Weekly Update #3 – Study Time vs. Relaxation

This week has been one of my worst for a very long time since I started studying Chinese.

At the start of the week I spent two days staying with friends and going out, plus on Wednesday I sent my phone off to be repaired so this limited me.

Not having Skritter sucked, and not being able to look up words quickly in Pleco made me less motivated to tackle harder material.

Having a less intense week I guess is not so bad though, I was starting to feel quite overwhelmed with my studies so some time off was in order. I just have to make sure I don’t let this slump continue.

I’ve also been working a bit too much on this blog rather than studying, so I need to get my priorities back in order.

Level Up Chinese is meant to be a way to document my progress and share my experiences learning, so it must not cut so much time into my learning if if I actually want things to write about.

So with that said, I’ll keep this weekly update short and sweet.

If you read my last update, you can see I didn’t meet many of my goals set.

New Practical Chinese Reader 2

I really slacked this week on working my way through this book. I have spent some time on the 5th lesson but I haven’t learned it standards I would consider acceptable. I listened back to the dialogues from the first 4 lessons and looked into all the words I had forgotten from last week.

Time spent: ~3 hours


As I’ve mentioned, mid-week I sent away my phone. I could use the desktop version with a tablet but I find it less practical for the way I’ve been using Skritter. I managed to get in around 30 minutes a day before it went.

Time spent: ~1.5 hours


Really dropped the ball here. My goal from last week of listening to more ChinesePod really failed in style. I managed to listen to just 1 lesson a few times.

Time spent: 0.5 hours

Anki and Pleco Reviews

Fortunately I was able to keep up with my Anki deck even when staying with friends. I woke up earlier and got my reviews done in the morning. Pleco didn’t get any love because again, no phone. The review count is going down more and more each day, which is a sign I’m improving, but also a sign that I need to be getting more input.

Time spent: ~6 hours

italki Skype Lesson

I had my lesson yesterday and finished it feeling a bit depressed and frustrated. I was tripping up on yes/no questions, something I thought I was now confident with, guess this’ll happen when I forget to revisit the basic stuff for a long time.

Time spent: 1 hour


I forgot to get these listened to while away from home and basically didn’t work on it at all. Massive fail. I’ll likely restart this from day 1 as I wasn’t that far into it and it won’t hurt to review some more after this long gap in time.

Time spent: <1 hour (not counting it)

TV and Film Viewing

Really chilled too much on this as well. I watched a bunch of episodes of Happy Chinese but it was very passively, read too much of the English subtitles.

Time spent: ~2 hours

WaiChinese & Pronunciation Challenge

This was one goal I did meet however, I joined the Hacking Chinese Pronunciation challenge and I have been using WaiChinese on a daily basis, getting feedback on my pronunciation from a native speaker.

It’s helping me to find weaknesses I didn’t know I had with my pronunciation, and participating in the challenge is has given me some much needed discipline for this sloppy week. It’s not much time, but I’m roughly on track to meet the target of 10 hours I set.

They were also very generous and gave me some extra material to use in this free trial, so big thanks to them!

Time spent: ~2 hours

Weekly study total: 15 hours

Goals for next week

My main goal for this upcoming week is to get back on track and aim for at least 30 hours of effective studying.

Cut down my time on the blog and make better use of my free time. Aside from weekly progress updates like this one, I won’t be posting more than 1 extra entry per week until I’m back on track.

I really hope my phone will arrive back soon so I can catch up on Skritter.

  • Finish 5th and 6th lessons of NPCR 2, get the new vocabulary and patterns committed to memory
  • ​Ramp up my listening, aim for at least an hour a day. I will attempt to use some of the methods Dan from chinese-breeze uses (shame this guy stopped blogging!)
  • ​If phone arrives, catch up on my ever growing Skritter queue
  • Continue with the Pronunciation challenge, using WaiChinese and also paying more attention to pronunciation in general

I’m really looking forward to reporting my progress from China, I think there will be so much more to talk about and my progress updates will be much more entertaining!

If you have enjoyed reading this or found it useful, please consider sharing it to help spread the word about Level Up Chinese :)

Leave a Reply