Morgana's Swedish log

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Morgana
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby Morgana » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:48 am

Thank you, jeff_lindqvist. I always appreciate the help.

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Swedish: Reading a lot, Harry Potter and some news on SVT.se. Making lots of flash cards for the moment. Back and forth on whether to chorus and how much. Still not sure how to tackle listening comprehension in a specific, intentional way. Listening to Odinsbarn audiobook and watching Bonusfamiljen and...

I downloaded Bieffekterna from the iTunes store because it was only $6 and I was so bored of the usual stuff I was listening to. Btw the English subtitles are OPTIONAL! I can turn them on and off. I didn't know they did that now. I don't think I can shut them off from any of my earlier iTunes purchases. I haven't finished watching but the conclusion I've reached so far is that there must be a measurable discount from familiarity with the material one is listening to. So it was somewhat discouraging watching Bieffekterna. On the other hand, I think that discouragement stewed a bit and resulted in my idea today to look for subtitles for Bonusfamiljen. Stating the obvious: there is different vocabulary used on tv vs. written in books. I might read and read and read and never get some of the colloquialisms I hear on Bonusfamiljen. Open Subtitles did not disappoint. I haven't done anything with them yet, and haven't decided how I will use them, but it is nice to know that I can use this tool to maximize listening comprehension I guess.

(No subs for any of the Icelandic programs I've watched, sadly :lol: )

I'm doing well for the daily hours with Swedish since however many days ago but I'm trying not to treat it like a must. If I do them I do them, great. If I don't, that's just one day. Yes this is a hedge. I’m careful not to lay down inflexible goals in the first place, but especially after just a few days I am feeling mental resistance to getting 3 hours of Swedish in each day. It’s not so bad if I can flit from activity to activity within Swedish every half hour or so, but reading the same thing for 90 minutes feels boring. Same with watching/listening. So I’m just trying to vary my activities a bit, add in that chorusing, maybe add in some kind of grammar/course (I don’t have any B-level materials yet though, and the A-level materials mostly feel like it’s wasted time because they’re easy).

Icelandic: Started sentence analysis of the first reading in unit 7. I'm going to change my approach due to the shorter time each day spent on Icelandic. I'm also not sure what to do for listening material. I did restart the Oath on Netflix, but I’m not sure I want to watch it a second time. eido posted a timely quote from iguanamon in her log, about having interesting stuff/avoiding boredom vs. using what’s available as a means to improve. I see the sense but I am also lazy. My desire to improve only gets me so far and then I need something else to take over for a while. But in either case there isn’t really anything appropriate for my level in Icelandic (that I’m aware of). Maybe I’ll start mixing in VLÍ episodes again.

Other: Finnish is back and Croatian is out. For now anyway. Yes yes I keep changing my mind. I think I'm going to blame tiia for laying out the logic one page back ;) And to be even more honest I'm on a Nordic kick and though Finnish is not North Germanic it is in the geographical area, and somehow that gives it a better reason to stick around. Just spending a couple days reviewing some material before I move onto TY unit 4. I don’t know where this is going. I often question the sense in loading on more work when I wish for less :lol:
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tiia
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby tiia » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:06 pm

Morgana wrote:I think I'm going to blame tiia for laying out the logic one page back ;)

I think I can handle being blamed for that. :D
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Corrections for entries written in Finnish, Spanish or Swedish are welcome.
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Morgana
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby Morgana » Sat Oct 20, 2018 12:52 am

Swedish hours as of the end of October 13: 740 hours, 52 minutes
Swedish hours as of the end of October 18: 755 hours, 24 minutes
Change: +14h 32m

Over the same duration, Icelandic got 2h 39m and Finnish received 1h 22m.

sigh... I'm not sure how long I'll be able to keep up an almost 3h/d pace with Swedish. When my materials feel boring or when I'm just not in the mood that day, it's challenging to stick to it. I think my best time with any language is achieved within the first 90 minutes, and after that the diminishing returns begin.

Still not 100% hating chorusing yet. I'm keeping it short on time so I don't let the frustration grow too much. Ollie Kjellin is on to something when he says he doesn't bother with IPA. I also was browsing Reddit and saw this comment, talking about German:
anonlymouse wrote:You're actually supposed to do the work with your tongue, your lips only play a minimal role. Of course that's not how the vowels are ever taught. With ü you're always taught to round your lips and try to say eee. It works, kind of, but natives don't talk like that. What they should be saying is to keep your mouth relaxed and keep playing with your tongue shape and position until you get the sound right.
My gut is telling me this person is correct, and not just about German ü.

Starting Finnish made me take note of where the IPA is flawed, because the Finnish /y/ doesn't sound like the Swedish /y/ to me, and yet they are both /y/. And I've succeeded at making neither of them by "making the /i/ sound with protruded lips." The IPA is at best a guide and at worst has been ruining my ability to perceive things as they are.

So a new side project while I chorus is to forget all about what I've "learned" from the IPA and try to trust my ears.

I'm enjoying the conversations going on in Expug's, Systematiker's, and Xmmm's logs at the moment. It will be interesting to see what comes out of the changes Xmmm's making to his approach.

I think there is value in working on what you want to work on right now, instead of some day. I also know there are only 24 hours in a day and maybe I want too much. (I want it all and I want it now.)
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Izabela
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby Izabela » Sat Oct 20, 2018 12:26 pm

Morgana wrote:I think there is value in working on what you want to work on right now, instead of some day. I also know there are only 24 hours in a day and maybe I want too much. (I want it all and I want it now.)


I like to think I've learned patience over time, but I know that feeling. I've tried as much as possible to take enjoyment in the process of getting along the way to what you want and console myself that now is going to be later, so make this now a step along the way to the end goal.
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Morgana
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby Morgana » Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:04 am

Izabela wrote:
Morgana wrote:I think there is value in working on what you want to work on right now, instead of some day. I also know there are only 24 hours in a day and maybe I want too much. (I want it all and I want it now.)


I like to think I've learned patience over time, but I know that feeling. I've tried as much as possible to take enjoyment in the process of getting along the way to what you want and console myself that now is going to be later, so make this now a step along the way to the end goal.
Yeah... I've been working slowly over time to drop expectations and enjoy where I am, but it's very much a work in progress and I still have moments (more like days/weeks :oops: ) where I am living in the future or loading too much "enjoyment" onto my plate as if I'm racing to some end. It is a process.

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I learned something cool today in Finnish!! It didn't click while I was doing the lesson, but later, while cleaning up after dinner it just went BAM! in my head and I got excited about it. Prelude: today I finally moved onto something new in Finnish. It was lesson 9 in the Absolute Beginner season of FinnishPod101. It taught the genitive case! (I think I've been exposed to five cases now? Or rather taught, I've likely been exposed to more without realizing.) And the ending for that is -n, and the thing that clicked while doing the dishes was minun, sinun, etc! With the stems and everything! Hahaha. Sorry it's probably just me who finds this exciting.

In Icelandic, I finished working through reading 1 of unit 7. Next up are several pages of grammar notes and exercises, and then dialogue 1. I had a pre-readthrough of that dialogue today and it seems semi-transparent already, so hopefully this unit will flow rather well now that I'm through the first reading. I know it's going to get to explaining the cases a bit more before the unit's over, and I hope that's not too much to digest at the time.

Watching a short chunk of Eiðurinn today, it sounded clearer than most of the rest of everything I've watched in Icelandic. Or maybe not listening to anything for a few days just helped me forget how bad things are :lol:

Not much to say about Swedish. Reading, listening, Anki. Didn't have time for chorusing today. I've been thinking about time tracking especially since putting the pressure on with Swedish, and how I don't really like to track my hours. I need some kind of accountability system, because without it I slack right off, start doing bare minimums each day like only doing Anki reviews, or do nothing at all. Weeks pass, I wonder why the heck I feel so stuck. But maybe once these 1000 Swedish hours are done I can switch to a system that holds me accountable but doesn’t demand every last minute be tracked and logged on a spreadsheet. Tracking as I do has and does prevent(ed) me from doing things spontaneously. It creates this artificial division between my Swedish (or any TL) time and the rest of my time. It'd be nice to feel free to turn to Swedish when I have only a few minutes to spare, or when I'm distracted by something else but want to have something going in the background, etc.

So my current idea is come January first I'm going to hang one of those big year-long calendars up on my wall above my desk and do the Seinfeld calendar thing (a bit more info here too), regardless of where I’m at with those 1000 hours (hopefully nearly done). No more spreadsheet. Just an X on the calendar if I get X minutes done each day.

I don't know. It's an idea.
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StringerBell
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby StringerBell » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:58 pm

Morgana wrote: I still have moments (more like days/weeks :oops: ) where I am living in the future or loading too much "enjoyment" onto my plate as if I'm racing to some end. It is a process.


This reminds me of something I heard on an Italiano Automatico podcast. Alberto was discussing that language learning is like hiking to the top of a really high mountain, in that we tend to be hyper focused on the goal - reaching the top with the beautiful vista - so we don't really enjoy the hike on the way up. But after we get to the top, it's cool for a few minutes, but then that's it. It's done. So instead, it's better to take our time while we're hiking up (i.e. while learning a language) and enjoy the process of getting there, rather than seeing it as work to get through. When I start getting frustrated that I'm not reaching that summit quick enough, I remind myself to slow down and just enjoy where I am.

Morgana wrote:Not much to say about Swedish. Reading, listening, Anki. Didn't have time for chorusing today. I've been thinking about time tracking especially since putting the pressure on with Swedish, and how I don't really like to track my hours. I need some kind of accountability system, because without it I slack right off, start doing bare minimums each day like only doing Anki reviews, or do nothing at all. Weeks pass, I wonder why the heck I feel so stuck. But maybe once these 1000 Swedish hours are done I can switch to a system that holds me accountable but doesn’t demand every last minute be tracked and logged on a spreadsheet. Tracking as I do has and does prevent(ed) me from doing things spontaneously. It creates this artificial division between my Swedish (or any TL) time and the rest of my time. It'd be nice to feel free to turn to Swedish when I have only a few minutes to spare, or when I'm distracted by something else but want to have something going in the background, etc.

So my current idea is come January first I'm going to hang one of those big year-long calendars up on my wall above my desk and do the Seinfeld calendar thing (a bit more info here too), regardless of where I’m at with those 1000 hours (hopefully nearly done). No more spreadsheet. Just an X on the calendar if I get X minutes done each day.

I don't know. It's an idea.


This sounds like a great idea! I use the timer on my phone and start/stop it to track Polish. I don't reset the timer at all until I've reached my goal for the day, so it's easy to do 10-20 minutes here and there if needed.

I don't track time with Italian at all, but I do find that having some kind of goal (now it's my speaking and reading articles challenges) is really important for me in terms of being accountable. I keep a calendar on the fridge where everyday I write down how much time I spent speaking Italian. Many days, I really didn't want to do it, but knowing I'd have to write a big, fat zero for that day made me motivated to speak even though it might have been 9pm and the last thing I really wanted to do. So I think your calendar has a great chance of success!
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Polish goal: 1100 hours in 2018 : 994 / 1100
Italian "Output Challenge": 250 hours speaking Oct 2018-Sept 2019 : 29 / 200
Italian "Super Article Challenge": read 500 articles : 237 / 500

Morgana
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby Morgana » Wed Oct 24, 2018 4:50 am

A few days where the hours weren't where I wanted (life!!) and now I'm getting back on track.

Wanderlust has tried to lead me astray again (again!!! :x ). I'm getting really tired of this. I think the particular points of weakness are boredom, or fatigue, or feeling trapped by my own routine. Wanderlust is a (false) way out of the rut. Wanderlust feels new, it's invigorating, it demands changing things up, and it derails and overwhelms and fizzles out after a few days/weeks.

I'm actually feeling a bit zapped already right now with three languages. I keep claiming Finnish isn't serious, Finnish is just dabbling, but it requires the same kind of thinking and effort (and discipline :? ) as the "serious" languages do, and so far I'm not so good at limiting time spent. Trying to keep things to 30-minutes-or-less... might as well be in one of those hamster wheels. You do your 30 minutes everyday but do you get anywhere? Yes, but it's really slow. I want to be zen and live in the moment and enjoy it! But I'm no master of mindfulness so maybe I'm better off keeping the amount of things that currently require conscious effort to be present to a more manageable level.

But it's the cycle: wanderlust -> add language(s) -> feel overwhelmed/too short on time -> quit extra language(s) -> wanderlust again

Or heck sometimes you engage in the dabbling and the wanderlust is still there anyway! As I have recently learned. It's almost like wanderlust is not the solution to whatever the problem is that is causing wanderlust :P

It's also similar to dieting: if you're relying on willpower alone to stick to a plan, you eventually run out of the ability to say no to the ice cream in the freezer. So you better not keep ice cream in the freezer. Cut down on temptations so that making the choice to stick to the plan is easier.

Won't update about the languages individually because it's just the same old, except...

Chorusing, meh. I'm so done with trying to make myself speak because other people think that's something people should do when they learn a language. Why do I keep losing sight of the things I want? Why do I let other people's ideas about language learning make me feel like I'm doing it wrong...

Lest other people feel that this log update is a whole pile of negative, I wish to inform you, dear reader, that I am indeed having a good time with Swedish and Icelandic, that I feel very positively about these two and usually wake up everyday eager for when I'll have time to get studying.
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MamaPata
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby MamaPata » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:24 am

Morgana wrote:Chorusing, meh. I'm so done with trying to make myself speak because other people think that's something people should do when they learn a language. Why do I keep losing sight of the things I want? Why do I let other people's ideas about language learning make me feel like I'm doing it wrong....


All of this! It's so easy to look at other people's choices and try and force yourself to do something unnatural for you, because people with experience recommend it.

This forum often puts a big emphasis on pronunciation, which is obviously great and has many benefits. So I keep thinking that maybe I ought to iron out my errors, do some focused work etc. But I hate pronunciation work and I have no interest in having a "perfect" accent. And so the circle goes round!
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zjones
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby zjones » Wed Oct 24, 2018 3:37 pm

Morgana wrote:Chorusing, meh. I'm so done with trying to make myself speak because other people think that's something people should do when they learn a language. Why do I keep losing sight of the things I want? Why do I let other people's ideas about language learning make me feel like I'm doing it wrong...


I'm with MamaPata, this sentiment is so relatable! It took me forever to let go of the guilty feeling that I should be using Anki, SRS and flashcard systems, even though I really don't like doing them. Remember that language-learning is very holistic, so you can often find different ways to get the same results... or even decide to stop worrying about those results in the first place! Don't let a random method of language-learning stop you from having a great time with your languages.

So, what do you want to do instead? Are you interested in becoming conversational? Improving your pronunciation? Do you care about speaking just because other people tell you that's what languages are for? You don't need to answer those questions, but think about them. :)
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Morgana
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Re: Morgana's Swedish & Icelandic log

Postby Morgana » Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:34 pm

MamaPata wrote:
Morgana wrote:Chorusing, meh. I'm so done with trying to make myself speak because other people think that's something people should do when they learn a language. Why do I keep losing sight of the things I want? Why do I let other people's ideas about language learning make me feel like I'm doing it wrong....


All of this! It's so easy to look at other people's choices and try and force yourself to do something unnatural for you, because people with experience recommend it.

This forum often puts a big emphasis on pronunciation, which is obviously great and has many benefits. So I keep thinking that maybe I ought to iron out my errors, do some focused work etc. But I hate pronunciation work and I have no interest in having a "perfect" accent. And so the circle goes round!

zjones wrote:I'm with MamaPata, this sentiment is so relatable! It took me forever to let go of the guilty feeling that I should be using Anki, SRS and flashcard systems, even though I really don't like doing them. Remember that language-learning is very holistic, so you can often find different ways to get the same results... or even decide to stop worrying about those results in the first place! Don't let a random method of language-learning stop you from having a great time with your languages.

So, what do you want to do instead? Are you interested in becoming conversational? Improving your pronunciation? Do you care about speaking just because other people tell you that's what languages are for? You don't need to answer those questions, but think about them. :)

Thanks for the moral support, MamaPata and zjones :) I do enjoy the forum and am always encouraged reading about other people's experiences, but I am also a bit easily swayed by the trending opinions. I need to go back and remind myself from time to time what I do and don't care about. From the linked post: "I just want to listen, and I just want to read," and "I couldn't give a toss about production." :!: My feelings have not changed since then.

It's been very important for me to have put some thought into why I'm doing this whole language learning thing, what I expect to get from it, what is realistic for me to expect given my personality and my life circumstances, and what are deal-breakers in all of that, eg. if I have to do something I really hate in order to be successful, then I don't think things are going to work out. This is a hobby after all, a 100% optional past time. If I'm not enjoying it, I've got two options: make it enjoyable, or get rid of it.
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