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Students Share Their Language Learning Journeys – A New Series

Croatian Language SchoolnewsletterStudents Share Their Language Learning Journeys – A New Series

Mar

28

Students Share Their Language Learning Journeys – A New Series

Welcome to our new occasional series where students share their learning experiences with us. Many thanks to Susan, from Rab, Croatia, for her feedback after a semi-intensive one-on-one Croatian language course with the Croatian Language School, in Zagreb, in March 2024.

We asked Susan about her current level of Croatian, any courses she had done so far, and what she was hoping to achieve from her course with us:

I am currently at about the A2 level. I’ve been coming to Croatia on holiday for around 25 years and have learned what I know both from a grammar book and talking with relatives here. I’ve never taken a proper Croatian class before, but I have done a handful of conversation lessons via the italki app

….and then we asked her a few questions about the course:

Q1 Did the course meet your expectations?

Yes! This was not at all a cookie-cutter course. The content and the pace were very much tailored to me. Linda understood my level of knowledge right away and toggled between different books to find the right exercises to do at any given moment. The pace was really good and there was a nice mix of analyzing reading passages, doing grammar exercises, and talking with one another. Taking a one-on-one course was really helpful for me and boosted my confidence quite a bit. I needed this kind of intensive course and would certainly think about taking a group course in the future.

Q2 What are your best memories and what are the worst?!

I have quite a few great memories and I’ll highlight a couple of them. We did some deep dives into grammar. I am a grammar geek myself and love to understand how a language works so I really appreciated the way Linda walked me through some of the subtleties of Croatian grammar. I also liked the way that Linda allowed us to go in whatever direction seemed right at the moment even if we veered from whatever topic we had started on. For example, we would go over my homework—a short essay—every morning. Linda might probe with additional questions that would then lead us down a tangent and onto a new grammar or vocabulary point that we’d work on for a while. Eventually, we’d come back to the essay and continue on. It was always a seamless flow from topic to topic.

 

I think my worst—or perhaps, most embarrassing for me—memory was the realization that I have never had to articulate large numbers or dates before. Fumbling through how to say a number like 967,585 or the year 1977 out loud was eye-opening. In daily life, I just never used those numbers before. But now, I know how to if I need to.

 

Q3 Is there anything we could have added or subtracted from the course?

I can’t think of anything.

Q4 What is the next phase of your language learning journey?

The next phase is all about putting what I’ve learned into practice and talking, talking, talking. I know that is my weak area. I’ve joined a couple of clubs and have been meeting more people. Down the road, I’d like to take another class, but right now, I need to focus on conversation.

 

Q5 What did you like about the location?

Taking the course in Zagreb was wonderful as I have relatives who live there and also it’s such a vibrant city. A great walking city, too. The week I was there happened to coincide with the Festival Svjetla (Festival of Lights) so it was really special to see all of the art installations around town.

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You can find out more about the Zagreb Festival of lights here: Festival of lights Zagreb (festivalsvjetlazagreb.hr)

Image Attribution, Feature Photo: AJorge Láscar from Australia, CC BY 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

 

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