OK so the reality?
If you do 2-3 hours a day, half and half between reading and watching laddered up youtube videos (starting with “TPRS”, working your way through slowly spoken spanish then to native speakers) over a period of six months, then for sure you’ll get to low intermediate comprehension.
Don’t expect reading by itself to work for listening comprehension though.
OK so the reality?
That’s good. Yeah, it was “and then I can relax” part that worried me as it sounded like you weren’t relaxed whilst reading. If you’re enjoying it that’s all that counts.
Don’t forget that even if you don’t hit those targets, or even if you leave the language for a day or two, it doesn’t mean you’ve failed (I realise you probably realise that but I thought I’d mention it just in case). I’ve often had periods without any contact with Spanish but despite that my level continued to improve.
If I could truly understand one thing when I first started - and not to take it lightly (which I did) - it’s that learning a language (to a high level) is 100% about the big picture, about doing all you can to stay the (very) long course.
I read that advice when I started but I didn’t fully understand it until I got deep into this journey. Finding a way to keep showing up is the only goal you’ll need.
I’m heading through the LingQ Spanish podcasts on the app and they have been good with a lot of variety. I like to read about football as well as this is something that I am passionate about.
That’s great advice though thank you. Motivation and enjoyment over a long period of time win in so many aspects in life!
That would be a good level to get to. There content will become a lot more interesting for sure. I am looking to listen more to help as well. The video suggestion is good, I have started watching Dreaming Spanish videos and they are very good.
I am hoping that a combination of those videos, listening to podcasts, my daily reading (with listening) and music should get my exposure to around 2-5 hours depending on which day it is (if I am commuting or not etc).
Should be a fun journey
How do you find the LingQ Spanish podcasts? I still struggle a bit to find my way around LingQ. I tried doing a search but no luck!
LingQ Mini Stories - Latin American Spanish - LingQ Language Library
Thanks! I’ve done all the mini stories and Who Is She but can’t seem to locate the podcasts.
I wanted to provide an update to my original post.
After some great recommendations and experiences shared by those on this thread (thank you!) I have tried to shift my focus more towards my listening comprehension as it was so far behind my reading. As many of you have said, this is natural given how difficult listening comprehension is to acquire.
I have tried to read the same amount to continue growing my vocabulary, but wanted to listen more to improve this side of things. Which means, more total exposure to Spanish. Some things that have helped:
When I walk the dog in the morning I wear my headphones and listen to Spanish only. Usually some short stories that I have read before.
Dreaming Spanish YouTube videos. These have been great! I have filled in some dead time by watching these when I have dinner. The key is that I really trying to listen to the words rather than just letting them pass by. I am watching the intermediate videos now and most of the ones with Pablo that I have watched, I understand pretty much everything. I flirt between INT and BEG levels to get different levels of exposure and love how comprehensive input is developing my listening abilities.
Listening while commuting. This has been great and I find it easy to listen on the way to work, on the way back is a different story and I have a tired mind and struggle to pay attention to my TL. Does anyone have experience with this and what did you do to help this?
Watching Spanish shows on Netflix. I need to do more of this. I don’t watch much TV as it is but watching some Spanish shows after work with a tired mind is another way to get the language in and the cherry on top to my learning and my day.
Generally trying to make the most of my time. Can I get as much exposure to the language as possible without it being overkill and it becoming a drain. I like the challenge of trying to learn more and I feel like with some intense exposure over the next few months I am going to make huge gains. I already feel like I have.
Ultimately, the progress I am making with acquiring new words is slowing, but I am still progressing. Words that I know feel a lot more ‘stuck’, and they are embedded well in my long-term memory, generally. This gives me MORE confidence to keep going, and actually do more!
I am also learning Spanish language with the help of LingQ.
Good discussion! I wonder about this myself.
I’ve been learning French on LingQ for two months. (Before that I messed around with flash cards and song lyrics for six weeks.)
I do enjoy racking up new words while reading – currently at 5700. However, I also love the sound of French and one day I hope to hear and speak it decently. It’s slow going.
So in Sentence View I listen to the audio 4-6 times. Sometimes for meaning, sometimes for pronunciation, sometimes to speak (after or during the audio).
Lately I close my eyes during the last listen or two and visualize the words being spoken in mind’s eye. I don’t know how much this helps, but I do notice my very gradual improvement.
Sounds like you have a good motivation to keep listening to the same piece of material, and I like the idea that you are looking for something different each time. Repetition and novelty!
I am integrating more and more listening into my daily activities such as driving or walking the dog. I have found it a bit mundane to listen to the same stories etc over and over and it has been difficult to find new material that is interesting to me.
I find that now I am better able to understand native speakers and those that speak with speed. My brain isn’t so overloaded by this and I can understand some of what’s going on. Some days I feel like I have made no process then another day it seems to ‘click’ better and it gives me motivation to carry on!
I like reading about football in Spanish, and have recently discovered ‘Marca Daily’ podcasts. I read a lot on the Marca website, but these podcasts are released daily and are 10 minutes long. They are usually on different topics within the world of current sport, a lot of which is Spanish football. What I am now planning to do is export the Youtube video into Lingq, read it a couple of times, then read while listening to the audio. Then, when I am walking the dog or driving, I can listen a couple more times to get a lot of different exposures to the same information. Because it is current news and something that I am interested in, it won’t get boring after 5 listens/reads as I am keen to understand what is being said! It’s great to find new content like this, and especially something that is digestible and released daily.
I’ll give another update in a week or so time
Also, I have now read over 400,000 words and try to read a couple of hours everyday. My vocabulary keeps piling up and I love the motivation of going for 500k and up!