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TAC ’15 French Spanish Celtic Adv Study

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jeff_lindqvist
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 Message 233 of 336
25 February 2014 at 8:36pm | IP Logged 
Yeah, that volume has a lot more of everything. At the end of each lesson, there's a loooooong text- still just a page long but more content than in any lesson's Talking Heads section (smaller print, no doubt).
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sctroyenne
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 Message 234 of 336
26 February 2014 at 3:32am | IP Logged 
Just when I feel down I find something to lift my spirits again. I just watched this video promoting choosing Irish for the GCSE. The video content covers a lot that's taught in Gaeilge gan Stró so with the help of the subtitles I was able to make out a lot. It makes me think I just might be able to tackle the intermediate level when the time comes...
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jeff_lindqvist
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 Message 235 of 336
26 February 2014 at 7:23pm | IP Logged 
Thanks for sharing! I haven't seen that before.
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sctroyenne
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 Message 236 of 336
02 March 2014 at 4:25am | IP Logged 
Monthly Recap: February 2014

This month you can really see the effect tracking time has on how you decide how to spend time. Even though February has fewer days, I blew my January total study time away.

Language study time by week:


Broken down:



and



That's a total of 214 hours and 12 minutes, an average of 7 hours and 39 minutes per day. Broken down:

French: 151:20
Active (speaking, writing, lessons, deliberate study): 16:06
Passive (listening, reading): 135:14

Irish: 46:50
Active (deliberate study): 25:35
Passive (listening): 21:15

Other: 16:03
Meta language learning: 14:02
English teaching: 2:01

Notes, Reflections, Goals:

As I said above, tracking my time pushed me to choose language exposure activities and study more often. At over 7 hours a day on average, there's not a whole lot of room for increasing my daily exposure without getting a job in francophone (or other) work environment.

I'm really happy with my Irish progress this month. I averaged almost an hour a day in study time. I copied my Gaeilge gan Stró CDs and put them on my iPhone so I can review the chapters orally while walking around. I'm getting close to finishing the book and the Memrise course based on its vocab so I'll soon be able to move on to "intermediate" materials. Which means I should probably seek out opportunities to practice speaking and I should be writing on a regular basis.

The easiest way to push my total hours was to do more French listening, which I did. I made the decision last month to replace vocabulary study with reading, which I did by reading news (though I haven't been good about doing this lately). I think to make real progress, though, I'll need to focus on doing more writing and speaking.

I didn't do anything with Spanish. At some point I'll need to pick it up again to prepare to go to Guatemala.

Any feedback?
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sctroyenne
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 Message 237 of 336
03 March 2014 at 9:17pm | IP Logged 
So I'm brainstorming an activity that will put me into contact with Spanish on a more
regular basis even while I'm not concentrating on it. I'm not happy with letting it lie
fallow - I haven't been learning it for enough time to do so without sacrificing the
progress I've made. I'm thinking my best options are podcasts and/or audio courses that I
can listen to during dead time (though not multitasking time, such as at work). That will
be my short-term goal for Spanish - load some audio onto my iPhone and starting listening
to it at least a few times a week.
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sctroyenne
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 Message 238 of 336
04 March 2014 at 8:18pm | IP Logged 
I've been reviewing units 11 and 12 of Gaeilge gan Stró like crazy which covers
shopping for clothes and commands. Shopping for clothes drills the "that/this ___"
structure a lot (an sciorta seo - this skirt) which has taken some getting used to but
I'm feeling more comfortable with it now. The commands unit is pretty vital to the
whole book as it throws a ton of essential verbs at you (along with the unit on daily
life) and the 2nd person singular imperative form just also happens to be the "root"
form of the verb. Next is past tense, focusing on the 11 irregulars, which will also be
incredibly important so I'm getting pretty anxious to move on.

I'm moving through the units faster than I had intended. One reason is that I review my
lessons while commuting, then while walking from the bus to work (about 18 minutes) I
usually just let the audio run, which means I start listening to the next unit before
officially starting to study it. I'm finding that's actually working out well for me.
Each new piece of Irish tends to be hard at first but with exposure becomes easier. By
previewing units I build a foundation for when I study them without becoming too
overwhelmed.

Gaeilge gan Stró does one thing that I'm not sure I like. They like presenting a lot of
"extra" information, especially in the dialogues and talking heads. It's quite
frustrating when you're supposed to sub in for one speaker in a dialogue when half the
content is stuff that not only hasn't been covered yet but won't be covered formally
for several units (and some not at all). It can be easy to get discouraged about poor
performance in the dialogues, but the more accurate test is the quiz at the end of
every chapter. Yet, from what I've seen of the intermediate book, it's all about
learning the "flourishes" that they toss into the beginning level content so I better
get used to it. Then again, whatever is giving me grief in one unit is often covered in
a future unit so I can go back at a later time and find it much easier.

I won't order the intermediate book just yet as I'll be too tempted to dive right into
it and I just don't think my comprehension has the "stamina" just yet. I think I'll
finish off the book, then go through and tackle some of the hard parts again and wait
until I feel I've really absorbed it.

Language Hunters just announced their Irish summer camp for August. This will be 5 full
day sessions which I'm really eager to try out. All in all, things are looking good for
me to have a strong intermediate level before summer of 2015 which would be my target
for visiting the Gaeltacht!
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jeff_lindqvist
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 Message 239 of 336
04 March 2014 at 11:34pm | IP Logged 
I got lost for a while during the commands. I know some members here don't use textbooks because of the focus on booking a flight, staying at a hotel etc. (a reason I can fully understand), and now I saw all these commands like "Put on your clothes!", "Comb your hair!". That's way outside my likely vocabulary zone.

I agree about the extra information. Listening to the (more advanced) dialogues once or twice isn't enough to be able to say "Go down the hall and turn right. It's there on the left-hand side." in Irish. However, what I do like about that (and the Talking Heads) is that it shows more or less "real" language - often with just the vocabulary I've been exposed to already (well, maybe i+1), but in longer sentences, subordinate clauses and so on.

Edited by jeff_lindqvist on 05 March 2014 at 11:57pm

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sctroyenne
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 Message 240 of 336
05 March 2014 at 4:40am | IP Logged 
Yeah, some of the orders to give children aren't at the top of my most necessary list but it's certainly helping with Aifric (between the teachers, parents, siblings, and the teenagers basically telling each other to shut up there's tons of imperative).

I was totally going to mention the giving directions dialogue that's treated as some sort of red-headed stepchild. Usually that will take up a significant portion of a unit (I think Pimsleur devoted one whole lesson to it in addition to the repetitions in the 8-lesson intro course to Irish). In that case I'll just have to take all the bits they give and work on them on my own since it's pretty important.

One conversation that was particularly bad as far as full of stuff you wouldn't know was the one where a woman was calling her colleague who had just had an accident (10D). I think the only thing you would really know at that point is the word for leg. Though after the unit on past tense I can see how it would be a lot easier to comprehend. Which almost makes me think it's designed for you to go back after finishing to pick up on all the "second" and "third level" material.

jeff_lindqvist wrote:
I got lost for a while during the commands. I know some members here don't use textbooks because of the focus on booking a flight, staying at a hotel etc. (a reason I can fully understand), and now I saw all these commands like "Put on your clothes!", "Comb your hair!". That's way outside my likely vocabulary zone.

I agree about the extra information. Listening to the (more advanced) dialogues once or twice isn't enough to be able to say "Go down the hall and turn right. It's there on the left-hand side." in Irish. However, what I do like about that (and the Talking Heads) is that it shows more or less "real" language - often with just the vocabulary I've been exposed to already (well, maybe i+1), but in longer sentence, subordinate clauses and so on.



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