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PMs TAC 2015 crazy? French course mission

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PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3785 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 225 of 451
10 November 2014 at 8:26am | IP Logged 
Mohave wrote:
PeterMollenberg - congrats on finishing your first real book in
French! :). Way to go!!

Glad to find someone who has started Pimsleur IV. After you complete a few more
lessons, I would enjoy
your thoughts on it.. I am nearly finished with Pimsleur III, And trying to get
Pimsleur IV on an InterLibrary
Loan (which is looking doubtful right now), So, it looks like I will need to purchase
it, if the ILL doesn't work
out. Therefore, I would appreciate your thoughts before I purchase it as it is a
little pricey!

Also, you have reminded me I still need to finish the last lessons of FIA. I have just
done video and textbooks
to-date. Do you do audio, workbooks, etc and do you also recommend that portion of the
program?

Keep up the great work!



Tnx for the congrats Mohave. As for Pimsleur IV I will let you know :) And FIA I
totally recommend all components of the course (I use video, audio, textbook, workbook
and study guide). The more you use the more fullfilling the experience, the more well
rounded it is, the more you feel you're accomplishing as you go along. I must say tho,
that if you've done the video and textbook, and used the workbook? then audio on it's
own would be a little one dimensional and dry but still worth it in my opinion. I
guess I feel the course works best with everything running smoothly together. Perhaps
you could use the audio on commutes? Depends if you don't mind reviewing the grammar
together with the workbook.
2 persons have voted this message useful



luke
Diglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5514 days ago

3133 posts - 4350 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish
Studies: Esperanto, French

 
 Message 226 of 451
10 November 2014 at 10:52am | IP Logged 
PeterMollenburg wrote:
Mohave wrote:
Also, you have reminded me I still need to finish the last lessons of FIA. I have just done video and textbooks to-date. Do you do audio, workbooks, etc and do you also recommend that portion of the program?


And FIA I totally recommend all components of the course (I use video, audio, textbook, workbook and study guide). The more you use the more fullfilling the experience, the more well rounded it is, the more you feel you're accomplishing as you go along. I must say tho, that if you've done the video and textbook, and used the workbook? then audio on it's own would be a little one dimensional and dry but still worth it in my opinion. I guess I feel the course works best with everything running smoothly together. Perhaps you could use the audio on commutes? Depends if you don't mind reviewing the grammar together with the workbook.


I'm finding the French In Action audio helpful on commutes and other odd moments where I can't use the book or watch the video. It's helpful to have the workbook handy while doing the audio, because some of the audio refers to things in the workbook, such as pictures. A lot of it though can be used in one way or another away from the workbook. I do it both ways. The Mise en Ouvre is meant to be done away from the other components of the book, but other components can be as well. For example, a fill in the blank exercise can become a "repeat the audio in the blank provided" exercise. Also, not reading along in the workbook tunes up the ears when the instruction is in French. Lately, I've been going through the slightly more challenging audio about five times.

With the workbook, first listen without looking. Trying to respond to oral exercises, etc. Then I do it again trying for more fluency. Then a third time looking at the workbook to again associate the written word with the sound.

Later, and this can be a week or two, I listen and speak in the car. Sometimes just repeating or shadowing, responding, when that's the sort of drill. This is also good for review.

Then there is a "truncate silence" track on my smartphone, where I mostly try to shadow the audio, but have also used for quick responses. This has been about 3 weeks behind the original pass.

I agree with Peter. All the components build on one another, and more time with the course makes the experience richer.
1 person has voted this message useful



Mohave
Senior Member
United States
justpaste.it/Mohave1
Joined 2316 days ago

291 posts - 444 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French

 
 Message 227 of 451
10 November 2014 at 1:35pm | IP Logged 
luke wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:
Mohave wrote:
Also, you have reminded me I still need to
finish the last lessons of FIA. I have just done video and textbooks to-date. Do you do audio, workbooks, etc
and do you also recommend that portion of the program?


And FIA I totally recommend all components of the course (I use video, audio, textbook, workbook and study
guide). The more you use the more fullfilling the experience, the more well rounded it is, the more you feel
you're accomplishing as you go along. I must say tho, that if you've done the video and textbook, and used
the workbook? then audio on it's own would be a little one dimensional and dry but still worth it in my opinion.
I guess I feel the course works best with everything running smoothly together. Perhaps you could use the
audio on commutes? Depends if you don't mind reviewing the grammar together with the workbook.




I'm finding the French In Action audio helpful on commutes and other odd moments where I can't use the
book or watch the video. It's helpful to have the workbook handy while doing the audio, because some of the
audio refers to things in the workbook, such as pictures. A lot of it though can be used in one way or another
away from the workbook. I do it both ways. The Mise en Ouvre is meant to be done away from the other
components of the book, but other components can be as well. For example, a fill in the blank exercise can
become a "repeat the audio in the blank provided" exercise. Also, not reading along in the workbook tunes
up the ears when the instruction is in French. Lately, I've been going through the slightly more challenging
audio about five times.

With the workbook, first listen without looking. Trying to respond to oral exercises, etc. Then I do it again
trying for more fluency. Then a third time looking at the workbook to again associate the written word with the
sound.

Later, and this can be a week or two, I listen and speak in the car. Sometimes just repeating or shadowing,
responding, when that's the sort of drill. This is also good for review.

Then there is a "truncate silence" track on my smartphone, where I mostly try to shadow the audio, but have
also used for quick responses. This has been about 3 weeks behind the original pass.

I agree with Peter. All the components build on one another, and more time with the course makes the
experience richer.


PM and Luke, thank you so much for your detailed responses! I think I am going to have to see if I can find
an inexpensive, used audio for FIA. This sounds like exactly the type of exercises I need. Thanks again!

1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3785 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 228 of 451
02 December 2014 at 8:39am | IP Logged 
ok, 2nd try... I just spent half an hour adding up figures and typing away only to lose it! Dammit!

------------------------------------------------------------ -------------------------------
November study breakdown

Coursework 20hrs,45min
Audio only 16hrs,22min
Reading 8hrs,37min (of which 92 pages read for SC)
Flashcards 7hrs,18min
Watching 6hrs,9min (of which 241min for SC)

November total 58hrs,21min
November average      1hrs,56min
               
TOTAL FOR YEAR SO FAR 852hrs,19min
CURRENT AVG PER DAY OVER THE YEAR 2hrs,33min
------------------------------------------------------------ ---------------------

Materials
I so want to write 'matériaux'... Anyway...

FIA: Leçon 7

Assimil NFWE: 81 (reviewing all lessons, currently on 68, making my way back to 81 and beyond)

Vivre sans Vaccins (reading) I've essentially read this book 4 times I worked out, having read every page 4
times (twice for each page, at end of chapter go back and do again twice). I'm now back at the start of the
book and looking to do the same again.

Thoughts...
A good month. Better than October at least. My best month was January (full of enthusiasm) in which I did
133hrs. May was 2nd best at 88hrs. I'm aiming for somewhere between those two for December. If I manage
that I'll be just shy of the 1000hrs for the year, which is okay, it gives me something to aim for next year.
Actually averaging 3 hrs a day next year would be nice - so 1095hrs of French is my aim next year. I shouldn't
have to work any harder, just be that little more consistent and not lose the plot. This year so far has been a
great success in that I haven't lost the plot completely and dropped French for weeks on end or months or
years like I used to do, and have studied nearly every single day... only missing prob a handful of days in
which I did no French at all. However I did lose the plot in smaller ways and had days I just wanted to rebel
against myself and those days often involved just audio during commutes or just a bit of reading or watching.
I'm so pleased with myself this year that next year i'm very eager to do what i've just stated.

On another note, after doing so much study I thought I'd be a lot better than what I am in terms of language
skill. Mind you I have come a long way, I just underestimated the effort it takes and the time it takes. Not to
mention my obsessive nature in completing courses, multiple courses on the same language level in fact
before moving on. This means I'm inevitably going to take longer than I should to reach my goal than perhaps
using other methods, but I've found it's working for me and I enjoy it, and I'm keen to work through my
accumulated courses.

Fry on, throw a crapsteak at a burger-filed wall, know what I'm sayin? 's not like there's 22 goats in my face or
nothin' for real speak

The honorable rediculous Peter Mollenburg, continuing the mission of worthlessness that is just so important
1 person has voted this message useful



Jeffers
Senior Member
United Kingdom
Joined 3218 days ago

2151 posts - 3960 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Hindi, Ancient Greek, French, Sanskrit, German

 
 Message 229 of 451
02 December 2014 at 1:15pm | IP Logged 
Mmmmm.... crapsteak......


You have done a ton of work, and like you say, probably not in the most "efficient" way in terms of results per hour spent. But sticking with it is a lot more important that being efficient, so I have to say, rock on dude. There are other advantages to your "inefficient" ways of working: I am convinced that slow learning is deep learning. If your goal was to speak 10+ languages then your method probably need some adjustment. But since your goal is to learn a few languages really well (right?) then you seem to be on the right track.

I hate to post corrections to your writing, but I think the word you were looking for was "misunderestimated". Definitely....
2 persons have voted this message useful



Mohave
Senior Member
United States
justpaste.it/Mohave1
Joined 2316 days ago

291 posts - 444 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French

 
 Message 230 of 451
02 December 2014 at 5:09pm | IP Logged 
It's interesting as I also thought with all the hours of studying that I have put in, my French would be better
too! I
figured I started off the year a solid A2, maybe with some skills approaching B1. Silly me thought I would be
at B2 by now!!! ;). I'm redefining my measures of success now.... I try to do something in French daily -
making it a habit, and I try to focus on the skill increases I have seen, and where I want future skill increases
to be rather than focusing on A2, B1, and B2. This intermediate stage can be a zapper on motivation.
However, at least my skill set is now at a level where I can have FUN by watching movies and reading most
things, albeit slowly. My time with this "hobby/lifestyle" shows me that consistency and slow and steady is the
way to go. So, the fact that you are consistent, you WILL reach your goal, it just may take a little more time
than expected, but just have FUN on the journey!

Edited by Mohave on 02 December 2014 at 5:09pm

2 persons have voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3785 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 231 of 451
03 December 2014 at 6:23am | IP Logged 
Jeffers wrote:
Mmmmm.... crapsteak......


You have done a ton of work, and like you say, probably not in the most "efficient" way in terms of results per
hour spent. But sticking with it is a lot more important that being efficient, so I have to say, rock on dude.
There are other advantages to your "inefficient" ways of working: I am convinced that slow learning is deep
learning. If your goal was to speak 10+ languages then your method probably need some adjustment. But
since your goal is to learn a few languages really well (right?) then you seem to be on the right track.

I hate to post corrections to your writing, but I think the word you were looking for was "misunderestimated".
Definitely....


Thanks Jeffers, Should the appropriate French translation of misunderestimated be: mal estimé(e)? Yeah I
tend to agree with your positive comments, naturally. It sounds good your theory on deep learning. I'll go with
that. Ironically I did originally want to become a polyglot, my ego hand grandiose ideas of multiple languages
wowing people and so on, and hey perhaps that might, maybe, perhaps, peut-être, on va voir, faut voir, ça
dépend, on ne sait jamais, happen. But if it doesn't i'm not overly fussed, but I am likely to punish all the little
people with a reign of terror as PM. Thing is I realised the more I learned the more I didn't know and the
longer it was going to take to get to where I wanted to get- very very confdent and capable in the language of
C1/C2 standard or even native-like proficiency, and for that, having procrastinated for so many years and
having not realised the work needed to be carried out = less languages to that level to be attained if any (if i
didn't stop piss-farting around as we like to say in Australia). I'll keep soldiering on with it and if I make it only
to French in that level I think i'd still be satisfied, but I would like to attain that level in say 3 other languages,
but if turns out it's to the detriment of having some kind of a life then that number will be reduced. We'll just
see where my efforts get me, how much time allows, how my study methods evolve and so on, bla bla black
sheep

But thanks again Jeffers for agreeing i'm the best French learner ever. I expect to be receiving my award in
the mail in the coming weeks - a house valued at 480,000 euros in France and all my bills paid for the rest of
my life along with holidays whenever I like. Pfft i'm not materialistic, can't help it if I won all that stuf, peace up
1 person has voted this message useful



PeterMollenburg
Senior Member
AustraliaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3785 days ago

821 posts - 1273 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: FrenchB1

 
 Message 232 of 451
03 December 2014 at 6:46am | IP Logged 
Mohave wrote:
It's interesting as I also thought with all the hours of studying that I have put in, my French
would be better
too! I
figured I started off the year a solid A2, maybe with some skills approaching B1. Silly me thought I would be
at B2 by now!!! ;). I'm redefining my measures of success now.... I try to do something in French daily -
making it a habit, and I try to focus on the skill increases I have seen, and where I want future skill increases
to be rather than focusing on A2, B1, and B2. This intermediate stage can be a zapper on motivation.
However, at least my skill set is now at a level where I can have FUN by watching movies and reading most
things, albeit slowly. My time with this "hobby/lifestyle" shows me that consistency and slow and steady is the
way to go. So, the fact that you are consistent, you WILL reach your goal, it just may take a little more time
than expected, but just have FUN on the journey!


Very true indeed Mohave,

Slow and steady consistent work. I think it seems to pay off for anything. Although if you're competing in
some kind of racing like running, cycling whatever then minus the 'slow' from that statement. I agree
Consistent continuous effort is the key.

As for enjoying materials... I'm finding I'm reading a LOT of things on the net lately usually related to
alternative health, nutrition and what shouldn't be termed conspiracies, but by default are due the system of
control we seem to be living under. Anyway these things i'm finding i'm reading more and more in French
without much of an issue and like you, enjoying them. It's a shame I can't count this stuff (like watching the
French news) for the SC as I'm certainly doing more reading and watching than what is evident in my
'standing' if you want to call it that. As for the watching, as I'm not watching that much I'm prob not enjoying
that side of things as much as yourself by the sound of it, but i'm not concerned as I will get to that point. It's
really ironic I think that a lot of people have stated in my various readings of blogs, articles and so on that
French is harder than ppl generally rate it according to the FSI grouping of difficulty of languages for English
speakers. And a number of ppl stated on this forum that their French listening didn't improve a great deal
despite an SC with a lot of watching (last SC). Which makes me realise let's not be so hard on ourselves,
although it's very closely connected to English, French is NOT necessarily easy. Okay some points are
seemingly easy but due to it's syllable division and phonetic system favouring vowels and vowel sounds and
lack of individual stress on words, comprehension in this language is trickier than many give it credit for - and
to add to that if you are like me and actually want to sound authentically French and I mean really authentic,
then you will extend your learning time significantly by ensuring your pronunciation sounds just that -
authentic. In my experience emulating authentic Spanish, German or Dutch sounds is nowhere near as time
consuming in perfecting it. This of course may be purely subjective but I think there's a certain degree of
objectivity in that statement.

On another note... I think when you're not yet a polyglot and relatively new to attempting to reach a decent
level of a chosen foreign language (B2-C2, native-like proficiency) then at some point you realise that all
language programs (particularly newer ones as capitalism ups the ante on marketing) contain some degree
of marketing (usually the less effective programs market their product in a more deceitful way) in the product
that leads ppl to believe that ok if I'm sensible and don't believe the hype that one or 2 courses will get me to
fluency then 3 or 4 or 5 or 6 will... which turns out to be marketing indoctrination - ie it's just not true. There's
a lot more to learning a language than most courses care to point out - for good reason tho I think, aside from
marketing hype, they don't won't to turn you off the beauty of learning a new language by telling you the truth
of the effort required to reach such goals.

So what about FSI estimates then again? Are they really that inaccurate or is it just French?

My experience as you know contains an overwhelming reliance on courses. However I do get a general
sense that if i put the same amount of effort into any one elses methods - Benny's immersion style, purely SC
native materials, a more effective combination of all methods, I still struggle to believe I'd be at my goal even
with all that, as French imo just seems to need extra time. I personally would not grade it among Spanish and
Dutch, and Italian in terms of difficulty/hrs required to reach FSI's 'fluency' level, i'd at least group it with
German - German trickier in terms of grammar, French for pronunciation, rhythmic stress, not overly tricky but
sometimes messy grammatical rules and a massive amount of idioms.

2 formaldehyde-soaked French fries thanks... oh and one arsenic sprayed meat pattie contained within a bun
of mineral robbing nutrients that shall raise my blood sugar like refined sugar. Ah... what nutritious goodness I
say, because that's what TV told me


1 person has voted this message useful



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