Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

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LMAshton
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Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby LMAshton » Thu Dec 17, 2015 4:10 am

I'm actively working on both German and Spanish. French is more of a background thing at the moment.

German. I took a year of German in university decades ago and wasn't particularly good, which could also be translated as pretty terrible. Earlier in 2015, I started learning German because, well, I wanted to and for no other reason. I did a couple of beginner courses through Memrise that had a couple of hundred words, then I started the Memrise A1, which I'm now at level 64 out of 83, so pretty close to the end. If I power through, I can probably finish by the end of the year or soon thereafter. At that point, I'll start A2. Meanwhile, I'm also listening to an audiobook in German (Tom Sawyer, of all things). I don't understand most of it, so I need something that's more appropriate for the level I'm currently at. I also need to find books that are at my level so I can read in German.

Spanish. I started working on it because the husband and I were considering spending some time in Spain. It's not likely happening now, but meanwhile, since we started learning Spanish together, we're continuing, and there's something to be said for working on a language together. Again, I'm using Memrise. My husband prefers Duolingo, which I hate, and he hates Memrise, which I love (although the bugs on the iOS app are a bother). We’ve watched a couple of video learning series together, although one was too frustrating for me since it was too far above my head. We're watching The Backyardigans in Spanish - we've watched two or three episodes and there are a whole bunch more. Unfortunately, there are no Spanish subtitles, which would be preferable to me since I have a difficult time with my hearing. I'm also listening to Don Quixote on audiobook - again, I don't understand most of it, but that's okay. And I'm also listening to a podcast or two in Spanish as well.

French. I took French in high school years ago. When the husband and I were contemplating visiting Europe a few months back, France was on the list for a little while. During that time, I started the A1 French course in Memrise and surprised myself with how quickly it came back. I blew through 41 levels in less than two weeks. It was surprisingly easy, so apparently, the French I learned when I was young was still stuck in my head somewhere. I have no idea what level I'd be at if I reviewed everything until I got to the point of learning new material, but this is something I definitely want to know. So while this is a backseat language to the other two, it's not being entirely patient, either. But since learning three languages at the same time is probably overkill, it must wait.


A few days ago, I started adding Spanish, German, and French twitter users, news outlets, and such to my twitter feed. It's interesting seeing this explosion of languages, and oddly enough (for me), I'm understanding far more of it than I had expected. And I get a dose of those languages on a fairly regular basis throughout the day.


Plautdietsch. This is for after I get to a reasonable proficiency level in the languages above. It's the language of my ancestors and relatives, but my parents refused to teach it to us kids when we were young. I've always regretted not being able to speak it. And it's a bit of a dying language. While it's not exactly useful in the world at large, I still want to learn it at some point. There isn't much by way of learning materials, but since I have access to native speakers, I can create something with their help.

Sinhala. Another one to learn after the first three. It's a language native to Sri Lanka, where my husband is from and where we've lived for most of the last twelve years. It would be useful. I've tried learning it in the past and didn't get very far. If/when I tackle this, I'll take a different approach. There isn't much by way of *good* learning materials, but since I have access to native speakers, I can create something with their help.
Last edited by LMAshton on Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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LMAshton on Memrise.
: 114 / 1612 German A2 on Memrise
: 188 / 5038 German 5000 Words on Memrise
: 1017 / 1706 Spanish A1 on Memrise
: 1479 / 1663 French A1 on Memrise
: 53 / 5000 French 5000 Words on Memrise

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LMAshton
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Location: Sri Lanka
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - German, Spanish, and a bit of French

Postby LMAshton » Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:12 pm

My notebook keyboard isn't working properly, so I have to use my iPad for typing this in. Ugh.

So in reading stuff here and at HTLAL, I came across a thread about Professor, um, Aguerra (is that right? It's something close I think) and his languages spreadsheet. It was huge. And, sine I'm an accountant from way back, I think in spreadsheets. I started one, realized fairly quickly it was going to get overrun, and asked my husband, a programmer, to write an iOS app for me to track my goals and progress. It's not feature complete, but the essentials are there, so now I'm using that to track my progress. Which is a huge yay - much simpler than a spreadsheet and I get gold stars and everything.

Spanish.

Memrise. I'm back to doing it again. I'm now on level 39. Slow progress, but still. The husband and I are watching The Backyardigans in Spanish. He understands more than I do, so it's more fun for him. I'm also listening to audiobooks like Cervantes' Don Quixote, which I read in English years ago. Even though I'm not understanding much of the words, I hope it'll help me get used to the sounds of the language. On Twitter, I'm surprising myself with how much I'm understanding. Today, I understood a few tweets entirely. Okay, so Twitter isn't complicated writing, but still.

German.

I have only thirteen levels left in Memrise's A1 German, so I'm pushing through a fair bit. I also started the top 5000 words by frequency Memrise course today. I also started watching The Backyardigans in German. Waaaaay easier to understand than the Spanish version for me. I didn't know all the words, but I could understand the dialogue well enough to look up words and to get the gist of things. Listening to audiobooks, I switched to one of the Heidi books, and found that I understood more of that. I don't have enough vocabulary yet to get even the gist of what's going on. But hey, I'm still a beginner so I have a ways to go.
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LMAshton on Memrise.
: 114 / 1612 German A2 on Memrise
: 188 / 5038 German 5000 Words on Memrise
: 1017 / 1706 Spanish A1 on Memrise
: 1479 / 1663 French A1 on Memrise
: 53 / 5000 French 5000 Words on Memrise

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LMAshton
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby LMAshton » Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:16 am

German

I'm DONE the German A1 course from Memrise. I finished it last night. If I had been feeling well, I could have finished it a week and a half ago, but the last couple of weeks I've been feeling horrible. Tons of headaches with a side of being severely overheated, which is, unfortunately, all too easy for me in a tropical climate. Anyway. I'm finished now, and that brings me an unreasonable level of happiness and accomplishment. :D

Now on to Memrise's A2 and probably the top 5000 words one to improve my vocab.

I've also been listening to more audiobooks, and it's getting easier to pick out words I know. I still don't have anywhere near enough vocabulary, but that's life. Also, now that Netflix has just gone nearly world-wide, we're considering getting it so we have access to more foreign-language programming.

Spanish

Still plugging away. Still working on the A1 Memrise thing, watching episodes of Extr@ and Backyardigans. Extr@ is easier in terms of understanding way more of the content, but Backyardigans is fun in its weird little way, too. I like kid's animated movies and TV way too much it seems.
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LMAshton on Memrise.
: 114 / 1612 German A2 on Memrise
: 188 / 5038 German 5000 Words on Memrise
: 1017 / 1706 Spanish A1 on Memrise
: 1479 / 1663 French A1 on Memrise
: 53 / 5000 French 5000 Words on Memrise

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Brun Ugle
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby Brun Ugle » Fri Jan 08, 2016 5:58 am

Congratulations on finishing the Memrise course! I haven't been on Memrise in ages. I got sick and lost all my streaks and never got around to starting up again.

Your app sounds interesting. Are you considering making it available to others? I have an accounting background too, among others, and I have complicated spreadsheets for everything. Excel is my favorite computer game. :P
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LMAshton
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby LMAshton » Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:07 am

Thanks!

Yes, he's going to put it on the App Store when it's ready. He hasn't had much time to work on it in the last couple of weeks due to a heavy work schedule. But when it's ready, he will. He's also looking for beta testers when it's ready for that.
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LMAshton on Memrise.
: 114 / 1612 German A2 on Memrise
: 188 / 5038 German 5000 Words on Memrise
: 1017 / 1706 Spanish A1 on Memrise
: 1479 / 1663 French A1 on Memrise
: 53 / 5000 French 5000 Words on Memrise

Tomás
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby Tomás » Sun Jan 10, 2016 3:46 am

Thanks for the Backyardigans mention. I'd never heard of it before, but I tried an episode tonight and understood about 50%, which is only a little less than I understand of Extras. It's the first non-Spanish student show I can actually watch without subtitles.

PS: My family lived in Sri Lanka back in the 60s when I was a child. It was still called Ceylon back then.
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LMAshton
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby LMAshton » Mon Jan 11, 2016 5:39 am

Cool! Glad to hear it helped. :)

I'm in Sri Lanka because my husband is Sri Lankan. Without him, I highly doubt I would have ended up here. It's not exactly on the beaten path...
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LMAshton on Memrise.
: 114 / 1612 German A2 on Memrise
: 188 / 5038 German 5000 Words on Memrise
: 1017 / 1706 Spanish A1 on Memrise
: 1479 / 1663 French A1 on Memrise
: 53 / 5000 French 5000 Words on Memrise

Tomás
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby Tomás » Mon Jan 11, 2016 8:15 pm

If you like kid's shows, look for episodes of "Guillermina y Candelario" on youtube. It's a Columbian preschoolers' cartoon and pretty easy to follow.
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LMAshton
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Location: Sri Lanka
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Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1729
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Re: Laurie's Language Log - TAC DE ES FR

Postby LMAshton » Tue Jan 19, 2016 11:57 am

Thank you, Tomás, for the suggestion. I'll check it out. :) It's not so much that I like kids shows - although I do like animations geared towards families - it's that it seems like they're easier to follow given how limited my language skills are.

I haven't done anywhere near as much work on the languages as I would have liked. We've been sick. I'm only really starting to feel better now, so I'm getting back into it again. So, not a whole lot of progress to report...
0 x
LMAshton on Memrise.
: 114 / 1612 German A2 on Memrise
: 188 / 5038 German 5000 Words on Memrise
: 1017 / 1706 Spanish A1 on Memrise
: 1479 / 1663 French A1 on Memrise
: 53 / 5000 French 5000 Words on Memrise


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