I always find it interesting when hear someone respond when asked if they have worked on mastering the language involved in discussing a holiday like Thanksgiving for example that, “I have already studied that.”
It is as though one pass through the chapter in the text book or one session with a language helper has somehow given them all the information they will ever need about a certain topic.
It could be any topic really, but it is as though they could plug their mind into a language and culture database and instantly download all the relevant information – words, phrases, beliefs, nuances and history of a particular topic.
Oh that it were so. Our lives would be so much easier.
But language – like life – does not work that way. And so my encouragement with this short post is to go ahead and pass over the material one more time.
Do not shy away from talking with one more person about a particular topic and certainly do not assume that there is but one way, one word or phrase or belief that is used to convey a certain meaning, that is called upon to express an idea.
Languages are too deep and broad and nuanced to not visit each area more than once.
Certainly, as we learn new languages we need to continually be pushing out into new territory and exploring new topics and the words and phrases used to discuss them. But we also need to keep going back so that we can go deeper.
So don’t be afraid to pass over old material more than once.
Read this article in German
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