For the month of June I've focused on learning Spanish, I'm calling it 'Junio.' We're just over halfway in so it's a good time for an update on my progress.
During this, my two main tools are Lingvist + LanguageTransfer.
LanguageTransfer is a series of lectures about learning Spanish. Though, I must admit, I've fallen off taking the lessons. I've done the first 20 of 90 lessons in the series and I don't think I've listened to one in 4 days. I am going to get back to listening to them and taking notes today.
Everyday I do between 2-4 sets of flashcards in Lingvist. Each set is 50 words. So far this month I've spent nearly 10 hours using the app. The app estimates I know 1,285 Spanish words. I like their spaced repetition and that it shows dots that symbolize how many times you've gotten it correctly (up to 5, which is where it considers you having learned the word.)
With over two weeks of use, I can tell you my main criticism of Lingvist, which is it treats each form of a word as a unique word. So an adjective that is modified to match the gender of the noun, 'mismo'/'misma' both mean 'same' and each are counted as unique words for me to know in Lingvist. I would rather have it be a single word. Same for verbs, I don't want each conjugation to be its own word. And for the singular or plural form of nouns.
I get that for English speakers where this is their first language learning experience that the way they do it is probably preferred. But, having taken Latin in high school, I have a better understanding of linguistic grammar and a mental model. So I find myself preferring to know the base word and make the modifications needed for the right usage. It is approaching a point where I am getting more and more frustrated and annoyed by it. This is largely because of irregular words. For example, the verb 'sigue' means 'I continue' or 'seguir' means 'to continue' - We continue? 'Seguimos.' But not solely. I also have come to think that knowing the base forms would enable me to better identify linguistic connections which would further my learning and understanding.
So, as is my custom, I've begun considering making my own tool for vocab learning. I don't know if I will, or if I'll just make my own word list for use in Anki (another more generic memorization app.)
The other thing I am trying to do is think about translations in my day to day. If I turn on a light, I think 'luz.' When I watch soccer ('futbol') and I see a forward ('delantero') kick ('tiro') the ball ('balon').
There is still much to learn, but I am getting there.
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