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Language Learning - My 30 Day French Challenge


I've decided that I want to read some books in their original language, L'Etranger and Candide to be specific.

The idea is to do intense study of the language by attempting to completely immerse myself in it for 30 days. I watch a movie? It's going to be in French. Listen to music? French? Game? French Radio? French and so on. By minimising my exposure to English and maximising my exposure to French I am hoping to accelerate the language learning process, it certainly won't hurt regardless :p

The heart of the method lies on memorising as many sentences as possible. The theory goes that if you take enough input you will learn all these 'grammar rules' by default, just as you do in English. Grammar will not feature in this experiment.

There are many resources to 'sentence mine', games with dialogue, films with subtitles, books. The idea is to mine from things you enjoy to ensure you don't get bored. Boredom is the enemy of this experiment and anything that I consider boring will be dropped in favour of a more interesting French based activity.

The primary resource in use for this experiment will be Anki. Anki is a 'spaced repetition system' program that optimises the memorisation of information. I have created a deck in Anki titled 10,000 French Sentences.

This idea was not thought up by me, the technique is a copy-cat of the ideas used in the http://www.ajatt.com blog ran by a guy who used these same techniques to learn Japanese. He claims that in the majority of language, 10,000 sentences, though seemingly arbitary, is the amount of sentences you need to know to be considered 'fluent'.

Due to the shortness of this experiment I have decided not to pay much attention, if any at all, to speaking. This is all about maximising input, almost in a baby-like manner. The speaking and pronunciation, apparently nightmarish in French, can come later.

I am going to document each day as I go through this in the first post. If anyone is interested in learning languages, feel free to post and let this turn into a discussion. Maybe someone wants to take a similar challenge along with me for a bit of moral support?

During the first day I found a great resource through the help of a blog that did the same thing I'm doing now, albeit in a slightly different manner. The resource is Tex's Grammar, it looks great as a starting point for sentence mining. Remember, I'm not going to read up on the grammar rules, the idea is to get enough input to let my brain work them out on its own.

I mined the majority of the noun section from Tex's grammar, about 70 sentences in my Anki deck. After getting bored of this I decided to play Pok


Active Member
En anglais: [BLACKOUT]Excellent idea. I'm really interested to know how well this goes. It sounds like a good way to force yourself to learn a new language. My previous attempts at Spanish were pretty painful.[/BLACKOUT]


Coding random shit
En anglais: [BLACKOUT]copying adiuvo's method, anyway this is quite interesting, i can't wait to see the results of your 30 day challenge. if it works pretty well, i'll probably attempt this with Japanese.[/BLACKOUT]


lol,you can type in English in this thread guys. I can make an exception for this website and besides, I want to generate discussion.

Also slicer, you need to know the kanji off head to attempt anything like that.


eXo Admin
Enforcer Team
C'est interessant que vous avez commencer cette aventure pendant les fetes des Acadiens (le 15 Aout).


so, how did the ajatt blogger use the same technique then?, had he already taken classes for it?

Classes are useless in this day and age. He learned the kanji with heisig's method (which is the best and the fastest) and then he learned the kana. Then he did the 10,000 sentences. All in all he was 'done' (you're never really done) in 18 months and could hold up a decent conversation in Japanese. He used some absolutely intense immersion though. The sort that I'm trying to replicate with this challenge.


New Member
I'm learning German and French at the same time now. And I think the fear of learning 2 languages which can mix up and interfere is overblown. My plan is to learn both up to a conversational level (I can already translate simple stories, short simple texts or write my paper for me with summary tranlsations for linguistics projects). I learned German at school, so it's a bit easier, but still I have difficulties trying to memorize the new vocabulary units and the gender of nouns.

My list of apps for learning both:
Rosetta Stone

I use each one 20 min on a daily basis.
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