Milestone and and how to progress

guyz i am almost an inch away from hitting the milestone of 28k words( i have been deleting names countries and dates ,basically everything that is not usable) for both after 5 months tha since i’ve started. I still find hard to understand french speaker in youtube and i think that podcasts and Rfi show doesn’t help . I think i have hit a wall or sth like that any kind of advice???By the way i have lingqed more than 10k words on each language so i have been thinking to learn a couple of thousand words on each language and listening to youtubers with the transcript…

Just keep going I would say, and perhaps get a bit more listening practice. It’s easy to get to a intermediate level, it’s here that things get tricky. But if you just keep practicing you will achieve whatever goal you set yourself.

Are you meeting your listening targets in your progress snapshot? It is important to listen to the text you are studying as well especially if you have trouble with comprehension. You may want to also try reading along as you listen. Otherwise, as the other poster says, just keep going it’ll start to make sense for you eventually.

Personally, I’m surprised you have gotten to so many known words with such relatively little linqing. Unless you are getting the words from context, you need to create lingqs to know the words. The words go from blue to white by way of turning yellow first. People have all different types of personal criteria that they use before they will make a word known. The basic threshold is whether you can understand the word in context, regardless of you’re ability to immediately recall it or use it.

Assuming that is at least your criteria (or better), my guess is that the bigger reason you are not listening as well is because you haven’t listened enough yet. For me, I’ve done a lot of reading, but relatively little listening comparatively until about a year ago.

How many hundreds of hours have you listened to Spanish or French? Like Mark said, keep going at that listening, especially reading AND listening to the same stuff because you need to associate those sounds with those words.

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Mark you see the problem is that even though i have listened to material such as audio books and things of that nature the language is not real…not organic so it is a completely different monster listening to tv shows and youtubers and listening to audiobooks and RFI for examples…(my take at least) …I have a dillemma right now to go back read some of the stuff i already read or find new material to read… (my reading ability is at an advanced level i could say just beacause i have spent a lot of time practising it) I would be glad to be suggested some type of course or book!!! thanks in advance!!!

Spanish is a different situation i can watch spanish series and understand what they say even at full speed at a good rate even though i could have done more listening but it is the fact that i said to mark also … There are only a few courses that go on par with the listening comprehension that you need to understand tv shows and stuff… (one on one conversations is also another story since i can concetrate on what they are saying and i can interact properly…) so the only thing missing in my comprehension is tv shows and movies!!!

it does get tricky indeed … I have to keep it up though and see what happens in 3 months or so!!

I’ve come to the conclusion that however long you think it should take to understand native speakers speaking freely, it’ll take quite a bit longer than that.

I’ve just recently had a small breakthrough in my listening where I’m able to understand large parts of conversations without needing to translate so much, this has freed up my brain to hear and understand more (I think). I’m now able to understand some parts of conversations that I struggled with in the past. I’m not sure how I’m suddenly able to do that but I think it has something to do with just hearing the words and understanding the meaning without translating, or at least without translating all the time.

I think Steve made a video where he likened language learning to stumbling around in the fog, and how this fog slowly disappears. I’d liken that to my own experiences so far, thing is, it doesn’t happen in a linear fashion, you can go a long time with no change, then suddenly the fog has cleared a little more, then on you go again, waiting for the next improvement to occur, but you can’t force it, it happens when it happens. I’m sure this is what most of us have experienced anyway.

I’m sure you know this, but anyway, it can’t hurt to be reminded. The only way to do it is to keep plugging away, with the knowledge that what you do now will pay off at some point down the road, you don’t know when, but you know it’s in the post.

I’d do what you’re doing right now, find native dialogue or whatever it may be, with transcripts, listen and read over and over and at some point I guess you won’t need the transcript and you’ll just get it, but before that there will probably be a series of mini breakthroughs until it all comes together.


I remember, and use, the fog analogy too.

Ah, okay. I see. Yes, movies and TV shows are the hardest listening to do often because there is regional slang, fast speed, back ground music/other effects, and there is often lots of subtext and implied meaning.

I haven’t tried to watch a Spanish movie in a long time (foreign aren’t the greatest in my mind), but TV shows are generally not an issue. However, I still use Spanish subtitles so I can listen and read simultaneously. If I were to just listen I would have a bit harder time

Yeah what i am trying to say is that i have no problem conversing with my french teacher for example because she is speaking real , right french … I have issues with many youtubers and tv shows in which there are people who talk like super fast and they skip many words and that makes it difficult… So i think i should be listening to more that kind of material than listening to audio books and things of that nature… ( i think i made myself more clear this time)…

Any suggestions to watch?? I am currently watching Reina del sur but it is not like super exciting…

I watched that. It is supposed to be the greatest telenovela ever, but I found it only so-so. That might simply because all of them are bad. The jail episodes were a little boring and dragged, but the last 1/2 to 1/3 episodes are better as things ramp up. I will also say that there were a lot of words I had to look up because they were peculiar or Mexican (at least in the beginning).

The second series I watched was Teresa. Now I’m watching Rubi. Both were pretty good and easier to understand. And they didn’t have that cloying corrido music like Reina.

A good short series is the 15 episode Chicas del Cable (Cable Girls). I watched that in between Teresa and Rubi. When I finish Rubi, I’m probably going to watch Velvet.

FYI: all Mexican telenovelas seem to fall into one of two story lines: 1) female who has an important drug dealer male in her life die and she has to take over and be respected by her former enemies; and 2) poor girl who has nothing but amazing good looks and often brains betrays everyone and sells out to land a rich guy.

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First of all, 28k words in both languages after 5 months is an astonishing feat to all!

I think youtuber speech is less formal and more colloquial, and besides voca, accent and speed of the speaker might have all caused comprehension problem for us.

As with the TV Drama (Telenovela), conversations are really easy to follow with simple and predictable story line.

Have you replayed the same video(with subtitle or not) to see if you pick up more every time?

My listening skills in Spanish could be no better than yours. I certainly found some youtubers to be more understandable than others once i spent more time in their channels.

Watching debate about various topic could also be helpful, because it is more focused, and more interactive than a monologue by a single youtuber.

Just my 2 cents.

For sure if they talk at normal speed i understand about 85% of what they say at french and in spanish i have no problem understanding even at higher speeds especiallu when it comes to castellano instead of cuban and latin america accents!!! i have issues with youtubers who speak to fast…eat( skik ) a ton of words and use colloquillal… i understand B2 Delf exams and i could probably pass it even iahve not practised it…( reading and listening and speaking because writing is another story againi in french (wish it was as easy and as confortable as it comes in spanish or italian) i think i have to concentrate listening to the same audio over and over again untill i unlock these sounds…i believe in 2 months or so of consistent practise ( 1 hour plus per day ) i will put it down!!!

man you have a heart telenovelas are the worst

If it weren’t for the pretty girls and the idea that I’m learning Spanish at some level, I wouldn’t be doing this. If I were a native Spanish speaker, my brain would rot.

Did you try watching dubbed series?
Like this: - YouTube

If you know the setting of a series already it could help you understand an episode you don’t know yet.
Or you watch the original version of a movie you already know the American remake of like My Father the Hero // Mon père, ce héros.

How about “Ministerio del Tiempo”? I do enjoy that series (it’s from Spain)
As for the listening difficulties, understanding films/series, etc. is particularly difficult. Don’t get too upset if it takes you some time.
At the intermediate level I think that your main goal should be to understand face to face conversations. In general, conversations between third persons are harder to understand than speech directed to you. Anyone language speaker joining a group conversation between natives can attest to it.
Consider listening media simply training. A little as what gladiators used to do: they trained with heavier than normal weapos so as to build strength. You listen to series just to try and pick some sentences and, more importantly, exchanges between the characters. You’re bound to lose a lot but that’s ok. You build up “listening music” by going through that exercise.
For listening practice at that level I often watch tutorial videos, which typically are more concerned with viewers actually understanding each detail, rather than challenging them with hard to get information
Another thing I usually do at that level is watch segments of a movie and then read a part of a written synopsis. That both helps with listening practice and provides “comphrehensible input”, which is what will eventually take you to the next level.

No i have not gave a try yet…I am on it!!!