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World Cinema Club: Ida Review

Ooo, this was to the deadline this month! I watched Ida just last night after a crazy busy April. This is probably a really good thing as it’s fresh in my mind and I have a lot I want to say about this film. Let’s jump right into the Ida review.

So I picked this film because it won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film and the equivalent BAFTA. Pretty good accolades by all accounts. But then about 10 minutes into watching, I remembered how awards like this so frequently work. My ‘pretence-o-meter’ was at an all time high, and, of course, when it comes to award ceremonies, it often seems the more pretentious your film, the better chance of winning. This film has that.

But I want to rewind a bit. I would estimate less than 5 minutes in to the film, I was getting a serious case of déja vu. If you read the Blog en Español series, you’ll know that recently I wrote about Luis Buñuel and the incredible story of the film Viridiana. For those of you who don’t know, I’ll give you a little introduction…

Viridiana is a nun about to take her vows who gets told she must visit her uncle, her only living relative.

Now let’s look at the introduction to Ida…

Ida is a young nun about to take her vows who gets told she must visit her aunt, her only living relative.

Woah woah WOAH. Do not pass go, do not collect £200. Having seen Viridiana just weeks before and absolutely falling in love with the film and its real-life story, I was instantly discouraged from enjoying Ida. No-one can imitate Buñuel! So my wall was up. I didn’t want to like it – hence my heightened pretence-o-meter a few more minutes in.

Granted, the two stories do diversify from that point but the comparison was laid in my mind, and I love Viridiana so much that Ida barely stood a chance at making an impact on me.

That said, the cinematography is beautiful in places and there are some shots that would make amazing photographs. Also the actress who plays Ida has a STUNNING face for black and white. She reminded me of Yolandi from Die Antwoord (I’m still obsessed with trying to understand those guys after seeing Chappie). However, in my opinion, the long lingering (dare I say, lazy?) shots distract from what could be a powerful film.

So in short, I get why it won the awards, but for me, the film was lacking something and I couldn’t connect with it, which sucked because I really wanted to.

May’s Film

To pick things up a little, next month’s film is much more fast-paced: Lola Rennt, or Run Lola Run in English. I have seen this film before, but it’s been a while and I’m sure once I return from Berlin (more on that on Wednesday!) I’ll be in the mood for a little German. Also, there’s not yet been a German film as part of World Cinema Club. So what better time to have one than now?
Lola Rennt Run Lola Run World Cinema Club Film Review Lindsay Does Languages blog
To give you a little taste, here’s the best trailer YouTube had to offer. I promise the film does actually have people speaking German in it!

Have you seen Ida? What did you think? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Blog en español #10: Las Lenguas de Hispanoamérica

En el último blog en español, consideramos algunas otras lenguas de España. Sin embargo, hay también muchos idiomas en otros países hispanohablantes, es decir principalmente en Hispanoamérica. Había actividades en mi curso esta semana sobre dos idiomas en particular: el quechua y el guaraní. Voy a hablar solamente de los dos porque estos son lo que tengo que discutir en mi ensayo, ¡entonces necesito revisarlos un poco!

Quechua

Se habla el quechua en la región oeste de América del Sur, en la tierra que hoy en día es parte de lo que se llaman Perú, Chile, Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia y Argentina. Dicho esto, es solo una lengua oficial en Perú, Ecuador, y Bolivia donde la mayoría de la 8 a 10 millones hablantes viven.

Es un idioma que es principalmente hablado, y no existen muchos libros u otros recursos escritos para ayudar con la enseñanza o la difusión de la lengua. Desafortunadamente, eso es una razón por que es difícil a mantenerlo. Otra cosa que no ayuda mucho a la preservación de una lengua es la variación – los dialectos, el vocabulario, la gramática diversa que existen naturalmente. Sin embargo, cuando una lengua se habla de un territorio tan diverso y amplio, es claro que va a existir variaciones de la lengua, y eso es verdad por el quechua.

De hecho la variedad es tan grande que a veces se refiere a ‘las lenguas quechuas’ en vez de ‘el quechua’ como una lengua en su mismo.

Hablamos el quechua…

Hello – Rimaykullayki / Napaykullayki
Please – Allichu
Thank you – Solpayki / Urpichay sonqoy
Goodbye – Tupananchiskama

Guaraní

Cuando aprendí del guaraní la primera vez en este curso, fue asombrada. Es tan fascinante. El guaraní es una lengua indígena que se habla en lo que se llama el Paraguay hoy en día. Entonces, pensamos de la historia “tradicional” de una lengua indígena: una otra lengua de conquistadores viene en contacto con su población, poco a poco todos se aprenden esta lengua, y en tiempo, olvidan su lengua materna. Pero, ahora olvídelo. La historia no se repita en Paraguay. Lingüísticamente es un país increíble (estoy seguro que en otros “-mentes” es increíble también). El guaraní se habla por…espera…90% de la población paraguaya según un sondeo de 1992.

La preservación de la lengua es muy grande y existe con el español uno al lado de otro como lenguas oficiales del país. Dicho esto, hay una población rural muy grande que solo habla el guaraní.

Hablamos el guaraní…

Hello – Mba’éichapa
Please – -mi
Thank you – Aguyje
Goodbye – Jajohecha peve

¿Hablas el quechua o el guaraní? ¿Cómo es a aprenderlos? ¡Compártelo en los comentarios!

Review: Why French Is Easy by Benny Lewis

Something exciting is happening today. No, it’s not just Friday. Benny Lewis of Fluent in 3 Months is releasing four new language guides: Why Chinese Is Easy, Why English Is Easy, Why Italian Is Easy, and Why French Is Easy. Why German Is Easy and Why Spanish Is Easy have already been available for some time now, but I was lucky enough to get a sneak peak of these and the new guides! For today’s post I’m going to focus on Why French Is Easy, but the format of each guide is similar so a lot of what I say will be relevant if you’re considering purchasing the other language guides.

I started learning French from about age 9. This means that I’ve now been learning French for…*calculating*…at least 16 years. I may have been 8. I forget. When you say you’ve been learning a language for 16 years, I have to admit, it sounds kind of impressive. But let’s look at this from another angle. The first 2 and a half years were spent learning cat, dog, blue, green. Because that’s how the 90s decided languages should be taught to children. And then at secondary school? I pretty much did cat, dog, blue, green for another 3 years. Because not everyone in the 90s had decided languages should be taught to children. So we started again for the sake of everyone who had no French in primary school. Then shizzle got real, and I spend the next 4 years scratching my head as various teachers explained why it’s je suis allé instead of j’ai allé AND why as a girl, I had to add an extra ‘e’ at the end of je suis allé but not at the end of j’ai mangé. POOF! Mind well and truly blown. And not in a good way.
Why French Is Easy Benny Lewis Fluent in 3 Months Review Lindsay Does Langauges blog
What I’m trying to say here is that 16 years a perfect French speaker doth not maketh. You could be speaking brilliant French in far less time than it took me. Why French Is Easy is a great way to speed up that process. Why? Let’s take a closer look.

What do you get?

Ok, so here’s the deets. For $39 (see below for this weekend’s offer!), you get the Why French Is Easy eBook in 3 formats (PDF, ePub, Mobi), Device Set Up Guide, and Sample Daily Schedule. So let’s look at each of these one by one…

Why French Is Easy eBook

So chances are you’ll probably dive right into this first, which isn’t a bad move. The book starts with a personal account of Benny’s experiences with French, and is followed by four well-structured sections.

Part 1 is all about getting started, focusing on the right attitude and approach to your French so you’re feeling pumped before you get into it all.

Part 2 is about speaking French. This is a meaty guide to the kind of things I had to pick up myself over 16 long years – when to say a letter, when to not say a letter, when words blend – all of that stuff is here. In one place. From the start of your French language learning journey. Amazing.

Part 3 is about grammar. Argh! Grammar! I have to admit I’ve acquired a hefty pile of French grammar books over the years. And you know what? A lot of this you don’t need to fill your pretty brain with, at least not from the early stages. Benny has hand-picked the awkward stuff, the major stumbling blocks, and focused solely on ways to make things easier on yourself. Phew.

Finally, part 4 covers words, and in particular, tips for learning vocabulary. Always rather useful.

Device Set Up Guide

Also included in the Why French is Easy language guide, is the Device Set Up Guide. This is a handy bonus if you’re not too tech savvy as it takes you through step-by-step how to get your digital life prepped for some extra language practise throughout your daily life.

Daily Schedule

Speaking of daily life, (See what I did there? Nice transition, huh?) there’s ANOTHER(!) bonus: the Sample Daily Schedule. This gives you plenty of ideas as to how you can incorporate language learning into your daily life without actually changing much. Because let’s face it, a lot of us don’t have much room for manoeuvre when it comes to our daily routines. This bonus is about adding languages into your day rather than having to clear other things to make way for languages, which is a brilliant approach.

I want!

Fancy being one of the first to get your hands on the new guides? You’re in luck! Now is a perfect parfait time because this weekend, Benny is hosting a sale on the guides. Woop! You can buy an individual guide for $29, which is 30% off the normal price. Or, if you’re feeling flush, you can get all 6 Language Guides for $47, which, when you consider that they’d normally be $39 each, is a pretty good deal. Quite the steal. Rhyme time. Everybody loves lime.

But, if you’re just after the individual guides, here are the links to those, depending on which language you’re after.
Why French is Easy
Why Spanish is Easy
Why English is Easy
Why German is Easy
Why Italian is Easy
Why Chinese is Easy

Oh, and there’s even one more HUGE deal on offer this weekend. If you’re considering the 6 language guide bundle and have umm’ed and ahh’ed over the Fluent in 3 Months Premium package in the past, then today could be the day for a splurge. If you purchase the Fluent in 3 Months Premium package this weekend, Benny will throw in ALL 6 GUIDES…for FREE. Say what?! To get that awesome deal, click right here.

What’s more you can support Lindsay Does Languages by purchasing the guides too, as the links in this article are affiliate links, which means that I earn un peu d’argent if you choose to buy after clicking from this blog.

You’ll have to be speedy though, as the sale closes at midnight PST on Monday 27th April. Of course, the guides will still be available at standard price after midnight. They’re not Cinderella. You won’t get a pumpkin and some mice instead of a language guide, no worries there.

Have you tried Why Spanish is Easy or Why German is Easy? What did you think? Do you want to try one of the new guides? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Blog en Español #9: Lenguas de España

¡Woo! ¡Es la unidad sobre lenguas! Entonces, cuatro semanas de blog en español sobre lenguas. Otra vez, ¡woo!

El primer tema es ‘Lenguas de España’, entonces hoy vamos a examinar eso en más detalle.

Vasco

El vasco se habla en la región vasca – no hay ningún sorpresa aquí. Lo que es interesante es que es una lengua aislada que significa que no hay ningúna relación con otra lengua del mundo. Tal vez hay muchas teorías de los orígenes del vasco.

Hablamos el vasco…

Hello – Kaixo
Please – Mesedez
Thank you – Eskerrik asko
Goodbye – Agur

Catalán

El catalán es una lengua oficial en la región de Cataluña. Es una lengua romance, entonces en la misma familia de español y francés entre otras. De lo que he visto del idioma cuando he estado en Barcelona, ¡hay muchas ‘x’s!

Hablamos el catalán…

Hello – Hola
Please – Sisplau
Thank you – Gràcies
Goodbye – Adéu

Gallego

Es interesante que el gallego sea más similar al portugués en vez de español. Geográficamente, parece lógico claramente porque se habla en la región gallega – encima de Portugal. La otra cosa del gallego que para mi es muy interesante es que hay aspectos de la cultura que se parecen a la cultura céltica – como los instrumentos musicales por ejemplo.

Hablamos el gallego…

Hello – Ola
Please – Por favor
Thank you – Grazas
Goodbye – Adeus

Valenciano

El valenciano es una lengua que se habla en la region de Valencia. Hay semejanzas con el catalán y una cosa que he estudiado en mi curso es “el pollo y el huevo”, por decirlo así, del valenciano y el catalán.

Hablamos el valenciano…

Hello – Bon Dia
Please – Per Favor
Thank you – Gracies
Goodbye – Adeu

Aranés

El aranés es el tercer idioma oficial de la región de Cataluña. Se habla por menos de 5000 personas en el norte de la región cerca de Francia. Según un sondeo de 1996 y 2001, el conocimiento del aranés es menos hoy en día. Sin embargo, la cantidad de personas que pueden escribir en aranés fue un poco más alta en 2001 que en 1996.

Hablamos el aranés…

Hello – Òla
Please – Se vos platz
Thank you – Gràcies
Goodbye – Adiu

Aragonés

El aragonés se habla en la región norte de España de Aragón por entre 10,000 y 30,000 personas como una lengua activa, pero se estima que hay al menos 50,000 en total. Es otra lengua en la familia romance. En 2009, esto dio algunos derechos lingüísticos a la lengua que al pasado, en particular durante la época de Franco, fue considerado como un dialecto.

Hablamos aragonés…

Hello – Ola
Please – Porfavor
Thank you – Grazias
Goodbye – Adiós

Asturiano

Se estima que hay al menos 100,000 personas que habla el asturiano como una lengua primera. A pesar de que no es una lengua oficial, es protegido por legislación y es una lengua opcional en las escuelas y los colegios de la región.

Hablamos asturiano…

Hello – Hola
Please – Por favor
Thank you – Gracies
Goodbye – Adiós

Existen algunos otros idiomas de España. Se puede ver más información aquí.

¿Hablas una lengua de España en adición al español? Qué es? ¡Compártelo en los comentarios!

Guest Post: My Language Story – Francesco, FlashSticks

Today’s guest post comes courtesy of Francesco who writes on behalf of FlashSticks. He’s sharing his language story with us. Thanks for such a personal post, Francesco!

I’ve always been fascinated by the way people learn and discover new things, languages have been a very large element of this. My name is Francesco and I’m the new Community Manager at FlashSticks and here is my language story.

I am originally half Italian and half English, my father being Italian and my mother being English. This always causes problems when supporting rugby as Italy aren’t great, but they are fantastic when it comes to football so I can take my pick. When I was younger, I never spent lots of time learning the Italian language in detail. My language skills with Italian have never passed a proficiency that mean I could engage in a conversation and guide myself around a city sadly.
Guest Post My Language Story Francesco FlashSticks Lindsay Does Languages Blog
This has always been difficult as although my heritage has pressured me into learning the language, I believed my path was different. I really loved the way languages were communicated to learners and also how people have engaged with the learning process as well: this excites me about languages. When it comes to language learning the way that people interact, connect and learn together is something that amazes me and really inspires me to engage in language learning as a route to help others develop their personal and professional skills as well as to use them to socialise and grow their networks.

At 17, I saw the way that people were engaging with language learning, and decided to set up a language learning community on Google+ called Learn Communities (it originally started as Learn Italian Community). This would be a place where people could come and talk with each other, as well as learn and develop their social skills whilst bringing language in as the core focus. Quickly this community grew to 5,000 members with the help of some fantastic friends around the world. We then launched a podcast and magazine in order to keep users engaged with useful content, from here we grew to 10,000 users with over 15,000 listeners on the podcast side. The content from the podcast and magazine were created by the community members. This was truly a passionate and focused project.
Guest Post My Language Story Francesco FlashSticks Lindsay Does Languages Blog
This small social movement really opened up the opportunity that language learning has had. I started to believe that language learning had been very much focused towards “go-it-alone” methods for too long, and now they were connecting people across the world via Skype, Google Hangouts, social networks, and podcasts. It was a great place. We then merged and were acquired by a Q&A language service called Fluentli. Learn Communities was a space that allowed people to express their language creativity and network of native speakers as well as friends.

After Fluentli, I moved on. I started a business teaching students soft skills (communication skills, enterprise, digital fluency) in the South West of England with my friend. This is when I discovered the FlashSticks team. I was aware of them before through social media and also their work across the UK in WHSmith and Staples, but now I was in a position where I could contact them and see how we could work together. The team have been amazingly welcoming and now I’m proud to say I’m the Head of Community over at FlashSticks.

Languages are social, languages need to be immersive, and languages need to be truly creative. This is the reason I joined FlashSticks at the end of last year, the reason I started Learn Communities, and the reason I’m investing time into working out how people communicate effectively through all mediums. I think language and culture are beautiful things, spending a lot of time in Italy growing up, travelling through France and Switzerland and having a family that was very culturally aware with Italy has really made me passionate about how the world learns languages.

What’s your language story? If you’d like to share your story on the blog then please get in touch at lindsay[at]doeslanguages[dot]com! Or, of course, share your thoughts in the comments!

Review: The Global Education Toolkit

Back in January fellow language bloggers Kerstin Hammes and Chris Broholm hosted the first Language Book Club. A day full of live chats with language bloggers, learners, writers, and all round language lovers from across the world. Not only this but many authors of a great range of language books held exclusive offers on the day! Some even offered free copies. I was lucky enough to win a free copy of The Global Education Toolkit by Homa Sabet Tavangar and Becky Mladic-Morales. Today, I wanted to share my thoughts on the book with you.

Because language learning is so much more.

Global Education Toolkit Book Review Lindsay Does Languages Blog
The first thing I noticed about this book (after how much I love the feel of the textured cover) was how much I loved the concept. For many years now I have taught languages to all ages, including children from toddlers to teens. One thing I aim to get across to all of these young learners is that there are so many more places French or Spanish can take them than France or Spain (I’m speaking from a European’s point of view here). Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with France or Spain. However, so many children have been amazed when I’ve told them just how many countries speak French or Spanish, shown them these countries on a map, or spent a little time explaining why these far off and exotic countries speak the very language we’re learning in their kitchen.

But why do I see it as my job to tell children about who and where speaks the language we’re learning? Why don’t I just focus on vocab, grammar, and spelling tests? Because language learning is so much more than language. It’s about culture, exploration, and understanding. I’m in a lucky position of being invited into people’s lives to teach them or their children a language. I can create my own curriculum based upon each child’s needs and abilities. However, for a teacher working within the school system, it may not be so easy. With constant pressures of exams, and grades, and targets; there’s a lot of curriculum to fit into not a lot of time. 

And that’s why I love this book. It gives teachers (and parents) un montón of activity ideas and creative ways to integrate “global education” into their teaching day. The aim of the book is to create well-rounded and understanding individuals, often referred to by the book as ‘global citizens’. If that’s not enough to inspire, I don’t know what is.

What’s in it?

Global Education Toolkit Book Review Lindsay Does Languages Blog
Not only is the book full of ideas to use within the classroom, both within individual lessons and as part of international days or weeks, but there are also plenty of suggestions for professional development as well.

After the initial excitement and flicking through not knowing where to start, I turned back to the contents page and found the book really well organised. Chapter 1 begins with ideas to introduce the concept to your school, followed by chapters 2 and 3 giving so many suggestions to incorporate the concept into the curriculum and school events. Chapter 4 focuses on technology and its now essential role, and the book is well rounded off with chapter 5 about charitable ways to make a difference. I say rounded off, there’s also an additional resources section to the book which gives a handful of printable resources including a global citizen passport and a list of multicultural books.

Final thoughts

Global Education Toolkit Book Review Lindsay Does Languages Blog
The Global Education Toolkit is perfect for teachers, especially teachers working within a formal education environment with groups of young students. If you’re an independent learner, you’ll be left wishing you were in a classroom – or that you had a classroom of children to share these ideas with!

This book really excites me. There’s enough ideas here to fill an entire timetable! Of course, that’s not the point. The point is to integrate the concepts in the book to the active curriculum, and the way the book is organised accounts for this, making it almost effortless to give children a global education via every subject. So inspiring.

Have you read The Global Education Toolkit? What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments!

This is a review written purely as an unpaid thank you to Becky Morales for sending me a copy of this book as part of Language Book Club. If you wish to purchase a copy of this book, you can do so right here.

9 Reasons to Learn Portuguese (Video!)

It feels like it’s been an absolute age since I made a 9 Reasons video. It wasn’t too long ago really. The last one was 9 Reasons to Learn Croatian with reasons by the Shannon Kennedy of Eurolinguiste back in February. Ok, maybe a little while ago!

Believe it or not, this video has been in production for a ridiculously long time. Like, since last summer. I even filmed it back in November before moving, but when I went to edit the footage months later, I was saying things like, “earlier this yeah I learnt Portuguese.” so I couldn’t use it and had to film again. Ha. For that reason, I’m really glad to finally share this with you. Enjoy 9 Reasons to Learn Portuguese! Finally!

Do you speak Portuguese? What reasons would you add? Share in the comments!

Using Facebook for Language Learning

Following on in our little series on enhancing social media to your advantage for language learning, so far about Instagram and Pinterest, today I wanted to share some ideas on using Facebook for language learning.

Change the language

Chances are most of your Facebook friends speak your native language, which instantly means that a lot of Facebook will always be presented to you in that language. If you’re lucky, you might have some international friends on there sharing statuses and the like in different languages. However, this isn’t necessarily the case for all of us, so how can you make sure you get some exposure to your target language? Change the language of your Facebook.

How do you do this? Log in, scroll down slightly keeping an eye on the right hand sidebar. When you get to the bottom (of the sidebar, not the infinity scroll of the whole page!) just past the sponsors, then it will say the language your Facebook is currently in next to ‘privacy’, ‘terms’, and all that jazz. Click the name of the language and the list of possibilities will be presented to you! Take your pick!
Using Facebook for Language Learning Lindsay Does Languages Blog

Follow famous folk

So now your generic Facebook lingo such as ‘like’ and ‘What’s on your mind?’ is in your target language, you may as well work on your feed content. Unfortunately, unless you delete all the people from your life who don’t speak your target language (little harsh, Gretch) then you can’t completely control what Facebook decides is relevant to you. You can see fewer posts from people without deleting them, or use friend lists to make sure you never miss a post from people whose stories you do want to see. There’s more info on all that stuff here.

However, to ensure you get at least a little foreign language in your feed without resorting to adding strangers, why not try following pages of bands, brands, or other people and stuff originating from countries that speak your target language? Here are a few examples to get you started…

Spanish

  • Shakira!
  • Juanes
  • Mr. Wonderful
  • French

  • Louane
  • Stromae
  • Norman Fait Des Vidéos
  • German

  • AlexiBexi
  • Marteria
  • There’s loooads of German pages on last year’s Bab.la Top 25 Facebook Pages list!
  • Join like-minded groups

    Believe it or not, there are plenty of people out there with the same interests as you. Facebook Groups make it easier to find them. I don’t want to necessarily suggest groups here – Facebook will do enough of that for you. Plus it completely depends on your languages, your level in these languages, and what you’re after.

    How do you find these groups? On your homepage, on the left sidebar, you will see your little picture, then ‘Pages’, then ‘Groups’, perhaps all with other options underneath these main headings. Click ‘Groups’…
    using Facebook for Language Learning Lindsay Does Languages BlogThen click ‘Suggested Groups’…using Facebook for Language Learning Lindsay Does Languages BlogThis is where you’ll get a few ideas to get you started. Good luck!

    Writing this has made me reevaluate my lazy Facebook habits and today I’ve liked some new German pages and changed the language of my Facebook to German to give me some more exposure before the Polyglot Gathering in a few weeks. Das ist sehr gut, ja?

    Do you use Facebook for language learning? Share your tips in the comments!

    3 Tips for Getting Back on That Horse (Whatever That Horse May Be)

    Maybe English isn’t your first language and you’re thinking, ‘Why has she started blogging about horses? I come here for languages!”. Get back on that horse is an expression in English for when you’ve perhaps stopped doing something, and it’s time to restart. Right now I need to get back on that language learning horse.

    You see, I live with a teacher, and during school holidays I also indulge in an extra hour or so in bed in the morning and an extra or hour or so marathoning Parks and Recreation at night. I like to spend time with the people I love. Sue me. I’m sure I’m not alone in this. Perhaps you too have someone in your life, be it a partner, a flatmate, a sibling, who you don’t always get to spend as much time with as you wish…so when you get the chance you take it. Because what else can you do? “Sorry, my alarm woke you up and I ate breakfast without you and now I’m …shh with your cornflake crunching! I’m trying to learn the future perfect tense over here!”. Boo. Not a happy home.

    As it turns out, I’d actually quite like a happy home. So I allow myself a lighter workload (both work-work and language ‘work’ aka study) during these school holidays. This is glorious while it lasts, but makes for a difficult return to a regular work and study load sometimes. Today is that day. So it seemed appropriate to throw the blog schedule out of the window and share some tips for when you need to get back on that horse, like me. Neigh.

    Be a tortoise

    3 Tips for Getting Back on That Horse (Whatever That Horse May Be) Lindsay Does Languages Blog
    I may be biased but don’t expect your brain or your body to suddenly want to snap straight back into your old routine. I’m sure you know the story of the hare and the tortoise, right? Slow and steady wins the race. I follow this motto in a lot of aspects of my life…especially swimming. I could swim for HOURS but I never do any fancy strokes or anything that requires one of those weird energy drinks that smells like wee. Slow and steady. The same thing applies here. Be kind to yourself! Set your alarm earlier but do so gradually. If you really have to be up at 6 on day one of ‘back to reality’ then set it for 6.30 a week before and move the alarm back 5 minutes each day until you have to be up. You don’t even have to get up if you don’t want to or need to, but just getting your body used to it again will help when the time comes.

    So in terms of languages, say you do 20 minutes of Memrise each morning, skip it for a fortnight and then want to restart the habit. The best thing to do is restart with something you know you can achieve – let’s say 5 minutes – increase it daily until you’re back on form. Woop!

    Remind yourself why

    3 Tips for Getting Back on That Horse (Whatever That Horse May Be) Lindsay Does Languages Blog
    You’ll have maybe got quite comfortable with your new “routine”. How did you ever find the time for everything you did before?! You may even find yourself procrastinating with tasks that are…important perhaps, but not what you want or need to do. Ever had the sudden urge to completely spring clean your wardrobe when a deadline is looming? I have. Shh, don’t tell anyone. When this happens, I need to remind myself why it’s so important that I complete that Spanish essay, or learn those German words, or practise my Japanese writing. This comes in many forms. It could be a memory, a visual reminder, a book….lots and lots of possibilities here. Re-find your inspiration and bottle it up so you don’t lose it again!

    Then sell it as “Inspiration. Bottled.” and make your millions. I await my cheque in the mail.

    Remember your self-loathing

    3 Tips for Getting Back on That Horse (Whatever That Horse May Be) Lindsay Does Languages Blog
    We all have d’oh moments sometimes. And chances are, unless we’ve trained our brains to be superhuman, that we hate ourselves a little bit for it. Firstly, we shouldn’t hate ourselves. We’re all amazing and have different talents and skills and things to give to this planet. Secondly, STOP and try and bottle this feeling up for later. Not to reminisce as such, just to remind yourself how lousy it feels to feel lousy. And how much you don’t want to feel like that again. You see, if we know that doing something (or not doing something) makes us feel bad then we can avoid falling into this trap again.

    Let me give you a personal example. I know that I feel good when I do an hour of Spanish followed by 15 minutes of different scripts for the Language Script Challenge in the morning before I exercise. So although I can comfortably take a lighter schedule during holiday time, if I’d gone back to work mode today and not had that time my day would have been naff because I’d have this niggle in my mind all day telling me I should have studied. Shoulda woulda coulda. There’s nothing we can do to change the past but we can change the future. Focus on moving forward to the future rather than letting the past drag you back.

    In short, you will get back to where you were before, it will take a little time, but you will ace it. Now go find your horse and jump back on!

    So…this post kind of came out of nowhere but I think it’s important to be spontaneous and go with it when the inspiration is there. Thanks for letting me share. How do you cope when your routine is altered? I’d love for you to share in the comments!

    Blog en Español #8: Cine

    Ahh, el cine. Es una cosa que me gusta mucho. Es claro, ¿no? Con World Cinema Club cada mes sobre el blog, tal vez ya sabes que me gustan las películas. Pues, creo que el cine español, es decir, hispanohablante, es fantástico. Hoy voy a charlar un poco sobre algunos de mis preferidos.

    Pedro Almodóvar

    ¡Qué tópico! Sí, pero es verdad. De una vista creativa, las películas de Almodóvar son inolvidables. Con las ideas fijas de género, la sexualidad, y los colores que corre a través de todo lo que hace, es siempre una alegría a ver una de sus películas.

    Hemos visto La Mala Educación en World Cinema Club hace algunos meses ahora. Creo que esa es mi preferida. ¿Cuál es tuya?

    Luis Buñuel

    No me di cuenta de la importancia de Buñuel hasta comencé mis investigaciones por mi próximo ensayo (sobre el cine y la telenovela). Ya mencioné Un Perro Andaluz pero ahora después de más investigación, veo la relevancia y la importancia de Buñuel.

    Tengo una lista de películas de Buñuel que quiero ver ahora pero más que nada, es Viridiana. ¿La has visto? ¿Qué piensas?

    Anoche, lo he visto. La película es buena, pero la historia fuera de cartelera es increíble. Fue la primera película de Buñuel en España después de la inauguración de Franco. Este vídeo explica la historia…

    En inglés

    Una cosa muy interesante que descubrí de mis investigaciones es la cantidad de películas en inglés basadas en una película español o hecho originalmente en inglés por un director español. Lo más sorprendente para mí es ‘Vanilla Sky’, basado en ‘Abre los Ojos’ por Alejandro Amenábar.

    ¿Cuál es tu película preferida en español?

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