7 year old speaks 5 languages

Meet my friend Yukine.
She’s 7 years old and speaks 5 languages: English, Spanish, Japanese, German and Sign Language. When I visited the Canary Islands recently, we sat down for a chat, and I asked her about her languages and what she likes about each of them. Now, it’s a common myth that children are much better language learners than adults.
Unfortunately, this is a myth that’s perpetuated wherever you go, and is often used by adults to justify not trying so hard themselves…
When you watch this video, you may find yourself feeling the same thing.
But I want you to look a bit deeper into exactly how Yukine has managed to learn these languages because there’s a very important lesson in there.

How a child can learn 5 languages

  • Here are the facts:
  • She lives in Spain
  • She speaks Spanish and Japanese at home with her parents
  • She attends an English medium international school
  • The school has a language focus to it, and runs a number of German classes as part of the curriculum
  • She also takes regular extra-curricular sign language classes at the school, and has done for a while

Also:

  • She visits Japan for 2-3 months every summer and attends Japanese summer schools whilst she’s there
  • Her uncle and cousin, who she sees regularly, are native English speakers

So, has she just “picked up” all these languages?
Absolutely not.
Children vs. adults
Whether she knows it or not, Yukine has accumulated 1,000s of hours doing the exact things that result in successful language learning.
It’s no accident.

  • For years now, she’s been spending the majority of her waking hours learning or speaking
  • one of her 5 languages.
  • She uses 3 languages regularly with the people she loves.
  • She takes regular classes in the other 2 (and will be for years to come).
  • The people around her understand the importance of learning languages, and are incredibly encouraging and supportive.

As regular readers of the blog will know, these are exactly the same success factors that I spend my time encouraging people (i.e. adults) to go after…

  • Spend time on your languages every day…and keep it up for years
  • Speak regularly with people you like
  • Be clear why you’re learning, and stay motivated by surrounding yourself by the right people

It really is no different whether you’re 7 or 70! 🙂

Of course, the big advantages that kids have, are plenty of time on their side, and an unquestioning attitude, that means they’ll just do anything.

Adults tend to be busy, and will often sabotage their progress by demanding “progress now!”, getting frustrated, and moving on to the next new thing.

So, think about how Yukine has learnt her languages.

Then, compare it to the last 6-12 months of your own language learning.

On Wonder Woman And Choosing To Be Chosen

There are a lot of opinions floating around the internet about Wonder Woman.

The movie has dominated the headlines since before its release. It has been discussed and dissected, lauded for its position as a superhero movie, as a war movie, as a feminist movie.

Wonder Woman is all of these things, but it also has a very interesting position within another long-standing movie trope: It is a Chosen One movie — but one with a very interesting take on the story.

Diana chooses herself.

Chosen One narratives have been around probably since time began. If there’s a prophecy to be fulfilled, there is a Chosen One to do it. If there’s an adventure to be adventure, there’s probably a super special character just waiting to take up the cause. King Arthur is a Chosen One. Hell, you could probably argue that Gilgamesh fits the bill as well. Chosen Ones are a longstanding tradition in fiction, but there has been a particular increase in the kind of storytelling in the last few decades, especially in young adult fiction. Think about Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Katniss Everdeen, Tris Prior, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Neo from The Matrix, Emmet from The LEGO Movie. All of these characters fall into one category of Chosen One or another.

And now we have Wonder Woman.

Most of these stories follow a few major plot points. A character is thrust into a new situation — magical school, Hunger Games, pulled from the Matrix — and is then told by others around them that they are somehow special, that they are the only ones who can defeat the Big Bad. In many of those stories with male chosen ones, there is a female character who is more qualified than the “chosen one” who has been waiting for that character to show up and save the day.

One of the most common elements of these stories, though, is the uncertainty and self-doubt that these characters feel. Neo doesn’t accept that he is The One until the end of the movie. It takes Katniss nearly all three books (and four movies) to start to accept her position as the inspiration for a political movement. Harry Potter spends nearly all seven books complaining about his lot in life. Buffy just wants to be a normal teenage girl.

Then you introduce Diana and things get flipped on their head.

Diana is a Chosen One. She is a special member of a group of people who, for reasons that have nothing to do with her and everything to do with the circumstances surrounding her birth, is the only one who can defeat the ultimate evil, Ares. She is the Godkiller, the daughter of Zeus and Hippolyta, created with the express purpose of destroying the God of War once and for all.

The thing is, Diana doesn’t know this. Her mother and fellow Amazons refuse to tell her of her true origins or her destiny for fear it will send her running into danger for which she is ill-prepared. Of course, this doesn’t stop her from realizing her destiny on her own. Diana has grown up training with the Amazons, hearing their stories, living their beliefs about their sacred duty to protect the world from Ares and to intervene in times of war. Even though Diana is the only member of her people who doesn’t seem to know her true destiny, she is also, somehow, the only one willing to take that destiny on. She chooses for herself, long before she ever knows that she never had a choice.

Diana is a new kind of Chosen One, one who takes on the burden of her destiny without being asked. Unlike her predecessors of this genre, that destiny, that sense of purpose, does not weigh heavily on her soul. Rather, it gives her the courage and conviction to stare down those who would tell her what she wants is impossible. It is the reason she is able to walk across No Man’s Land and inspire an army to free an oppressed and broken people. It is what further inspires Steve to make his own sacrifice to save the day. And ultimately, it is her own belief that she can and will fulfill the sacred duty of her people that allows her to accept her secret fate as a demigod and to defeat, not only Ares the man, but the seeds of doubt he places within that conviction.

Unlike those who came before her, Diana chooses herself, first. Fate’s only role is to confirm what she has known all along.

How To Become An Expert In Your Field

“How do I become an expert in my field?” I get this question a lot from coaches, consultants and experts who want to create and launch a profitable online course, coaching program or online product. There are two simple things you can easily do to become an expert in your field: be a source of information and share abundantly.

1. How to Become an Expert in Your Field: Read

Self-development expert Brian Tracy tells us that, “If you read only one book per month, that will put you into the top 1 percent of income earners in our society.” Now, imagine if you read one book a week what will happen.

If you read one hour a day in your chosen field that translates into 1 book a week. One book per week translates into roughly 50 books a year. Do that for 5 years and you have read 250 books in your field. You will quickly become an expert in your field.

I have read at least one book a week for close to 20 years in the fields that interest me: marketing, sales, human performance, the brain and how we learn. (Confession: I have a strange obsession with detoxing and nutrition.) Thousand+ books are everywhere in my office and home.

There is so much great information out there and the people who do the work of sifting through it will be seen as the experts. Be the expert who brings information together, makes it simple to grasp and you will be in the top 1% of experts in your field. Dedicate 30 minutes a day to reading and you will have more information to offer than 99% of the experts out there. Imagine the depth you can bring to coaching the people who experience the online courses and programs you create and launch.

What’s the biggest question your ideal clients are searching to answer? Get online and search for books that relate to answering that question. Be the source of information for your audience.

2. How to Become an Expert in Your Field: Share

There has never been a better time to share your expertise. Online discussion forums, DIY marketing tools and paid social media ads make it incredibly easy to find and serve your ideal clients. Here’s the thing: you have to show up and give before you show up and ask.

Build trust in your expertise by sharing what you know. As you create and launch an online course, get focused on contributing content in that channel. The key is to focus on answering the questions your ideal clients are asking. Dedicate 15 minutes a day to commenting in online discussion groups, creating tools that solve problems and sharing what you know.

In 60 minutes a day, you can quickly become recognized as a rock star in your field.

How to become an expert in our field? Take Action:

  1. Make a list of the types of questions your clients are looking to answer. Think about the questions that make them search for support (like tools, online courses or coaching).
  2. Search for books related to these topics. Buy one and read it. Repeat.
  3. Find and join online discussion groups related to your area of expertise. Tip: Type in your area of expertise plus “online discussion forum” into search engines and see the top online discussion forums in your field. Contribute as an expert in your field.

Giant Dabs of Thick Oil Paint Captured as Hyperrealist Colored Pencil Drawings

Australian artist Cj Hendry (previously) tricks the eye with her hyper-realistic drawings, works that recreate the appearance of thick swabs of brightly colored paint. To achieve the dimensionality and sheen of fresh oil paint she layers dry pigment atop colored pencil, accurately portraying the liquid medium’s viscosity.

The series, Complimentary Colors, is far different than the artist’s previous style, which for several years had been exclusively black and white. You can view pieces from her past and present, as well as a series of billboard-sized works, on the artist’s Instagram. (via My Modern Met)