Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish and French

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philomath
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Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), German (Complete Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=16409
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Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish and French

Postby philomath » Mon Dec 28, 2020 8:52 pm

Hello, and Happy New Year! As always, I've made a new language log for the new year. My past language logs can be found at these links:


During 2021, I plan to focus on French, but I also want to maintain my Spanish and maybe even pick up German. However, I'm not going to make specific goals for any of these languages. I've found that setting goals at the beginning of the year only keeps me motivated for a few months, but then my goals change or I lose interest in them. Instead, I plan to set mini goals for myself throughout the year.
Last edited by philomath on Sat Oct 02, 2021 8:47 pm, edited 4 times in total.
4 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Intermediate), French (Intermediate), German (Complete Beginner)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=16409
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Mon Dec 28, 2020 8:59 pm

Placeholder post
Last edited by philomath on Sat Oct 02, 2021 8:47 pm, edited 14 times in total.
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Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=16409
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Mon Dec 28, 2020 9:03 pm

Today I had my first French lesson in over two months. I think it went pretty well! At first I felt very self-conscious about my French, but my teacher said I was speaking well. I told him I haven't been feeling very motivated lately, but that I'd like to improve my pronunciation and practice speaking faster. We came up with a plan where he'll ask me a question, I'll answer in one minute, and then I'll answer again while trying to speak faster. My next lesson will be on Saturday, and then I'll have another lesson every two weeks.

It's time for some new French goals!
  1. Watch my favorite French YouTube channel for 5 hours. The channel is called "Christelle Lebailly Auteur" and it's about creative writing. Christelle does a mixture of skits about writing as well as vlogs about her own writing process. I really like her videos and would like to be able to understand her better. I might even download the audio from her videos and cut it up using Audacity to try to understand it better.
  2. Do Pimsleur French II Lessons 3-10.
  3. Write 3,000 words. I'll either write about my day or answer various writing prompts.

That's it for now! Like my goals from August, I'm not giving myself a deadline. Whenever I finish one of the goals, I'll just make a new one to replace it. Hopefully I'll complete these goals relatively quickly though. :)
3 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Tue Dec 29, 2020 11:16 pm

Today I did an interesting listening exercise using a video from the YouTube channel Christelle Lebailly Auteur. The video is called "Les Auteurs Sur Les Réseaux Sociaux". In it, Christelle acts out how different types of writers interact with others on social media. It's only 9 minutes long, so I figured it would be a good video for an experiment. (A lot of her videos are much longer.)

Here's what I did:
  1. First, I watched the whole video once.
  2. Next, I downloaded the audio and imported it into Audacity.
  3. I began listening to the audio sentence by sentence. Whenever I encountered a sentence that I didn't understand, I cut it out and pasted it into another Audacity project. Even if I got the gist of a sentence, if I wasn't able to transcribe it, I counted it as one I didn't understand. At the end of listening to the audio, I had one Audacity project containing the sentences I understood, and another project containing the sentences I didn't understand. Based on the length of each project, I estimated that I understood 64% of the speaking in the video.
  4. Finally, I took some of the sentences and decreased the speed in an effort to understand them better. I listened to each sentence two or three times each. This actually helped my comprehension a lot.

This was a very time-consuming exercise, but I think it was worth it! It was exciting to quantify my level of listening comprehension, and I hope I'll see my comprehension increase over time. I also learned some new phrases and noticed some interesting things about French pronunciation. Slowing down the sentences made it easier to hear how Christelle combined a lot of words in order to speak faster. I definitely want to try this again sometime with another video.
5 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Thu Dec 31, 2020 5:33 am

It feels a little wrong to be posting in this language log again, since it's not 2021 yet, but I had a very productive day with French and I want to write about it here.

First, I watched a couple of videos by Christelle Lebailly Auteur. I opened the audio from the second video in Audacity and listened to it again, one sentence at a time. If I couldn't understand a sentence, I listened to it 2-3 times, and if I still couldn't understand, I checked the subtitles that were auto-generated by YouTube. In most cases, the subtitles seemed pretty accurate.

Next, I reviewed my Anki flashcards (36 cards) and wrote about my New Year's resolutions in French (192 words). I was very happy with my writing because I was able to use a few phrases that I learned recently.

About my writing: I type everything using an online keyboard. I look up words and phrases using DeepL, Linguee, or sometimes Google Translate, and when I'm done writing I paste the whole thing into Bon Patron. After making whatever corrections Bon Patron recommends, I take notes in my notebook about the words I learned and the grammatical mistakes I made. Normally I would also post my writing on iTalki to receive better feedback, but the iTalki update has taken away the notebook feature for now. :x

Anyway, I had planned to be done with French for the day, but after dinner I had another burst of motivation. I watched another YouTube video, and then I began reading Chanson douce by Leïla Slimani. I'd purchased the audiobook and ebook a while ago, but for some reason I hadn't felt like starting the book. Maybe I was intimidated because this will be the first book for adult native speakers that I've read in French. Well, once I started reading I realized the first chapter is very short, and that seemed a lot less intimidating. It also helped that I was reading the book in the Kindle app, which made it easier to look up words. I highlighted some of the words I looked up, in case I want to make flashcards for them. Finally I listened to the audiobook chapter as well.

I might even read more of Chanson douce after writing this post! I don't know what happened, but I'm suddenly feeling so motivated to study French. Hopefully this motivation continues, even after I resume work next week...
8 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Sun Jan 03, 2021 3:03 am

Friday, January 1
I did Lesson 4 of Pimsleur French II, watched a 25-minute video by Christelle Lebailly Auteur, and read more of Chanson douce.

Saturday, January 2
I had another 45-minute lesson with my French tutor. This lesson went really well! My tutor asked me questions like "If you could learn any language, what would you learn?" and "Where is the most beautiful place in nature you've ever visited?" First I answered slowly and asked how to say some words, and then I answered a second time. Afterward we went over the mistakes I made. Finally, we went over some phrases I said and how I could say them more like a native speaker. I thought I made a lot of progress during this lesson so I was really pleased. After the lesson, I watched a couple of videos by Christelle Lebailly Auteur and wrote 170 words in French.
4 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Sun Jan 10, 2021 11:37 pm

This year I'm trying to balance my hobbies better. I'd always tried to follow the advice that it's better to be consistent and do a little bit of each hobby every day. However, recently I've realized that I'm happier when I try to focus on just one hobby per day. So this week I mostly worked on my writing (rather unsuccessfully--I've been super tired :cry:).

Today, however, I began studying French again. First I reviewed my Anki flashcards, next I watched a video by Christelle Lebailly Auteur, and finally I did Lesson 5 of Pimsleur French II.
2 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

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philomath
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Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 2:57 pm
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby philomath » Sat Jan 16, 2021 10:11 pm

Today I had another French lesson with my iTalki tutor. I had a lot of trouble speaking during this lesson, I think because 1) I hadn't studied French much in the past week, and 2) we were talking about more difficult topics than usual (for example, one of my tutor's questions was "Would you rather live in a world full of Flat-Earthers or a world full of Scientologists?" :lol: ).

Later I watched another video by Christelle Lebailly Auteur, and then I downloaded the audio and used Audacity to estimate my listening comprehension, following the method I described in a previous post. This time my estimate was 66% listening comprehension. While I listened to the audio, I made a list of words and phrases I learned. Some examples include "tenir une promesse", "Foncez !", "renverser", etc.
4 x
Spanish
Cien años de soledad: 3 / 20

French
Dix pour cent: 9 / 24
Les fiancés de l hiver: 84 / 601

cmia11
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German (A1)
Beginner in russian.
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby cmia11 » Fri Jan 22, 2021 9:52 am

Good luck with French, I am happy to see you so motivated on this language ;)
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jackb
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Re: Amanda's 2021 Log: Spanish, French, and Maybe German

Postby jackb » Fri Jan 22, 2021 1:19 pm

Normally I would also post my writing on iTalki to receive better feedback, but the iTalki update has taken away the notebook feature for now.


Hi philomath!

I was looking for a place to post my writing for corrections and found Journaly (https://journaly.com.com). You can post writing for corrections and also correct other people's writing. I've used it a few times and the feedback is fairly quick. It looks to be fairly new so usage will fluctuate . Also if you're a Chrome user, there are grammar correction extensions (including Bon Patron) to help without the need to cut and paste to another website.

I hope this helps,
2 x


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