One of the reasons why we hold the italki Language Challenge is we believe in Goal Setting for language learning. Setting a goal helps you focus and allocate your time and resources efficiently, and can keep you motivated when you feel like giving up.
Whether or not you are taking our Language Challenge, we want all our members to understand the importance of setting challenging but attainable language goals. The graphic above is a great summary of what an effective goal should be:
1. Your Language Goal should be specific!
Our Language Challenge lasts for 6 weeks and requires you to take 20 lessons during that week. Regardless of whether or not you are taking our challenge, you should give yourself a concrete goal: “I want to be able to have a simple conversation with a native speaker” and also have a deadline and a steps to achieve that goal (i.e. I will study 5 times a week for an hour at a time).
2. Your Language Goal should be challenging!
20 lessons in 6 weeks is very challenging. This amounts to 3-4 lessons a week which is difficult but it will make you “reach” for your goal. Goals that are too easy don’t push people. We want italki students who take the challenge to feel the pressure so that when you do finish and are successful, you know you’ve done something that you can be proud of.
The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.
— Bill Copeland
3. Your Language Goal should be attainable!
Our goal of 20 lessons in 6 weeks is a “stretch” but it is entirely attainable for serious language learners. Most people probably would not be able to keep this pace up for a long period of time but that is the beauty of the challenge, it will push you for just a short period of time! With a simple pledge of 100ITC, if you complete the challenge we will give you 300ITC as a reward!
4. Your Language Goal should be flexible!
20 lessons in 6 weeks is our specific goal but how you achieve this will be different for everyone. Some students may have a set schedule that they follow (4 classes a week). Some students may do double sessions (morning and evening). Some will use only Professional Teachers while others may mix it up with a variety of teachers and Community Tutors. Whatever the case, you have a lot of flexibility in reaching your goal!
So for those of you who are taking the challenge, get started now! Your goals are clear and all you need to do is start working towards it! And the closer you are to your goal, the better your language ability will become.
For those of you who aren’t taking the challenge, we hope that this post helps you understand the importance of goal setting and motivates you to set one. However, if you are still interested in taking the Language Challenge with everyone else… there still is time to apply! It’s a great way to get that extra push with clear goals defined for you!