hi, all! january is treating us pretty nicely around here although there is none of that typical lovely january snow thing that usually occurs right about now. even though the days are dark and short, i’m feeling kind of pumped right now. the dust has finally settled after the holidays and all of the decorations are put away, leaving only the space for something new. that is really exciting to me. sure, i’m pretty stoked about the arrival of longer days and more light (because i am just such a day/light/warm temperature person), but i’m happy there’s still loads of time to cuddle up with books and cups of tea.
so, the new year. not only am i hoping to have music as more of a presence in my life this year, i really want to work on my language learning. if you are a new-ish reader, maybe you are not aware that i’ve been studying both german (for 11+ years – eek) and czech (2+ years) in my free time when i’m not teaching, trip planning, or any of the other things i get up to.
now. there are so many levels of “studying a language”. someone spending one in class hour a weekday can say they are studying a language. someone who does only duolingo on their phone can also say they are studying a language.
(and yes, this is exactly how i’ve ended up studying german for over eleven years and yet i’m still only at an intermediate level… that and the near absence of any language schools in seattle).
i have made really, really good gains in 2017 with language, especially german. BUT. but… i know i can do a lot better.
i’ve devised myself a daily schedule and a list of things to do to practice language. these things include, but are not limited to…
– doing homework (first and foremost thing)
– watch a serial / tv show in target language
– watch favorite language learning series (i personally adore easygerman)
– study vocabulary
– watch a movie (or just part of one)
– read something: a comic, a magazine, or book
– read a news article online or in a newspaper
– find youtubers in target language; watch
– read a blog post in a target language
– do online practice (many coursebook publishers offer this exclusively with purchase of their book)
these are all relatively entertaining, interesting things that i think i can do (at least) one of per day. in addition to these things – because studying even one language takes time, and time is hard to round up sometimes – i want to cut out mindless social media usage in favor of any of the above.
i am also planning to take an intensive language course this summer (two weeks long as a minimum, 4 hours a day of classes) which i think will really give me an edge (or some kind of push. or something) that i had been longing for the past few years.
not to mention, we’ve just booked a post school year vacation to france (provence & côte d’azur!) so i will be (lightly… delicately) adding a third language in there at some point in the spring. as uncle jesse from full house always said: “have mercy!”
so far, i have tried a new thing: watching random tv in the target language. somebody, please tell me this is going to pay off in the end like everyone says it will!
if you are studying a language, what’s your favorite activity (besides just sitting down with a course book)? what would you add to my list?
any #languagelearning goals for yourself this year?