
A1 reader without looking up 5-6 words on each page, so I decided to get a frequency dictionary and start
learning the vocabular. I am up to about 2400 words in the dictionary, and it really did do what I wanted. I
was able to read the easy readers, and soon after Petit Nicolas and other native books, much more easily
and without looking up too many words. The problem is diminishing returns, and at the vocabulary
level I have I'm finding flashcards less and less useful. In actual fact, every new word I recently entered has
still come up in native contexts one way or another, so it would still be useful to keep adding words. But I
also learn as much, if not more, by reading loads and loads, and it is a heck of a lot more fun. The kindle
popup dictionary has literally changed the way I learn. And like Luke, I like to have audiobooks of things I
read and listen to them until I've worn them out.

I'll probably pick up my deck in a month or two, dust it off, work through the backlog, and maybe even add
more words. My goal was to get at least to word 3000 in the dictionary, but it remains to be seen if I actually
get there. There's no doubt that in a year or two I'd know all those words anyway (I probably already know at
least 50% of the words between 2400-3000 that I haven't entered yet).

I am pretty sure that your vocabulary is at a higher level than mine, so I am positive that the laws of
diminishing returns means that you could do better than learning new words from flashcards. But still there is
the idea that your flashcards hold a lot of course revision for you. I think that idea still has a lot of merit. On
the other hand, one of the valuable things about doing multiple courses is that each course is itself a review
of all the others. If it turns out there is some point in one course that doesn't come up in others, then it is not
very important.

All in all, I think the solution you have come to for yourself is the most sensible way to proceed.


Thanks Jeffers,

Yeah luke's reasoning was the reasoning I was arriving at and you have demonstrated this theory with your
experience Jeffers. Although it sounds like you did have a need to push your vocab at the time to bring your
beginning
reading up to speed. To me it seems that if the FC's aren't really substantially 'activating/solidifying' my
understanding of the words more than (would have to be 'more than', as 'equal to' wouldn't warrant their use)
native materials and courses mixed together then imo they're not worth it as those other sources give you a
lot of other input plus the added bonus of context - ie i'd get more out of not using FC's, provided I study/use
native materials consistently so as not to limit my exposure too much to new words. I should start to lift my
reading numbers a little now in the SC.

Last time I had a dilemma with FCs I remember Jeffers you were the turning point in convincing me to
continue with them. And I think it was a fine decision at the time. I kinda expected you might remain silent this
time around as I kept persevering with the FCs and I remained stubborn despite announcements of trialing a
no FCs couple of months which lasted about a day if that. You didn't tell me what to do but your arguments
for FCs were convincing and like I said I was cool with that. The decision could've gone either way. Now as I
ask the question it seems natural the decision now go the other way, and once again your logic backs me up
:)

I have a lot of ebooks, some in iBooks and some in the kindle app. Recently i've been contemplating getting a
larger phone (screen and capacity) so that i can read more effectively on the go if i'm out somewhere. The
kindle app runs fine, but reading off an iphone 5 is not fantastic. Both apps (kindle & iBooks) on the phone
have pop-up dictionaries I believe. Perhaps I should start using them too, but I can't help but wonder whether
a kindle would be a good investment, but do I really need another device or just a bigger phone... I guess i'll
work that one out in due time- just thinking out loud there.

Yes you are right, I agree Jeffers, multiple courses should help revise new content and words so that FC's
aren't desperately required. In fact I could view books as vocabularly acquisition and courses as grammar
acquisition and word introduction. Whatever, i'm being over-analytical really by labelling, all in all I think this
should be a good shift in my routine.

Good effort btw with your frequency dictionary thus far. I have one or two of them myself as well as some
other vocab books with pictures and lables, it remains to be seen what I do with them, but at the moment I
have no place for them. I would make the assumption that our vocab levels are not that much different. I'm
guessing you'd have more words in your passive vocab due to more reading in fact. I'm sure we all have our
strong and weak points depending on our methods, approach and materials.

Word up, for real and for fake
PM
PS Tony Abbott says hi


Edited by PeterMollenburg on 23 February 2015 at 7:24am

1 person has voted this message useful



Serpent
Octoglot
Senior Member
Russian Federation
serpent-849.livejour
Joined 4903 days ago

9753 posts - 15776 votes 
4 sounds
Speaks: Russian*, English, FinnishC1, Latin, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
Studies: Danish, Romanian, Polish, Belarusian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Slovenian, Catalan, Czech, Galician, Dutch, Swedish

 
 Message 299 of 451
23 February 2015 at 8:02am | IP Logged 
PeterMollenburg wrote:
Cloze deletion is something that i'm definitely interested in. emk mentioned it a while back. So full sentence with word highlighted on the answer side and full sentence except the word in question on the question side, right?

Can also be several words, or only a part of a word (an ending especially). At least in Anki you can also choose to be asked to type the missing part. That requires a separate field, but that's nothing difficult, certainly not like subs2srs (if you have the technical skills, that would be a great idea btw!)

And the question side might contain hints, like a more simple expression, a translation, or for example the infinitive/basic form.

Also, Anki has cool automatic tools for generating several cards from the same sentence.
2 persons have voted this message useful



Jeffers
Senior Member
United Kingdom
Joined 3215 days ago

2151 posts - 3960 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Hindi, Ancient Greek, French, Sanskrit, German

 
 Message 300 of 451
23 February 2015 at 8:55am | IP Logged 
PeterMollenburg wrote:
Jeffers wrote:
I'm a bit late to this discussion, because I
haven't been on HTLAL at all this past week (too
busy with 6wc work and other things). I've defendend flashcards in general, and single word
flashcards in
particular. But the funny thing is, I haven't touched mine more than a few minutes for about
the past 4 weeks.
I think they are useful for cramming in the most common words to prepare you for when you
come across
them, but there is obviously a limit to how many you need. I think Luke makes an interesting
disctinction
between dense sources (e.g. native materials) and sparse sources (e.g. flashcards). A lot of
repitition of
native materials has broader benefits: you learn the vocabulary, but you also repeat common
structures,
become aquainted with the native mindset, etc. Repeating flashcards only does one thing:
help you learn
whatever you've put on it.

When I started studying French (3 1/2 years ago?) I intended to ignore flashcards and use
more "natural"
methods of developing my vocab. But when I was 2/3 of the way through Assimil I found I
couldn't read an
A1 reader without looking up 5-6 words on each page, so I decided to get a frequency
dictionary and start
learning the vocabular. I am up to about 2400 words in the dictionary, and it really did do
what I wanted. I
was able to read the easy readers, and soon after Petit Nicolas and other native books, much
more easily
and without looking up too many words. The problem is diminishing returns, and at the
vocabulary
level I have I'm finding flashcards less and less useful. In actual fact, every new word I
recently entered has
still come up in native contexts one way or another, so it would still be useful to keep
adding words. But I
also learn as much, if not more, by reading loads and loads, and it is a heck of a lot more
fun. The kindle
popup dictionary has literally changed the way I learn. And like Luke, I like to have
audiobooks of things I
read and listen to them until I've worn them out.

I'll probably pick up my deck in a month or two, dust it off, work through the backlog, and
maybe even add
more words. My goal was to get at least to word 3000 in the dictionary, but it remains to be
seen if I actually
get there. There's no doubt that in a year or two I'd know all those words anyway (I
probably already know at
least 50% of the words between 2400-3000 that I haven't entered yet).

I am pretty sure that your vocabulary is at a higher level than mine, so I am positive that
the laws of
diminishing returns means that you could do better than learning new words from flashcards.
But still there is
the idea that your flashcards hold a lot of course revision for you. I think that idea still
has a lot of merit. On
the other hand, one of the valuable things about doing multiple courses is that each course
is itself a review
of all the others. If it turns out there is some point in one course that doesn't come up in
others, then it is not
very important.

All in all, I think the solution you have come to for yourself is the most sensible way to
proceed.


Thanks Jeffers,

Yeah luke's reasoning was the reasoning I was arriving at and you have demonstrated this
theory with your
experience Jeffers. Although it sounds like you did have a need to push your vocab at the
time to bring your
beginning
reading up to speed. To me it seems that if the FC's aren't really substantially
'activating/solidifying' my
understanding of the words more than (would have to be 'more than', as 'equal to' wouldn't
warrant their use)
native materials and courses mixed together then imo they're not worth it as those other
sources give you a
lot of other input plus the added bonus of context - ie i'd get more out of not using FC's,
provided I study/use
native materials consistently so as not to limit my exposure too much to new words. I should
start to lift my
reading numbers a little now in the SC.

Last time I had a dilemma with FCs I remember Jeffers you were the turning point in
convincing me to
continue with them. And I think it was a fine decision at the time. I kinda expected you
might remain silent this
time around as I kept persevering with the FCs and I remained stubborn despite announcements
of trialing a
no FCs couple of months which lasted about a day if that. You didn't tell me what to do but
your arguments
for FCs were convincing and like I said I was cool with that. The decision could've gone
either way. Now as I
ask the question it seems natural the decision now go the other way, and once again your
logic backs me up
:)

I have a lot of ebooks, some in iBooks and some in the kindle app. Recently i've been
contemplating getting a
larger phone (screen and capacity) so that i can read more effectively on the go if i'm out
somewhere. The
kindle app runs fine, but reading off an iphone 5 is not fantastic. Both apps (kindle &
iBooks) on the phone
have pop-up dictionaries I believe. Perhaps I should start using them too, but I can't help
but wonder whether
a kindle would be a good investment, but do I really need another device or just a bigger
phone... I guess i'll
work that one out in due time- just thinking out loud there.

Yes you are right, I agree Jeffers, multiple courses should help revise new content and words
so that FC's
aren't desperately required. In fact I could view books as vocabularly acquisition and
courses as grammar
acquisition and word introduction. Whatever, i'm being over-analytical really by labelling,
all in all I think this
should be a good shift in my routine.

Good effort btw with your frequency dictionary thus far. I have one or two of them myself as
well as some
other vocab books with pictures and lables, it remains to be seen what I do with them, but at
the moment I
have no place for them. I would make the assumption that our vocab levels are not that much
different. I'm
guessing you'd have more words in your passive vocab due to more reading in fact. I'm sure we
all have our
strong and weak points depending on our methods, approach and materials.

Word up, for real and for fake
PM
PS Tony Abbott says hi

As far as I know, the pop-up dictionaries don't work on kindle apps, just the kindle devices.
I have a kindle and a phone. I was thinking of getting a phone with a bigger screen but then
I got a tablet (kindle fire) and I am happy with all 3 (although now I don't. It is much more
pleasant to read on a kindle than on a backlit screen, especially before bed.

P.S. David Cameron said hi, but then he denied that's what he really meant and said his words
were taken out of context.

Edited by Jeffers on 23 February 2015 at 8:57am

1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3782 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 301 of 451
23 February 2015 at 10:10pm | IP Logged 
Serpent wrote:

Can also be several words, or only a part of a word (an ending especially). At least in Anki you can also
choose to be asked to type the missing part. That requires a separate field, but that's nothing difficult,
certainly not like subs2srs (if you have the technical skills, that would be a great idea btw!)

And the question side might contain hints, like a more simple expression, a translation, or for example the
infinitive/basic form.

Also, Anki has cool automatic tools for generating several cards from the same sentence.


Interesting.... maybe I still do need to try Anki out after all. It appears to have more options than I
realised. Tnx again Serpent :)

Edited by PeterMollenburg on 23 February 2015 at 10:10pm

1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3782 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 302 of 451
23 February 2015 at 10:43pm | IP Logged 
Jeffers wrote:

As far as I know, the pop-up dictionaries don't work on kindle apps, just the kindle devices.
I have a kindle and a phone. I was thinking of getting a phone with a bigger screen but then
I got a tablet (kindle fire) and I am happy with all 3 (although now I don't. It is much more
pleasant to read on a kindle than on a backlit screen, especially before bed.


I checked my pop-up dictionary situation last night. Both iBooks (app) and the Kindle app on my phone now
have English and French monolingual dictionaries built in after downloading (for free) those I hadn't
downloaded yet. Other languages are available, but no dual-language options at this stage. Also I think the
iBooks dictionaries are more or less built into the iOS platform and can be used for other things too (I think)
like web sites. However the more pleasant Kindle screen may be a major positive.

Jeffers wrote:

P.S. David Cameron said hi, but then he denied that's what he really meant and said his words
were taken out of context.


Oh poor David. Like Tony and heads of state in general, they get picked on far too much. They're really trying
they're very hardest to do what's best for us, the people. Have you ever noticed those strings attached to their
limbs, and that they seem to enunciate their words rather deliberately like they are ventriloquist puppets? In
fact it seems like if you (when you're a journalist Jeffers) ask them a specific question they can't seem to
answer it directly and must ... ummm ... stick to the script? ... or ... they won't get the bribes from the
multinational corps and the big guys controlling the strings. Sorry that just came out, don't take those words
out of context now- you know I'm mentally unstable and I'm trying very hard to not see those strings anymore.
What's wrong with my eyes?

Edited by PeterMollenburg on 23 February 2015 at 10:44pm

1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3782 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 303 of 451
07 March 2015 at 8:56am | IP Logged 
Here I was thinking I was onto something being able to work around issues with accessing HTLAL...

rlnv was kind enough to inform me via twitter that some recent entries on my log were on an (seemingly now
non-existent? I am often clueless with IT) older copy of the server. Hopefully I can regain the entries, if not so
be it. Thanks to Cavesa & fortheo for recent positive feedback and encouragement with my studies (their
messages are currently absent from my log too).

PM
1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3782 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 304 of 451
11 March 2015 at 12:42am | IP Logged 
Once again rlnv came to the rescue and sent me the missing messages! Thanks a million!

Here are all the old posts, which i'll paste each one separately so as to annoy ppl
with multiple message notifications. Actually it just looks like far too much in one
message, hence the separation. Fry on!


Suzie
Diglot
Senior Member
Belgium
Joined 679 days ago
159 posts - 73 votes
Speaks: German*, English
Studies: French, Dutch


Hi PM,

This is an interesting discussion that gave me quite some food for thought. Everyone
seems to have a different learning practice here in the forum, and I also continuously
question the efficiency of my learning habits. The following is just meant to add yet
another example of how someone else thinks about FCs, and does not at all intend to
question anything in your current decision-making on how to proceed. Even more so, as
my overall learning habit is very, very different from yours.

I do like flash cards, still use them, and use them moreover primarily for learning of
single words. I would guess our level and vocabulary is about the same size, but I
feel I benefit a lot from my FC sessions. However, my sessions are much shorter than
yours (Anki tells me I spend around 20 min per learning day on my FCs), and beside
Anki, I nearly exclusively do Super Challenge activities. Therefore, I currently spend
less energy on repetition of old cards (the extensive reading/listening does this for
me), but focus more on new (and try to learn those quickly after creation, so that I
still remember the overall context (= the scene of the book or TV show) when seeing
the card). I limit my Anki time to repetition of 100 cards and acquisition of 10 new
ones per day (and often won’t even get there).

I have not specific system when to create a new FC; I add a word when I feel it’s
worth it, and when I am in the mood for adding new cards. This was first hard for me
to accept, since I am a very analytical person, but I agree to what was already
stated, that there are other ways to learn a new word. I now feel my system is
working, and have a party in my head every time I see one of the words in a new book
and new context, remembering that this is one of thoses in my FC backlog.

I even have a desk for English words (though I don‘t touch it right now), but sensed
an immense boost even at C2 level when I did English FCs for a couple of months a few
years ago. Maybe I really need to hammer a word into my brain for proper activation?

I hope you find your way to develop a learning technique you are happy with. It seems
to me that FC strategy is depending on various factors (personal learning skills,
learning style, language level) that no general conclusion can be drawn and advice can
be given. What is good for us today may be a bad idea tomorrow.


Jeffers wrote:


P.S. David Cameron said hi, but then he denied that's what he really meant and said
his words
were taken out of context.




LOL, Jeffers, I nearly spilled my morning coffee when reading this. How comes all
politicians are the same?



1 person has voted this message useful



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