So, it’s been an interesting few days. In true Adam fashion, I’ve gotten very motivated AROUND the subject of learning Hebrew without managing to actually LEARN or USE any Hebrew 🙂 It’s all mental, dude. I knew that going in. I justify it with the Stephen Covey metaphor of making sure my ladder is up against the right wall, lest I spend tons of effort climbing it to only find myself in the wrong place.
Three noteworthy things:
1. I met with a language acquisition expert last night. Actually, her primary focus is teaching English to high school kids with dyslexia and other learning issues. Lovely lady. She uses the Raviv Method, and explained how it can be applicable to my situation. The Raviv Method involves learning while involved with a specific movement – the movement was discovered by a mom and her son, after the son (who previously was told that he’d never read) went surfing in Hawaii for 6 months and found himself reading street signs and whatnot during that time, and when he returned home he eventually could read novels. Last night, she taught me the basics of the movement and she drilled me in Hebrew for a few minutes during that time. It’s supposed to rewire your brain. Hey, I’m game for anything and this sounds worth a try. I should be doing it every night for 20 minutes/night.
2. I’ve been doing a lot of online reading about language acquisition, and I particularly enjoyed this article mostly written by Benny Lewis (“Benny the Irish Polyglot”). He’s got lots of opinionated videos, reviews, and essays on his website, and his approach really resonates with me . I’m going to try to grab a copy of his book, and perhaps I’ll write a review here when I finish it. Seriously, read the post, it is chock full of resources and suggestions.
3. I’ve been thinking about smartphone-based foreign language learning. So far, the offerings out there aren’t all that great (for Hebrew, at least). Quizlet is a cool flash-card app for which there are a lot of Hebrew vocab lists. It held my attention for a few days, but wasn’t engaging enough to keep me coming back. Duolingo certainly seems promising, and I enjoyed playing around with the Spanish lessons, though they don’t offer Hebrew just yet. Here is a thread where I encourage you to add your support for Duolingo to add a Hebrew course. All things considered, I feel that a market exists for a proactive, fun, engaging way to learn Hebrew on your smartphone. So there’s a potential side project.
Probably, being sleep deprived really hurts your ability to learn language, so I think I’ll cut this short here. Thanks to everyone who provided great encouragement and feedback on Facebook!
PS: Oh wow, I did not realize there was a queue of comments on the first post, waiting for approval! I’ll try to be more timely in moderating! I think I need to set something up to ensure I get email notifications when comments appear.