Hello & happy Friday!
I have included my copies of the Madrid article I posted Tuesday, with my own notes and study strategies. If I am doing more than skimming an article, I prefer to print out a copy to write all of my notes on top of the original text. Here’s what I do to dissect a news article:
- On the first read-through, highlight or underline any words that are unfamiliar to you. Even if you’ve seen the word before but can’t remember the precise definition, mark it anyway. Worst case scenario: You’ve just solidified that vocab word into your memory.
- Skim the article once more while researching your unknown words — that way you have a better understanding of the context, since different definitions may have their own word altogether. If it’s not too time-consuming, I like to also include the other vocabulary for contexts that don’t specifically apply to the article. Mainly to have the full weight of a given word in the back of my mind, but that’s a personal choice. Watch out for idioms and other tricky phrases that can’t be translated word-for-word!
- The next time through, identify all the verbs and tenses you know. Keep an eye out for compound tenses, since the past/present participles resemble and are often used as adjectives. It may help to have a cheat sheet of verb tense endings at first.
- Read through the article once more, taking in the new vocab and using the identified verb tenses to give the article better context.
If you think it would benefit you to identify more in the article [prepositions, gender/number of nouns, and transition words are helpful too!], go for it! The more time you spend dissecting an article, the more time you are spending working with your target language. This exercise is incredibly flexible, so tweak it to fit your own learning style. Studying a foreign language is a daily struggle, but it doesn’t have to be tedious!
As always, comment below or send an email with any questions! See my previous post, My tips & tricks, for resources for news articles in your target language! ¡Hasta martes!