Tutorial Transcript

Hi everyone and welcome back to my channel. In today's video I would like to respond to a comment I received a few weeks ago, and that I get often. It's a comment, but at the same time also a question. The comment is the following: "I feel so frustrated... I can completely understand this and definitely understood the C1/C2 one, but I can't speak correctly neither can I write it... How can I work with this?" I want to start off by saying that your passive knowledge always develops before your active knowledge. Before speaking and writing, so before being able to actively produce in the target language, you need to store information, before anything. Storing information, words, phrases, will enable and develop your passive knowledge. Passive knowledge means reading and listening, active knowledge is speaking and writing. All of this is absolutely normal, it's actually the natural process of language acquisition and learning. At the beginning we experience something called "period of silence", when we do not produce anything, we don't speak, we don't write, we just listen and read. After this period you should go ahead and actively start using the target language. How long can this period of silence last? There's no right answer, because we are different. Everyone learns and acquires a language differently, so duration is also different. Something I can recommend doing is: do not compare your learning process to somebody else's. Don't make this mistake, don't think "oh they have learnt Italian in a year" or "they could already speak after three months". This is not positive for your to think. Do not compare your path to other people's paths. Everyone learn differently, everyone has their methods, and most importantly, everyone has a different lifestyle. If you work eight hours a day, so you have little time to learn a language, you can't comprare your studying to the studying of someone who is at university, for example, where studying is their job. So, how can you actively start using the target language? Firstly, you should feel at ease just talking to yourself in the target language. You should be comfortable listening to your own voice speaking in a different language from your native one. If you feel blocked or if you're afraid to speak, do not search for a teacher or a tutor just yet. Because having someone in front of you waiting for you to say something is not ideal, you will feel even more pressured. Finding a teacher or speaking with a tutor is something you will have to do, sooner or later. Speaking with a native speaker, a tutor or a friend, is something important to do in the future. But before doing that, you have to be comfortable with yourself. So what can we do? We could do many things actually. We can start speaking using everything we know to create monologues,. It might sound strange, but it's actually quite useful. When you're by yourselves, try and repeat sentences you've heard or try and build phrases with all the words and verbs you've learnt. Simply experiment with the target language in front of a mirror, in the shower, when you make your lunch, when you're by yourself and you feel relaxed. Another useful tip is reading a book and listening to it at the same time. So get yourself an audiobook. Reading the text and listening to it gives you the chance to know the correct pronunciation of words, but you can also repeat the phrase or paragraph you've just read. And imitate the voice you've just listened to. Italian audiobooks are usually read by actors and dubbers, this means their pronunciation and diction is very close to perfection. And this helps immensely at the beginning, when we all tend to learn a perfect target language, then as our competence improves, we can understand all of the other layers of a language. But at first it is important to practice and repeat, imitate, what we consider to be the perfect target language, in our case, standard Italian. I recommend audiobooks because the language is somewhat controlled. But you could also use other resources. There's an audiomagazine called TuttoItaliano that is interesting, it's for B1-B2 levels. It's a magazine about current affairs in Italy and it's made for students of Italian. So you can read the article, listen to it (there's a CD with the magazine). So, these are controlled resources. You could also use more informal resources, such as YouTube videos, radio, podcasts, etc. even thought at the beginning it might be difficult to know what content is linguistically better to do this type of exercise. I would wait a little longer to use more informal content and I would stick to audiobooks and audiomagazines. Or CDs you find in textbooks, the ones you use at university or at school. Even though those dialogues might be artificial, they are useful to get you used to speaking. Okay? So we are not interested in authenticity of dialogues just yet, we want structure to the dialogue to do repetition and imitation exercises, using content we are sure about. So this is my tip to start speaking. The only way to start speaking is actually speaking, and I recomment you experiment with the target language, on your own at the beginning, and then with other people when you feel more comfortable. I hope this video was useful. Let me know in the comments if you've experienced something similar or not. I'll see you in my next video. See you soon, ciao!