Learning Spanish Day 1
Time Log and Activities
Duo Lingo: Lessons 4, 30 minutes
Tiny Cards: Sessions 1, 10 minutes
Memrise: Sessions 4, 20 minutes
Notes in Spanish: Episodes 2 + notes, 1 hour
300 Spartan Words: 2 hours
Master of Memory: Lesson 1, Practice tests, 1 hour.
Babbel+ Lesson 1, 10 minutes
Flash cards and writing 1 hour
Read ½ of Fluent in 3 Months – 2 hours
Listened to Spanish music most of the day
8 hours total
You can check out all the Spanish language resources I am using here.
How Spanish Went Today
Today I spent a lot of time planning what I would do and testing out different channels, I probably won’t be using this many apps and podcasts on a normal day, today was a kind of a tester day.
One of the biggest things I had to decide was which podcast/lesson plan/book I would use. As I didn’t have any specific Spanish language books, and I want to do this for free or super cheap, I didn’t want to buy any. So I re-read Fluent in 3 Months by Benny Lewis. It is a great book but I won’t clap on about it, if you want to know more please do check out my review. I decided not to buy his hacking Spanish book simply because its £10 I don’t really have (you know, considering the surprise flights and accommodation and tickets I just sprung for 4am Sam’s trip to Spain 😛 )
I tried out and tested a few different podcasts but settled on Notes in Spanish because of the “real” Spanish aspect, and I just liked the presenters – which is important as I am going to be spending an hour or so every day with them – I have a fuller review and discussion of Notes in Spanish here, I will update it as I use the podcast more.
I did try the Masters of Memory podcast and I did like it, but when I checked out the free online course which has basic animations to go along with the stories and quizzes you can take part in TOTALLY FREE I decided to do that one instead. I did listen to the podcast first and there are a few weird differences, for example the podcast describes a path between stations shaped like a K whereas in the online version describes a structure within a station being shaped like a K. While I like the portability of the podcast I prefer the depth that the online course goes into.
I also found the 300 Spartan Words I would be focusing on. Spartan Words are the 300 most commonly used words in a language – if you can remember and know how to use these 300 words you will be pretty well set. I used the video by Polyglot Paolo. It’s literally 30 minutes of a black screen with the 300 most common Spanish words flashing up, with enough time in-between to write them down. Which is exactly what I did.
After writing them all out I went through and I chose the ones I felt would be most relevant to me in the next two weeks and my trip to Spain, and skipped the pronouns and connecting words I would be learning through my other means – for example the word for “late” (tarde) is probably more relevant to any conversations I may have as a short term tourist than the word for “science” (ciencia). I also excluded numbers and the words I already know pretty well (solo means only, hombre means man etc). I ended up with about 200 words – plus all the others I will be learning through other means (this will be fiiiiine, I’m not worried….)
I made this new list in my favourite way, notebook flashcards – if you want a video showing exactly how do this then let me know in the comments, its super basic and so useful
Lastly for today, I downloaded the Babbel+ app and completed the first beginner class – hello and thank you etc, plus singular pronouns. It was good, smooth, nice interface but from the first lesson on you need to pay for premium. The cheapest over all is £79.99 a year, or £12.99 per month. Worth it? I don’t know. I guess if you have the money it would be great and it has a little bit more grammatical information without looking for it than Duo Lingo, where you have to click the “information” to read about the grammar. With that said the Babbel Youtube channel is awesome, and I will freely admit a lot of the inspiration for this challenge came from an awesome video about twin brothers who try and learn Turkish in a week.
So, let’s hope I am half as successful as these guys! Let me know what you think, and if you have any tips for learning Spanish please drop them in the comments!!
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