10 ways to write a book review

The Hungry Brain gives off a bit of a Malcolm Gladwell vibe, with its cutesy name and pop-neuroscience style. Stephan Guyenet is no Gladwell-style dilettante.

10 ways to write a book review

Regardless all opinions expressed are my own honest opinions. This blog article is preparation. Teach Yourself Korean, by Mark Vincent and Jay Hoon Jeon I bought this book before I came to Korea for the first time, and managed to learn the alphabet and the absolute basics of Korean grammar from it.

Unfortunately, having presented the Hangeul alphabet, this book then proceeds to not use it for much of the book. Even worse, they romanize Korean using their own cockeyed version of the outdated McCune-Reischauer system.

The method used in the book is the common one of presenting dialogues that introduce new vocabulary and illustrate grammatical principles. This is the Japanese department. That said, apart from the goofy romanizations, this is a solid book that will give you a good workout in Korean, if you stick with it.

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I — beginning what would become a long tradition — did not. I never got past lesson 2, and left the book behind when I went back to Australia after my first year.

Learning from Korean-Australian friends at orientation Orientation offered Korean classes, which I attended two of before abandoning them to go drinking with my new friends. As a result I still have a notebook full of Korean swear words, insults and pick-up lines, along with meats, numbers, and Korean family relationships.

Ended with orientation, but definitely educational while it lasted.

10 ways to write a book review

Rosetta Stone Korean Rosetta Stone is the bestselling method for learning a foreign language. You might assume that this is because it is the best method, or at least slightly useful, but it is neither of those things. It is the bestselling method because of its marketing. But the idea of passive absorption is a joke — it simply will not happen.

Babies are neurologically wired to learn languages at an extraordinary rate, an ability that disappears as you grow up. The idea that an adult can replicate this process with a stupid computer game that requires you to endlessly click on one of four pictures is ridiculous.

And that is what you will do with Rosetta Stone: Often the same pictures, for what seems like decades. Even worse, Rosetta Stone believes you can shoehorn any language into the same stages, without any explanation of grammar, just by changing the language of the sentences accompanying the pictures.

This might be good for company profits but it is a disaster for learning a language with profound grammatical differences from English. I even proudly used this word to a number of Koreans, causing what I imagine was a lot of polite bafflement. I did, however, learn the words for man, woman, boy and girl, due to their interminable repetition.

I persevered long enough to go on a virtual hike with some virtual Korean friends as some sort of achievement badge before abandoning Rosetta Stone. Language exchange with Koreans At my new school I formed the first of many language exchange groups, with a couple of Korean teachers.

This went the way most of my subsequent conversation groups have gone, the way they go for most foreigners here: I had a good time and learned very little Korean. Why does this happen?

Koreans who are learning English are generally better at it than waegukins who are learning Korean, The Koreans want to practice their English, The waegukins find it easier to talk in English, and The waegukins are more interested in socializing than actually learning Korean.

So, back in Sydney, I took the first of what has since become a number of Korean classes. Taking a Korean class is not fundamentally different to learning from a book.

I like to read. Still, there are definite advantages to taking a class: You have a teacher who can help you with specific points which you might find confusing You have a native speaker your teacher with whom you can practice, and a variety of other people at the same level as you with whom you can practice, study, commiserate, and secretly compete against Perhaps most importantly: It is very easy when you study on your own to procrastinate by telling yourself that you will do it tomorrow, or that you are preparing to start studying again by writing really long blog posts about methods of learning Korean.

So, you find time to study. More than anything, it is this terror of being called upon that makes language classes valuable.

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Learning solo with flashcards At the same time, I also started learning big chunks of vocabulary with flashcards. Ask a Korean blog, in his terrific post on the best way to learn a foreign languagemakes the same point. And if you ever read the forums of people whose hobby is being polyglots, you will find they advocate a similar method: This gives you a very large percentage of actual spoken and written vocabulary in a given language, and once you have that you can start intense reading and conversation with native speakers, and learn quickly.

Speaking of memorization, you would be crazy to start without first familiarising yourself with mnemonic techniques.Pearson Prentice Hall and our other respected imprints provide educational materials, technologies, assessments and related services across the secondary curriculum.

10 ways to write a book review

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