WEEKLY UPDATE Hebrew
- I'm at the lesson 21 from Assimil. As planned, I slowed down the pace with this language because I prefer to learn the new material well, Hebrew being so different from the languages I've learned so far. I noticed that the young woman from the Assimil recordings does not pronounce the letter "he" ה at all. I wonder if it's some generational change in pronunciation?Russian
- lesson 26. It's as if I were learning a language that I knew a long time ago but did not use for many years and I'm rediscovering it now. Of course, there will be less and less similarities the more I progress.German
- I'm feeling that my extensive listening to German podcasts has finally started to pay off. I listened to an interview with a German humanitarian aid worker on FunkNova and I literally understood everything - her pronunciation was excellent so that helped a lot of course... I'm aware that my German is not near to any kind of fluency but I know I'm doing progress in the area I'm specifically working on (listening) and that's a really rewarding feeling.Romanian
- I was inspired by other forum members who decided to measure their level in some languages at the end of the year and I did the same for Romanian. On the internet site of Institutul Limbii Romane there are a few exam tests from previous years for all the levels. First, I did the test for B2 level and my score was 87%. Of course, I did only reading, vocabulary and listening parts. Then, I did a C1 test and though my score was 82.77%, it took me more time to complete it and I felt less at ease. The texts and recordings were more complex than for B2 level - who would have known
- but I mean that my level is probably indeed somewhere between B1-B2. For a short moment, I even had a temptation to sign up for B2 exam for the next session (it takes place on-line anyway due to Covid and the fee is not very high) but in the end I did not. I would have to learn how to write in Romanian, go through a lot of tests from previous years to get accustomed to the format, and sign up for some conversations in Romanian. Well, I prefer to spend this time by consuming native content in the language and I bet I will never need to write much in Romanian in my lifetime anyway. Having a certificate is a nice thing but honestly, it's not that useful in real life and it only proves the level of the language one has at the moment of the exam, which leads me to...English
- exactly 10 years ago, in December 2010 I passed a First Certificate in English with grade A which confirmed my B2 level (I believe the exam changed the name since then). I wanted to take this exam to assess my level in English because I had learned this language all by myself. The problem with Polish schools was that although English was and is part of the curriculum, the parents were expected to enroll their kids to private "language schools" that gave English classes in the evenings because it was widely believed you could learn the language only in private lessons and not at school. My parents could not splash out the money for me and my sister and anyway, it's ridiculous that teachers at public schools were allowed to neglect English lessons and let the private schools flourish instead. I mean, we already pay taxes and so on so why we need private schools to complement the public ones... I remember there were dozens of those private language schools in each town. I wonder if it was only a Polish phenomenon?Italian
- and in June 2011, I passed a CELI3 "Livello B2 - con grado A". In all honesty, I do not think that my level was B2 at that moment
the listening part was the most difficult because I had hardly listened to any Italian before. The oral part went quite smoothly, probably because I had some conversations with an Italian student as part of my preparations before the exam. After the exam, I put Italian on the shelf for a few years. If I remember correctly, I wanted to pass an exam for each of my languages and I wanted to get to C1 or even C2 level exams but I gave up along the way. When preparing for the exam, one learns a lot of stuff that is needed only for the exam. In the end, I preferred to spend this time on consuming native content and so on. I'm not dismissing the idea of exams, maybe if I had more time, I could sign up for some exams myself, but my priorities are elsewhere now.
Sorry for this long post, I did not report much on my progress but rather drifted away from the main subject. I'll try to be more concise next year.
Wishing already all the best in 2021 to all the Forum Members!