Posted in English

Exam Prep Review

Progress on the list I made a week or two back

Speaking Goals

Not really winning with any of this stuff.  😦

  • Build Confidence: I need to speak clearly and confidently even when I get to a bit I’m not sure about. If I don’t know the word, just guess and keep on going rather than fretting and looking confused.
  • Conversely, don’t be cocky: talk at a sensible speed to give myself time to think, and don’t go off at a tangent that seems interesting if I’m not sure where I’m going with it. Obviously this is in conflict with the point above.
  • Speak portuguese for at least 5 minutes every day between now and the exam.

Listening Goals

  • Listen to videos of people speaking in a range of accents from Alentejo, the rural centre of the country. and the islands (hence that Açoriano video I just posted). Some done but not enough
  • Listen to at least 3 video films with subtitles. One down, 2 to go… oh no, wait, Ramiro doesn’t count because the only subtitles were in English and that’s no bloody good! OK, 3 to go still, then.
  • Get to grips with the Raul Solnado “Guerra de 1908” sketch Done!

Cultural Goals

  • Read at the very least:
      • A Língua Portuguesa (Fernando Pessoa)
      • Mensagem (Fernando Pessoa) Done!
      • Brevíssima História de Portugal (A.H. De Oliveira Marques)
      • Maybe even A construção da democracia em Portugal (Kenneth Maxwell) although that seems a bit ambitious. No way is this happening. 
  • Make a timeline of portuguese history to get a sense of how it hangs together. Drawn but not yet filled in. I need highlighters – stat!
  • Write about portuguese landmarks – the Padrão dos Descubrimentos, Torre de Belém, Mosteiro dos Jerónimos and so on. Assembled some materials for this but not yet put pen to paper

General Language skills

  • I need to build my vocabulary – Memrise and Lingq daily goals – Doing alright so far!
  • I’m getting better at the ver/vir (which was one of the 4 Evil Exes I identified a year or so back) but need to step up my game on some of the other weirder irregulars like Por and Dar Not done
  • Finish the exercise book I’m on now Done!
  • Do a couple of mock exams to get a feel for the speed I need to be working at to get in under the time limit Nope
  • Practice writing legibly. I type so much these days I need to get my hand used to forming letters or I’ll be penalised for spelling errors. Started working on this: transcribed a song and translated it. It started breaking down when I was low on space but I’ve shown I can do it if I put my mind to it. More practice needed.
  • Letter format and forms of address Nope
  • Learn – actually learn verbatim – one song. I started looking at a song by Márcia called “Menina” but she writes in a weird, cryptic style that’s really hard to decipher. I thought maybe Deolinda but having dug around a bit, I’m more inclined to go for “Dia de Folga” by Ana Moura because it’s got proper sentences and a wide range of fairly ordinary, everyday language in it, plus it would be good fun to belt it out while I’m doing the housework.


Just a data nerd

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