Author Topic: Learning Spanish, English, Italian, & Korean  (Read 3140 times)

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Offline agaldamez

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Learning Spanish, English, Italian, & Korean
« on: April 09, 2019, 08:25:02 PM »
I speak Spanish and English, and I have studied Italian and Korean for extended periods of time.

Spanish: It is my native language. I lived in a Spanish-speaking country until the age of 6. After that, I attended English medium schools. Although my Spanish listening and speaking skills advanced thru everyday interactions with other Spanish speakers, my reading and writing skills remained quite low. I took Spanish classes in my last two years of high school, and I did a minor in undergrad. Studying Spanish in a formal setting allowed my reading and writing skills to greatly improve. However, I do still consider them to be my weakest skills. This is mainly because I do not practice them enough.

English: It is my second and dominant language. I have done almost all my schooling in the US. To be more precise, I have about 20 years of formal education in English.

Italian: I did a minor in undergrad. At that time, I remember that I could write essays in Italian. I do not think that the quality of my writing was good, but I am impressed with my old self for having the ability to write that much. Since I graduated from undergrad, I have not practiced Italian at all, so I have forgotten a lot of it. I think I am at beginner level with listening and reading but novice with speaking and writing. 

Korean: I lived in South Korea for 4 years. Learning Korean was interesting because I had to get learn a new writing system. When I first arrived, I took language classes to learn how to read and write in Korean. However, because those were survival Korean classes, the focus was on practicing listening and speaking and learning common grammar structures and vocabulary. During my last year there, I attended an intensive Korean language program for 9 months. Some of the students in my classes were taking those classes to be able to study in a Korean-medium university so I had to do several tasks to improve my reading and writing. I feel that after those 9 months my Korean proficiency level was as its highest level. Even though I have taken two intermediate courses at the U of I, I feel like my proficiency has regressed to a low intermediate level.

Looking at my experience with these four languages, it seems that to improve my reading and writing skills I had to study in a formal setting and to maintain those skill levels I had to practice. It is unfortunate that I have not been able to practice and improve my Spanish, Italian, and Korean. 
« Last Edit: April 09, 2019, 08:25:51 PM by agaldamez »