A comprehensive guide to our language learning tool.
Learning languages can be a difficult undertaking for people. In fact, there was a 20% decrease in students at school taking language courses in 2020. Even if children do take these courses, many will give up after the age of 14 for classes with more tangible results.
There is a direct correlation between enthusiasm in the classroom and being able to see the fruits of your labour. But what if we could find a way to show you these results? In this blog, we will take a deep dive into our app feature Lilly’s Gold, and show how the pain is truly worth the gain.
The main reason students get off-track with their language progress is that they want to reach expert levels right away. It can be hard to find the right techniques to help you fast-track this seemingly never-ending process. This can be attributed to several factors, with the main reasons being:
Overstatements and promised shortcuts
Learning a language should never be fast-tracked. Accept that it’s going to take a long time and enjoy the process! Additionally, accept that you’re going to make lots of errors during this marathon as well.
Oversaturation of Apps that provide shallow service with hefty promises
(ie. learn one word a day – be fluent in a year!). They clutter up your bookmarks and don’t offer a well-rounded approach. They are often forgotten after a month of use and replaced by the next gimmick tool to appear in the app store.
Overestimating the results!
When a students’ expectations are high, it can feel discouraging to not feel progress. Especially when you’ve been following directions for months and can barely string a sentence together. This is the point when most people throw in the towel and stick to what they know. We want to help you avoid this.
Where Do You Start?
With all of this being said. There is a great majority of people who start learning a language and don’t stop until they know it inside and out. All of these people have one thing in common, they all had a free tool working tirelessly for them in the background.
This tool was piecing together the essential information while they ate, worked, and slept. In fact, you have it working for you right now, say hello to your Long Term Memory.
Long Term Memory
These memories can be recalled into our working memory whenever we need them. They are often involuntarily made through daily interactions – solidified when we go to sleep at night. This is a form of implicit activity.
Our brains take in short-term memory during the day, and these are siphoned off without us knowing what we will retain and what we will discard. But we can harness this relationship and have memories purposefully stored away. This is where memory exercises come in.
When memories are accessed, again and again, they become more solidified in our minds. The amount of times a memory is accessed by a person directly correlates with the strength it has. We can use this to our advantage in language learning.
By recalling information again and again until it is solidified in our memory. However, this must be organized in a way that we can be sure no rock has been left unturned.
Since long-term memory is strengthened through callback, it’s important to organize what you want to remember. Having something to record what you have learned is the only way to call it back later. This is why we designed Lilly’s Gold.
Lily’s Gold is partially framed on the workings of The Goldlist Method, developed by Professor David James. This method is as follows:
- Write 25 phrases down in your desired language, taking your time as you go so you can truly absorb the material.
- If needed, make a separate list for translations of the phrases.
- Repeat this method with different lists as many times you want, as long as they are on different days.
- Walk away, and revisit the list 2 weeks later. This is to ensure your long-term and short-term memory have fully distinguished themselves from each other.
- Take note of what you have remembered in that time. This could be up to 8 of the 25 words.
- Carry the remaining phrases you could not remember onto a new list and repeat the process until your long-term memory has absorbed all 25 of the phrases.
As you can see, this is a long-game approach to learning languages. Many people swear by this method for its effectiveness and accessibility. All you need is a notebook, determination, and time.
However, it should be noted that this method is only meant to be used as one of the many tools in your kit. For some learners, the low-tech aspects (pen and paper only) can be stifling and inconvenient. Not everyone wants to carry around a large notebook when our lives have become so digitally integrated.
This method also doesn’t incorporate more popular learning methods such as reading aloud. Which has been proven to increase our word recognition 17% more than silently reading.
This is where Lily’s Gold comes in. It’s an in-house app we developed, drawing inspiration from a variety of popular methods in language learning. It incorporates the repetition of the Goldlist Method, along with reading aloud exercises, revision, and optional bonus exercises so you can be flexible depending on the day.
All you have to do is choose your preferred subject matter and you’ll be taken on a 20-minute quiz of common phrases. Some of which will be recalled later in future sessions. Below, we will walk you through the benefits of each feature and why this in-app feature will, with regular use, aid you in your language learning journey.
Lily’s Gold Features
You have the choice between choosing your own phrases or allowing Lilly to surprise you with a selection of her own! This gives you a wide range of choices to make sure no rock is left unturned. You can also manage your preferences by choosing the genre of phrases, whether it be common expressions or something more specific. Once you have selected your preferred phrases, Lilly will begin her lesson with you:
As you settle into your learning module, Lilly will start off simply and ask you to spell the words first. While this may seem like an easy task, studies have shown that spelling things correctly increases learner autonomy. It gives the learner a small, tangible victory to begin with. Starting with small successes such as these are encouraging to new learners and builds confidence with the reading material. Simply spell it out in a mindful, present way. Take note of every letter as you go.
Pronunciation is a cornerstone of language learning. A student cannot hope to retain the information without first putting it in its proper context. Language is there to be spoken, and learning how to enunciate the words in front of you is essential.
Vocalising has also been shown to increase your retention of the material, which will directly aid your long-term memory. Lillypad encourages you to speak not only in this module, but across the board throughout the app. You can read works from your favourite authors, or have them read to you if you are unsure. Whatever your preference, the app will provide a safe and fun environment to speak, learn, and practice.
Now the building blocks are in place, Lilly will ask you to translate! For first-time users, there’s the nifty translate button attached so you don’t need to leave the page. This translator will accompany you along the way if you need any help decoding a difficult phrase.
Translating is the most important part of this exercise because it forces you to confront the things you don’t know. It’s the best way to accurately mark your progress. But don’t worry if you get things wrong! Chances are you will find most of these phrases foreign until the summary exercise tests you later down the line.
This is where Lily’s Gold tests your long-term memory. The phrase recall portion of this gadget invites you to recall phrases you’ve seen before in previous sessions and asks you to give it your best shot. Again, no worries if you can’t remember them all. This is all part of the learning process! Congratulations in advance if you manage to remember a few phrases. You’re doing a great job already.
If you want to take your phrase recall to the next level. You can continue on and re-learn the forgotten phrases with this function. This will help you retain the ones that fell through the net and hopefully aid your long-term memory in future sessions. As previously stated, pronunciation is a vital part of the learning process. You have a much higher chance of remembering material that you say out loud compared to the material you type out.
If you still feel the desire to learn, you can extend your time even further by learning bonus phrases! Lilly’s Gold is flexible and allows you to spend anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour depending on the student. Just remember: you get out of it what you put in!
Have Fun Learning with Lilly!
Once you’ve completed your adventures with Lilly’s Gold, you can explore other learning features of LillyPad with additional spelling, vocabulary, and pronunciation lessons! There are a variety of exercises included in this app to aid you with your language learning.
If you would like to see some of your personal content read aloud, you can upload your own files and have Lilly read them back to you. You also have an extensive library full of stories, blogs, articles, and educational material. There are plenty of options with LillyPad – making it a tool worthy of your bookmark bar!
Lilly’s Gold – Authoring Your Success:
We put the power of the pen in our member’s hands! Based on the famed Goldlist method, Lilly’s Gold is powerful, innovative, and it’s personal! Lilly empowers members to design, write, speak, practice, and retain the phrases or words they want to use in their daily life. Lilly’s Gold incorporates spaced repetition, deliberate practice, and bi-directional translation training.
For people with purpose, passion, and perseverance.
Do you want to improve your English? Visit www.lillypad.ai.
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Note: iOS is currently unavailable.