Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby StringerBell » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:40 pm

Thanks! Now that I know this, I might motivate myself to make a course or two in Memrise comprised of vocabulary/sentences I've mined from either TV shows or books I'm reading. I doubt it would be of interest to other people, but I think the process of creating the deck would be useful at least for me. Do you have any way to know if other people have used the Russian course you created?
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Radioclare
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Radioclare » Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:22 pm

12 August
Normally Mondays are really productive for me but I spent a lot of today dealing with people issues as opposed to doing any of the things I'd optimistically written on my Monday to-do list on Friday afternoon.

Russian
I made quite a bit more progress with the Russian 3 Memrise course on the train to work. I've only got 72 words left to learn now and I'm kinda looking forward to finishing it. I seem to have a lot of things which are almost, but not quite, finished at the moment so it will be a nice feeling to actually finish something.

I did lesson 22 of Pimsleur 3 on the way to work. The past few lessons have started practising dates. I really hate dates and I'm also really terrible at them, so this is both good and bad. I mean, good because I need to practice and bad because I find it really painful :lol: Pimsleur is another one of those things which it feels like I've been on the verge of finishing for months, but I think there are still about 10 lessons to go, which in practice means it will take me about 3 weeks to get to the end.

This evening I watched part of a Russian documentary about polyglots on Youtube. And I spent half an hour or so on my Colloquial Russian Memrise course. I've entered 115 words from chapter 11 now and uploaded all the audio, but I still have over a page of verbs to enter. Tomorrow! I forgot to say that one of the useful things about entering words in Memrise and then copy/pasting them to Forvo is that, if Forvo can't find a pronunciation, I know I've probably made a typo :lol: Typos happen all the time with my Cyrillic typing so this is a useful way of making sure that I don't accidentally learn an incorrect spelling of a word!

Total time = 122 minutes. Streak = 223 days

StringerBell wrote:Thanks! Now that I know this, I might motivate myself to make a course or two in Memrise comprised of vocabulary/sentences I've mined from either TV shows or books I'm reading. I doubt it would be of interest to other people, but I think the process of creating the deck would be useful at least for me. Do you have any way to know if other people have used the Russian course you created?


When you create the course you can choose to set the status either to "published" or "unlisted". If it's published, other people can find it and learn it too, whereas if it's unlisted it's private. For the published courses, there will be a leaderboard on the course page, so you'll be able to see who else is using the course and who's got the most points that week/month/all time. If you keep the course private, there will still be a leaderboard but you'll be the only person on it so you'll always be top of the class :lol: My Russian course is private but I've got a couple of Croatian ones which are public and I've just realised I'm only in 7th place on the all-time leaderboard for one of them and 3rd place for the other, so other people are obviously enjoying them more than me :lol:
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby cjareck » Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:43 pm

Isn't агенство rather an agency than an agent?
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Radioclare
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Radioclare » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:03 pm

cjareck wrote:Isn't агенство rather an agency than an agent?


Yes, you're correct :D I guess in English I use "estate agent" sloppily to mean both the person and the business.
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Radioclare
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Radioclare » Tue Aug 13, 2019 8:58 pm

13 August
I was working in Birmingham today but going to another firm of accountants to review files for a new client I'm taking on.

Russian
Because I was going somewhere slightly different, I didn't do any Pimsleur this morning. I still had to walk to get there, so I could technically have done it, but I just felt like I was going to be devoting more of my attention to figuring out whether I was walking the right way than I would have been to Russian grammar.

I did do lots of Russian Memrise on the train though. I didn't have too many reviews this morning so I got through the bulk of them before my train even arrived and was able to make more progress with new vocabulary.

This evening I've been working on adding more verb pairs to my course. I think I've got them all typed up now, but I'm leaving adding the rest of the audio until tomorrow night.

Total time = 56 minutes. Streak = 224 days
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Radioclare
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Radioclare » Wed Aug 14, 2019 9:50 pm

14 August
Worked from home today. And got some good news that the planned strike at Heathrow has been postponed, so it looks like I will be going to Spain the weekend after next after all :)

Russian
Because I was working from home today I didn't do any studying until about 8pm. When I logged into Memrise at that point I had a crazy amount of reviews again, so I spent 36 minutes in total which was just enough to get through the reviews and learn 10 news words on Memrise 3. I'm making progress with the course though; only about 40 words to go through.

Once I'd done that I continued working through the list of verb pairs in Colloquial Russian. It was very dull, but I've finally got all the audio uploaded. So now all I need to do is actually learn the words! The book shows the conjugation of all the verbs as well, which I looked at for approximately 30 seconds before deciding I wanted to cry and giving up :lol: I don't think trying to memorise the stress patterns for a big list of verbs completely out of context is a good use of my time right now, so I'm not going to bother.

Total time = 52 minutes. Streak = 225 days
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Teango » Thu Aug 15, 2019 12:50 am

Radioclare wrote:When I logged into Memrise at that point I had a crazy amount of reviews again...
Once I'd done that I continued working through the list of verb pairs in Colloquial Russian. It was very dull, but I've finally got all the audio uploaded. So now all I need to do is actually learn the words! The book shows the conjugation of all the verbs as well, which I looked at for approximately 30 seconds before deciding I wanted to cry and giving up :lol: I don't think trying to memorise the stress patterns for a big list of verbs completely out of context is a good use of my time right now, so I'm not going to bother.

Anything that makes you want to cry and give up is a big warning sign...so your instincts are absolutely spot on! :)

If you find any aspect of independent study to be particularly overwhelming, or mind-numbingly dull, please feel free to bin it or attack it from a more rewarding angle! You can always set it aside for now and replace it with something that makes you smile and feel daily accomplishment instead. Don't worry, those verb conjugations won't swim away, and who knows, perhaps once you're more familiar and comfortable with Russian verbs in general, it might be interesting to return to that little lake of piranhas later on (or not).

The same goes with all those reviews nipping at your ankles every day. It sounds like misery. Believe it or not, all the most useful words and constructions will come up again; they really will. So feel free to throw them out and start afresh if they're really getting you down, or at least dramatically slim down your lists so that they don't take up more than 10-15 minutes of your time each day. It can be quite liberating and cathartic.

And I know...sunken costs...yeah...I'm all too familiar with sunken costs (especially when it comes to watching Netflix :oops:). However there are so many other things you could do right now that are much more rewarding and motivating. And there's the key...wanting and looking forward to doing activities in and through the language, not just today, but tomorrow and onwards, and ideally without the need to endure too many sharp teeth or draining currents along the way.

Take it from someone who bears the scars of initially trying to wade through textbooks, grammar tables, and flashcards the hard way... ;)
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Radioclare » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:47 pm

Teango wrote:If you find any aspect of independent study to be particularly overwhelming, or mind-numbingly dull, please feel free to bin it or attack it from a more rewarding angle! You can always set it aside for now and replace it with something that makes you smile and feel daily accomplishment instead. Don't worry, those verb conjugations won't swim away, and who knows, perhaps once you're more familiar and comfortable with Russian verbs in general, it might be interesting to return to that little lake of piranhas later on (or not).

The same goes with all those reviews nipping at your ankles every day. It sounds like misery. Believe it or not, all the most useful words and constructions will come up again; they really will. So feel free to throw them out and start afresh if they're really getting you down, or at least dramatically slim down your lists so that they don't take up more than 10-15 minutes of your time each day. It can be quite liberating and cathartic.

And I know...sunken costs...yeah...I'm all too familiar with sunken costs (especially when it comes to watching Netflix :oops:). However there are so many other things you could do right now that are much more rewarding and motivating. And there's the key...wanting and looking forward to doing activities in and through the language, not just today, but tomorrow and onwards, and ideally without the need to endure too many sharp teeth or draining currents along the way.

Take it from someone who bears the scars of initially trying to wade through textbooks, grammar tables, and flashcards the hard way... ;)


Thank you for the advice, Teango :) I thought about it this morning and decided that you were right and my reviews have indeed been pretty miserable recently :lol: So I've had a spring clean of my Memrise today and deleted three of the decks that I was using. I think that must have removed about a thousand words, so hopefully I'll have significantly fewer reviews coming up now!

The ones I deleted were the three official Memrise Russian courses I was working through; I started doing them earlier this year because they had really good audio and there were lots of words and phrases which I thought would be useful for me to practise before going to Russia. This is all true, but there were also loads of really pointless phrases that weren't of any particular use to me and I think I was just stuck in a rut of reviewing them over and over again because I'd put so much effort into memorising them in the first place.

It felt quite good to delete them anyway :) Perhaps I'll come back to them at some point! For now I'm just going to try and focus on the vocab from Colloquial Russian. I am not really a lover of SRS in general but I can't find any other way of learning vocabulary that works for me, and the two main things I'm trying to do with Russian at the moment are increase my active vocabulary and get a proper handle on the grammar. I don't really like grammar study either, but I feel like I need to press on with it because my Russian is at a weird stage where I can understand a surprising amount (mainly due to the benefit of already speaking some Croatian) but can barely string a coherent sentence together myself.

15 August
I had a meeting I was really dreading today. Dreading it has pretty much dominated my week. But it happened, and in reality it wasn't anywhere near as bad as I'd expected. I guess there's a lesson in there somewhere!

Russian
On the way back from my meeting I had 20 minutes to wait for a train so I used the time to finish the Russian 3 course. It was slightly illogical to finish it, given that I'd already decided I was going to delete it, but as I said yesterday I was only about 40 words away from the end and I'm a bit of a perfectionist, so I couldn't help myself :lol: I finished it, took a screenshot of it being finished as proof, and then deleted it.

This evening I spent a fair bit of time on the first batch of exercises in chapter 11 of Colloquial Russian. The first one gave sentences with imperfective verbs in the past tense and asked you to rewrite them with perfective verbs in the past tense. That wasn't too bad, because the past tense isn't hard. The second exercise was much tougher because it gave sentences with verbs in the imperfective future and asked you to rewrite them in the perfective future. The perfective future is definitely a weak point for me and I couldn't do most of the exercise without going back to the verb list and looking up the conjugations.

Total time = 93 minutes. Streak = 226 days
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby rdearman » Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:01 pm

Worrying is like paying a debt that you don't owe.
-- Mark Twain
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Re: Radioclare's 2019 log (Croatian/Russian)

Postby Radioclare » Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:05 pm

Sound advice from rdearman, but worrying is one of my key skills :lol:

16 August
I was in the office today and had a lot of frustration dealing with a HR matter, which meant I felt like I didn't get a lot of actual 'work' done. Definitely one of those Fridays where half the to-do list gets rolled forward to Monday!

Russian
Well I definitely felt the benefit of deleting Memrise courses this morning; I logged in and only had 8 words to review :D So that was quite refreshing and meant I could spend some time getting to grips with the new vocab in my current Colloquial chapter.

I'm up to lesson 23 of Pimsleur 3 now. The main thing I remember from today's lesson was learning how to say I wanted to open a bank account. Probably not a phrase I'll ever actually use! But there continues to be some practice of dates and times, which is useful. I feel like I'm slowly starting to get a bit better at them.

This evening I watched a video about learning Polish and was pleasantly surprised how much I understood (of the Russian, I mean, not of any Polish :lol:). Then I made some more progress with the grammar in chapter 11 of Colloquial Russian. Now I've got past all these verb lists there's finally an explanation of when to use which aspect, so I took notes on that this evening but stopped short of doing the exercises.

I know some people aren't into tracking time but I find it really useful to time what I do in Russian. When I was working through Colloquial Russian just now, I finished making notes on the imperfective aspect and I felt like I had literally been studying Russian grammar for ages and could legitimately give up and leave the perfective aspect for tomorrow. But when I looked over at my timer, I could see that it had actually only been 9 minutes! So then I was able to tell myself to get a grip and tackle the perfective aspect too :lol: I just think it's interesting how my perception of how long things are take is sometimes so skewed. I could spend 9 minutes on Twitter in a flash and yet I spent most of 2018 convinced that I didn't have time for any Russian grammar.

Total time = 100 minutes. Streak = 227 days
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