Sunday, December 28, 2014

Play it again, SLLP! (Avoiding the 8 deadly sins of second language learning practice)

Clip art:
With apologies to Humphrey Bogart, a good first question in a learner interview is something like: How do you practice your pronunciation or English? If he or she plays or has recently played a musical instrument or sang well, I will follow up with an analogous, music-based prompt. 
Glyde at has a new piece on something like the "8 deadly sins of bad (guitar) practice--and how to overcome them," which applies beautifully to our work: (His specific "how to" recommendations have been omitted for the time being.)
  • Playing instead of practicing guitar
  • Focusing too much on new material
  • Going through the motions. 
  • Failure to break up large practice sessions
  • Failing to avoid distractions
  • Failing to avoid boring practice routines 
  • Failing to set up a practice schedule
  • Failing to apply what you know
Not sure that I have ever seen a better, comprehensive framework for embodied practice. I'm going to come back and look at how that approach works specifically in haptic pronunciation teaching. In the meantime, feel free to comment on any of those. 

And, if you are serious about getting even better results with a wider range of learner "styles" this year, just begin by candidly sketching out for yourself how/if your system avoids those pitfalls (or persistent SLLP ups!) -- and have a very good 2015!

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