I had a couple of days last week where it felt as if my brain was rebelling against learning Thai. I expected there to be times like this, so I too wasn’t alarmed. I just gave my mind a bit of a rest by focusing more on revising rather than trying to cram more stuff in there. This approach worked and whatever was clogging up the system is now gone.
I keep making alternations to my study schedule in response to my progress. I devote a huge chunk of my time on the Glossika material, but I think this is time well spent. It feels like the right thing to be doing, and I continue to enjoy this course. Last week I was learning 30 new sentences per day, but I’ve cut this back down to 25. I’m now half-way through book 1 of the Glossika Thai fluency course.
10,000 Sentences for Thai Fluency
I heard about the 10,000 sentences approach a few years ago on the A Woman Learning Thai website. I no longer believe that just reading alone is enough to guarantee fluency, but I believe reading out loud can be – so long as I’m using proper pronunciation. By the time I’ve complete the Glossika course, I will have learned 3,000 sentences – and I’m also collecting more sentences to bring this up to 10,000.
My favorite place for mining useful Thai sentences is the Pantip Web Forum – I particularly like the ‘ปัญหาชีวิต’ (life problems) section. I think these posts are the nearest thing we can get to spoken Thai in the written form, and the content is stimulating enough to keep me fascinated (e.g. คุณ รีด กางเกงใน กัน ไหม ครับ ‘should I iron my underpants?). I’m collecting and sentences that interest me, and I add them to a spreadsheet. I then practice reading these sentences out loud – this is in addition to the Glossika material.
Falling Asleep to the Sweet Sound of Thai
I watch Thai TV or movies on my iPad in bed already, but I’ve decided to make more of this period just before sleep. I got the idea from Catherine over A Woman Learning Thai, she has been listening to the Glossika c-files last thing at night. Apparently providing the brain with this material just before going to sleep gives it something to digest for the rest of the night – it makes sense to me.
I’ve taken Catherine’s idea one step further by combining it with a technique I use to encourage lucid dreaming. It basically means putting the body asleep while staying alert through a process of targeted muscle relaxation. My hope is the change in consciousness associated with this state will make it easier for me to absorb some additional Thai – that’s the theory anyway. I’ve been doing this for about five days so far, and it does definitely feel as if the Thai words come easier to my tongue when I wake up – this morning my first thoughts were in Thai, so I take this as a good sign.
Other posts in this series on learning Thai
Week 0- My Quest to Speak Fluent Thai in Six Months
Week 1 -Creating the Right Mental Conditions for Learning Thai
Week 2- Maybe Just Getting Out There and Speaking Thai is Not Enough
Week 3 – 5 Improvements in My Approach to Learning Thai
Week 4 – Generating Enough Passion to Learn Thai
Week 5 – Undoing the Damage from Speaking Thai Badly for Thirteen Years
Week 6 – Early Impressions of Glossika Thai Fluency Course
Week 7 – Introverts Can Learn Thai Too
Week 8 – Winning Strategy for Achieving Fluency in Thai
Week 10 – Problems with Staying Focused Prevent Me from Learning Thai