Maintenance v reactivation
How can you possibly maintain fluency in two foreign languages — let alone five or six — if the opportunities to use them are months or years apart?
He then explains how he reactivated his German before visiting Germany recently by watching German films, reading German manga and a German phrasebook, and also using flashcards. He reckons that once you reach an intermediate to advanced level in a language, trying to maintain it at that level could be a real struggle of you don’t have regular opportunities to use it and you may also develop bad habits. Instead he recommends that you spend 1-3 weeks reactivating and reviving your knowledge of the language before you need to use it.
What do you think? Is it better to keep a language ticking over, or to brush it up only when you really need it?
I’m trying to maintain and improve the languages I’m focusing on at the moment (Czech, Welsh, Irish and Scottish Gaelic), while practising my other languages when I get a chance to keep when ticking over.