Exercise 4. Let us try some practice for our minds. Exercises in this grammar are primarily thought practice.
A. First, let us think how long we could stay without thinking. We may happen to hear or even say that someone is not thinking. This is yet only a saying, something nobody can mean literally. In reality, a live human being cannot “stop” his or her mind even for a minute.
B. Let us fix our visual focus on a single thing — a teacup, a pencil, or an apple as in the image above? Let us try to think about our object only and not anything else. We can use a wristwatch to see how long we cope.
C. Let us close our eyes and try not to think absolutely anything. The watch will tell us if we can really make it.
D. Let us think if there is language in our thought, what language it is (as English, German, French, or another), and how we think. Do we think in entire words? Could our thoughts be only pictures?
E. Let us go back to exercises 1-3. We try to “see” and “say” our answers in our thoughts strictly, and then we whisper or say them. We can try writing the answers on a spare piece of paper, at the very same time as we whisper or speak.
In the beginning, we might feel it is really an effort to “discipline” ourselves and consciously direct own thinking. It is essential that we try. “Saying” or “writing” in our thoughts before actual spoken or written activity can make our language habits stronger and more flexible too.
The practice may resemble children learning first tongues, especially if we whisper or speak, and write at the same time. Importantly, we do not have to stay doing this forever. It is only to exercise, to make an association in own mind, for the language we are learning.
We people naturally have inner language. For example, silent reading is faster than reading aloud. This is the inner language to facilitate the process. It is not entire words or even speech sounds. It uses only trace aspects of written or spoken language.
Inner language is the highly advanced way that our human brains and minds correlate language knowledge and skills. We do not know a language really, if it does not belong with our inner capacities. Human natural aptness for language affords to exercise and consciously accept a new language into inner intellectual competence.
Exercises in this grammar course are for minds. Practiced, we should become able to speak and write without excess attention to language form.
Feel welcome to further grammar journey,
Chapter 2, the verb form WILL.