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!
For me, the project to improve ten languages this summer is going great! For the first weeks, I did a lot of Skyping and managed to do so for nearly all 10 languages. I have to admit that it was confusing to switch so regularly, so for the rest of the summer if I want to handle multiple languages well, it’s best to be focused. Focus is better when it’s over several months (at least), but for the purposes of this project I’ll give it one or a few weeks at a time if possible.
There’s no way I’d do this if I was learning a new language, but it’s a little easier to handle when I am improving languages I already speak – especially for languages I’m already very fluent in.
I’ve just spent the month of July in the states, and had a break to celebrate my 30th birthday and speak at the “World Domination Summit” (Pinky and the Brain say hi!). This was all in English.
My own mission
The last two weeks however have been focused entirely on American Sign Language, and I managed to successfully immerse myself in the language and improve my communication skills in it. I can’t wait to share a really cool video entirely in ASL with you on Friday!
Right now I’m back in Cavan (just arrived and just woke up from my jetlag crunching siesta), and on Saturday I will head up to Glencolmbkille in Donegal for two weeks, to improve my Irish, as well as experiencing the Fleadh again, and visit other places in Ireland while I’m here. I’ll see about recording an interesting video or two in Irish for you!
I still have to make solid plans, but after 4 weeks in Ireland, I’ll be heading to mainland Europe to practise some of my other languages intensively, and ideally record a video with a native speaker in each one of them if I can. I’d love to have 10 videos to demonstrate my current level in each of the languages if it’s feasible (and interesting) to do so, since I prefer to make a video with a real point or interview someone genuinely interesting.
I’ll probably do a couple of those videos via Skype. Suggestions for who I should (and could) interview, appreciated!
Clues for the next language coming!
Some time around mid-to-late September, I will head to my next destination and start the next epic three month mission to learn a new language to fluency… in the wrong country.
All specifics on that mission will be announced on the blog the week I go, but those in the Language Hacking League email list will, as always, find out before everyone else! To make it more fun, I am going to be dropping clues as to what the mission will be, this month in the next emails. The answer will be revealed a couple of weeks before I go, only by email.
So make sure to sign up if you haven’t yet! Also, I removed some subscribers who looked like they were inactive (just a once off thing, so I won’t be doing it again), so check to make sure you are indeed subscribed. The easiest way by far is to enter your email address and submit it, because if you are already subscribed you won’t get any extra emails – just a message to confirm you are already on the list.
Because of travels, I haven’t had the time to write any emails in July, so don’t worry if you didn’t see anything since June! I’ll be able to catch up on emails and blog posts now that I’m in Ireland. I also plan to write a few blog posts in advance for the next months, so that I have more time to focus on that mission and make most updates I do in real time to be video updates about the project or similar.
Prize for whoever guesses correctly!
This time I’ll aim to make at least three or four videos a month, rather than the two per month I did for the Chinese mission, since people enjoyed seeing my progress a lot! I’ll also have big updates with what I learned in general, and how I’m doing every month or so.
However, a lot of people are curious about specifics like how many hours I’ve put into flashcards, reading, speaking, studying, and more frequent updates about major milestones and challenges of a particular week. With that in mind, I’ll update a limited number of people, every single week, with as much transparency as I can, and will track everything that I possibly can during that mission!
I’ll write more details about that later, but three people can guarantee that they’ll access the exclusive updates IF they guess the mission correctly in advance! You only get TWO guesses max though! So wait until you get the clues before hitting me with shots in the dark If more than three people guess correctly, I’ll use random.org to select the winners.
You’ll get that first email with the basic clues on Monday, and then more specific clues will come 2 weeks later. This is as well as the usual very helpful language learning tips in the email list that are exclusive to be shared on the completely free email list and not on the blog. I always have fun dropping clues to my upcoming missions, so I’m looking forward to seeing if people can finally guess it right this time!
Amazingly, in the past usually only one or two people actually get the mission right!! You’d think the sheer number of guesses would guarantee more get it right… (there was even a reddit discussion trying to figure it out the last time I dropped clues!), but my clues are intentionally to get you to put your thinking caps on
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How are your summer language learning projects going? Let us know in the comments and in the forum! Looking forward to seeing some of your guesses in reply to the Monday email!
Enter your email in the top right of the site to subscribe to the Language Hacking League e-mail list for way more tips sent directly to your inbox!
If you enjoyed this post, you will love my TEDx talk! You can get much better details of how I recommend learning a language if you watch it here.
This article was written by Benny Lewis
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