6WC November 2015: Progress Report #004

Hey guys! It’s Friday already, yay! Anyone else looking forward to the weekend? I know I am.

But for now, it’s time again for me to leave a little update about my 6WC progress. So, off we go!

6WC November PR 004

Time logged to date: 1982 minutes (33 hours, 2 minutes)
Time spent learning Slovak: 695 minutes (11 hours, 35 minutes)

Alright, so there’s been yet another big leap here. In the last three days, I’ve clocked about twelve more hours of study, of which four and a half hours are for Slovak. I’m impressed – and surprised. I genuinely tend to lose interest around this point of any 6WC, but I think it’s this new aspect of it, where I’ve committed myself to logging progress every few days, that’s driving me to keep going. I would highly recommend it; I know that no one is going to get mad at me if I miss an update or don’t study, but having the public declaration there is pretty good motivation.

But anyway, onto the languages themselves. And first, Slovak. First point – I’m still making slow but steady progress through the Colloquial Slovak book. I’m still a little confused by the difference between perfective and imperfective verbs, but I’m beginning to recognise them, so that’s good. I can mostly recognise the past tense in the dialogues and I’m not failing at the exercises as much as I was in September or October (when I studied at all).

A lot of that time the last few days, though, has been spent making flashcards and doing stuff with Anki. I guess maybe that’s not studying in the strictest sense of the word, but it involves me looking up the term from Gabriel Wyner’s list of the first 625 words you should learn (though, clay? Really?) and then searching for the pronunciation and a picture – and so far, I’m finding that my recall is doing pretty well. I’m trying to learn 30 new words a day through Anki, so I need to step it up with making the flashcards (and I need to see if my interest in this method holds out), but it seems to be working a lot better than what I was doing before.

My plan is to get through that 625 word list and then make a new deck with the words from Colloquial Slovak. I am, of course, still using Memrise, but there are certain words that just come up over and over and I need to drill them into my head somehow.

I wasn’t so great on German this Tuesday – all I did was read for fifteen minutes – but it’s a German day again today and I need to prepare tomorrow’s Kind 44 post, so that should step it up a little. I also need to find a TV show to watch in German that I actually can stay interested in, so if you guys have any suggestions, they’d be much appreciated!

Mandarin is going well. Wednesday was my day off, so I spent a lot of my day watching 花千骨, as well as chipping away at that final lesson in NPCR 4. I have some more reading to do and then it’s finished; I’m hoping it’ll either be Saturday or next week that I’ll finish it. I also read the first chapter of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, while listening to the audio, so that was fun. I’m hoping I’ll get through a chapter per Mandarin-day, because reading is a skill I desperately need to work on with that language. I am really enjoying it again, which I’m glad of – it’s not that I ever didn’t enjoy it, it’s just that I hit that plateau, I think, so I was getting a little bored. It’s such a horrible stage in some ways, but I guess you kind of have to power through, where possible. I’m still teetering along it but I’m hoping to improve a lot in the next few months.

And finally, Spanish. Spanish was yesterday’s language and I had bigger plans for it than what I did, but I’m still happy with my progress. Yesterday basically involved me doing some work from the Teach Yourself book and playing around on Memrise a bit. The lesson I’m doing currently is titled ¿Cuántos años tienes? (how old are you?) so I’ve covered a lot of this before, but it’s a nice refresher and more interesting than the previous lesson, which was about exchanging money and hiring a car. Spanish is another one where I want to step up my media consumption – there are a few Spanish series on Netflix and I have a couple of Spanish books I want to read, so those are my slightly longer-term goals.

Oh, I also logged like another half hour of French. I’m up to nearly 900 words now, so well into the intermediate level FlashSticks.

So, the next three-day goals:

  • I’ve got 75 cards in my anki deck (well, 217 cards, but 75 ‘notes’); I’d like to have 150-200 by Sunday night. That’s 25+ cards a day, which if I’m learning 30 a day should be my minimum anyway.
  • Find something in German to watch. Even if it’s dubbed. I don’t mind dubbed things.
  • Keep going! In two weeks, I’m going to have a few days where I know I won’t study, so I need to make this time count right now.

How are things going with all of you? We’re almost halfway through November already, right? I hope you’re all doing well! 🙂

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