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Focusing on input: Reading

It is said that some people are visual learners and some people learn better by hearing. But all learners can benefit from doing both. Reading a lot is essential to achieving fluency in a new language.

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To read a lot you must make it enjoyable by finding material to read that is interesting. 

There’s a multitude of websites that opens up a limitless source of interesting reading material, consisting of very unique content and a diverse range of articles, e-books and other material, and which the Internet makes accessible to the learner. You simply need to look for it.

At first though, you need to read to understand what you are listening to and to reinforce your learning. As you progress in your learning, you will read to gain new vocabulary and to learn about the culture and other subjects in your new language. 

Get in the habit of reading new content wherever you are. It’s a good idea to have access to software dictionaries and create a database for words and phrases. This will make it easier to read and understand unfamiliar material and ensure your reading contributes to your vocabulary growth.

Reading should be a growing part of your learning activities. As your vocabulary and confidence increase you will actually start to enjoy reading conventional print versions of books and periodicals in the new language. 

When reading away from the computer or your phone, you should ignore the few words you don’t know and just enjoy yourself. Many language learners find it a struggle to read in a foreign language when there are so many words they don’t understand. 

It’s easier to persevere when you are interested enough in the content. Gradually your ability to read in a number of languages will improve. You’ll be able to read your target languages for information and enjoyment rather than as a learning task. 

Whether you are a native speaker or a non-native speaker, reading widely will enhance your ability to express yourself clearly and eloquently.

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