French Week 5

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Week 5 target: 4260 known words.
Week 5 result: 4266 known words.

I really noticed the value of short-term achievable goals these past two weeks. Without them I don’t think I would have made the progress I have made and put in the reading needed. I am now in a really good position: into the second month of learning French and I have mostly left the beginner material behind and I’m working through the intermediate reading over at LingQ. This is a real pleasure because as the language becomes more complex, the passion and soul behind the written words becomes more evident, from Steve’s description of language learning (wonderfully read by Marianne) through to SanneT’s odd and amusing little letters from an imaginary English village. It is really here, on the lower foothills of intermediate reading, that the real joys of language learning get going.

Week 6 target: 4766 known words.


I must say, that’s impressive. Did you start from scratch these 5 weeks ago or did you have some knowledge of the language before? I’ve just read your 1st blog post and it says you learned 700 words that week which is like crazy. Then I read your 2nd post and that’s just insane :slight_smile:
I’m just editing this message for the 3rd time because I must say something else. I got quite motivated. No matter your language exposure prior to starting your blog, that’s waaaay better progress than mine. I’m just too slow with my Spanish and now I have a reason to push myself a little more. I’d been doing like 30-60 minutes a day involving next to 0 listening but that’s going to change now :slight_smile: Starting today.

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Good for you! Take into account that spscole mastered Spanish before tackling French. Thats great news for you because it means that you can progress very fast in Italian and then French after your Spanish level is good. It stands to reason that your first romance language should take longer to acquire.

Tres impressionnant, bon courage pour la semaine prochaine

@Francisco, how much did it take for you as a native Spanish speaker to be able to communicate in other Romance languages?

It took me a week of learning Polish to be able to ask something in Poland (I had no more time to learn but my native Belarusian helped me so much).
It took me 2 months before my travel to Prague to be able communicate with anybody there in Czech.
I have never learned any Serbian or any dialect spoken in ex-Yugoslavia but I was able to communicate with people in Montenegro asking them in Russian and understanding their replies in their own language.

I am wondering how good will I be in next 3 month with Spanish. My Italian helps but I am not confident yet.

@ftornay is spot on here - your first romance language is going to be tougher. I am using my knowledge of Spanish and English to make quick work in French which shares a huge vocabulary with these two languages. I started 5 weeks ago as a “false beginner” - I studied French at school over 18 years ago, and I hated every minute of it.

I recommend this video from Steve from way back about how many words we can learn a day: Learning Words - 100 Words a Day? - YouTube … I think it is reasonable to “learn” between 50-100 words a day with about 45-60 minutes reading, as long as you adopt a Kaufmannesque definition of a “known word”. I certainly can’t produce much French and for now my listening abilities are still fairly poor. I just know from Spanish that both of these will come later and are currently not a priority.

I’m glad it is motivating! I thought I’d blog to help motivate myself and inspire others. I’m not a linguist, have always struggled to learn languages, so my attitude is “if I can do this, anyone can.”