Oh-ctober! Language learning recap

Oh my, it’s good I didn’t plan anything for September because my plans would have been all over the place!
First and most importantly, at the end of October, I will be leaving London for good. I’ve finally made up my mind and I should have done so earlier: the longer I was here, the more I was aware I would never love this city. I will be back in Bologna for a couple of months and then move on to Sweden at the beginning of 2018.
You can probably imagine this change involves lots of work, stress and worries. Until I settle again my language learning won’t be a top priority, unfortunately. It will hopefully be my way to unwind, though.

So what have I done in September?

Unpredictably, September was focused on French. I had the opportunity to try some free online classes on Lingoda (affiliate) and I am oh so happy I accepted.
It was a positive experience that reminded me how much I love this language and helped me assess my current level and my limits.
I am standing at a solid intermediate level: I can understand pretty much everything I read and most of a conversation. I have some gaps in grammar that I believe I can fix with some focused reviews. Most importantly, I need to acquire vocabulary and more complex structures to bring my French production to the next level. This is kind of a fun phase because I can do so with authentic materials.

Swedish didn’t get much attention for September, but I studied some sentences every day with Memrise or Duolingo. Yay for little good habits at busy times!

I got a bit nostalgic about Japanese after an interview on Koipun, where I talked about life in Japan and learning languages. But for now I need to be patient, I’m only keeping my ear trained with some videos. By the way, do you know Dogen? He makes humorous videos for advanced learners: he’s so fun and I can’t stop being impressed with his pronunciation!

A lot of my study time this month went into an awesome course on Future Learn (affiliate) about teaching languages through short film: so much inspiration for my work! The course is ending this week, but if you rush you’re still on time to enrol and discover more on the topic.

What’s next?

As you can imagine, I won’t commit to much for October. There are things to sort out, stress to keep under control and quality time to spend with my “London family”.
I will still try to do a little bit every day, be it an app, a few videos, grammar exercises or a post on Instagram.

As I’d like to take proper lessons for a couple of months before moving to Sweden, I might start looking for a Swedish online teacher. I won’t start studying until November, but if any of you lovely people knows a good teacher or website throw it my way!

Not a whole lot of goal planning here, but let me know what you’re studying this month and good luck šŸ™‚


Iā€™m Elena Gabrielli, introvert, grammar geek & proud Ravenclaw :)
I’m on a journey to help introverts and other quiet learners make language learning into a tool for self-care (and keep anxiety out of it).


  1. dandiprat
    6th October 2017 / 8:21 pm

    Good luck in Sweden. I hope you enjoy it more than London. I think your Swedish will get better now that you have a goal in mind.

    • Elena
      10th October 2017 / 3:55 pm

      Thank you! I hope so too.
      And I agree, a very practical goal can make a difference in learning results.

  2. 8th October 2017 / 11:50 am

    Sorry to read that London has not worked for you. I am not a fan of London as it’s too busy for me. I wish you all the best with your move to Sweden it is a beautiful country. I do love future learn and Udemy courses. For me, I will be focusing on German and Mandarin this month. I am currently drafting a course for Mindfulness so October is going to be busy! All the best with Swedish.

    • Elena
      10th October 2017 / 3:58 pm

      Thank you Trisha! Not a big deal, I knew from the beginning that London would be a temporary home. Way too busy for me too. I think it will go better with Sweden.
      Good luck with German and Mandarin and also with your course creation!

  3. Elfin
    8th October 2017 / 3:02 pm

    Elena, loved your interview at Koipun! It was full of interesting insights both on Japanese and language learning in general. I’m so happy you’re moving from London and have new goals. It’s for the best!

    • Elena
      10th October 2017 / 4:00 pm

      Thank you Elfin! It had so many great questions, it was a real pleasure to answer.
      Yes, I think it’s for the best too, it’s time to move on šŸ™‚

  4. 10th October 2017 / 10:56 am

    Wow! Lots of changes in the air!! You must feel better now that you have taken your decision. It’s never easy to change plans or to accept that somes cities aren’t made for us, even though we try hard to convince ourselves otherwise. You’ll soon have plenty of time to practice Swedish! Keep us updated with your plans, and the best of luck!

    • Elena
      10th October 2017 / 4:02 pm

      I do feel much better! And no regrets, I got a lot from my time in London, but now I need to move on.
      I need some intensive study before moving there, I want to be well prepared.
      Thank you and good luck with your goals too!