Purpose: This log is for accountability and to record my process.
Background: I feel like quite the newbie compared to most others here. Spanish is my first attempt to learn another language, and I just started in July on a whim due to the pandemic. I'm in my 40s which feels a bit late, but I'm quite enjoying the process and have much more discipline than when I was younger. English is technically my second language, but I am illiterate and incompetent in my first language so I'm not sure how to categorize that.
In my whopping 5 months of experience, I have done the following:
- Completed the Baselang Real World curriculum
- Used KwizIQ for a month, completing A0 - 100% | A2 - 70% | B1 - 70% | B2 - 40%. I may come back to it, but I don't really enjoy it.
- Gone through some of Practice Makes Perfect Complete Spanish Grammar, but I can't take it anymore. Apparently I hate grammar.
- Used a verb conjugation app daily for the past 12 weeks. I feel like this is the most useful of the grammar exercises I have done, though it's clearly very limited in only hitting verb conjugation, and I wish I had a audio version of this.
Audio Visual comprehension
- Watched lots of Youtube videos - favorites include BBC El Mundo, Noticias Telemundo, alanxelmundo, Luisito Comunica, TED en Español, VisualPolitik
- Listened to lots of podcasts - favorites include How 2 Spanish, No Hay Tos, Radio Ambulante (above my level, but transcripts are helpful)
- Watched all of La Casa de Papel with English subtitles (I wouldn't say I learned anything from this, but it gave me something to discuss with my tutors)
- Watched 12 episodes of El Dragón (mostly without subtitles, will re-watch with Spanish or even English subtitles if needed)
- Read books: 100% Ready Player One, 70% of Crepúsculo, and 70% of Sol de Medianoche
- Read articles in Spanish from the New York Times, Washington Post, MIT Technology Review, El Pais and other sources
- Used Anki consistently every day, starting in mid-July, adding 40 new words per day
- Conversed with tutors for 10+ hours per week since completing the Baselang curriculum in October. Including the curriculum, I have spent over 300 hours on the platform since July.
Going forward: I was feeling at a bit of a loss once I finished the Baselang curriculum, especially since my knowledge has a LOT of gaps and am not sure how best to fill in those gaps. I know I am missing automaticity and the FSI Basic Spanish program appeals to me for this reason. I went through the first three units this week and already feel that the speaking is so fast, but I think it will be very useful for me. My plan is as follows.
- FSI Spanish
- 5+ hours of conversation practice per week
- Continue with Anki until I reach a point where adding 40 new words daily becomes too difficult, then maintain or add fewer words
- Continue with daily conjugation practice
- Consume written and audio materials - I've never had a set plan for this, since I seem to have no problem consuming input, though sometimes I binge more written or audio for a period.
If anybody has suggestions, I am all ears!