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LUNA_81 Posts: 10
12/9/12 2:33 P

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Actually, I think it is quite possible to become fluent in a language without ever living in the country where it is spoken. I know of loads of people who've done it. I belong to an internet forum for language lovers and most people there learn on their own often for no other reason than that they have a passion for languages.

It is also not necessary to be fluent in order to read without translating. I do it to some extent in Japanese. All my other skills are weak to non-existent, but I do a good bit of reading. I do have trouble in some passages and sometimes have to think about things or look up words, but I also sometimes read several pages without even noticing it's Japanese. My Japanese is still very bad at this time, but I hope to improve it in the coming year enough to read at a reasonable speed.

If anyone would like to join us at that forum I mentioned, it's how-to-learn-any-language.com/forum/
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fault.asp
. There is a lot of information there on different learning methods and helpful materials as well as interesting discussions.

We have something called TAC (Total Annihilation Challenge) in which we form teams with people studying the same or related languages. Everyone keeps a language-learning log to record their activities, progress, problems and anything else they want to write about. Team members read and comment on each other's logs to give tips and encouragement. The Challenge starts at the beginning of each year, so we are currently forming teams. Stop by if you're interested. The sign-up is a sticky in the "language logs" section.



MAGNOLIA416's Photo MAGNOLIA416 Posts: 5,548
8/6/12 8:20 P

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In Swedish they have "lättläst" novels. They are shorter versions of popular novels with simpler lanugage. I've got a couple of them but my enthusiasm for reading them is really up and down. I still have to look up words in every paragraph, sometimes every sentence, so it's not fun ready...hard to catch the flow of the story when I have to stop to look up words so often.



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MARCYNA's Photo MARCYNA Posts: 1,806
8/2/12 3:57 P

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If you want, you can start from an unabridged version of a book , unfortunately for me it did not work in German!!! I had a stories collection which my teacher advised me to buy but I've never been able to do do!!!


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MAGNOLIA416's Photo MAGNOLIA416 Posts: 5,548
6/28/11 12:27 P

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hee! good story!

Sometimes I'm too lazy to interpret every word in a sentence so I skim it to get a sense of what it means, but of course that's dangerous because it's fertile ground for mis-informing myself!


If you don't like the road you're walking, start paving another one!

Dolly Parton


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SKEETOR's Photo SKEETOR Posts: 1,769
6/28/11 11:25 A

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Unfortunately, I think I still translate in my head when I read. I did one time however interpret some German at a gasthaus for one of my friends who didn't understand German but understood Russian. At first I was going (in my head) from German to English to Russian, then Russian to English to German, but later in the conversation I suddenly realized the English step was being skipped! I just went directly from German to Russian and Russian to German! It was a "wunderbar moment".
A lot of times though an adjective or adverb will come to my mind when I am speaking English as the foreign word has a more precise meaning for what I'm trying to say. Then I have to stop and try to think of a way to say it in English (my native tongue)!

Edited by: SKEETOR at: 6/28/2011 (11:26)
Concern yourself more with accepting responsibility than with assigning blame. Let the possibilities inspire you more than the obstacles discourage you.
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ALEXTHEHUNN's Photo ALEXTHEHUNN Posts: 2,535
3/23/10 4:29 P

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I agree, it requires close to total immersion in order to achieve thinking in another language. But once you get it, it can linger a long time. In academic work sometimes I have to read in French or German and though it's slow at first, once I get back into the zone, it just flows quite naturally.

Once one dismisses the rest of all possible worlds,

One finds that this is the best of all possible worlds.


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SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
3/22/10 6:05 P

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To read in the foreign language without translating to English in your head, I think you would need to be fluent in the language, and it will come with time. The more time spent using the foreign language, the sooner you will get to thinking in Swedish.

I don't know if that could happen without living in Sweden! However, if you have a knack for it, you may find yourself thinking in Swedish at least for phrases - that's my non-expert, unscientific opinion.

MAGNOLIA416's Photo MAGNOLIA416 Posts: 5,548
3/22/10 5:13 P

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When you read in language you're learning, to you read the words in that language, or do you see the foreign word and say the English* word in your head?

(*or whatever language is your mother tongue)

If you don't like the road you're walking, start paving another one!

Dolly Parton


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