The article has been automatically translated into English by Google Translate from Russian and has not been edited.

'Shadowing': a method of learning English from a polyglot who speaks 50 languages


Source: Yandex Zen

Alexander Arguelles is a hyperpolyglot. He speaks 50 languages. First of all, his name is associated with the technique of language learning that he invented, which helped thousands of people around the world to pump their skills, writes the author of the blog "How I learned English" at Yandex Zen.

Photo: Shutterstock

What is the essence of the “shadowing” method?

To complete the exercise, you will need a podcast, audiobook, or other medium-speed voiced text. “Shadowing” translates to “being a shadow”. And your task is to “become a shadow” of the speaker - to listen to the speech and copy all the nuances of pronunciation.

A short passage should be repeated 10-15 times, long - 2-3 times. Only one passage takes 5 days:

Day 1: We listen to the passage and repeat after the announcer. Understanding speech is not necessary.

Day 2: we listen to the same passage, but already looking at the translation.

Day 3: we listen and look in the original text.

Day 4: we independently read the original text, without audio accompaniment, but at the same time trying to repeat the intonation and pronunciation of the nuances heard earlier.

Day 5: we read the original text aloud, writing down the text by hand and pronouncing each word.

Maybe you already thought this was wildly complicated, but in fact the process is addictive and it takes not so much time. In the meantime, you are pumping the letter, and pronunciation, and reading, and listening.

On the subject: How to learn English from TV shows and songs: techniques that increase efficiency by 5-10 times

There is also a way to perform the exercise:

  1. We find the voiced text, comfortable in complexity.
  2. We read the text, translate unfamiliar words, we strive to make the text familiar and well understood.
  3. We are listening. First looking at the text and reading after the record. Copy pronunciation, intonation, pause. When the reading becomes easy, we remove the text and listen and repeat the voiced fragment aloud.

This method looks simpler, but pumping letters, for example, is no longer there.

And another important point.

The exercise is recommended to be combined with motor activity. There is a scientific explanation about the cerebellum, neurons, and that’s all. Just believe it.

So the headphones in the ears, if people are embarrassed, we go away from them and walk, repeating what we heard with an expression.

Original column published on the blog. “How I Learned English” on Yandex.Zen

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