Scritto da speakitalianmagically.com il 14 Febbraio 2013
In my previous post I briefly told you how being an actor can help you speak better Italian and how in the fourth lesson of Awaken your Italian you’re invited to choose and enter into a role model for the Italian language. Today I want to give you some other hints about the principles that lesson is based on. But let’s start with a mind map:-)
Who are the people you see in the above drawing? For now let me tell you that they are some people who speak (or spoke) Italian very well… And you? Do you want to speak Italian very well, do you? To discover who these people are, read this article till the end and have fun by answering the following questions.
How have you learned to do everything you are able to do nowadays? For example, how have you learned to ride a bike? Maybe someone helped you out with that… perhaps at the beginning you used trainer wheels, then you didn’t and after falling some times, you finally were able to enjoy your bike. But even before you rode it yourself, you may have watched others who already had been doing it for a while. Think about it again. How did it go for you?
And what about all other things that you are able to do? Can you think about another skill that you mastered? How did you do it?
Sometimes you may have learned by trials and errors; perhaps in some other cases, before applying a new skill, you spent more or less time by watching and observing another person who was already good at doing what you wanted to learn. Between the two methods ( that with trials and that of observing another person who is already good), which do you think is the fastest?
Whatever your answer, you should know that many authors, who have worked with accelerated learning, have reached the conclusion that it is very useful that first you observe another person and then put yourself at doing personally what you want to learn. So, if at beginning you observe and listen, or spend some time with another person who’s already good at doing what you want to learn, you can learn to do something in shorter time. Consequently, you could learn Italian much faster also by watching, observing and listening to a native speaker of Italian.
A little note: nowadays, thanks to internet it is possible to spend time with some excellent role models in a virtual way; has it occurred to you?
The same authors endorsing this approach have said that you can make your learning curve even quicker. How? After watching for a while the person whose skills you want to learn, you can start and use your imagination. Thus, you could see with your mind eyes (and not only) what your role model does. Then, after a while you could push yourself even further and imagine that you “enter” into your special role model and see what he or she sees through his or her eyes, listen to what he listens to through his or her ears and feel the feelings that he or she feels through his or her body. And you can find these ideas applied in the fourth lesson of Awaken your Italian, where you can learn from the best ones: from those persons who speak Italian very well, because they were born and bread in Italy and Italian is their mother-tongue.
If all this looks funny (or exaggerated), consider it like a game! Perhaps imagine you are a child again, one who has fun to learn new things day after day and this modeling technique will be very fun!
If instead you consider yourself too serious or too rational to do this kind of exercises and you want scientific proofs that this can work, I can invite you to read the last pages of Awaken your Italian, (those about the science behind the method), where I cite several authors and research proving the usefulness of guided imagery. If you dont’t have the book in hand’s reach or you haven’t bought it yet, I can remind you of an exciting study, by Elisa Tartaglia of the Laboratory of Psychophysics at Switzerland’s Ecole Politechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) confirms that: “perceptual learning – learning by repeated exposure to a stimulus – can occur by mental imagery as much as by the real things. The results suggests that thinking about something over and over again could actually be as good as doing it.”
Well, you just have to try all that, don’t you think?
And I just have to tell you who the people (in my childlike version) in the mind map are :-) Monnalisa, Roberto Benigni, Valentino Rossi, Leonardo da Vinci and Maria Montessori. Have you heard of them? Google them out;-) These are just some possible role model for the Italian language among about 61 millions (source: Wikipedia) who speak Italian as a native language. Which one would you choose? Like whom would like to speak Italian?