The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

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Lianne
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Posts: 422
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:29 pm
Location: Canada
Languages: Speaks: English (N)
Actively studying: French (low int), Italian (beginner)
Dabbling in: ASL (beginner)
Wish list: Swedish, Esperanto, Klingon, Brazilian Portuguese
Has also dabbled in: German, Spanish, toki pona, Swahili
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... hp?t=12275
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The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Lianne » Fri Jan 03, 2020 12:10 am

The French continues! The Italian begins! There may also be some dabbling in ASL, if I'm being honest!

My previous log, which includes links to all older logs and other various background information, is here: Lianne's 365 Days of French

French
I'm starting 2020 at sort of a vaguely intermediate level in French. Here are some things I wanna get done this year:
- Finish the last little bit of Pimsleur French V (pretty soon)
- Finish the Duolingo French tree (it's huge so this will take a while)
- Finish Kwiziq (my premium month is about to run out so this will be very slow on the free version)
- Spend more time on Memrise Decks boosting my vocabulary
- Read 2500 pages in 2020 (up from 1785 pages in 2019)
- Keep watching lots of TV
- Do some writing and get it corrected (I hate this but I know I must)
- Actually speak?? In French?? To people???

Italian
I am a complete beginner! I am using a combination of French and English resources to study Italian. I've gathered a bunch of stuff to start with, and will keep/abandon them based on how much I like them in the next couple of weeks. Here are some resources I've gathered:
- Duolingo French -> Italian tree
- Pimsleur Italian I, lessons 1-16 (that's all the library has)
- Assimil le nouvel italien sans peine
- Learn in Your Car Italian (9 hours of audio)
- Méthode 90: Italien Débutant Pratique de Base
- Adesso! An Introduction to Italian (the textbook from when I took Introduction to Italian in university; I dropped the course but I may as well make use of the textbook if I can!)
- Italian at a Glance (a phrasebook from when I took a trip to Italy in high school)
- Memrise course Italien 1 (French-based official Italian course. There are 7 levels so if I like it there's more where this came from!)

In 2019 I participated in the 365 Day Challenge and studied French for a minimum of 30 minutes per day. This year I have signed up for the 366 Day Challenge in French and also in generic (Italian, French), which means that I must study French for at least 30 minutes, and then have another 30 minutes of either Italian or more French.
11 x
: 2 / 100 French SC (Books)
: 4 / 100 French SC (Films)
: 1 / 50 Italian Half SC (Books)
: 3 / 50 Italian Half SC (Films)

: 377 / 2500 Reading 2500 pages of French in 2020 (updated June 5)

Pronouns: she/her

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Lianne
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Posts: 422
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:29 pm
Location: Canada
Languages: Speaks: English (N)
Actively studying: French (low int), Italian (beginner)
Dabbling in: ASL (beginner)
Wish list: Swedish, Esperanto, Klingon, Brazilian Portuguese
Has also dabbled in: German, Spanish, toki pona, Swahili
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... hp?t=12275
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Lianne » Sat Jan 04, 2020 8:33 am

French
Jan. 1:
1 hour, 40 minutes Kwiziq

Jan. 2:
50 minutes Kwiziq

Jan. 3:
2 hours, 10 minutes Kwiziq

And with that, my month of Kwiziq premium has reached its end! On the one hand I'm relieved that I am no longer under pressure to do SO MUCH, but on the other hand I am sad that it's done, because I'm not done all the material and it will be extremely slow going on a free membership. My plan now is to go back over all the grammar points that gave me trouble along the way, and write sentences out on paper to practice them. And then I'll make sure I get my 10 free tests each month.

And actually I am quite proud of what I managed to plough through in that month and a bit. I started with the easiest stuff and got my scores up to 100% on A0 and A1, 96.02% on A2, and 75.55% on B1. I studied every topic in A0-B1; some of them just aren't at full strength yet. In terms of what I've learned, I feel like I've made more progress than ever before on verb conjugations that I've only touched on before. I can conjugate imparfait, conditionnel, and futur for a lot of verbs! I usually know whether I'm supposed to be using imparfait or passé composé! I'm quite pleased. (Also, I used to feel stupid because I didn't feel like I could confidently conjugate all verbs in the present tense, but now I know that that's actually totally reasonable lol; there were literally still irregular verbs popping up in present tense in the B1 section. It is not straightforward at all.)

I've never managed to get an image to successfully display on this site before, and apparently today is no exception to that rule, so here's a link to the image if you wanna see my Kwiziq brain map as of right now!


Italian
Jan. 1:
30 minutes Duolingo

Jan. 2:
20 minutes watching YouTube videos on the Italian alphabet and pronunciation
12 minutes Memrise - Italien 1

Jan. 3:
21 minutes Memrise - Italien 1
10 minutes Duolingo

My first few days of Italian are as much an experience in being a beginner in a language as they are about actually learning that language! I'm experiencing some frustration with the way beginner information is presented. I keep finding that there's specific info that I want, but when I look it up, I find it hidden in long blog posts that try to sell me things. :roll: I guess with French I'm usually looking up more advanced topics, plus I already know some good sites, so I don't have this problem so much. And don't even get me started on the YouTube videos for beginners! It's like, I know how language works. Please, just please tell me what all the subject pronouns are! :lol:

Anywho, aside from that, I find the pronunciation easy, but I have to be careful not to let my French pronunciation seep into it. (Tu is like too, not tu! Er, not like that other tu!) And the vocab is a mix, with some being super easy (passively, at least) because it's so much like French, and then suddenly there'll be a word like sbagliarsi. :shock:
5 x
: 2 / 100 French SC (Books)
: 4 / 100 French SC (Films)
: 1 / 50 Italian Half SC (Books)
: 3 / 50 Italian Half SC (Films)

: 377 / 2500 Reading 2500 pages of French in 2020 (updated June 5)

Pronouns: she/her

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badger
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intermediate: French
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Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... p?p=135580
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby badger » Sat Jan 04, 2020 9:48 am

Lianne wrote:- Actually speak?? In French?? To people???
what a horrifying idea! :shock:
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StringerBell
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby StringerBell » Sat Jan 04, 2020 2:25 pm

Lianne wrote:My first few days of Italian are as much an experience in being a beginner in a language as they are about actually learning that language! I'm experiencing some frustration with the way beginner information is presented. I keep finding that there's specific info that I want, but when I look it up, I find it hidden in long blog posts that try to sell me things. :roll: I guess with French I'm usually looking up more advanced topics, plus I already know some good sites, so I don't have this problem so much. And don't even get me started on the YouTube videos for beginners! It's like, I know how language works. Please, just please tell me what all the subject pronouns are! :lol:
:


Have you tried the YT channel Italy Made Easy? This is the best channel I've found for short and sweet Italian grammar/vocabulary explanations. The creator is Manu, who taught Italian at the university level in Australia for years. His videos are really well done, his explanations are really clear and concise, and he uses lots of examples that are helpful. I still refer to his videos when I get stuck on some grammar topic or I just want a refresher. He also has some videos where instead of explaining grammar he narrates what he's doing or seeing (slowly and enunciating clearly) on various topics to help people practice listening comprehension.
2 x
Italian: Read 5,000 pages : 2045 / 5000
Italian: Write 50,000 words : 9100 / 50000
Season 4 Lucifer Italian transcripts I created: https://learnanylanguage.fandom.com/wik ... ranscripts

User avatar
Lianne
Green Belt
Posts: 422
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:29 pm
Location: Canada
Languages: Speaks: English (N)
Actively studying: French (low int), Italian (beginner)
Dabbling in: ASL (beginner)
Wish list: Swedish, Esperanto, Klingon, Brazilian Portuguese
Has also dabbled in: German, Spanish, toki pona, Swahili
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... hp?t=12275
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Lianne » Sat Jan 04, 2020 6:55 pm

badger wrote:
Lianne wrote:- Actually speak?? In French?? To people???
what a horrifying idea! :shock:

I know! It was unsettling just writing it down!
StringerBell wrote:Have you tried the YT channel Italy Made Easy? This is the best channel I've found for short and sweet Italian grammar/vocabulary explanations. The creator is Manu, who taught Italian at the university level in Australia for years. His videos are really well done, his explanations are really clear and concise, and he uses lots of examples that are helpful. I still refer to his videos when I get stuck on some grammar topic or I just want a refresher. He also has some videos where instead of explaining grammar he narrates what he's doing or seeing (slowly and enunciating clearly) on various topics to help people practice listening comprehension.

Yes, I did find that one! That's actually where I watched a few videos on the alphabet and pronunciation. I didn't check out anything else on his channel but did subscribe so I'll probably go back and check it out.
1 x
: 2 / 100 French SC (Books)
: 4 / 100 French SC (Films)
: 1 / 50 Italian Half SC (Books)
: 3 / 50 Italian Half SC (Films)

: 377 / 2500 Reading 2500 pages of French in 2020 (updated June 5)

Pronouns: she/her

Cavesa
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Posts: 3811
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Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Cavesa » Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:35 pm

A great log! I wish you all the best in 2020!

Actually speak?? In French?? To people???
Remember the Grumpy Cat. People are overrated. So, don't worry about either speaking to some or not, books are usually better anyways ;-) :-D

Do some writing and get it corrected (I hate this but I know I must)
If you find a good source of corrections, I'd love to hear about it! I am looking forward to reading about your writing adventures!

I started with the easiest stuff and got my scores up to 100% on A0 and A1, 96.02% on A2, and 75.55% on B1.
Yay! Congratulations! This is awesome progress. And I totally get your feelings about the verbs. It is such a relief to not have to worry about them anymore and just use them as needed. You are on a good way towards that goal and have learnt so much! Your brain map is beautiful. Btw do you know what the white spots mean? I haven't got them but my bf does (he started a few months ago, so it is probably something new)

I just wonder: do you still find any value in Duolingo (as you basically know the content superficially covered there from other sources, mainly Kwiziq and Memrise,...) or are you finishing it just to not leave it incomplete?

Btw I love your Italian plans!

I guess with French I'm usually looking up more advanced topics, plus I already know some good sites, so I don't have this problem so much. And don't even get me started on the YouTube videos for beginners! It's like, I know how language works. Please, just please tell me what all the subject pronouns are! :lol:


Do you want to kick your Italian to a more useful level very fast? :-) There is no Kwiziq, but there is something like the Progressives. Una grammatica italiana per tutti 1 is a grammar that doesn't beat around the bush, gives you the basics (volume 1 covers A1 and A2, and definitely lets you read online non fiction of the more interesting kind), some good exercises, and it really made me use Italian right away. Perhaps you'll like it too :-)
2 x

User avatar
Lianne
Green Belt
Posts: 422
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:29 pm
Location: Canada
Languages: Speaks: English (N)
Actively studying: French (low int), Italian (beginner)
Dabbling in: ASL (beginner)
Wish list: Swedish, Esperanto, Klingon, Brazilian Portuguese
Has also dabbled in: German, Spanish, toki pona, Swahili
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... hp?t=12275
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Lianne » Mon Jan 06, 2020 11:26 pm

Cavesa wrote:Your brain map is beautiful. Btw do you know what the white spots mean? I haven't got them but my bf does (he started a few months ago, so it is probably something new)

Hmm, it doesn't say in the legend where it says what all the colours mean. I *think* those are ones that had previously shown up as light yellow, because I had gotten a question right in the test that you take when you sign up. And then they went to white after not being studied again. Because I'm pretty sure there used to be some yellow in B2.

I just wonder: do you still find any value in Duolingo (as you basically know the content superficially covered there from other sources, mainly Kwiziq and Memrise,...) or are you finishing it just to not leave it incomplete?

Honestly, probably a bit of both. I haven't been enjoying Duolingo as much lately, but that's a pretty recent change. I had completed the old French tree, and felt like I learned a lot from it. When they released the newer, bigger tree, I thought it would be a good way to boost my vocabulary, because I've always felt like Duolingo is one of the ways I learn vocabulary the easiest. (I'm directly translating things, unlike while reading, but it's also in the context of sentences, unlike most of what I've done on Memrise.) That being said, I feel like the amount of new vocabulary I'm learning vs the amount of time I'm spending on it may not be worth it. Maybe if I were more aggressive about testing out of levels once I'm getting the hang of it, it would be better.

Do you want to kick your Italian to a more useful level very fast? :-) There is no Kwiziq, but there is something like the Progressives. Una grammatica italiana per tutti 1 is a grammar that doesn't beat around the bush, gives you the basics (volume 1 covers A1 and A2, and definitely lets you read online non fiction of the more interesting kind), some good exercises, and it really made me use Italian right away. Perhaps you'll like it too :-)

Thanks for the suggestion! I have located a copy of this one and will definitely check it out. But, one concern: it's written in Italian! :lol: How much Italian do I need to already know to be able to read it? I have been in French classes where excerpts from all-French textbooks were used, but those were also with a teacher there to explain what we were doing, and I wasn't a complete beginner either. Diving straight into an all-Italian textbook seems a bit intimidating!! Though I do like the idea of working through a grammar and getting straight to the point.

Thank you for your in-depth insights and questions, Cavesa! :)
3 x
: 2 / 100 French SC (Books)
: 4 / 100 French SC (Films)
: 1 / 50 Italian Half SC (Books)
: 3 / 50 Italian Half SC (Films)

: 377 / 2500 Reading 2500 pages of French in 2020 (updated June 5)

Pronouns: she/her

Cavesa
Black Belt - 3rd Dan
Posts: 3811
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:46 am
Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Cavesa » Tue Jan 07, 2020 7:35 pm

Lianne wrote:But, one concern: it's written in Italian! :lol: How much Italian do I need to already know to be able to read it? I have been in French classes where excerpts from all-French textbooks were used, but those were also with a teacher there to explain what we were doing, and I wasn't a complete beginner either.


That's the coolest part: you're not a complete beginner. Comprehension of the bit of vocab and the terminology won't be any problem, and the amount of dictionary searching needed should be definitely low enough to not burden you :-)
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Lianne
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Posts: 422
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:29 pm
Location: Canada
Languages: Speaks: English (N)
Actively studying: French (low int), Italian (beginner)
Dabbling in: ASL (beginner)
Wish list: Swedish, Esperanto, Klingon, Brazilian Portuguese
Has also dabbled in: German, Spanish, toki pona, Swahili
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... hp?t=12275
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Lianne » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:29 pm

Cavesa wrote:That's the coolest part: you're not a complete beginner. Comprehension of the bit of vocab and the terminology won't be any problem, and the amount of dictionary searching needed should be definitely low enough to not burden you :-)

I'm not a complete beginner? This is news to me! :lol:


French:
Jan. 4:
30 minutes Duolingo

Jan. 5:
30 minutes reading Miss Peregrine et les enfants particuliers (11 pages)

Jan. 6:
30 minutes reading Le Nouvel Italien Sans Peine (6 pages, introduction and part of lesson 0)

Jan. 7:
30 minutes watching L'Alchimie de Noël (The Knight Before Christmas)

Jan. 8
30 minutes watching L'Alchimie de Noël (The Knight Before Christmas)


Italian:
Jan. 4:
20 minutes Memrise Italien 1
10 minutes Duolingo

Jan. 5:
30 minutes Memrise Italien 1

Jan. 6:
30 minutes Memrise Italien 1

Jan. 7:
30 minutes Pimsleur Italian 1, lesson 1

Jan. 8:
18 minutes watching Peppa Pig (Italian audio, English subs)
12 minutes reading the grammar section of my Italian phrasebook

Ugh, this year is starting off weak. I've been sick since before the new year, although I finally feel like I'm coming out of it. I probably have not had a proper full night's sleep yet in 2020. Every day I have to drag myself to get to 30 minutes in each language. Like, I literally split a Netflix Christmas movie into 30 minute chunks. Thank goodness it's Thursday!
1 x
: 2 / 100 French SC (Books)
: 4 / 100 French SC (Films)
: 1 / 50 Italian Half SC (Books)
: 3 / 50 Italian Half SC (Films)

: 377 / 2500 Reading 2500 pages of French in 2020 (updated June 5)

Pronouns: she/her

Cavesa
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Posts: 3811
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Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
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Re: The Bee's Knees: Lianne starts the 20s with French and Italian

Postby Cavesa » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:48 pm

Lianne wrote:
Cavesa wrote:That's the coolest part: you're not a complete beginner. Comprehension of the bit of vocab and the terminology won't be any problem, and the amount of dictionary searching needed should be definitely low enough to not burden you :-)

I'm not a complete beginner? This is news to me! :lol:


You're not, you already know French. It's good news :-D

Really. Last year, I took the French medical exams for residency. There were Italians taking the same exam without having ever learnt French. Yeah, they sucked just like me, but it was not because of the language (it was because of the worse conditions for preparation compared to the locals). They were lost in any simple spoken organisational information. But they were quite ok with the written exam, thanks to the significant similarity.

Of course, you shouldn't overestimate this. It is still a new language, it will take a lot of efforts to learn it to a solid level. But the head-start is huge. Especially in areas like using monolingual resources for beginners right away. And early reading of rather advanced stuff.
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