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I was watching this video from Lindsay Dow about “9 reasons to learn German”, and something about it really inspired me. Lindsay brings a great energy and sense of humour to language learning as it is, but there is something specific in this video below that I’d like to share…

At 2:58, for reason #9 she says “I stand by it that German is the hardest language that I ever learned”. But somehow that only helped her to learn the language even more!

I find it inspiring how she reframed the difficulty in learning German and used it as a positive to motivate her further. She could have limited herself to romance languages because they were familiar and, by that point, relatively easy. But she didn’t.

For me, Danish is the hardest language I’ve ever learned. However I do have moments where I am extremely satisfied with the results of my hard work.

Speaking of hard work, let’s see how I’ve done with my goals this week:

Write a journal on Lang-8 every day

I am super proud of this one now: I’ve managed to write on Lang-8 for three consecutive weeks! In the previous week, I wrote about how I happy I was about this. However, I also realised that it came at the cost of not being able to do pretty much anything else on my daily commute.

I’ve found a way around this by sticking to a simple format: only writing four sentences in each post. That’s it. I quickly realised that I rarely write correct sentences in Danish on Lang-8 anyway, so limiting my Danish writing in this way also makes it easier for me to digest the corrections that I get.

I also rewrite every post in English, so whoever is correcting me knows exactly what I am meaning to say in my native language. This has helped me to get some more natural sounding suggestions on how I can be better understood in Danish.

Watch the news in Danish at least 4 nights a week

I achieved this goal too! The purpose of this goal is to immerse myself in Danish culture. It is meant to be more of a passive exercise where I familiarise myself with Danish political figures and current affairs. It is slowly helping, but most of the news stories are still noise to me despite my wife helping to explain what they were about when we review the stories afterwards.

I’m quite mindful that there isn’t much time until my upcoming ‘Prøve i Dansk 3’ exam. So it is important that I use my time to actively practise as much Danish as possible.

Do the exercises from Ordet er Frit (and prepare them in advance)

Um… this is embarassing, but I have yet again failed to do a single exercise from my Danish textbook despite titling my blog post last week about this goal. The only concrete thing that I can say I have found it impossible to prepare the exercises during my breaks at work.

Maintain my Danish Duolingo tree

I have achieved this goal, at the current time of writing I am on a 32 day streak and have kept my Danish Duolingo tree gold. Although it feels good, I am beginning to experience what Rachel over at The Book Bound Polyglot describes as ‘linguistic wanderlust’. The Esperanto, French and Russian Duolingo courses are calling out to me. But I have to stay focused on Danish.

Goals for next week

My goals for next week are to:

  • Prepare exercises from “Ordet er Frit” so I can work on them during my train journey
  • Work through exercises for “Ordet er Frit”
  • Continue writing 4 Danish sentences a day on Lang-8
  • Have 2 italki Danish lessons

By the way, if you have any suggestions on how I improve my Danish learning goals, please let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading and see you next week…

Vi ses i næste uge!