100 hour language challenge


It’s a new year today and that is without a doubt a time to set some nice and useful new year’s resolutions. Mine for this year is to re-learn my German in my 100 hour language challenge.


Let me explain.
I have spent years!!! learning to speak German. I started learning at school when I was 9 years old and I passed my final exams when I was 18.


That is 9 years.


Nine long years of drilling vocabulary and grammar to the extend good enough to pass a series of tests over the years.
I didn’t do great at it either. I ended up with what mark 3 which would be equivalent of C in British system.
And be assured that I do not mean the elusive fluency CEFR C. At that time I had no clue about the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. I mean the basic Primary school marking of achievement.


If I did know about the CEFR, and took the test at the time of my final exam, I would have maybe just by the skin of my teeth reached to perhaps A2. And even that only if the examiner was an old creepy man with false teeth and side sweep and I gave him my cutest smile and a cheeky wink.


Yuck, what a thought!
Let’s forget about that (if I ever can)


The point I was trying to make is, that after 9 years of lessons 3x a week (which equals roughly to some 800 hours of learning without even including home works and home studying) I was left with very pathetic level of skill to show for it.


That’s sad, right?


So now is time to look back and see where it all went wrong.


And also NOW is the time to fix it and finally learn to speak German.


I have learned two other languages since leaving school. And I dare to say that I have learned them in far less than 800 hours.


How long it took me? I would lie if I tried to come up with number of hours.
However, now that I know that I can do it and also how, I can try to measure it too.


I have set myself a challenge.


I want to see if I can relearn German in 100 hours. Technically I should have a bit of an advantage of my past education.

Maybe once I start it will all come to me and I may reach my goal in a blink of an eye and it would not be a challenge at all.

Or maybe I find that my German education was as useless as it appears to be now and I will have to start right from the scratch.

Perhaps it will even slow me down.


I am curious to see.


One thing is for sure, this time I will use my own learning methods. The ones I used to successfully learn all 5 of the languages I can currently speak without even studying or ever trying to memorize a word.


In the process I will also look at other ways of learning. Ones, which the most skilled polyglots in the world use to learn languages in a matter of hours (you can read more about it in one of my favourite articles by Babbel, where 4 of the world’s best polyglots took a 1 hour language challenge)


I invite you to share my journey and learn with me (whatever language you wish to conquer)


My goal in those 100 hours is to get communication skills good enough to have a conversation in German with a native speaker.


I would appreciate your support tips and comments. I also hope that my story will help you on your own journey. So let’s get started with the challenge and have some fun.