Alright, here we go: moment of truth! Let’s see how it went after 2 weeks into the challenge!
In case you’re new here (welcome!), you can check the story of my crazy challenge here. This experience is meant to create in the end the best learning/practice routine for my students, even the busiest ones! So let’s take a closer look at this update number 1.
Well, let’s be honest here, I didn’t practice every day…yep, I’m not the perfect student, but who can pretend to be? Nobody! Why? Because there is no such thing as the perfect student, just like there is no perfect teacher!
Anyway, let’s go back to our point here. I knew when I decided to take the challenge that this would happen, and it’s fine! Like I always tell my students: « don’t be too hard on yourself »!
The truth is: the most important is to do the work in the end and not make excuses. No work, no reward! So to create a balance, the first week I didn’t do a 15mn daily practice but more like one hour twice; also because after only 15 minutes I wanted more (is it just me or do I sound like an addict…lol)!
Let’s take a look at the details, shall we?
- Challenges: even with a reminder on my phone, it’s hard for me to actually start my daily practice… Most of the time I’m doing something else when I get the reminder or lately, because of several things happening in my personal life, my head was just not into practice… I guess the right expression is « life happens »!
But once I start, I really enjoy it! The fun is back, the excitement and it reminds me of why I decided to do this! So I might change the time of my reminder, so that I can take action more easily; maybe start my day with this good energy!
- Advantages: as it’s all online and without a teacher, I can go as fast or as slow as I want! I’m a fast learner, especially at the beginning, so I like that I can jump to the next thing to learn. That’s the great part about private classes too: you don’t get frustrated because the class is going too slow or too fast for you.
What I’ve learned from it
I’ve realized that 15mn daily practice is great for somebody with a set routine, like taking the transit every day, eat lunch at 12pm every day or taking a break at the same time every day; but that’s not my lifestyle anymore. I practice before bed for example, or after lunch, before I start working again; but not at a specific time.
The awesome part of my crazy challenge is that it DOES come back really fast! I mean I knew that already but I’m still amazed to see how the brain can bring the knowledge back to the surface once you reopen the language box! I could remember the numbers, some vocabulary, I could guess most of the meanings without translation, it’s so cool! That is definitely something to boost your motivation!
I’ve noticed that I need to work on my accent, like the melody of the Italian language, which is one of the most beautiful ones in the world I believe! Again, I knew that not being in immersion would be a challenge for this; that’s the part I struggle with right now, especially for the questions.
I’ve also noticed also that my ‘good student syndrome’ is back…lol! I want to have all the answers right so I get really annoyed when my computer doesn’t record properly and turns my answer into a mistake….grrrrr! But it’s ok, it’s a good reminder for me that we can’t be perfect and that there is actually no need to be!
With this “syndrome”, comes the fact that I like to test myself (I love the vocabulary review after each lesson!) and want to get the highest score, of course… That’s why I don’t use grades in my teaching practice: I know it builds up competition (even with yourself) and encourages judgement. We’re not here to judge each other but to help each other to make the best out of this learning journey.
Thankfully, as I am well aware of all this, I don’t take this competition mindset too seriously and use it to motivate me!
It’s really interesting for me to be a student again, both on a personal and professional level. In case you didn’t know, I can tell you that your reactions through your learning journey reveal a lot about your personality. That’s why I love it: it’s not only about learning grammar and practice your accent, it’s about trying to be a better version of yourself with this experience!
To sum it up, self-discipline and knowing yourself are the keys here, like always in e-learning. So my advice would be to make adjustments regarding our own routine: take the time to know (and maybe write down) your routine and see where you can include your daily practice. That way, you decide; you are your own captain in this learning journey and that’s the way it’s always supposed to be (in every part of your life)!
So I’ll make mine to enjoy even more my crazy challenge and I’ll keep you posted in a couple weeks for the new update!
Stay tuned! 😉