I woke up groggy, still trying to snooze off a sleepless night of New Year’s parties, looked out my window and could see that we had just flown over a small bay of some sort that showed the Mediterranean sea part of my journey was done. Our flight had just entered Egypt, and it […]MORE
My three months are officially up! In a few hours I’ll be getting a flight back to Ireland to spend Christmas with my family, then heading to Germany for a few days to celebrate the New Year in Esperanto with some good friends as always. Then, a few days into January, I fly into Egypt, […]MORE
Here it is; my official two month point in Arabic! Subtitles in English, Arabic and Portuguese via Youtube.
I had initially planned to go to the Egyptian consulate in Rio, to finally speak the language for the first time in my life in person, but there were issues in setting up a meeting there. Luckily, I randomly ran into an Egyptian-American, Ahmed, at a Couchsurfing meeting!
I decided to only speak English with him then and ask him if he’d be up for recording a video with me. We still spoke English before recording the video, so he had no idea what my level would have been at. The reason I did this, was so you could literally see the very first time I genuinely spoke the language face-to-face with someone in my life, the moment after I pressed record.
Sharing this key moment is good for tracking my progress, since I know people are curious about such important milestones of the mission, (unlike some friends of mine, I don’t tend to have a camera on my head to catch such moments in cognito!) but obviously breaking into Arabic suddenly, after not speaking it for over a day since my previous Skype session, meant I didn’t have quite the ideal kind of flow I’d like. In future, I’ll speak in the relevant language for several minutes before recording, so I have this flow.MORE
Today’s video marks the half-way point of my mission to learn Egyptian Arabic to fluency in 3 months, while in Brazil. I’m talking to Henry, an Egyptian who lives in Australia, and it was the first time we ever talked. He’s a reader of this blog, and offered to let me record our Skype conversation.MORE
My “Learn Egyptian Arabic in Brazil” week 2 project update. Here I have no script to refer to, and I recite the entire seven minute script from memory. There are a LOT of mistakes, but I like to think I am at least coming across as a bit more confident than the previous week.MORE
Here it is – my first ever video in Arabic, a week after starting to learn it! Subtitles are provided in original Arabic, English and Portuguese for all videos of this project. In this video, I read a script written entirely in Arabic (no romanisation) about how I’m in Rio and just starting the mission. To make it more interesting, I’ve thrown in some nice views of the city at various points in the video, but there is no editing out of my pauses and hesitations.MORE
As you all know, I’m attempting to get Fluent in Arabic in 3 months, in a city 500km deep inside Brazil. It’s on! A good start is essential if you want to get the momentum to learn as fast as possible, so this meant that I did as much as I could not related to […]MORE
This may be one of the craziest language projects I’ve ever undertaken! Watch the video for the proper introduction. As you’ll see, I have three months, starting today, to reach fluency (more specifically, high level B2/low C1 on this scale) in (Egyptian) Arabic and I plan to do it… in Brazil!MORE
[Quick reminder: the next language mission will be announced in the Language Hacking League email list next week! Enter your email in the top-right of the site to find out in advance of the blog announcement] Check out today’s video interview with Diarmuid Ó Mathúna from Raidió na Life, and don’t forget to click Youtube’s […]MORE
I spent a month in Austin (TX) and learned enough ASL to make a multilingual music video in ASL, but not enough to record a video interacting with someone. But then I made it a major focus to improve my ASL to a level where I could interview people to share Deaf culture and more about ASL and how it works with the world. Check out today’s video, entirely in American Sign Language.MORE
We are over half way through the summer and the 3 month challenge that I’ve proposed to people. How’s it going? Make sure to share your story in the language forums – I’ll be happy to share some of your missions and videos on the blog soon! What I’ve seen so far is really inspiring! […]MORE
I met up with fellow Youtube polyglot, Moses McCormick (see his Youtube channel) in Columbus, Ohio and the two of us went to a mall simply to walk up to complete strangers and practise a bunch of languages with them.MORE
Time for another video in Chinese! This is actually part of the summer project of improving many languages, and as such it is the first in a series of many interviews with natives of the languages in my list of 10. Yang Yang works as the Mandarin speaking presenter for the TV show “Hello Hollywood”.MORE
Those of you in the email list, and following my Facebook, or twitter found out about this in advance, but today it’s time to announce on the blog what my epic summer language learning mission is, tell you where I’ll be, and precisely what I’ll be working on in TEN languages so that you can […]MORE
The big question regarding my Mandarin project that a lot of people have been asking is How well can you really speak it Benny? I’ve been saying it’s about a B1 (lower intermediate), but I’m sure self evaluation (even though I have indeed sat so many CEFRL examinations ) can lead to some scepticism, so […]MORE