Today I’ll be sharing with those who may be interested my personal relation with the six languages I currently speak/study. This blog is meant to be written in different languages as a way to practice writting skills as well as to be in contact with more people. It serves also as an advice to people who study some languages: write in the language as much as you can 🙂
Well, let´s get it started. I´m a Brazilian native so I speak Portuguese as mother tongue (I do not speak “Brazilian”, please, it doens´t even exist! ). At most schools in Brazil people only have two options of foreigner languages to pick: English or Spanish. That´s how my incursion into the languages world begins:
When I was a kid, maybe because I was living on the border with Argentina and Paraguay, we had a bigger encouragement to learn Spanish compared to other regions in Brazil. My very first contact with it (and with a foreigner language itself) was at the age of 8 thanks to a very remarkable Spanish teacher I had. It was enough to start loving this language and I would spend the next 10 years of my life studying it by myself and practicing it whenever I had the opportunity. When I was 19 I spent some months in Colombie where I could learn more and get some profeciency. Back in Brazil I started teaching Spanish in a school for two years.
English was the second language I´ve started studying. I was 18 when I took my first serious class (a bit late I confess). It wasn´t a language I loved and it still isn´t but I can say I enjoy it. When I lived in Brazil I didn´t have many opportunities to practice it until 2013 when I hosted a Finnish girl for a couple of months and it really helped me a lot. (Thanks Emmi!) Back to 2014 I went to China to have an intership and as I worked and had fun mostly in English I could practice it a lot. Currently I study it at the U and I´m not sure about my level, I do make a lot of mistakes, but that’s why I´ve choosed to write the blog also in English.
Next language I´ve started was German. I have studied it for 2 years in Brazil and I was able to understand some lyrics and other audio files (basic ones), ask for directions while in Germany and specially read. But, as I haven´t studied it for a while I ended up forgetting it. In France I wanted to take German class again, but neither the learning method nor the teacher was interesting to me so I decided to change it for Italian.
In 2015 I´ve decided to move to France to begin a new undergratuate degree. In order to get the French´s level required by the university, I´ve spent my first year here studying it intensively. If I wasn´t emmerged into the culture it would be harder, of course. Before that I have taken 2 months of intensive French lessons in Brazil. Fortunately Latin languages native speakers have way more learning ease to study this family of languages.
I started being interested in it during my time in China but only 2 years later, in 2016, I started learning it for real. Chinese´s workload is over 10h weekly which made me reach a considerable nice level afer one year. We do a lot of speaking, reading, writing and listening with Far East Everyday Chinese material. Also there are good learning apps such The Chairman’s Bao app to read texts and news accordling to your level or simply Chinese radios apps.
Just like many Brazilian people I have Italian blood myself, my grandmother speaks the language and I feel that Portuguese and Italian are closer than Spanish or French, lexically and grammatically speaking. Thanks to this 3 factors I must say that this one is the easier language I ever learned. It has been one year since I started learning it and today I´m able to attend B2 level Italian language and society courses. I can also have basic conversation with natives even if I mix it with Spanish sometimes.
Nowadays I feel comfortable speaking French, Spanish and English. The other languages I mentioned I´m still in a beginner-intermediate level.
Thanks for reading and if you have some comments or advice about languages learning methods I´ll be glad to hear.