1 Week Down in the Polyglot Challenge

snyderwrites people of the known world,

This is going to give you a quick run down of how my week has been so far. I’m going to do another Snyder Show that explores what I mention here. I hope that you’ve all been healthy, happy, and living life to the fullest. Because remember,


Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Visit .png

Pretty incredible that Mark Twain was able to predict the beauty and sheer goodness of this website. Wow.

Here’s the breakdown on the Polyglot Challenge:


  • Listening comprehension is greatly improving thanks to the podcasts
  • Verb conjugations (regular/irregular and past/present/future) are coming along nicely
  • My pronunciation is leaps and bounds better than day 1
  • I’m staying focused on my goal–not giving in to the urge to slack


  • I haven’t had many chances to write
  • Haven’t got on YouTube and watch news
  • Still no speaking partner
  • Difficult time locating restaurants or places with French speakers in my area

Like what happened to me during my Portuguese classes, my brain hurts as it’s making connections. Those of you who know me understand how hard it is get anything through my oversized, thick skull. But! Once it is etched into the stubborn steel, I don’t usually forget it.

Un éléphant n’oublie jamais rien!

Another thing I noticed is just how nerdy I’m getting with this. Out of all the segments within linguistics, I’m really into phonetics–the sound system of the language. I find it fascinating how many different sounds can be produced in all the various tongues of the world. Phonetic transcription is formidable!

Can you guess what this is?

aɪ wɪʃ aɪ hæd ə ˈθaʊzənd ˈdɑlərz

You can probably get it, I bet. In English, it’s a mess. We’re not considered one of the toughest languages to learn for nothing. 24 vowel combinations…What else can I say? I wish I had a thousand dollars!

Anyway, while I’m speaking French, I’m comparing everything that I say to Spanish and French. It’s natural. I’m seeking to make the connection so I can remember it. Par example, the French tu is much more narrow than the Spanish. Your tongue is also in a different position when vocalizing.

Keep checking back with me for more updates. One week in, I’m settling in to French. Three weeks is going to fly by, so I just have to keep working.

Let me know what your experience has been with learning language below in the comments.



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