Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Continue or start your personal language log here, including logs for challenge participants
User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Thu Dec 02, 2021 4:52 am

It's December, which means in a few days I'll start my Spanish speaking challenge! I've decided that I'm going to put French on hold this month so I can focus on Spanish, Italian, and my other hobby: writing.

I haven't been feeling very satisfied with my progress in Italian. I have a feeling that the key is to pause both Spanish and French for a bit, but I'm really looking forward to my Spanish challenge this month. Maybe I'll focus solely on Italian starting in January.
7 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Sun Dec 05, 2021 10:47 pm

Today was the first day of my Spanish speaking challenge! I did a 1-hour lesson on Baselang. Since it was my first time using Baselang, the teacher spent the first half hour setting up my learner profile. First she asked me questions about my learning style and why I want to learn Spanish. Then she asked me to choose my current level from a list of options. The one I picked was something like, “I know a lot of grammar, but I need to improve my speaking skills.”

Based on my answer, the teacher showed me some slides with grammatical questions and had me answer them. These included conjugating verbs in the preterit and conditional, knowing the difference between por and para, etc. Afterward she showed me a list of grammatical topics and asked me which ones I felt comfortable with. I said I would like to review the subjunctive, so she placed me in Level 5 out of 9. I wish I hadn’t said that because I already know how to conjugate verbs in the subjunctive and when to use it; I just struggle with it sometimes when I speak.

For the second half of the lesson, the teacher asked if I would like to try Baselang’s curriculum or do something else. I was curious about the curriculum so I opted to try one of the lessons. She pulled up a presentation which had sentences for different vocabulary words. For example there was a slide for “la inyección”. I read each of the sentences aloud and then we discussed the topic a little bit. I didn’t think the sentences were very useful, but I liked the conversations they prompted.

Overall I'm not sure how I feel about Baselang. I scheduled another lesson for tomorrow, and I'd like to have a regular conversation instead of following one of their lessons.
8 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Mon Dec 06, 2021 3:40 pm

02Dec21-05Dec21

Spanish
04Dec21: I listened to Radio Ambulante for 15 minutes. The episode was about a woman's experience with synesthesia and it was really interesting. I was disappointed that I couldn't finish it, but the train was too noisy. Later I practiced speaking by myself for a few minutes.

05Dec21: I began my Spanish speaking challenge with an hour-long lesson, as I described in my post above. Afterward, I practiced speaking by myself and wrote a little bit about my day.

French
02Dec21: Even though I decided to take a break from French during December, I saw an episode of French Expat Le Podcast that looked interesting, so I listened to it for 20 minutes.

03Dec21: I continued listening to the episode of French Expat.

Italian
03Dec21: I did Assimil Lesson 18.

04Dec21: I listened to Con parole nostre and read Chapter 1 of L'italiano secondo il metodo natura. Compared to French, I'm finding Italian a lot easier to read as a beginner. With French I was always worried that my pronunciation was wrong, whereas Italian pronunciation seems much more straightforward.
5 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Wed Dec 08, 2021 5:08 am

06Dec21-07Dec21

Spanish
06Dec21: I did another one-hour lesson on Baselang. This was with a new teacher, and I told him that I'd like to focus on conversation, so he spent the lesson asking me questions about my job and my life in general. He did a really good job at keeping me talking, but it felt like more of an interview than a real conversation. I'd like to find a teacher who I really click with.

As with yesterday's lesson, I was able to speak in Spanish for the entire time, but there were a few words that I had to ask how to say, like "insurance company", "internship", etc. I tried to write all of them down so I can memorize them later. I also mixed up some prepositions which was frustrating. I really hope these mistakes go away as I practice speaking more. It's good that I'm aware of them, at least?

Later, I listened to an episode of Radio Ambulante and wrote in my journal. I ended up writing for 45 minutes because I was writing by hand and kept stopping to look up words.

07Dec21: I had a busy day, so I didn't schedule a Baselang lesson. However, I ended up spending a lot of time on Spanish anyway: first I spent 30 minutes writing about yesterday's episode of Radio Ambulante, and then I started listening to another episode. I also wanted to work on my pronunciation and review verb conjugations, so I did Pimsleur Spanish III, Lesson 3 and some conjugation drills on Linguno. Finally, I read a little bit more of Cien años de soledad.

Italian
06Dec21: I did Assimil Lesson 19 and reviewed Lessons 1-3. Next, I read Chapter 2 of L'italiano secondo il metodo natura. At the end of the chapter, I did all of the exercises, answering them out loud.
6 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Fri Dec 10, 2021 5:59 am

08Dec21-09Dec21

Spanish
08Dec21: I read three articles from El País and wrote down all of the words I didn’t know. Later, I started to feel sick from my COVID booster shot, so I didn't do a Baselang lesson.

09Dec21: I still felt pretty sick, so no Baselang. Instead I made a bunch of Anki flashcards from the list of words I'd been keeping on my phone. Some of the words were ones I encountered while reading, and others were words I looked up while speaking or writing.

I'm planning to resume my Baselang lessons tomorrow, and I spent some time thinking about how to make the next ones more enjoyable. I've only had two lessons so far, but I'm worried that the teachers aren't as prepared for conversation-based lessons because they're used to following the Baselang curriculum. So I need to take matters into my own hands. I made a list of topics that I'm interested in discussing, and then I booked two hour-long lessons for tomorrow (actually today, given that it's now past midnight...). One feature I like about Baselang's scheduling system is that you can write whether you'd like to have a conversation-based lesson or a grammar lesson, and there's a comments section where you can write any particular topics you'd like to cover. Also, when you select a teacher, you can see what their interests are. I made sure to pick out topics that aligned with each teacher's interests, and then I left a comment about what I'd like to discuss. I'll also try to think of some specific questions that I'd like to talk about.
5 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

User avatar
luke
Blue Belt
Posts: 682
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2015 9:09 pm
Languages: English (N). Spanish (intermediate), Esperanto (B1), French (intermediate but rusting)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=16948
x 1791

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby luke » Fri Dec 10, 2021 11:58 am

philomath wrote:Spanish
08Dec21: Later, I started to feel sick from my booster shot.

A mi hermana, la misma, y a su esposo también. Espero que pronto te sientas mejor.
1 x

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Fri Dec 10, 2021 4:32 pm

luke wrote:A mi hermana, la misma, y a su esposo también. Espero que pronto te sientas mejor.

¡Gracias! Hoy me siento mucho mejor.
1 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

Christi
Orange Belt
Posts: 241
Joined: Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:56 pm
Languages: Dutch (N), English (C1), German (B1), Korean (high A2-low B1?)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=7574
x 312

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby Christi » Wed Dec 15, 2021 12:06 am

So nice to find a fellow Baselang user!

I also use the classes for conversation only. I can learn grammar by myself and don't feel like going over slides during class time.
So usually we talk about how my day or week was or I forward an article I'd like to discuss and mention what grammar they should pay particular attention to. Sometimes I also look up other activities we can do together.
I think my approach works really well so far. By preparing something beforehand I actually force myself to use newly-learned vocabulary and grammar.
3 x
2020 resolution words learned: 472 / 1000
Pages read at end of 2020: 220 / 1500

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Sat Dec 18, 2021 3:11 am

10Dec21-17Dec21

Spanish
10Dec21: I had another hour-long Baselang lesson with a new teacher. At the beginning of the lesson I said I'd like to practice my conversational skills and talk about social media in particular. The teacher pulled up a list of questions from esldiscussions.com and we spent the whole lesson answering them. It was pretty fun! I thought my speaking skills were all right, but I need to brush up on the verb conjugations some more. Also, I need to improve my vocabulary; I've forgotten a lot of words that I used to know. After the lesson, I made 20 Anki flashcards and spent 30 minutes writing about the questions we discussed. I like supplementing my lessons with writing practice because it helps reinforce what I learned.

After that, my Spanish plans were completely derailed. From 11Dec21 to 13Dec21 I was on a business trip and didn't have a lot of free time. Now I'm staying with my boyfriend's family for a few days. I forgot how hard language-learning can be when your routine is thrown off. Also, I don't really have anywhere I can sit and have a Baselang lesson without being interrupted. My new plan is to focus on building my vocabulary and doing as much writing as possible. Then when I return home next week, I’ll resume my Baselang lessons.
6 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105

User avatar
philomath
Green Belt
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), Italian (Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 25#p201009
x 1381

Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, Italian, and Ancient Greek

Postby philomath » Thu Dec 23, 2021 5:06 am

21Dec21 - 22Dec21

Spanish
21Dec21: I'm back home! Today I started by reviewing my Anki flashcards. Afterward, I looked at a list of conversational topics that I've been keeping. One topic I'd like to be able to discuss in Spanish is my job, which involves CRISPR and gene therapy. I spent half an hour looking up words related to my job and speaking by myself. Then I listened to an episode of Hablando con científicos. The episode was about CRISPR so I learned a few more words that are relevant to my job.

Later, I had a 30-minute lesson on Baselang. I wasn't happy with my speaking skills at all. We talked about traveling, which is a topic I've discussed lots of times before, but I felt like I was stumbling over all of my words. After the lesson, I practiced speaking for another 15 minutes by myself.

22Dec21: Today I started Spanish right after breakfast. I reviewed my Anki flashcards and then practiced speaking by myself for 10 minutes, talking about what I do for work. All of the vocabulary I learned yesterday really paid off; I didn't need to look up any words! I was planning to discuss the same topic in my Baselang lesson that morning, but the teacher had to cancel due to Internet issues. I scheduled a 30-minute lesson with another teacher instead, and we ended up discussing my hobbies and travel plans. I thought I did an okay job at speaking, but I still made lots of silly mistakes.

Later, I watched two episodes of La casa de las flores without subtitles. I tried to listen for phrases that might be useful in my speaking practice.

My speaking challenge definitely isn’t going as I planned. I don't think I can do more than one lesson each day because I always dread the second lesson too much. At this point, I've pretty much given up on doing as many lessons as possible, but I'll still try to aim for at least one each day.
2 x
Italian
Assimil: 19 / 105


Return to “Language logs”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests