Last month I was declared the winner of a Language Challenge where I learned Mandarin in 90 days (you can read all about that on this post ) , I will be taking my prize trip to Beijing in November this year. That means I have 3 months to work on improving my Chinese before I go.
As well as working on Chinese, I would like to spend a few months studying more German. Resources are plentiful and I’m a low B1 level at the moment and I’d like to improve to eventually reach B2 level. You can read more about what each level means by clicking here.
Once I have been to China in November, I will be continuing with my Chinese studies because it’s a language I really enjoy learning. However, I will be able to slow down my study pace after my trip, but I will continue with skype lessons every 10 days or so.
I have a trip to New Zealand in February and I would like to learn some Maori because I am interested in the language and culture. I managed to get some Maori coursebooks delivered from New Zealand and there is a Maori TV Channel which has hundreds of video lessons.
Next summer, I am going on holiday to Croatia. Croatian is a language I have wanted to learn for quite some time. One reason is that I would like to learn a Slavic language to a good level as knowledge of one Slavic language can eventually help me learn others in the future. There are plenty of tutors on Italki and enough resources for me to reach a good level.
Another hobby language I am considering is Cornish. Cornish is one of the Celtic languages that (arguably) became extinct around the late 1700s. However, it has been revived and there are now around 500 speakers. I’m interested in doing a distance course after my Gaelic course finishes in February and there is a Cornish study weekend in Cornwall in April which I’d like to attend. I have never visited Cornwall, but it’s one of the most beautiful parts of England. The Cornish Distance Course is currently very cheap (£20 per level including tutor support), but I don’t think this reasonable price will last as the government has withdrawn funding. If you are interested, details are on this website .
Between October and December I will be doing a new 90 day Add1Challenge to learn Sicilian. This is a “hobby language” and should be easy for me because I know Italian already.
I have also decided to revive my basic Arabic. I did two semesters of Syrian Arabic at Dalarna University around 4 years ago and then they did not run any more courses. Since then I have been a it stuck for resources and tutors. However, I started looking into Egyptian Arabic because I have some Egyptian films on DVD and I didn’t think it would be too much effort to start focusing on the Egyptian dialect. There are more resources and tutors for Egyptian rather than Syrian Arabic. I have now found a great tutor on Verbling and I plan to have regular lessons with her.
This year, I did a 24 hour Wolof challenge in conjunction with the North American Polyglot Conference. I hope to learn some more Wolof sometime next year and this was my first time learning an African language. I actually only had about 2-3 hours to learn it during the Linguathon weekend and then I made this video in Wolof with English subtitles.
I will also be maintaining my better languages just by having Skype conversations. Due to lack of free time, I can only really commit to intensively studying two basic level languages at the same time and one or two others at a slower pace. The ones that I study intensively depend on my current level and necessity for that language at that time. Sadly, I can’t do everything I want. The best routine for me is maintaining my higher level languages that I don’t need to actively study anymore by having Skype conversations with native speakers and then choosing the most essential ones from my lower level languages to work on over a period of a few months at a time. My best languages which I use regularly are Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Catalan, French and Norwegian.