2014-04-08

Sensible Chinese Character Challenge 2014 Milestone 1!

Click here and check the bottom of the article to see where I first mentioned this Challenge. You can also go straight to the Hacking Chinese article if your interested.

So in the above mentioned article I showed the following milestones.

  1. April 8th: 157 new words
  2. April 30th: 314 new words
  3. May 31st: 471 new words
  4. June 30th: 628 new words
I am happy to report that I have learned 366 new terms already. This was kinda expected since right now I am moving at a faster pace. Sadly the last half of this month, and the first half of the next month I will be moving at a much slower pace. I still think my June goal is obtainable, but hitting that third milestone is going to take some dedication. 

That's pretty much all I had on the actual challenge, so... I guess I can tell ya how I am going about completing it. 

I am using a spaced repetition program called Anki. There are a ton of free decks available to study your topic of choice. For me I am going over the Integrated Chinese vocabulary. It should be this deck. With it I get 3 different cards for each new term. One with the English, one with the characters, and one with the pinyin. I am still debating with myself how useful the pinyin is. 

Right now, I have it set at 20 new cards a day, which boils down to a little under 7 new terms a day. Because Anki is smart and doesn't want to show you three cards in a row of the same term, they will hold back the second and third version. So what really happens is I get introduced to 20 new terms one day, and then on the next day I get to practice them some more from a different direction. Then on the last day I get to practice them one more time from another direction. For me, this seems to work well. I am averaging about six days a week.

 But wait, that's not all! Besides the spaced repetition I also take lessons over the related material. So I then get to use these new words in a correct dialogue, make up sentences, and do homework over them. I do the speaking stuff about 4 times a week, one hour each time with my Chinese teacher. We communicate through italki.

Another trick I have been using is every day or two while I am going over these words I use my finger to write them on the table as an added way of memorizing them. 

I guess that's enough for now. Wish me luck on the next parts of the Challenge!

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