Here are two sample activities that demonstrate how I integrated my mentor’s feedback into my language learning:
1. Speaking and Listening:
I would select a written passage or a dialogue based on my language goals, such as the story “Bàbá Gàniyùú rí ilu Mákà.” I would make sure that the script incorporated new vocabulary and expressions that I wanted to deeply learn. While recording myself reading the script aloud, I also asked my mentor to record the script. After receiving feedback from my mentor, I compared the two recordings and took notes on the specific areas that needed improvement. I also sought clarification about specific phrases that confused me. The feedback I received from my mentor was applied to refine my pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary usage.
2. Reading and Writing:
I would select a written passage that aligned with my language goals, such as “Àyàa rẹ̀ẹ́ já” in Yoruba Wuyi. I read the passage, focused on comprehension, and wrote a summary of the content. Then, I sent my summary to my mentor for feedback. Sometimes the textbooks I used contained dated or less commonly used phrases. My mentor would point these out and offer better expressions. For instance, she highlighted that “fò” (to fly) is usually used to refer to an unusual or spiritual type of “flying”. She provided examples like “Aje n fo loru.” So it’s not customary to say “Ọkọ̀ ofurufu n fò.” I incorporated the feedback from my mentor to revise and enhance my summary, as well as deepening my understanding of Yoruba culture. At times, I also compared my revised summary with the original passage to track my progress and improvements.