Possible Spanish experiment
I posted the result of the "experiment" here: https://www.lingq.com/en/community/forum/open-forum/result-of-spoiler-mostly-faile
Now, when I´m almost at the point of leaving this is the status. I´m quite a bit burned out and find it hard to concentrate a lot of the time. I´m about to get to the 22,700 "known words" you need to complete Advanced 1, but that mostly just says where my reading comprehension is. My listening is far behind that and my ability to form sentences is almost zero. We´ll just see how it goes. If I´d been travelling to a French, Dutch or Norwegian speaking country, languages I´d had more time practicing on LingQ then I´m sure I would have been going to speak a bunch. I think it all depends on a bunch of things, my energy level, my mood, what we´ll be doing there, the reactions I get, the opportunities and so on.
You've already read quite a lot, great effort!
Since you're learning it for fun, it's ok if you leave it instead of burning out. But if you decide to take it up again in the future, you'll probably find it easier.
Didn't you find many cognates with French and English ? I think with those two languages already under your belt you must have found many similarities
I hope you have a nice trip to the Canary Islands.
"Didn't you find many cognates with French and English?" - Yes, especially French, but lots of words you find in English too. I had a fairly good understanding of simple stuff like the mini-stories from the very start for example, especially when I was reading.
I´m watching the Spanish LingQ podcast right now and I actually understand a lot and enjoy it somewhat. I´m more burned out from reading than listening. I´ll still try to finish Advanced 1 before I go, cause I like to finish certain goals like that, but I´ll be focusing more on listening.
This is what I´m listening to right now. I´m sure they speak very slowly and clearly compared to natives having normal conversations, but it´s a start to be able to understand a lot of it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fp8AVIIRVzw
Yes, they are speaking somewhat slower and clearer than natives usually do, but it's basically normal speach. It's also very close to how journalists speak on the radio in terms of speed and clarity.
If you want to learn to understand spoken you can't do it by reading. They are different skills and need to be practised separately.
With that in mind, if I was in your position I would watch Spanish TPRS for 3-4 hours a night until you go on vacation.
So go on youtube and search for "Spanish TPRS".
For reference I learn languages *purely* by listening.
3-4 hrs a day, I´m not really willing to spend that much time on it. I am doing some listening here and there though. It´s a vacation, not some test I have to score as high as I can on.
You said "thinking about putting a lot of effort into it".
Maybe you should have said "with minimum effort" instead ;->
It says you are from Canada, so is your first language not English? "Thinking about" does not mean "have decided to".
OK. Next time when you ask for help don't get upset if you don't get the exact answer you wanted.
He didn't get upset at not getting the answer he wanted. His reply was directed to your smartass retort of:
<<Maybe you should have said "with minimum effort" instead>>
OK it's *me* that's a smartass? OK
Stepping off now.
"He didn't get upset at not getting the answer he wanted. His reply was directed to your smartass retort of:
<<Maybe you should have said "with minimum effort" instead>> "
That´s exactly it. When someone gives a smartass comment, they should be ready to get one back.
There was nothing wrong with his advice, not that anyone would need to get upset even if they think the advice is bad. I think what he suggested would be an effective way to learn, I just don´t think I´ll have the time/energy for it. I clearly stated that it´s a "possible" experiment and that I´m "thinking about it", not that I´d set the goal and was sticking to it.
You should carry around a notebook and jot down important words; later if you have decided to learn Spanish seriously; you can review them in Anki. Some of the important words in Spanish may not be listed in Mini stories and other lessons. You only get to see them when you visit or walk by a Pharmacy; Shopping store, Coffee shop, Optician shop, Book shop, however, they are common words and are used in day-to-day life.
Nevertheless, share your holiday experiences and how much you are successful with your current Spanish level.
If you need to get basic speaking skills as fast as possible with LingQ, I would just start going through "Who is She" and mini stories, and read / listen to them over and over again on a loop. I actually started doing that once when I looked like I was gonna go on assignment to Spain, but then the gig didn't happen, so I just went back to my regular reading, but the experiment showed me that that would be thing to do if I needed to get my speaking up quickly at any time.
That´s one idea
I agree with the people who have said I need to do a lot of listening. I´m honestly pretty worn out from using LingQ. It´s my 2 year anniversary today and I´ve read over 5.5 million words and listened for over 300 hrs, among other things and it´s gotten to the point where I both find it hard to keep at it as much and just don´t want to miss out on other things I could be doing. I am however starting to listen to Spanish now more than before. Sometimes just something really easy like the mini-stories, but it´s a start.
I have also tended to get lost in reading here, because I´ll get obsessed with getting known-word-goals. It´s resulted in my reading ability being way ahead of my other abilities and I need to catch up. Listening is one thing I need to do more, but also to write and talk. I´d still need to read a bunch of Spanish (unlike the other languages I´ve studied so far), but I´m really tired of reading.
Yeah, it's totally possible to get burnout, especially for as long as you've been going at it. I've dragged out my "official" Spanish learning over so many years as I go away and return to it. My reading was also way ahead of my other abilities for my entire time learning, and especially since I started at LingQ--and that's a good thing. You need to read in order to get the words, and you need the words in order to be able to listen/comprehend spoken language, and you to listen in order to participate in a coversation if you want to understand what comes back to you when you speak.
If I were you, right now I'd be working on my listening by watching Spanish telenovelas with Spanish subtitles on Netflix, especially since it is mosly diaglogue and that will prepare you for good coversations (both comprehension and your own speaking). Once I got beyond 300 hours my comphrension was more comforable and noticeably better when I got over 100 hours of listening. Right now I'm at 800 hours. The benefit you have now is you can dump those subtitles into LingQ, update your stats, and practice speaking with people on Italki, (heard it's good) and here on LinQ so you can activate more of that 18K and 5.5 million words.
I actually only have about 350K read words in Spanish and a just few hours of listening. The 5.5+ million words and 300+ hours are my totals in all languages on LingQ. Lots of my known words in Spanish come from the fact that I recognize them from how similar they are to the French word.
But I think your points are valid. The approach of 1) read to learn the words 2) listen to catch the words when they are spoken 3) start to write and/or talk to learn to communicate - is a valid approach that works.
I think the point that was made before here on it being easy to learn a few sentences like "Where is the store", but it then being useless when you understand nothing of the answer, is a good point too.
In my experience (although that was in Catalonia) and what I've heard from others (but again, not on the Canaries), Spaniards already appreciate it if you try to speak some Spanish. Years ago my parents were in Andalusia and people already appreciated it that my father used the correct greetings depending on the time of day whereas the other tourists would use "buenos días" throughout.
just to get some quick speaking practice, maybe pimsleur is a good idea for a couple of weeks? It's relatively cheap if you get the subscription for a month and it gets you "used to" actually speaking.
Can you speak to real people on Primsleur with a subscription, without paying for it like a private lesson each time?
You need to be aware of how you say things in your native language when ordering coffee and cakes at a Bakery. Catching a bus from point A to point B. And, other daily interactions, etc
As humans, we have limited things to do in a day therefore we can easily acquire the required phrases and sentences. I think you need to have speaking lessons tailored-made for this purpose and some sort of shadowing on your own if audio is available.
After living in Germany one thing I have noticed is that "listening" is very important. You can only reply back if you can understand what the other person is saying. Don't neglect it.
As an aside, don't stress it over; Enjoy your holidays; English is always there ;)
I don't even think it's possible at all to speak to real people via pimsleur. If I would compare to anything, I would say it's more like assimil but fully audio.
I used it for italian for about 40 days. Although the vocab I learned was really minimal and to be honest I also thought it was boring, but I do have to admit that it really got me used to speaking out loud in the language. I felt quite confident in being able to have a simple conversation after 30 days.
You'll probably get a lot better results doing the same amount of speaking via Italki, but costwise pimsleur is comparatively a bargain.
I would second having some conversations with italki. I don´t know how much time you spend listening to content or trying to improve your listening comprehension, but I´m sure you could get to a point of basic spoken competency in a short time.
I would communicate with italki tutors about your goal, and you should be able to find some that are excited to help.
As asad100101 said a key part for me is definitely listening comprehension. I went to the Dominican Republic a few years ago and was surprised to learn how many people spoke German. At that time my level in German was at most A2. I was able to order food (the menus were almost all Spanish then German and maybe English) and bumble my way through saying things, but I understood almost nothing being said to me without them miming things out.
I have been talking to Russian speakers that I met at
As a test, I have just searched for
and found several potential partners
That´s great, cause I also really need French and Dutch speakers so talk to in particular. I´m much further along in those two languages than in Spanish.
I agree with Francisco's approach and have found that Spaniards on the mainland were very accomodating and appreciative.
However, I would add my own suspicion that if you are at 18K words now, and will probably be around 20K by the time you guy and continue to improve throughout the trip, I doubt you'll be offering " extremely primitive Spanish."
Como ftornay te dijo, "Buena Suerte."
I´ll certainly post on the forum again once I get back and report how it all went. What kind of effort I ended up putting into the preparation, how much I tried speaking there and how it turned out.
I'm sure you'll find people to speak with. What islands are you planning to visit? I've been to Tenerife (mostly the northern part), Lanzarote and Fuerteventura.
One thing you could try is to enrol in some kind of activity meant for natives, if you have the time for it But even if you don't, just talk to people and explain that you come from Iceland and want to practise your Spanish.
It´s going to be the Grand Canary.
I will try that. Even if it´s just an exchange of a few words it´s going to be better than nothing. I´m weighing a little how much effort I should put into it. It might not be good to get too insane trying to learn it as fast as I could and stressing about it too much, when you want to look forward to your holiday and relax once you get there.
I might not have the time for an activity meant for natives, but that is certainly a great idea for learning. At the very least I´ll learn to form some basic sentences, the typical "where do I find...", "how do I ...", "are you ...." etc. before I go there. I can understand quite a bit of written Spanish and a slight bit of spoken Spanish, but I´m usually grabbing at air (or French) when I try to build sentences.
I've never been to Grand Canaria, but I find most Spanish cities have "intercambio" events, where random people meet up over a drink to practice whatever language(s) they want to practice. English and Spanish tend to dominate, as you may expect.