9th August 2020 – French

I did quite a lot today. I did a unit from my level 4 textbook. That took a hour. The unit was about pronouns. I could answer most of the practice questions, but I had to stop and think about a few, which means I still haven’t sorted direct and indirect pronouns out in my head. I then did an hour of Duolingo. Making up for no study yesterday!

New book

I was aiming to study for level 3 of the French test administered in Japan, but I have realised the content is above my level. I need to step back and learn some basics, so I bought a textbook for level 4. (I also bought the textbook for level 3 in the same series.) I’m going to try and do a few units a week.

Studying never ends for a translator

I used to think that once I became a translator, that would be it. I would be a fluent reader, writer and speaker of Japanese, and I wouldn’t need to study anymore. I was wrong.

I’ve been a translator for 16 years, but I’m still studying. I study for exams in my specialist fields. The exams are all in Japanese. I specialise in cosmetics, skincare, marketing and tourism, but at the moment, I’m focusing my study on cosmetics and skincare.

I’m using these books for the Cosmetics Meister and Skincare Meister exams. I hope to pass these exams this month.

Then in November, I have another cosmetics exam. I’m going to take level 2. I should have taken it earlier in the year, but it was cancelled due to COVID-19. I’m using these books.

Shortly after that exam, I’m going to take the Cosmetics Ingredients exam. I’m aiming to take level 2, and am using these books.

Next year, I’m going to take a beauty-related pharmaceuticals exam. These are the books I will use.

And, as if that is not enough, I’m going to take level 3 on a pharmaceuticals exam! I’ll use these books to study.

I’ll take the higher level exams the following year. And somehow, I’ll fit the French and Chinese tests in!

Learning multiple languages at the same time

Photo by Julia M Cameron on Pexels.com

When I was studying Japanese, that was all I focussed on. My goal was the highest grade on the JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test), and I dedicated all my spare time to that goal.

At the moment, I’m learning Chinese and French simultaneously. At the beginning of the year, I decided to learn two new languages every three years for ten years. I want to pass the highest grades on tests of each of the languages.

But…I’m feeling myself being pulled by other languages…Italian, Spanish, German, Korean, Russian… They are all on my ten year list, but I don’t want to wait that long!

Someone I follow on Twitter is learning around ten languages at the same time. The person is taking exams in each of the languages, albeit at the lower levels. I am wondering if I should do that. Or am I just being attracted by the idea of learning something new. I tend to multi-task, so I think this is just my personality. Do I do what I did with Japanese and go narrow and deep, or go shallow and wide? What do I want? A basic knowledge of a lot of languages, or a detailed knowledge of a few? Hmm….

I am also studying for a few licenses and exams in my specialist translation fields. These are all in Japanese. I plan to take six of them over the next year, so I’m already studying a lot.

Maybe I should stick with just Chinese and French at least until I have passed the intermediate levels on the tests. I’m still learning the basics, especially in French, so it’s an important time. I need to concentrate, but still…. 🙂

5th August 2020 – Chinese

I studied my HSK level 4 textbook, but it’s getting difficult. The fact that I was really tired and studied just before I went to sleep didn’t help. I’m going to keep pushing on with it though, because it is proving to be good review of level 3 material. I am aiming to take level 4 next April, but I might drop down to level 3. It depends on how much time I have and how the study goes. There are a lot of characters and words to learn for level 4.

Total study time: 30 minutes

5th August 2020 – French

I tried two practice tests for level 5 (easiest level) on the French exam for Japanese speakers. I only made 3 mistakes on the first test and 4 mistakes on the second test.

I had a look at level 4, and I think I can get around 50% on it, so I think that’s my current level. My target is to take level 3 next June. I have some level 3 textbooks, but they are too difficult for me at the moment. So I ordered a level 4 book. I’m going to study that and then move on to level 3.

I also did 30 minutes of Duolingo. The topic is shopping.