In a desperate attempt to mar my immersion experience with personal development goals, here marks the beginning of something beautiful. Or not.
At the start of every fortnight I’ll be posting my language learning goals for the coming fourteen days thus putting my limey ass on the line and making myself accountable. Here’s hoping this will be a long and fruitful exercise and one that highlights SIGNIFICANT progress. Oh as well as letting you know what I’m doing in order to habla español in the fastest time possible.
Oh yeah. In order to make this less tedious and onanastic I’ll also be including a video with each report. Sometimes this might show my Spanish, sometimes not. The one above is half decent if you’re interesting in coming to Cáceres and checking out its cool old city. Or my intense (almost rabid) gaze into the camera.
On to the goals.
This fortnight I’ll be counting as my first real learning weeks. I took the first week to settle in, get a place and commence work. Also to shave off a mighty wild beard and converse with an alcoholic in the park.
1. Complete Two Chapters in Spanish Grammar Book
The book I’m using, Practice Makes Perfect Complete Spanish Grammar, is a little tedious yet a mighty handy resource for getting all the nuances of the language nailed. This week I’m going to focus on personal and relative pronouns as these have been a little confusing for me up until now. Maybe in a weeks time I’ll be able to ask questions and recount stories more precisely. As well as sounding less like a Swindonian trapped in Spain.
2. Learn 20 New Words Daily
Anki is what fat girls would like if they got sick of cake and became hungry for language. I use it every day for helping to learn and remember twenty new vocabulary items per day.
3. Converse in Spanish with 2 Strangers Daily
So far in Cáceres I’ve mainly been approaching lone rangers or tourists for random conversation practice. People here hang out in big groups so the big one is to approach a party of people and converse my way in. Either way I’ll be picking on two strangers each day to get plenty of speaking practice. Maybe an orgy?
4. Read 2 Pages of Spanish Novel – La Sombra Del Viente – Daily
I’ve found reading this novel to be a great vocabulary and grammar learning resource. Not to mention enjoyable. I’ll carry on with my slow method of reading and looking up vocabulary I don’t know. I’ll also flick over the past days dog-eared bits for maximum retention. Harry Potter? Go away.
5. Watch 1 Spanish TV Programme Daily
Watching TV is something I did much of back in the UK but watching it in Spanish (subtitles on of course) is something of a gold mine. They dub my Big Fat Gypsy Wedding here too. Double win.
6. Watch 1 Spanish Film
Films are to books are to TV what God is to Jesus is to Moses. Or something. What better way to enjoy and learn the language? And pick up some colloquialisms and curse words too?
7. Listen to Notes in Spanish Intermediate Podcast and Write 300 Words Daily
It’s not all about the speaking and reading you know. Got to make sure I’ve got the writing down too. This series from Ben and Marina in Madrid is particularly useful for listening and they give you homework-style topics to write about too.
8. Read BBC El Mundo Aloud for 15 Minutes Daily
I’ve found reading the news aloud to be good for pronunciation and improving the general speed of speaking in casual conversations. Yeah I sound like a nut but then that’s nothing new really.
Bang. So that’s a lot of learning goals for this week and hopefully I’ll get them all done. I’ve got to work, sleep and eat in the meantime too. Maybe I’ll just give that shit a miss.
Check in next week to see if I’m as strong as Shadow from The Gladiators.
How are you working toward your goals this week?