31st May 2020 / Day 152
Uh, I'm kind of exhausted. Another full day of Polyglot Gathering talks (I was going to watch the Quenya crash course but honestly gave up after the closing talks – though I can catch up through to the end of June anyway!) but why am I tired?! I didn't even do anything!
Yeah, so, I didn't really go into any of the practice rooms but I'm not super sad about that; I'm sure they were fun but the talks were really what I was after. Today's highlights: lessons from neuroscience for language learners – not a ton of new stuff in there but there's something nice about getting it all laid out and with evidence (!); and when can I say I speak a language (from Richard Simcott) which obviously didn't straight-up answer that question (I don't think
I was expecting him to?
) but was an interesting look at the development of the online language learning community over the last 14 or so years, as well as people's different opinions on when they feel they can say they 'speak' a language.
I have to admit to that being something I've only started to do relatively recently (like, the last few years) and only with German – which I've been learning for uh SIXTEEN YEARS by this point. Yes, I started it in school, but even then... I did a degree studying this language! I did a degree translating
this language! It's interesting the barriers we create for ourselves – because there was definitely no one stopping me saying I spoke German (in fact, I think there would have been several people who would have encouraged me to admit it), and yet... there we go.
(I also realised I think I've been hanging around here HTLAL for the last nine to ten years??? Like, not with the regularity of some of the members who've been around for ages but still. I forgot.)
Anyway, all this to say that's why I'm looking to work on Mandarin next (this? Just hit midnight here!) month. The aforementioned German degree? Yeah, I did German and
Mandarin and so while I would never expect them both to be at the same
level, there's no real excuse for my backslide here. It's not like I don't enjoy Mandarin, too! I really like speaking it – which is a surprise, since I'm not a superfan of speaking in general – but like I wrote yesterday, I think I've been holding myself back with the methods I've been using. They were fine when I was starting out, or when I was going through a structured course, but now?
Now, I can do whatever I want!
So, I have a few (a lot ofc what was everyone expecting) Mandarin goals to hit next month. Since I've been recording all my time spent on languages all year, I've set myself a reasonable time goal of one hour per day – but I'm not pushing myself to do an hour of study every day, just, like, at least thirty hours in general. That'll still give me enough time for 30 mins per day with Ojibwe/Basque (!!!)/DGS and time with my other languages.
Also, the key thing is that I'd like to read, listen, speak,
something in Mandarin every day.
Reading – graded readers, (likely to be) intensive reading of online news
Listening – LR either HP1 or some kind of web novel, TV
Writing – daily at least one sentence on this log, langcorrect
Speaking – taking part in the 30 day speaking challenge again (and will achieve more than one day this time!)
After rdearman's LR talk yesterday, I'm going with the intermediate method, in that I'm going to add transcription/translation etc. exercises to get the most out of the LR component. I'm also going to strive for 3+ hour sessions so if my brain explodes, that's why.
(Jk, I've definitely binged TV longer than that so I know I can keep up to some extent!)
I'm also aiming for around 30 mins of solid grammar/sentence structure practice per week and will focus on the HSK 5 list for vocabulary; there's 1,300 words total for that section and I should be able to get through them all at least once.
Aim: get my Mandarin from the A2/B1 a short online test put me at last night to a solid B1. Am I maybe pushing this in terms of time? Yes! Do I mind? No! I can't possibly get worse.
But anyway, long post's getting long. I'll be back tomorrow day time (aka earlier than this) to drop my May stats (hit 83% of my studying time goal woooooh) and my first month of the SC stats but for now, this is all I managed today. Mandarin
2 mins MemriseSpanish
131 mins TV (Community
4 mins DuolingoOjibwe
35 mins Pimsleur (L4, which will be redone tomorrow
)Total: 172 mins (4,242 mins / 15,659 mins)