Slow Learner's Log (not a sllog!)

Continue or start your personal language log here, including logs for challenge participants
Charlar_mas
White Belt
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 2:28 pm
Languages: English (N), French (B2), Spanish (B2), Russian (beginner), Italian (beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... ilit=sllog
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Re: Slow Learner's Log (not a sllog!)

Postby Charlar_mas » Thu Jun 27, 2019 12:49 am

Hello! I can’t believe it’s been a week since I started. It’s amazing and invigorating to read others’ experiences of language learning. Partly because of that and partly because I’ve actually got some goals, I’ve done more than I expected over the last week. (Yay!)

French
I’ve read 42 pages of "Histoire de la Russie des tsars", and 120 of “La Loi des mâles”.

I’ve also watched an episode of Secrets d’Histoire (the Aliénor d’Aquitaine one). My partner and I also went to see 2 operas that were sung in French over the weekend. I managed to understand almost everything. Yay! As there was a fair bit of music, I’d say that there was about 1.5 hours of French per opera. So I’m up to 4.45 hours of listening already.

Thanks to eido, I’m going to root around for something that’s already been translated. Sadly this means the story I’d picked out doesn’t make the cut, but I’ll be able to actually compare what I’ve written to a translation that’s already out there. This will definitely be more helpful in the long run as I’ll be able to see all the errors and bits I’ll have fudged.

Italian
Yesterday I hit the halfway point on the Paul Noble course. Yay! Italian sounds lovely, but I don’t think that I’m going to continue with it after finishing the course, not even the grammar exercises. I’d rather spend the extra time on studying Russian at the minute as it’s growing on me.


Russian
Chapter 2 of Ruslan is going a bit slower than chapter 1. I find it hard to do textbooks alone, but the audio’s jazzing things up a little. Thanks to the book, I discovered Булат Окуджава's music. I want to learn the lyrics to "Песенка об Арбате” as it sounds very lovely.

Apart from the book's cultural nuggets, I’m having more fun listening to Echo Moskvy than using the textbook. I’ve been listening for 10 minutes a day, hoping that by drip-feeding it, I’ll get used to some of the cadences. Yesterday was particularly good as I switched it on in time to hear people calling in and talking about something to do with Ukraine. No idea what they were saying about Ukraine, sadly, but I understood the callers’ introductions (names, where they lived, what they did,) and a couple of words here and there.
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eido
Brown Belt
Posts: 1175
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2018 8:31 pm
Languages: *
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Re: Slow Learner's Log (not a sllog!)

Postby eido » Thu Jun 27, 2019 1:17 am

Also remember that translations aren’t exact. So what you do and what the translator of your material did could be equally valid, just of different qualities or with different orders, etc.

So don’t get down on yourself if your translation isn’t exactly the same as a professional’s.

That’s why it’s important to have a language buddy or someplace to get that translation corrected.

That’s my two cents — good luck!
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Charlar_mas
White Belt
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2019 2:28 pm
Languages: English (N), French (B2), Spanish (B2), Russian (beginner), Italian (beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... ilit=sllog
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Re: Slow Learner's Log (not a sllog!)

Postby Charlar_mas » Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:07 pm

Well the last couple of weeks have been eventful, but not in the best of ways. I spent the end of June grieving for a mate whose body rejected the bone marrow donation he'd been waiting months to get. We knew there was a risk, as the match was "only" 90%, but we'd all hoped that he'd pull through. Anyway, I was busy getting time off and travelling across the country to get to his funeral, etc., and my brain wasn't up to much.

(Almost) normal service has been resumed this week though, as I had to enroll at Uni on Monday. That was the kick up the 4-letters that I needed!


French
I've been watching YouTube videos in French in the evenings and have exceeded the 10 hour mark for listening. Margaud Liseuse, Thomas Gauthier, and Patricia B have been especially brilliant to watch.

Reading's going well too: I've hit page 87 for "Histoire de la Russie des tsars", and 202 of “La Loi des mâles”. I think I've been making too many notes on "Histoire de la Russie des tsars", and should just focus on reading it through once for myself as opposed to seeing it as one of the core texts for uni. I'm so out of practice at studying that pre-empting what teachers expect might not be the best of ideas...


Italian
I finished the Paul Noble course, which was interesting as I'd never done anything like it before. In the future it'd be cool to try other products like Pimsleur, and Michel Thomas to see how they all compare against one another. I've heard that MT is very similar to PN, so it would be interesting to listen to the inspiration for the PN.


Russian
The second chapter of Ruslan is done, and I'll be starting the 3rd one on Monday.

I've started messing around with Drops, as you can get a free 5 minute session every day. Some words I now see and recognise instantly, others (the longer ones) take me a couple of seconds. It's the pronunciation of the unstressed "o" as "a" that throws me when I hear/ see/ learn a new word.

I can now sing along with "Песенка об Арбате”! Don't think I'll be going on the Voice any time soon (read: this lifetime), but it's fun to sing along with it and know all the words (and what they mean!!). The next song I'm going to tackle is "Kотик" by Alexander Rybak. It came up on a playlist I was listening to and I understood one of the lines "И может, любовь поможет", and got horribly excited and decided that this had to be my 2nd song.

Tuning into Эхо Москвы over breakfast has almost become a habit. I still don't know what's going on, but people talk about Ukraine a lot, and I wrote down part of the number they said people should call if they wanted to contribute to the morning discussion. This is a long-term goal, but one day I'm going to understand what they're talking about, have an opinion on it that I can share in Russian, and call in and give my 2 cents.


Miscellaneous
Looking at the class enrollment sheet, I've found that I have to study a second language at uni. I have absolutely no idea which one to choose (out of (A0) Italian, (A0) Dutch, and (A2/ B1) German). As I've spent a couple of weeks on Italian and enjoyed it, I thought I should spend a couple of weeks revising the German I remember from school, then spend a couple more weeks on basic Dutch to see which of the 3 I like most. So there will be random progress snippets on German, then Dutch this month and next month.

Luckily I have until September to decide!
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