Persevere your way to language learning success!

“Perseverance is not a long race.  It is many short races one after another” – Walter Elliot

In my last post I mentioned that the most important thing you have to do to learn a language is to simply persevere.  That’s easier said than done, but here are a few ideas that might be useful. Continue reading

Hard Data

I just realised I have been learning Spanish for exactly five months today.

I started on 18 June, 2014.  You can read my first post here.

One of the things I like about Anki is that it is good at collecting data.

I’ve been learning for 22 weeks (154 days)

I’ve learnt 1628 phrases/words, which works out at 11 phrases/words per day.

I studied 127 days out of 154 (82%)

On average, I studied for 32.1 minutes per day

If I had studied every day, it would have been 26 minutes per day.

I sit my exam on Saturday!

I did it!


I’m happy to say that today I learnt the last of 1500 phrases in my phrasebook.

I can think and speak in Spanish, but I’m still not fluent.  I still have to mentally search for the right word, so I speak quite slowly.

I have ten days until my DELE exam.  There are four tests – listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Can’t talk, must study.

Wish me luck!

Lisa Simpson

Faster / ¡M­ás rápido!

Carl Lewis

English (traducción español abajo)

I am learning Spanish by memorising a phrasebook.  It has three sections.  The first section is about 300 general phrases that might be useful for a tourist, things like “Where is the train station?”

The second section contains a whole lot of verbs.  And the third section is 900 words of vocabulary.

At last I have made it to the third section.  And I am finding it easier to memorise individual words rather than phrases.

I’ve got three-and-a-half weeks till my Spanish exam, so I’m picking up the pace a bit – learning thirty words (from Spanish to English and vice versa) each day.  I’m really enjoying going faster as I feel a real sense of accomplishment.

Today I will learn some words for clothing.



Español no es mi primer idioma.  Si hago un error, ¿podria mi corregir?

Estoy memorizando un libro de frases aprender español. El libro tiene tres secciones. La primera sección es de unos 300 frases por turistas, por ejemplo “¿Dónde está la estación del tren?”

La segunda sección contiene muchos verbos. Y la tercera sección es 900 palabras de vocabulario.

Al fin he llegado a la tercera sección. Y para mi, es más fácil memorizar palabras individuales en lugar de frases.

Tengo tres semanas y media hasta que mi examen de español, así que aprendo mas frases (30 en lugar de 15) cada día. Es muy divertido ir más rápido.  Siento un verdadero sentido de logro.

Hoy voy a aprender palabras por la ropa.

Clothing Vocab List

I want to speak Spanish

I can’t speak Spanish.  At all.  But I want to.

I don’t live in a Spanish-speaking country, and I don’t have the time or money to try the immersion experience.

So I want to find out if I can learn Spanish by memorising a phrasebook.

I will use Anki to learn 10 Spanish phrases a day.

My phrasebook has 1500 phrases, so it should take me 150 days, or five months.

I will start today.

The first 10 phrases in my phrasebook are:


I will report on my progress once a week.