1. ·

    Awesome! I am excited to (hopefully) pick up some Greek as I follow along with you blog. It’s definitely on my list for languages I’d love to know.

    Best of luck!

  2. ·

    This is a great idea! I can imagine the though of living in sunny Greece for three months would also be a great incentive to do some hardcore language learning! :)
    I’m looking forward to reading about your journey! Good luck!!

  3. ·

    Thanks, Randy and Jessica. :)

    Yeah, Greece in summer should be fun. On the other hand, I heard it gets too hot there at times. I will presumably not have very much free time there for language learning as well (more on that later).

    (On a side note, I should get DISQUS working again.)

  4. ·

    Excellent!! I love the idea :D A very precise mixture between both of the blogs and approaches – lovely!! I’m sure I will learn from your approach too: I never was good at studying before going to a country :P
    Greek is an excellent choice! Definitely on my eventual list some day :)
    Glad to see I’m starting a fluent-in trend among other bloggers :D :D As long as someone doesn’t start a fluent-in-2-months or one-month experiment, I should be safe enough :P :P

  5. ·

    Well, Benny, you never know. :)

    There has been a (seemingly successful) Fluent in a Week experiment (even though he has a bit of an advantage):

    He does have a blog but not about his challenge. If he starts blogging about that too, I guess we’re all screwed. :)

  6. ·

    Congratulations on selecting a Challenge! It seems like language learning never truly starts until you set yourself an incredible goal.

    And Greek, as I’m finding out this week, is an excellent choice. The alphabet took 10 minutes to learn, and pronunciation is not difficult whatsoever.

    (Technicality: Halfway between 3 months and 12 months is 7.5 months, therefore 6 months is very ambitious because it’s better than average!)

  7. Anonymous

    I’d like to call attention to the fact, that the Irish guy didn’t speak Thai after three months, but that the end result was that he could, after a couple of tries each, convey his meaning in such challenging things as: ordering streetfood, and asking for a lower price for a pair of sunglasses.
    So, you’re sure about six months?

  8. andai

    (3+12)/2=7.5 months

  9. ·

    J: From what I have looked, the alphabet is way harder than it seems. True, the letters are not very hard. However, knowing the letters doesn’t mean you can speak. It is true that the midpoint of 3 and 12 is 7.5 but a) six is a fair approximation of that b) it is double the first and half the second c) again, it is the midpoint of 12 counting from zero. “The 7.5 months challenge” just doesn’t sound right.

    Max: Well, to my knowledge, it was close to achieving his goal anyway. I’ll try my luck. ;)

  10. ·

    Good luck! I look forward to reading more on this and following your progress.

  11. ·

    Trying to become fluent in any language other than your native language in 3, 6 or even 12 months is setting yourself up for failure. As Max stated above, Benny did not learn Thai, is not fluent in Thai and probably doesn’t even remember the little he did learn while in Thailand.

    I think it’s great when someone wants to learn a new language but actually learning any language to fluency with all the inherent intricacies is never something that should be time based.

  12. ·

    Talen: I see your point and that is probably true. One could argue that one is never fluent in a language no matter how much one learns (under the most rigorous definition of the word “fluent”). However, here and I guess in the other challenges, the word “fluent” is used just as a phrase to mean “speaking confidently and getting understood” (I will give my definition soon). It does not imply knowing all the intricacies of the language or not making many mistakes. (Well, it could, but that’s going to be my definition for the challenge anyway.)

  13. ·

    Hey, man! It’s great to see you posting frequently again!
    As for the challenge, I will follow your progress on learning Greek and try to use your tips in my learning of German. I want to get to fluency this year.(I started to learn in November 2009)

    Boa sorte com seu desafio!

  14. Frokostordning

    Well… that’s amazing but frankly i have a hard time understanding it… wonder what others have to say..

  15. ·

    Well… that’s amazing but frankly i have a hard time understanding it… wonder what others have to say..

  16. ·

    Roman: Obrigado. Boa sorte para ti também (com alemão)! :)

  17. ·

    Best of luck with your challenge.
    Greek is a language that I would love to learn one day!

  18. ·

    Wish you luck to your project …If you want to practice Modern Greek , I surely can help you as a native speaker…

  19. ·

    Glavkos Sorry for the belated answer. That’s very cool indeed. I’ve just found your blog about learning Greek and subscribed. And thanks for the support!

  20. Sam

    It depends on your definition of fluency, but I think after a year you can definitely become fluent by most people’s standards in many languages, especially if the languages are closely related.
    While I don’t necessarily agree with the language gene idea, people do seem to forget that intelligence plays quite a big part, and someone very clever and outgoing in an immersion environment will thrive and could easily attain a very powerful and internalised command of a language within a year.

    While after 3 months if you aim high and put the effort in, you can achieve a good conversational level. 

    So I think it is good to aim high, because you won’t be setting yourself up for failure, but success, as even if you walk away not fluent, but competent, well you did pretty well.

  21. J McA

    I can only relate this to learning the piano: it takes TIME for the new info/skills to embed into the brain and muscles. It doesn’t follow that doubling the daily practice time halves the months of study required to pass the exam. Yes, you can learn quicker by doing more hours per day, but there is an optimum time per day and a diminishing return after that. Learning continues when you are not actively working on the new skills too, ie the gaps between study/practice sessions, so you have to leave these ‘blanks’ for the brain to do its work. I’d say a year’s learning could be done in 6 months,, but not really in 3 – just my experience/opinion. I started learning Spanish 2 months ago so read your experiences with great interest – thanks.

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