Meet Miss Mason and François(4)


Why Miss Mason and François Gouin?


If you use Gouin series, do you need to know Miss Mason? If you use Gouin series without Miss Mason’s methods and motives, your practice may look very different. For instance, you might try to study French for hours. Miss Mason taught that you can focus best in short lessons: 20 minutes for younger students and 40 minutes for older ones. Modern scientists who study the brain using CAT scans say she was right. In fact, we now know that even in a 40 minute class, you remember more if there are two 20 minute activities. Studying something for hours does not mean that you learn more.


Without knowing Miss Mason you might assume you should memorize lists of Gouin series. But Miss Mason said not all series are living series to all students, so you won’t remember every series you study; and you don’t have to stick with a series until you know it. Instead, focus on what you know; you may forget a few series, but you will remember many others.


Finally, Miss Mason wanted you and your family to learn languages so that you could be ambassadors for your country. That doesn’t mean you have to travel. I can speak French with my French neighbors in the U.S. or with Swiss in Switzerland—but in both cases I represent my nation in their eyes.  She wanted us to discuss good literature, poetry, politics, current events, and even matters of faith—to do much more than pay for a taxi or check into a hotel room.  She wanted each of us to use our language ability to connect with others—to serve them and our countries.  Miss Mason had great confidence in our ability to learn. If you are studying more than one language at school or at home, you should know that Miss Mason thought it was possible to do so. She often said that we need a feast for the mind; I hope the Gouin series in our language volumes provide part of that feast.



Allyson D. Adrian, PhD

AKA “Dr. A”

(Die deutsche Übersetzung ist demnächst hier  verfügbar)


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