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Has anyone acquired a language using ALG / comprehensible input methods?
Over the course of the last three years, I have gone from zero knowledge to an upper intermediate level in Spanish using only ALG (automatic language growth) / comprehensible input methods. The strange part is, that until recently I didn't know that this was a "method" so much as simply the way humans acquire a language!

I am curious if there are any other people that are using these "methods" as well. (with the exception of every child on the planet who is currently using this "method" but is unaware of that fact ;) )

If so, I would love to hear about your experience and what language(s) you have acquired.

Thanks! :)
May 2, 2020 10:34 PM
Comments · 7
The process of learning a new language varies a bit depending on the language (at least to me).
When I started to learn English I didn't stop and thought, "yeah, I wanna learn English, need to search about language learning methods". It just happened. I had a lot of free time and used it to listen to music and watch films and series for hours every day (with subs, initially in Portuguese and after some time in English) and most of the stuff I used to listen to or watch was in English. One moment it just started to made sense and it kinda "clicked" in my brain. One thing I actually studied in English was the th pronunciation. I had to see a couple of videos to get it right.
With German it was different. I stopped and said to myself "I wanna learn German, what should I do?" I downloaded Memrise and Anki, used to review flashcards almost every day, and watched some YouTube videos explaining German grammar (German grammar is not as easily intuitively understandable as English grammar). And of course, a lot of songs and films and some series. But the amount of stuff I listen in German isn't nearly the amount of stuff I listen in English. I can have a conversation but I'm nowhere near fluent in German.
Currently I'm learning French and Russian. French is not very difficult because a lot of words in French are similar to words in Portuguese or English, so it isn't hard to guess the meaning of a lot of words and to remember them.
Russian is difficult. The words are very different to words in Portuguese, English and German. The grammar is complicated. I had to see videos about the declension system. And it's much harder to remember the words. I know a lot of great Russian bands and I listen to them reading along the lyrics and translation, and it's helped but I still struggling.
That's my language learning experience.
May 5, 2020
Hi Marcelo,

Comprehensible input (ALG) is the same method that we all used to acquire our native language.

In the beginning, we didn't study grammar, we didn't learn to read or write- we just listened A LOT! and then slowly began to imitate the sounds and refine our abilities. Our brains are wired to acquire language.

We learned to associate the context of our situations with the sounds of the language.

There is a lot of info on the internet regarding this subject. Like all subjects, there are those that agree and those that disagree. I chose to try it and it worked for me, just like it worked when I acquired English from my surroundings.

I was inquiring because I don't meet a lot of people that are familiar with the idea. I'm not promoting it, just taking a poll to learn if anyone else has had any experience with it.

May 2, 2020

I read your answer with great interest and I really appreciate and value the fact you took the time to explain your path through the language learning jungle.

I didn't realize when I started to listen and learn Spanish that there was a name for the methodology that I was using, nor did I care (I'm not sure I even care now, I'm just curious about other's experiences)! I just figured that it worked the first time (English), and so it must be able to work again.

I know that everyone learns differently. For me, the listen and learn method apparently works well with my learning style.

Like you, one day things just started to make more sense- I could understand more and more. Very often I still find that my greatest progress occurs when I have a had a break for a few days. Like most learning, we need time to sort through the data and organize it into something useful.

Thanks again for taking your time to reply. :)

May 5, 2020
Hi Nada,

I realized after I wrote this, I should have titled it differently!

If you read through the threads below, it should give you a basic feel for the idea that it isn't really a method as much as just acquiring a new language in the same manner that we acquired our native tongue.

Again, I'm not promoting anything, I didn't even realize there was a name or a study for what is ultimately leading me down the path of learning a second language. I originally just thought it made sense to do it the same way I originally learned my native tongue of English!

Not long ago, a friend mentioned comprehensible input (Google it if you want to learn more), so I had to investigate. As I'm an engineer, I get easily sucked into things I find interesting- like language learning, for example! I have been learning something with reasonable success for the last 3 years and apparently didn't realize it has an official name ! ;)

As this "name" for what I just call learning the way we were supposed to learn was intriguing, I decided to ask if other people were familiar with it.

It doesn't change anything for me, I'll still be continuously listening to podcasts, the news, TV shows and such, regardless of what the method is called.

See ya!

May 5, 2020
Hi Russ! It's the first time to hear about this method. Would you please tell us more?
May 5, 2020
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Language Skills
English, Spanish
Learning Language