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Making best use of your time!

  Tags: Study Plan
 Language Learning Forum : General discussion Post Reply
Senior Member
United Kingdom
Joined 2761 days ago

119 posts - 182 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, Norwegian, Old English

 Message 1 of 1
12 January 2016 at 1:33pm | IP Logged 
There are so many language-learning resources out there, it's bewildering. Just to mention a few: Duolingo, Anki, Memrise, Teach Yourself, Michel Thomas, Assimil, Pimsleur, Collins (UK), For Dummies...

Literally millions of websites if you're doing a major language like German, including newspapers, magazines, audiobooks, blogs, tourism sites, literary texts, language websites like Babbel...

Then there is the decision whether to pay for one-to-one tuition with a tutor?

How does one even know where to start? And then, how do you know you're making best use of your time? Life is short, and language is nearly infinite. And we all have busy lives, too.

My aims are learning to speak German and Norwegian Bokmål. And to read Old English.

I already read German and Norwegian well, and I did 3 years of OE at uni, so have a headstart there. I lived in Germany for 4 years, so have a large *passive* vocabulary.

What should I best be doing? How does one know one is using one's time most profitably?

Right now my plan for German is: the coursebook "Living German" which includes a lot of German grammar and has audio. Followed by Assimil or Pimsleur for conversation/speaking. During this time I will also study grammar and wordlists using Anki. I will also read German newspapers and magazines (e.g. Focus).

For Norwegian my plan is: the textbook and audio course "Teach Yourself Get Started in Norwegian". I will follow that up with the immigrant course "På Vei", while reading Norwegian newspaper articles and things like Hamsun's Sult. Then I will tackle Assimil or Pimsleur major courses. All the while making Anki wordlists and testing words I don't already know.

For Old English my plan is: "Learn Old English with Leofwin" (so going right back to basics), followed by reading OE prose texts from "A Guide to Old English" (Mitchell and Robinson) and "Teach Yourself Old English". After these I will start to look at the poetry.

But there are so many resources and options out there, I don't know whether my plan is at all good or worthwhile.

Your advice would be much appreciated! I probably learn best by eye, then by ear. In the past I have always taken the grammar-translation approach, but that seems dated now and less useful for conversation and active skills. I've never been a great speaker of languages, it's a partly a personal confidence thing, I think, but I want to improve.

Many cheers, Ed

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