There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

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neofight78
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby neofight78 » Sun Jan 15, 2017 3:51 pm

MamaPata wrote:It feels quite underhanded to me and very capitalistic, which is not how they present themselves.


I've always called it the italki wallet challenge. The only difficult part about it is forking out the cash! Unfortunately italki seems to be going more and more downhill in order to make more profit. I have one last lesson to finish and I shan't use them again, but don't let that put you off! ;)
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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Mon Jan 23, 2017 7:48 pm

neofight78 wrote:
I've always called it the italki wallet challenge. The only difficult part about it is forking out the cash! Unfortunately italki seems to be going more and more downhill in order to make more profit. I have one last lesson to finish and I shan't use them again, but don't let that put you off! ;)


That's my impression too. I'm sticking with it, because of how easy it is, but it does annoy me. :roll:
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SC French Hours: 161 / 225 SC French Pages: 5085 / 7500
SC Russian Hours: 70 / 150 SC Russian Pages: 1263 / 5000
Output Challenge: 12100 / 50000

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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Mon Jan 23, 2017 7:50 pm

Over the last week, I have watched a ton of programmes in French, but done absolutely nothing else as I've been ill and unable to concentrate. At one point, I was amazed, because I was really understanding and it felt natural. No, I'd just accidentally left the subtitles in English. :oops: That sums up how well my brain has been working really! I'm on the mend, but still not quite with it, so not expecting much from myself.
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby Elenia » Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:13 pm

Get better soon!
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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Sun Jan 29, 2017 6:37 pm

Well, I'm enjoying the end of the holidays! My roommate is coming back in a few days. She's lovely and I am very grateful for her, but it has been very nice having my own space. We will start classes again on the 6th. Obviously, being Russia and being a university, we still don't know when we will get a timetable. So I have no idea what I am doing this term. :roll:

This has been a pretty good week for productivity! I realised that I only have two weeks until I have to submit something for my year abroad project so that has been a big push. (A slightly terrifying one, but hey). I signed up for some volunteering opporunities here in Moscow which has meant speaking a lot of Russian, and I may do some translation for them in the future. It has also meant I've found some group activities so will hopefully be able to spend time with more Russians.

Russian
- 13 hours of Russian
- Read: 32 pages of Winnie the Pooh, 12 of my crappy romance novel
- Watched: Harry Potter 2, Точка, Итальянец and Я тоже хочу
- Grammar: Chapter 8 Colloquial Russian 2
- 2 italki lessons

French
- 8 hours of French
- Read: 57 pages of the Three Musketeers (I am still a way from the end, but very ready to move on!)
- Watched: a few episodes of Gilmore Girls. Because I've been watching stuff in Russian for the project, I haven't been able to watch much in French.
- 2 italki lessons

Spanish
Zilch. I'm hoping to start working this into my routine, but I have a lot else going on, so I'm not too worried about it.
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SC French Hours: 161 / 225 SC French Pages: 5085 / 7500
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neofight78
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby neofight78 » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:37 am

MamaPata wrote:Obviously, being Russia and being a university, we still don't know when we will get a timetable. So I have no idea what I am doing this term. :roll:


Hmm... sounds like a familiar story. I even received an email asking when my visa ends. Umm... shouldn't they already know that?!

Of course the best example of the organisational ability of my particular university is when they decided the best time to renovate the dorms was in the middle of the first semester. To do it during the holidays evidently did not occur to them!

I'm sure there must be exceptions, but nearly everyday I am surprised to the point of incredulity at the inability of Russians to organise anything properly. I just can't get my head around it!
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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Tue Jan 31, 2017 6:35 am

neofight78 wrote:Hmm... sounds like a familiar story. I even received an email asking when my visa ends. Umm... shouldn't they already know that?!

Of course the best example of the organisational ability of my particular university is when they decided the best time to renovate the dorms was in the middle of the first semester. To do it during the holidays evidently did not occur to them!


Amazing. :roll: Well I'm glad it's not just me! What I find difficult is how annoyed they are if you try to do anything they weren't expecting, even if it's because of them. They kept changing our holiday dates so one guy booked his tickets according to the original dates. And is now being told off because he will arrive late. It's not just a Russian thing obviously, but Russia does seem to have a particular talent in this realm!
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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Thu Feb 02, 2017 8:50 am

Today, I decided to do the ODA Russian reading test to check my level, as well as the Liden and Denz one, which has been mentioned in the Russian study group.

The L&D test is multiple choice, so I wouldn't say it's a brilliant guage (several times I got it, but wouldn't have been able to choose the answer if I had to do it on my own). I made some particularly foolish mistakes (Миша is not a girl, and so the verb is masculine...) But if you're short of time, it's useful to get a rough idea. One of my big problems with these tests is I lose interest halfway through because they take so long and my scores start slipping. :oops: It placed me at about B1.

The ODA test is more useful - it gives you dozens of short tests and you have to answer content and grammar questions. Again it isn't perfect (you answer in English, for example) but it's a useful indicator. It gave me a result of 2+, which as far as I can tell equates to more or less a B1. I previously did it back in July and got a 2, so I clearly have made some progress!

This has been pretty reassuring - I was starting to get worried I would never break out of the A2 zone. Obviously I need to push myself further (and stop making so many silly mistakes), but it's nice to have more of a sense of where I stand.
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SC French Hours: 161 / 225 SC French Pages: 5085 / 7500
SC Russian Hours: 70 / 150 SC Russian Pages: 1263 / 5000
Output Challenge: 12100 / 50000

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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Sun Feb 05, 2017 1:38 pm

This week hasn't been quite as impressive as the previous one - I have a deadline coming up, and got sidetracked by reading in English. I suspect the next two weeks are going to be reasonably unimpressive on the language front because of the deadline, and because I have some friends coming to Russia for a week. But we start classes again tomorrow, so that should help. (Not that we know when our classes are... :roll: )

Russian
- 7 hours of Russian
- Read: 16 pages of Winnie the Pooh. It's finally done!
- Watched: Портрет в сумерках, Исповедь содержанки, 4. I have now also watched all of the films for my year abroad project, which is a relief. I will probably have to do some rewatching in March/April, but (as they were all pretty grim) it's nice to have ticked them all off.
- Grammar: Started chapter 9 of Colloquial Russian 2 but didn't really get anywhere with it.
- 3 italki lessons

French
- 3 hours of French
- Read: 175 pages of the Three Musketeers. Thank God it's done! I think this is a great book for French learners to read, and I have been able to feel it getting easier as I have gone through, but I didn't enjoy it. It's not really my kind of novel, and honestly I think the plot just doesn't hold up for the length that it is. I can see how, if you were reading it in serial form, as it came out, the plot would work better, but in one novel, it's not enough. I found the characters pretty one dimensional. But also, like I say, it isn't my kind of novel and it is useful for a language learner, so don't let that put you off.

Spanish
I had an italki lesson! Finally did some Spanish! (I am as shocked as you). It wasn't horrific, but I have lost a lot and about half of what I say comes out in Russian. I know if I just did more regular work, I could deal with that, but I am not going to. I love Spanish and I will definitely keep working on it, but very very vaguely. While I am still in Russia (and until I graduate), that has to be my priority. Any French/Spanish is great and a bonus, but it is additional.
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SC French Hours: 161 / 225 SC French Pages: 5085 / 7500
SC Russian Hours: 70 / 150 SC Russian Pages: 1263 / 5000
Output Challenge: 12100 / 50000

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MamaPata
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Re: There are worse things I could do... (FR, RU, ES)

Postby MamaPata » Sat Feb 25, 2017 4:13 pm

My friends were here last week, which was lovely, but obviously meant rather limited Russian. So skipping that recap, here is what I have done over the last week:

Russian
- 15 hours of Russian (this is much better than I expected and I am a bit bemused!)
- Read: 12 pages of my romance novel. I've ended up with a bunch of Russian books so I will work to push this next week. I also need to start reading in Russian for my project so, hopefully I'll get my act together there!
- Watched: Harry Potter 4 and 5 (may watch number 6 this evening!), the Proposal.
- Wrote: 491 words for the Output Challenge. Starting to get into the habit of writing, but need a lot more work.
- Grammar: Finally finished Chapter 9 of Colloquial Russian 2 so back on track there.
- 2 italki lessons

French
- 5 hours of French
- Read: 32 pages of Jane Eyre (God I hate Jane Eyre) and started La Belle et la Bete
- Watched: Un Peu, Beacoup, Aveuglement. This was pretty adorable, and occasionally reminded me of Delicatessen, which is one of my favourite films ever. It's on Netflix in the UK and Russia as 'Blind Date' and I'd definitely recommend it.

Spanish
Zilch.

I am becoming more and more aware that I really need to push my Russian onwards - I have four more months here, and I need to make the most of that time. I have been having a look at the final year uni courses, and they're pretty heavy on translation. There's no listening exam, though we do have to speak and write in Russian. Because of the translation emphasis, I do want to start practising written translations - it's not an area that I have any natural skill in. I'm currently really pushing vocab at the moment, which is meaning a lot of memrise work, and I'm hoping to increase the amount of reading I'm doing as I think these are the areas I am weakest in, in terms of where I need to be for the next academic year. I also really want to finish Colloquial Russian 2.
2 x
SC French Hours: 161 / 225 SC French Pages: 5085 / 7500
SC Russian Hours: 70 / 150 SC Russian Pages: 1263 / 5000
Output Challenge: 12100 / 50000


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