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Evita’s Mix of Languages

 Language Learning Forum : Language Learning Log Post Reply
236 messages over 30 pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 1 ... 29 30 Next >>
Senior Member
Joined 4949 days ago

734 posts - 1036 votes 
Speaks: Latvian*, English, German, Russian
Studies: Korean, Finnish

 Message 1 of 236
01 January 2014 at 2:01pm | IP Logged 
Hi everyone!

I'll be writing about my progress in various languages in this log. My old log for 2012-2013 can be found here, it's mostly about the beginnings of my Korean studies with a lot of Finnish and a bit of German thrown in. This log will contain more German and less Finnish (at least at first) but in general I will keep the same style of logging.

Korean is the language I'm most excited to study. It started as a mere curiosity in March 2012 but I quickly fell in love with it (the language) and then I discovered Korean dramas and I haven't looked back since. I would classify myself as a lower intermediate student at the moment, and my goal is to just keep improving. I'm studying Korean by myself using various resources from the internet and a couple of grammar books I have acquired. I recommend Talk To Me In Korean to everyone who is curious about the language.

German is like an old acquaintance of mine that I haven't been keeping in touch with. I studied it for 8 years at school and I even lived in Germany for half a year but then I lost all my connections to German except listening to the occasional song. In the years that followed, my active German skills deteriorated rapidly so my goal for this year is to bring them back. The reason for that is not because I suddenly discovered a great love for German, I simply need it for work. I will pay special attention to IT-related and finance-related vocabulary.

Finnish is my most challenging language, I've started and abandoned it many times. I think I might be at the A2 level now, maybe even lower. I want to learn it, I just never have the patience to really learn all the cases and all the verb groups. It might seem strange since both Latvian and Russian and even German have cases so I should have no problem with them, right? But, well, I guess I have been lacking the motivation to spend the necessary time and effort on it, especially since I took up Korean. But never fear, I'm still determined to learn Finnish and I'll give it one more go in the second part of the year.

I might also write something about Russian or Spanish in this log. Russian is just ever-present since some of my colleagues are Russian, and Spanish is just a language I like from my telenovela-watching days. I self-studied it quite seriously for a while but that was many years ago as well. Still, the level of my Spanish is definitely higher than that of my Finnish. I'd like to get back to it one day.

I'm participating in two TAC teams this year - the Korean team and the German team - and I want to wish good luck and a lot of success to all my teammates. I'll be following the other logs and I hope we can all have a nice studying experience together.
3 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
FranceRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3029 days ago

414 posts - 582 votes 
Speaks: French*, EnglishB2, EnglishC2, Spanish, Japanese
Studies: Korean, Norwegian, Mandarin

 Message 2 of 236
01 January 2014 at 7:00pm | IP Logged 
새해 복 많이 받으세요! 올해도 열심히 공부 합시다 팀메이트!

Although I'm not commenting much, I've been following your old log for quite some time
and will definitely continue doing so!

1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 4949 days ago

734 posts - 1036 votes 
Speaks: Latvian*, English, German, Russian
Studies: Korean, Finnish

 Message 3 of 236
03 January 2014 at 12:43am | IP Logged 
Thanks for dropping by, yuhakko! And good luck to you as well.

I'll make Anki the main topic of this post. It's been such a huge part of my Korean studies that it's really unavoidable. So here are the reasons I've been using Anki:

1) I believe in the concept of SRS. It's the most effective way of getting vocabulary to stick.

2) I like knowing how many words I know. In general it's very hard to measure one's progress in a language but this is one thing I can measure my progress by. Currently I have studied about 2850 words (excluding numbers).

3) Anki makes me study every day. But this reason has changed over time. In the beginning when everything was difficult it was Anki that kept me going because I knew that if I dropped it I would stop studying completely. Now the situation has changed but Anki has become a habit. I like that I can use it on my phone when I'm waiting somewhere or commuting.

4) Sharing my decks. The further I get in my Korean studies, the more important this reason becomes. I love Korean and I want to help others learn it, and it's a big motivation to keep my decks in good shape. My vocabulary deck has been downloaded about 3000 times in 13 months, and my sentence deck has been downloaded about 1600 times in 7 months. It's nice to get positive feedback.

The Vocabulary Deck
The Sentence Deck

For reasons 2 and 4, I'm also thinking of making a German vocabulary deck, in fact, it's one of my goals for this year. I'm just not sure yet whether it will be German-English or German-Latvian or both. The Excel list that I started making last year contains about 1250 German words right now, and my goal for January is to bring it up to at least 2000. Eventually I'd like to have at least 5000 words in the list, preferably about 7000. That should be enough to be pretty fluent, right?

I also had a crazy idea to take the C1 exam for German sometime this year or next year. We have a Goethe institute here in Riga so it's possible. I don't really need it but it would be nice to get a certificate. If only I could get my skills up to this level... Well, I'm going to try.
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 4949 days ago

734 posts - 1036 votes 
Speaks: Latvian*, English, German, Russian
Studies: Korean, Finnish

 Message 4 of 236
03 January 2014 at 11:01pm | IP Logged 

I will be covering German starting from the very basics but I haven't decided on the textbook yet. I did try out DW's Warum Nicht? as per g-bod's recommendation and I might stick with it. I like audio courses because I can do something else at the same time as well.

I also went to the library and borrowed two graded readers. I will read them out loud and use them as a vocabulary source for my list. I already started the reading today. Since I have to return the books in two weeks I won't be able to procrastinate like I usually do and that's a good thing.


It turns out that my Harukorean subscription will expire on February 2nd like it was originally supposed to so for now it's still active and I've been using this week to go through their lessons that are not available on TTMIK or Youtube. I've already gone through both levels of video vocabulary and now I'm studying volume 2 of the sentence builder lessons. They are not the same as on TTMIK and they cover some grammar points that are relatively new to me. In these cases I copy the examples into my Excel file.

I found Yoo In-na's (she's a Korean actress, 유인나) podcasts today and I listened to one of them. I didn't understand much but I did understand more than nothing. I guess it's a radio show where she reads letters from her listeners and offers her comments? And has some guests over as well. The podcast I listened to was from December 26th and the part I understood best was when someone had broken up with her boyfriend because he had been lying a lot and In-na said not to get back together with him because a lying boyfriend is no good. At least that's how I understood it. In general I like how she's speaking slowly and clearly. And does she really make an hour long show every night? Wow, I wonder when she has time to shoot her dramas.
2 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 4621 days ago

267 posts - 323 votes 
Speaks: German*
Studies: English, Swedish

 Message 5 of 236
03 January 2014 at 11:44pm | IP Logged 
Hi Evita,

Happy New Year and good luck with your studies.

I don't want to mess up your German study plans. Your wrote that your plan to add IT- and finance-related vocabulary. Have you thaugt about adding a newspapers to your resources? You might get some nice finance-related vocabulary out of this.
Are the standard newspapers too dificult you can consider newspaper like
Presse und Sprache or Deutsch perfekt. They offer vocabulary help for every article. The second page has also few free online excercises.
I don't know if you're able to get a copy of these in Latvia, maybe you find somthing similar in a bookshop at a central station or airport.

Edited by Mareike on 03 January 2014 at 11:46pm

1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United States
Joined 3932 days ago

1419 posts - 1765 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Korean, Japanese

 Message 6 of 236
04 January 2014 at 2:12am | IP Logged 
Evita wrote:
I found Yoo In-na's (she's a Korean actress, 유인나)
podcasts today and I listened to one of

I've been meaning to look for those since I knew she had a radio show (and has for quite a
while now)...thanks for the link.
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United States
HowToLanguages.comRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3086 days ago

335 posts - 594 votes 
Speaks: English*, French, German
Studies: Spanish, Mandarin, Persian

 Message 7 of 236
04 January 2014 at 3:31am | IP Logged 
A great book for advanced vocabulary (including IT and financial) is Wort fur Wort: New Advanced German Vocabulary (German Edition) by Paul Stocker . I use it all the time. It seems pretty modern and very accessible.

Viel Spaß!

Edited by BaronBill on 04 January 2014 at 3:32am

1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United KingdomRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4379 days ago

1485 posts - 2002 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese
Studies: French, German

 Message 8 of 236
04 January 2014 at 11:15am | IP Logged 
Warum Nicht is an amazing course for beginners but since you are coming back to German having
already put in a substantial amount of hours in the past you will probably find beginners
courses get stale quickly. I had this problem when I started French again last summer. I
would recommend trying to reactivate what you can just through exposure to native materials
and then trying to start writing things yourself, and then find a structured course aimed at
an intermediate level.

1 person has voted this message useful

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