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For the next 12 weeks (today, September 30th until December 21st) I will be participating in a language-learning challenge called the +1 Challenge! The idea is to add at least one new language to your repertoire in about 3 months, give or take. If you want to see how it all started, you can check out this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSuZNTWAHQU

Anyway, my plan is to study both Hebrew and Finnish during this time, alternating days and spending at least 1 hour each day on the language. I can use Youtube videos, podcasts, books, websites, flash cards: anything that will help me learn the language, as long as I am doing SOMETHING to study for an hour each day, even if it’s a holiday or weekend. If I don’t study for my hour, I have certain consequences outlined for myself, which I’ve described in my introductory video (link a bit later).

Writing this after completing my first hour of studying Hebrew on Day 1, I think that this will be a rewarding and successful experience for me. I joined the challenge because I love languages but sometimes struggle with self-motivation; so when my friend told me about the Challenge, I jumped on the opportunity to push myself and receive support from other language lovers and aspiring polyglots. I know that I chose two languages that are challenging and quite different from English, but I think this fact will only increase the pride I have in myself if I can meet my goals at the end!

Because Hebrew and Finnish are so different from English (and Chinese), a lot of you reading this are probably asking, “Why on earth did you pick those two??” And I guess my answer is that I don’t really have a particular reason for either. I just think they’re both fascinating and beautiful! And neither one is very widely studied in the USA, so knowing them even at a basic level will set me apart a little from other students and future job applicants.

Finally, I plan to update my Youtube channel with my progress at least bi-weekly (if not weekly), and this blog at least monthly, until the end of the Challenge. If you want to watch my intro video for a bit more detail and subscribe to my channel for updates, you can do so here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NzkLVnIEI8&list=PLIyYMvGTq-ZwL3RuBk72O4Yv5y3cNRpnC&index=86

And if you want to see what the other +1 Challengers are up to and follow their progress, here is a playlist of all of our intro videos! http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLIyYMvGTq-ZwL3RuBk72O4Yv5y3cNRpnC

I hope you follow and subscribe! Wish me luck, and good luck to all the other Challengers out there!