making mistakes is bad or good?

A comment on Steve's blog says:

The essence of learning is making mistakes, that's HOW you learn to do it right!

I have to say, I don't agree with this. We learn to do it right by doing it right, not by doing it wrong. When you do something wrong, it means you haven't learned how to do it right yet.

Is it impossible for someone to do something right without doing it wrong first? No, I don't

no English, none of the time, never!

Have you heard of "No English, None of the Time, Never!" before? Maybe we can shorten it to NENTN! I think I don't even have to explain what this means. 99% of readers probably understand what it's all about. For that one percent who are totally clueless, here's an explanation:

You're trying to learn a foreign language, right? Presumably, it's not English. All of my readers have already learned

reading like a native

I know many people have the notion that you'll never be as good as a native speaker in a foreign language. A few of us have the audacity to aspire to native-equivalent performance in our second languages and even fewer strive for native-sounding pronunciation. Even if we are delusional, I think for those that really want to be extremely good in another language, there is no reason that we can't

example sentences

One feature of modern dictionaries is the "example sentence." If you go to, you can find example sentences with the definition of a word. For example, here's an example sentence from the entry for "hamburger."

That's a sad fact for hamburger lovers, but it's true.

Unfortunately, all of the example sentences for hamburger, and most other entries, are useless. My guess is, though,