Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

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Cavesa
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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby Cavesa » Thu Apr 28, 2022 7:26 pm

I agree that moving on and returning later is a good strategy. One of the reasons: The stuff you struggle to internalize now will more naturally fall in place later, thanks to information and skills from the later units. The bits of knowledge support each other. It is a sort of layer structure.

So yes, learn stuff reasonably well, but don't let yourself get stuck, it can lead to too much frustration. But on the other hand, there is no correct amount of time to spend on a unit. Even any official times and curriculums are just ideas. There are people, who will have a lot to do with the chapter for many more hours (either due to perfectionism, or they'll simply find many more ways to use the material, than originally intended), and some will learn it much faster and return to it or cover the same stuff in other resources too.

Another good reason to move on and perhaps review later: stuff needs to get saved and organised in the brain. Fresh eyes see things a little bit differently (or a lot differently). That's why various languages express the idea "you should sleep on this". It's not just about sleep and decisions.

No need to overthink it, do it in any way that fits you. just remember that the point is not frustrating yourself until you start hating the book or the language :-D
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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby gsbod » Thu Apr 28, 2022 8:19 pm

Left to my own devices I also tend to take the more perfectionist approach to absorbing as much as I can from a single textbook unit - which is then counterbalanced by the fact that I rarely actually finish a textbook on my own!

It was a bit of a shock to the system when I did a two week intensive course based around a good quality CEFR aligned textbook at a pace of two units a week. There was no way I could take a perfectionist approach and keep up, so I just had to go with the flow. That also didn't do any harm. I learned less per unit, but still learned a lot overall in those two weeks.

I'd say how you approach your textbooks really depends on your own goals and interests. I think a decent CEFR aligned textbook like Édito actually contains a lot more knowledge than you need to pass the exam, particularly in terms of vocabulary, so if you're studying for a test you don't need to master everything in the book. If you're not aiming for an exam, I'd say it's up to you whether you really want to get your money's worth from a single volume or not :lol:

I also think if you have a tendency to perfectionism, it is more useful to apply it to covering the grammar in a structured and thorough way than the vocabulary, particularly if you are doing lots of other things in addition to your textbook study, as you can pick up new vocabulary pretty much anywhere.
7 x
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April Results

Postby philomath » Sun May 01, 2022 2:38 am

philomath wrote:Anki Stats

Spanish: 614 cards, 95% mature --> 615 cards, 98% mature
French: 2467 cards, 92% mature --> 2681 cards, 87% mature
Italian: 592 cards, 42% mature --> 364 cards, 89% mature
Ancient Greek: 72 cards, 81% mature --> 72 cards, 88% mature

Goals
This month I'll be focusing on French. I mainly want to improve my conversational ability and be able to discuss a wider range of topics. Right now one iTalki lesson per week is the most I can manage, so I want to increase my writing output as well. Last month one of my goals was to write 2000 words, but I wasn’t very motivated and didn’t even come close to writing that much. Instead, this month my goal is to read 15 articles and write a response to each one. I think that will keep me more motivated and also help me write about different topics.

Spanish
[X] Have one iTalki lesson.

French
[ ] Finish Levels A1 and A2 on Kwiziq. (I did 224 quizzes this month! I finished Level A1 and made it through 70% of A2. The levels take longer to complete than I expected).
[ ] Finish Beginner Level 3 on Speechling. (I kept forgetting about this goal, so I only made it through 83 of the 299 sentences in Level 3.)
[ ] Have four iTalki lessons. (I only had one, and then I got tired of iTalki lessons...)
[ ] Read 15 articles and write a response to each one. (I only did this for three or four articles. It was a good exercise but I lost motivation once I started doing the writing prompts in Édito.)

Italian
[ ] Do Assimil Lessons 34-60. (Nope... I sort of stopped Italian again.)

By the way, I realized I've never specifically said this in my language log, but any feedback on my language learning goals and methods is welcome! :)

Stats
  • Spanish: 1.00 hour (0% L, 75% S, 25% R, 0% W, 0% O)
  • French: 17.25 hours (26% L, 6% S, 16% R, 10% W, 42% O)
  • Italian: 0.25 hours (0% L, 0% S, 0% R, 0% W, 100% O)

This month didn't go quite as planned. First of all, I got tired of having iTalki lessons, so I began working through Édito B1 instead. I only completed the first six pages, but I wrote over 1200 words by answering all of the writing prompts. I'm going to follow everyone's advice and try to be less of a perfectionist with the rest of the book. I really like the idea of doing multiple passes so I don't have to worry about learning everything in one go.

I also stopped studying Italian this month. I don't have plans to go to Italy this year, so I think it would be a good idea to get my French and Spanish to a higher level (B2?) before resuming Italian.
5 x
French
Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100

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philomath
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May Goals

Postby philomath » Sun May 01, 2022 2:49 pm

Anki Stats

Spanish: 615 cards, 98% mature
French: 2681 cards, 87% mature
Italian: 364 cards, 89% mature
Ancient Greek: 72 cards, 88% mature

Goals
This month I'm continuing to focus on French. I've signed up for both the Six Week Challenge and the Super Challenge, and I'm going to Montreal on May 14th for five days!

French
[ ] Finish Édito Units 1 and 2.
[ ] Finish Kwiziq Levels A2 and B1.
[ ] Finish Speechling Beginner Level 3.
[ ] Do 450 minutes of listening practice (podcasts, TV shows, etc.).
[ ] Have two iTalki lessons.
[ ] Finish reading La familia grande and start reading another book.

Ideally I'd have even more iTalki lessons, but I'm still feeling pretty burnt out. I need to find a teacher who I enjoy talking to. In the meantime, there are lots of speaking prompts in Édito, so I'll work on those.
5 x
French
Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100

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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby philomath » Wed May 04, 2022 3:41 am

01May22–03May22

French
01May22: I listened to a 20-minute episode of the podcast Ça s'explique. I also did a few quizzes on Kwiziq and practiced some sentences on Speechling. Finally, I did another section of Édito Unit 1, which took a whole hour.

02May22: I listened to another 20-minute episode of Ça s'explique, and then I listened to the same episode again. I also read a couple more chapters of La familia grande. I've started highlighting words that I want to remember so I can make flashcards for them sometime.

03May22: I did a few quizzes on Kwiziq and then I spent an hour and a half reading La familia grande.

Over the past couple of days I've noticed a dramatic improvement in my reading ability. Normally I read La familia grande while listening to the audiobook at the same time, but this week I was too lazy to bring my headphones everywhere. However all of a sudden I was able to read much faster, without having to think about how to pronounce every word. I also felt as though I needed to look up fewer words than before (though I don't track those numbers, so I can't say for sure). Maybe it's the excitement of starting the Super Challenge, maybe all of my audiobook-listening has paid off, or maybe I'm just used to this writer's style by now. Whatever it is, it's great! I'm pretty confident that I can finish the book by the end of the week.
6 x
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Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100

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philomath
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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby philomath » Mon May 09, 2022 2:54 am

04May22–08May22

French
04May22: I read for another hour and a half and finished La familia grande! I read the last 105 pages in May, so I've now finished two "books" for the Super Challenge. :)

Later, I spent another hour going through all of the words that I highlighted and making Anki cards. It was nice to look back at my first highlights and see that I'd already learned some of the words.

06May22: I listened to French Expat for 45 minutes.

07May22: I did more quizzes on Kwiziq and finished Level A2.

08May22: In the morning, I did another section of Édito Unit 1 and practiced pronouncing more sentences on Speechling. Then I had a 30-minute lesson with a new iTalki teacher. She was very good at keeping the conversation going, so it was a fun lesson. We just talked the whole time and she wrote notes in a Google doc. After the lesson, I made Anki cards based on her notes and scheduled another lesson.
8 x
French
Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100

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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby philomath » Fri May 13, 2022 11:47 am

09May22–12May22

French
09May22: I listened to Ça s'explique for 30 minutes during my commute. Later, I did another section of Édito Unit 1. For one of the speaking exercises, I tried talking while using the text-to-speech feature on my phone to write down what I said. It was a bit of a pain, but it did help me catch some mistakes I made while speaking. Afterward I posted the text on iTalki for corrections.

10May22: I did a few quizzes on Kwiziq and then started reading Le voleur de foudre, but after a couple of pages I decided to keep my no-translation rule and read something else instead. I'm going to start Phobos by Victor Dixen.

Finally, I spent some time making flashcards for touristy phrases I might need when I'm in Montreal next week. I learned that déjeuner means breakfast in Quebecois and dîner means lunch. I'm glad I learned that before going to a restaurant and getting confused!

11May22: I listened to an episode of PodcastScience and an episode of French Expat.

12May22: I began reading Phobos. I think the first chapter of a book is always the hardest, and sure enough there were a lot of words that I wanted to look up. If I want to finish the book in a reasonable amount of time, I need to fight this perfectionist tendency to study every single word.
7 x
French
Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100

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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby galaxyrocker » Fri May 13, 2022 1:27 pm

philomath wrote:I need to fight this perfectionist tendency to study every single word.


This is something I find myself struggling with. I've just embraced it, and don't worry too much about the time it takes me to read, going through periods of intensive reading and periods of extensive reading. Because of that, I've learned the French words for all sorts of different kind of cereal crops, nuts, beans and metal/woodworking tools today.

All that to say, maybe it's best to alternate between intensive and extensive reading, just to get over that "itch" of wanting to look everything up. It might not work for you timewise, but I've found it useful and eventually I get to where I just want to read, not look up every word.
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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby philomath » Sun May 15, 2022 7:07 pm

Today is my second day in Montreal. I’m having a lot of fun exploring the city, but I haven’t spoken much French so far: just “bonjour”, “oui”, “merci”, etc. Most shop employees have greeted us with “bonjour hi” which I think is their way of telling us to pick the language. My boyfriend doesn’t speak a word of French (despite studying it for three years in high school) so we’ve pretty much been sticking to English. I’d like to try ordering food in French before we leave though!

I’m enjoying hearing people’s conversations and reading all of the ads in French. Oh, and menus: we went to a microbrewery and I learned some beer-related words in French! Today we also went to two bookstores: Librairie Drawn & Quarterly and the foreign language bookstore Librairie Michel Fortin. I bought a graphic novel in French, a copy of Édito B1 (because I’d been using a pdf I found online), and Assimil Le Grec. Librairie Michel Fortin was pretty awesome but I still miss Schoenhof’s.
4 x
French
Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100

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philomath
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Re: Amanda's 2022 Log: Spanish, French, and Italian

Postby philomath » Mon May 16, 2022 5:07 pm

Third day in Montreal. Today I made two attempts to speak French.

First attempt, at a café:
Me: Bonjour, je prendrai deux bagels, s’il vous plaît.
Café employee: Deux bagels ?
Me: Oui, merci. Et deux cafés aussi.
Café employee: [I forget how she phrased it, but she asked what size coffee.]
Me: Euh... petit.
Café employee: [Grabs two cups to show me the size options.] Moyen ou large ? [I’m pretty sure she said large instead of grand?]
Me: [Panicking] Euh... large.
Café employee: [Asks something else in French.]
Me: [Finally defeated] Sorry?
Café employee: [Switching to English] Do you want milk or sugar in your coffees?

So that was somewhat of a failure. Still, I wasn’t too discouraged; I resolved to try again at the next place we went to. This time I ordered a lemonade, but the woman at the counter answered in English right away. Maybe because we were in a very touristy spot?

Anyway, I’ll try again later!
10 x
French
Super Challenge listening: 9 / 100
Super Challenge reading: 21 / 100


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