This isn't technically the first time I'll be learning a foreign language, though it feels like it because it will be the first time I attempt to self-study one. I learned a good bit of German through traditional classes in high school and college, including a summer immersion program during undergrad; but that was years ago, and my German skills have decayed dramatically since. I'm leaving it in square brackets in the subject line for now because I verrrry occasionally attempt to hang on to what I still know, and hope to learn much more again someday.
For a variety of reasons, I'm choosing to focus the bulk of my efforts on Spanish for the foreseeable future. Long term goal? Let's say a solid B2. If I get there eventually, I'll consider it a great success. If I make it further (whispers 'C1+')...absolutely fantastic, but let's not get ahead of ourselves, any more than a goal of B2-via-self-study already may.
So, the plan.
I'm about a month in. After playing around with a few resources to see how they felt, I've settled into a routine with the following courses.
- Primary: Assimil Spanish with Ease
- I've never used Assimil before. I'm... shocked at how great this seems, thus far.
- Secondary: Learning Spanish Like Crazy
- started with Pimsleur, which was good but felt pretty slow. I got Learning Spanish Like Crazy for free through an Audible trial, and I'm liking it a lot so far, after 10 lessons. I appreciate the conjugation drills being there from the start, as well as how blazingly fast the speakers seem to talk during the listening exercises.
- For extra listening, as time permits: Destinos; Easy Spanish (YouTube); Notes in Spanish (podcast)
- these are fun breaks that feel much less like studying than just chilling
- Just for fun: Forcing my husband to watch Netflix series in Spanish
- this is with English subtitles, but I'm trying to get familiar with some shows that I can go back and watch w/o subtitles later
Perhaps (or likely?) ill-advised, but I'm attempting to very casually learn Tagalog on the side. I don't have any concrete goals here. My husband is Filipino, and this is something we've both wanted to do for a while. He's not super into the idea of learning languages as a hobby, but wanted to try out the Pimsleur lessons. I think I'll keep pace by just doing a Pimsleur lesson every day or two while I go for a walk or run, but if juggling this with Spanish gets to be too much, I'll put it on hold for now. I did preemptively impulse-buy the Living Language course when I found out about it, though, as a follow-up course if/when we make it through all 60 Pimsleur lessons.
Excited to be here. Here goes nothing!