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What Nina Sankovich Can Teach You about Reading Portuguese?

woman reading Portuguese books


You know how it goes.

You’ve set about reading Portuguese. You already have the books, you set some time aside, and now all you have to do is sit down and read.

And yet, you never get around to doing that.

Days go by. That pile of books sits on the coffee table, then it slowly moves closer and closer to the garage, and someday it will find shelter there.

Good Reasons to Procrastinate

You may be putting off reading for different reasons.

A new baby in the house… Sparky the dog needs care… You need to take advantage of every little block of time to see friends online during the pandemic…

We all have good reasons. But there comes a time when we have to get around to doing what we decided to do.

Take Nina Sankovich for example.

It started with her involvement with the PTA meetings.

Then, she became the football team and the robotics team coach.

Then she enrolled in several courses—arts, Pilates, parenting…

And as if that weren’t enough, she started a theater group of children in the basement of her house.

And, she put up a website to sell books.

She also got involved in gardening and—whenever she had some time—she would write a couple of pages for her book (as of now, she has published 4 books).

Her life was so busy and hectic—it felt like Sankovich was running away from something.

And yes, she was.

She lost her sister to cancer. And for three years she tried to live both her life and her sister’s. But even with so much going on, nothing really made sense.

And then, one day, she decided to drop everything and devote herself to a project that she had nurtured for a long, long time.

Reading a Book a Day

At first, attaining her goal was quite complicated.

There were too many distractions, but since she grew up in a house of readers, she already had the reading habit.

And reading she did — for a whole year.

Thus was the way she found to cope with depression and sadness. Of course, we all know that’s not the cure. She certainly underwent treatment, and that’s what you should do if you’re feeling down. And not everybody reads to escape from life.

But anyway, back to the subject at hand.

We can learn something from her that can be applied to reading Portuguese.

  • Commitment: you have to commit to attaining your goal. In her case, she had great motivation to keep on reading. It had been her goal for a long time.
  • Strategy: in order for her to read a book a day, Nina Sankovich needed to define exactly what kind of books she would like to read. It couldn’t be too long. And she steered clear from subjects like horror.
  • Involvement: whenever she finished reading a book, she would write a review about the story and posted on her blog.

Okay, but How Does That Apply to Reading Portuguese?

Quite simple.

You want to find a book that is good for your level. It shouldn’t be too hard. Neither should it be too easy.

You want to set aside a specific time of the day to read—every single day.

Of course, sometimes it’s not possible (especially nowadays with many people working remotely). If you cannot commit to a specific time, decide on a specific amount of time you going to read every day.

I have students who read two pages every day no matter what. Others believe that thirty minutes a day is more than enough.

Every one of them who commits to reading every day reaches their goal.

And talk about your book with friends.

You don’t need to go so far as to write a review—though that would be a fantastic way to improve your Portuguese—but speaking about it and retelling what you’ve read will work miracles to improve your Portuguese.

So, do you have any other tips to improve your Portuguese? And if you want to know more about her story, you can check out the book she wrote after that one-year journey.

read brazilian portuguese logo

At last, you can have fun and improve your Portuguese—without feeling it is a hurdle. Find out how it can change the course of your study for the better.


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