Language learning tips from a guitar teacher

Discussion in 'Learning Techniques and Advice' started by stratfanatic, Oct 19, 2014.

  1. stratfanatic

    stratfanatic New Member

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    Searching for tips on acquiring Russian cases, this title caught my eye in the youtube suggestions. Imo, these tips can be applied to learning not just languages or guitar, but just about anything. Well, maybe given some tweaks here and there.. What do you think?



    1. Practice what you can't do, not what you can.

    2. Never practice making a mistake. Get it right.

    3. Start slowly and get it right before you speed up.

    4. Using a timer saves time.

    5. Focus on one element of practice at a time.

    6. Try and practice a little every day, rather than practising a lot all on one day..

    7. Keep track of your practice: use a practice schedule..

    8. If it sounds good, it is good!

    9. Playing and Practicing are very different, don't confuse them.

    10. The more you think, the more you stink! Practice until it becomes instinctive.
  2. Peregrinus

    Peregrinus Active Member

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    He is the poster Splog on HTLAL and has a youtube channel. I think there are other vids not on his channel list if you search by his name. He also gave the following talk at the 2013 polyglot conference: Polynot



    He is a good and entertaining speaker and though I personally disagree with some things he said in that talk, he is well informed and has been a valuable poster on HTLAL.
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  3. Big_Dog

    Big_Dog Administrator Staff Member

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    Lol - that's hilarious! Excellent post. I'm normally not a fan of analogies, but this one is pretty good.
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  4. kikenyoy

    kikenyoy Administrator Staff Member

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    Analogies are like medicine-you might not be a fan of them but they're good for you.
  5. Big_Dog

    Big_Dog Administrator Staff Member

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    You may be right. Thinking a lot can sometimes clear the room.
  6. garyb

    garyb Member

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    I've not had a chance to watch the video but I'll try to later. I've certainly also already thought about the similarities between music and language practice. This in particular sticks out:

    I'm sometimes guilty of not following this in languages and in music. Especially if I'm with a group of native speakers, my temptation is often to speed up and to try to keep up with them. And like with guitar, if you try to go too fast you just end up making more mistakes: particularly bad pronunciation and simple grammatical or vocabulary errors. Reminding myself to slow down has been beneficial and helped me to express myself better. Once you can speak well at a slower pace, then you can speed up.
  7. Wise owl chick

    Wise owl chick Active Member

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    here is my opinion about the 10 points

    1. Practice what you can't do, not what you can.= I think that you can practise both but focus on what you can't. or maybe you only play what you can do. If you don't then you will forget it.

    2. Never practice making a mistake. Get it right. yes, and maybe you must ask a teacher becuase it depend if you can know if it is right or not.

    3. Start slowly and get it right before you speed up. I agree

    4. Using a timer saves time. What's a timer?

    5. Focus on one element of practice at a time. I agree

    6. Try and practice a little every day, rather than practising a lot all on one day.. I agree

    7. Keep track of your practice: use a practice schedule.. I agree

    8. If it sounds good, it is good! If you can judge this, maybe you can't. I mean in a foreign langauge or musical instrument, you can't always know. I think it's better if you ask the teacher or other person

    9. Playing and Practicing are very different, don't confuse them. I agree generally, although in music, after you have learnt the sections, you must practise to connect them, and in this situation playing = pratising as well. Also in writing and speaking, producing the langauge is like playing but also practising.

    10. The more you think, the more you stink! Practice until it becomes instinctive I don't understand why you will stink haha. I suppose he want that the things become automatic. this is nice when a thing is automatic and correct.

    I agree that the langauges and musical instrument learning have some similarities. I have always thought this.
  8. neofight78

    neofight78 Member VIP member

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    It doesn't really surprise me that lessons meant for learning one skill are often transferrable to another. Aside from the differences of what you are actually learning, I would expect the learning process to be the same for learning to drive, karate, chess, etc. I certainly feel these things to have a lot of commonality. In fact I would be interested to know what the differences might be if any.

    Yes, it's best to have a mixture. You need to break new ground, but also revise what you already know. The advice for improving at chess was always to play stronger players to find your weakness and to work on them (i.e. what you can't do). But also play weaker plays to hone your technique, (i.e. make what you can do more and more automatic). Which is why 1. and 10. are both in the list I guess.
  9. Cainntear

    Cainntear Active Member VIP member

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    Analogies are like medicine -- using the right one will help a lot, but using the wrong one will make things worse. There are only a few medicines that are effective for a given condition, but there are thousands that are not.
  10. neofight78

    neofight78 Member VIP member

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    Or even worse, you're given two and they interact with horrible side effects. :p
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  11. stratfanatic

    stratfanatic New Member

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    I'm right there with you! Whenever I catch my self rushing, I always think of those dag-gon Chinese finger traps!

    I think what this really means is just to use your time wisely. He explains it in the video. I agree with with all your opinions though. The wording of some of these should be taken with a grain of salt.

    ...and while your taking grains of salt, chase it down with some analogies! Thats always a mood lifter!

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