Over the past few semesters, I have been learning Portuguese. I think it is an interesting facet of learning a language that different portions of the language can be easier or harder to learn. In my case, translating written Portuguese to English has become the easiest while oral communication remains difficult. I think that this is because it is easier for me to recognize cognates (similar words which have the same function, like three and três both refer to 3) in written form than in spoken form, and because the immediacy of oral communication does not allow sufficient time to consult dictionaries and conjugation tables. This is obviously the sort of difficulty which is reduced by practice, as native Portuguese speakers seem to have no such trouble.