Suggested Study Method
When I studied Chinese at NTU, my instructors gave me a detailed method for quickly absorbing material, which I’ll share with you here.
Step 1: Read the Vocabulary Out Loud
Try to make an association that makes it easy to remember the word. The more weird the association, the better.
Example: When I learned watermelon in Chinese (西瓜), I pictured a woman with huge breasts (hey, don’t judge me). The first character: 西, sounds similar to ‘she’ in English. For ‘瓜’ I picture my jaw-dropping reaction at the sight of a large-breasted woman, “guuuwaaa.”
Step 2: Listen to the Recording
Listen all the way through one time. Then listen again and write down what you THINK you hear when you don’t understand something. Then listen a third time while reading along with the material. Go back and correct what you wrote down with the right words.
Step 4: Listen and Repeat
Speaking is just like exercise, the more you physically move your mouth to say the words, the more natural the movements become. Listen to the recording again, pausing to repeat each sentence.
Step 5: Quiz Yourself
Review the list of parts you don’t understand. Quiz yourself on these terms or phrases.
Step 6: Take a break. Then Back to Step 1.
After 15 minutes of study it’s unlikely they you will still be absorbing the content. So take a break before repeating the process. Repeat these steps three times. Then hop online here to discuss the material!
Hope this helps! The key here is active engagement and keeping your brain from drifting. Find a way to make the material interesting to you. Think about the benefits of knowing these words, or compete with a friend. This should keep you motivated!
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