Forum Learning Before Bed

Learning Before Bed

haneybd87

How long do you give yourself before bed to stop learning your language and unwind? I find that if I do any learning of Japanese within a few hours of bedtime my sleep is restless with words (spoken, hiragana, katakana & kanji) going through my head in a fever dream like state. That doesn't give me much of a window between getting home from work and bedtime. Does this restlessness subside after a while? I've been learning Japanese for 2 weeks now. 

BengalCatLady

It's different for everybody but I find that the worst time to study.  I find the best time (for me) is before work when I've just woken up and my brain is "freshest" - unfortunately this is very dependant on me being up early enough, so I will sometimes dedicate that to just new learning or the really hard stuff (new writing) and then later on in the day on revisiting phrases I've seen before but may not have remembered perfectly (particularly how to write them).

drewster

I have half an hour on the train each way to and from work so that's when I do most of my study, but of course I can't speak then so I tend to do half an hour to an hour in the evening too. I actually always flip through some flashcards before I go to bed too.

Dan-H24

My best time for my "formal" Rocket Spanish study is the very first thing in the morning, before I get going with other things. Later in the morning I review my Anki flashcards, in the afternoons I try to watch a video on Yabla, and whenever I am driving I listen to CNN en Español. 

I sleep very lightly and wake up often in the night, so studying in the evenings would be a bad thing for me to do. As it is, lately when I wake up in the night I am often thinking in Spanish, which I take as a positive sign.

haneybd87

I can say that morning is definitely a no go for me. My brain doesn't work until I've been awake for a few hours. 

KelllaurBailar

Hi @haneybd87, I recommend that you stop thinking about your language about 4-5 hours before bed. I was speaking random Spanish nearly all day through dinnertime and I woke up countless times throughout the night conjugating verbs I didn't even know I would remember (and correctly, at that). Makes language learning literally a nightmare. 

haneybd87

Well I'm glad to hear someone else has this problem and I'm not just crazy.

drewster

It sounds like for all of us, study before bed makes us dream in our respective second languages, but we differ on whether that's a good thing or a bad thing! :)

haneybd87

I guess my problem with dreaming in my second language is that it doesn't feel like restful sleep and I feel extra tired the next day. I'm guessing that's not the case for you?

Dan-H24

Hmmm...maybe counting sheep in your target language is the answer.

un oveja...dos ovejas...tres ovejas...

drewster

@haneybd87 - not that I'm aware. For the most part I find that this stuff relaxes me so I view it as a way to wind down after work. 

Meages

I actually have counted sheep in my target language....but it didn't help with falling to sleep.  It did help with my new language though!

Nick Hoyt

I think it's a pretty normal thing when you are just starting out on learning a new language. It happened to me too at first, but not so much anymore.

I read a study once that said when you learn a new language, you literally grow more Gray Matter in your brain. Your restless sleep and crazy dreams are probably just some normal growing pains that will eventually go away. Hang in there! (^_^)b

haneybd87

Well that seems like a pretty good reason to learn a new language. Learning Japanese must really maximize that gray matter growth! Haha

drewster

I like the sound of that. I like to think that it expands your learning capacity.

cyboteur

I find that first thing in the morning works best for me, but I do sometimes study Japanese late at night, even in bed right before turning off the light.  When I do that, though, I prefer to review rather than tackle new material.

BengalCatLady

Definitely need all the extra gray matter I can get but may need to rethink my early morning learning as the neighbours are grumbling about Japanese at  5am....

Not wanting to take this off topic, but Cyboteur - what a gorgeous cat!  Lovely  eyes.

 

Diana-S1

Here's another thought:  To study our new language near bedtime from books may be okay, but to use the Rocket Languages website may not be healthy.  Using our computer, or tablet, just before going to bed, floods our eyes with bright light and may be a hindrance to being able to go to sleep.  Thus, to get in a little of the language, we would be better off doing passive study such as listening to the radio or listening to a favourite movie -- one we know so well that we can fill in the pictures without looking at the computer.

drewster

I've often read that, but it really has no effect on me and I do it every day. I sleep really well and the study relaxes me. And I've never found any book which is as good for learning as Rocket. :)

 

haneybd87

The light before bed is specifically referring to blue light, that's why I use the night shift feature on my iPad and iPhone. Also I think that research is just preliminary and not definitive. 

BengalCatLady

It's 10.45pm and I'm on Rocket languages and drinking diet coke.  I'm pretty certain no study would find that healthy but a)  It's been a tough day  and b)  I don't care right now :-p

KelllaurBailar

I've heard about the blue light concept before. It used to bother me a lot, but now I can go to sleep and stay that way fairly deeply even if I'm up late at night with that same exposure. However, I'm sure it affects the quality if not the duration--so, my suggestion is write down the hardest words and phrases on flashcards during the day and use them for night study. No blue light, even if the study results eventually prove false. Get the beauty sleep and protect those eyeballs! haha
Laura

haneybd87

If you're using an iPhone or iPad all you need to do is enable the night shift feature which filters out the blue spectrum of the light your screen gives off. I have mine set to automatically come on from sunset to sunrise. 

SoozieBlue

i listen to the conversations on my iPod if i am having trouble sleeping , finding I'm repeating random words during the day!! too funny BUT subliminal learning along with the course seems to help....other when the music kicks in before each lesson !!

Rodney-J

I listen to the downloads to and from work which is 1.5 hours, get to work a little early and do my self recording and then again during lunch. Another 1.5 hours. Then usually another 1.5 hours right before bed and haven't had trouble getting good sleep... But then again I'm only in my second week.

ClaudiaR13

BengalCatLady, I'm doing the same thing except that it is 1:30 AM.  I find that studying right before I go to sleep helps me learn it better.  I KNOW it when I wake up.  Also I am dreaming in Japanese sometimes, which is supposed to be a good sign of learning.

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