November: A Look Back

Due to a short trip to Stockholm at the beginning of November, my language learning plans started with some delay. To be perfectly honest with you, I was not very optimistic that I would get anything done from my list this month. I suffered from a severe case of wanderlust after my return and both my work and social life kept me busy so I did not really got into the "language spirit". Luckily this changed around mid-November and even though I did not achieve everything on my list, I did a good lot and I feel quite content with that.

The "alternating days for non-prioritized languages" method worked perfectly and I couldn't be happier about it. More often than not I didn't manage to do anything for English and Spanish, but since my brain had filed those two under "maintain but don't stress about too much" I did not experience this "guilt spiral" like the month before.

But let's take a closer look at the plans that I had at the beginning of the month and the reality they had to face!

Japanese

O listening practice book: 2 chapters/day
X daily recordings for the 30DSpC
O review ~10 kanji each day
X keep watching anime and reading manga, if possible

I did not finish all 30 chapters of the listening practice book, but I managed to get through half of it and, thinking about my doubts at the beginning of the month, I count this as a small victory. I was also able to get through 300+ kanji, most of which I already knew but many of which I forgot over time. Reviewing kanji has become the first thing I do in the morning, something that makes me super happy because I absolutely loved the kanji classes back at uni.
I did not participate in the 30DSpC though and also wasn't able to watch much anime but I could keep my Japanese sessions to a daily minimum of 90 minutes and also got into translating lyrics and short texts again, so that is a win for itself.

Spanish

X journalling (1-2 DIN A5 pages) on "Spanish days"
X recordings for the 30DSpC on "Spanish days"

Since I didn't participate in the 30DSpC I had hardly any speaking practice this month. I don't feel too bad about it because my Spanish confidence level has grown over the last months and I felt not as insecure during those few recordings I did thanks to that.
I can't really put my finger on why I didn't write any journal entries. Everything was lying around, waiting to be used, but I just didn't. Instead I dived back into my old grammar book and had the time of my (Spanish session) life. Maybe I should have worked out some topics for my entries or a general concept, I will initiate further investigations on that.
Curiously enough, even though I did so little for Spanish, my motivation flame is burning brighter than ever and I think I will use this momentum to make some more (and more specific) plans for next month.

English

X journalling (at least 300 words, digitally) on "English days"
X recordings for the 30DSpC on "English days"

Very much like Spanish, my English study sessions were in dire need of improvement. Especially in the last third of the month I was able to do more and longer recordings, but since I am constantly learning through my work anyhow, I did not feel the desire to do something additional after I finished work.
Again, I think the lack of written practice might be due to a missing concept and topics - writing about my day would have been rather dull and for the most parts uneventful, so I just didn't write at all.
If English stays or goes on holiday for next month has still to be decided though.

Conclusion

I did way less than planned and I feel perfectly fine about it. As much as language learning is a process, so is finding a study method that works best for you. Having "banned" Spanish and English to the lower positions without being ripped apart by guilt is a huge progress for me and having studied Japanese almost every day was everything I really wished for this month. 9/10.

December plans coming soon™!

29th November 2018

まいど、まいど!

It's a me!

Hej! My name is Sandra, I am a language enthusiast from Germany and this is where I document my language learning journey.

I will share my study goals with you, talk about the ups and downs in language learning, try out cool challenges and show you study methods that I found particularly helpful. Making myself accountable here will hopefully give me some extra motivational boosts!

All main articles will eventually be translated into the four languages I am most comfortable with: German, English, Spanish and Japanese. Older posts can be found under "Archive" and are sorted in order of date.

You won't find a comment section under my posts, so if you feel like chatting a bit, or talking about language-y things feel free to message me on social media or write me an email!

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Enjoy your stay and happy studying!

P.S.: The icon above was made by the wonderful and talented @paraplyene! (Click to get to her Twitter profile!)