When do you really know a piece of a language?
Usually, we say we "know" something if we can remember it and understand it. When you're learning a language, it is easy to be deceived by this definition of "knowing", and to think you "know" a piece of the language, when really, you are still only halfway there.
The problem is the difference between two kinds of knowing, which are called "knowing that", and "knowing how". "Knowing that" is the kind of knowledge we have about facts. For example, you probably know that the capital of Japan is Tokyo. In order to know this, you only need to be able to remember it at the appropriate time, and understand it. "Knowing how", though, is the kind of knowledge you have when you swim, or drive a car. Here, knowledge of the idea is not enough.Read more · 続きを読む
Read how to learn more vocabulary faster.
A lot of people have ideas about how much their brain can handle, but they have no idea where they got those ideas. One very common idea like this is that you can "only learn so much" at a time. You probably have a belief like this. Could you learn 500 new words a day? You will probably say you couldn't. But how do you know? Have you ever tried?Read more · 続きを読む
Think in English and become more fluent by connecting the language you learn directly to your world.
Often, your native language gets in the way of learning a new language. To some extent, this will always happen—your native language starts getting in the way. Trying to learn through it becomes like "scratching an itch through your boot", as the Chinese saying goes (隔靴搔癢).
So we need to get our native language out of the way. Easier said than done, surely! How do you do this? By connecting the language you learn directly to your world.
Let's imagine, for example, two Japanese learners of English: "Mr Think-in-Japanese", and "Mr Think-in-English". Mr Think-in-Japanese learns English vocabulary like this:
Read more · 続きを読む
It is good to write about things that matter to you — either because they are connected to your personal life, or because they are subjects that are important to you.
When learning a language, it is really helpful to write and talk about things that matter to you personally, for two reasons. First, we remember what matters to us more easily. Second, we often find ourselves talking about ourselves in life (e.g. when we introduce ourselves, or in ordinary conversation), and so it prepares us for one of the most common real-life situations in which we will use the new language.
One of the great advantages of the Poligo system is you can use Editor feedback to create perfectly correct examples of English, tailor-made to subjects that matter to you.
Here are some suggestions for some personal topics you might write about. Even better, work your way through the list and write about them all, and with the help of Poligo's Editors, create a perfect English version of your life story!Read more · 続きを読む