Chatting with Carol Gaab

Title: Teach Your Students the Same Words, but Just in a Different Context


Subtitle: Teaching a student more vocabulary doesn’t actually help them learn a new language.



Louisa shares a quick, ten-minute audio clip of Carol Gaab, from Fluency Matters, discussing ways you can teach the same word 100-250 times without the student getting bored. The key here is to introduce the word in a different context each time so that the brain can naturally pick up the usefulness of the word!


Key Takeaways:

[:35] What are some of the challenges today’s teachers face?

[1:35] You can’t really, and consciously, practice a language. Carol explains further.

[2:40] Instead of providing more vocabulary, teachers first need to provide more exposure by mixing up the context of the same basic and simple words.

[3:30] How can you repeat the same word that many times?

[6:00] You can search for videos using your target word to teach the students the same word in different contexts.

[8:20] Carol won’t pick a video that’s more than 30 seconds for a beginner. Commercials tend to be perfect for this example.


Mentioned in This Episode:




“Practice is a conscious thing, and since language isn’t conscious, we can’t practice it.”


“It’s a trick of knowing how you could potentially repeat