Learning a different language...
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Do you speak more than one language?
Yes!
16%
 16%  [ 1 ]
No.
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
I'm working on it! (learning)
33%
 33%  [ 2 ]
I'm fluent in multiple languages
16%
 16%  [ 1 ]
I'd like to...
33%
 33%  [ 2 ]
Absolutely not interested ...
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
Total Votes : 6

Blazestorm
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Queen of the Realm
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Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:39 pm


The topic of learning new languages came up in the "Hello and how are you today?" thread and it seemed appropriate to make it its own topic, so here we are!


Exclamation Please jump in to the conversation - whether you know a language other than your native tongue(s) or not!

Exclamation If you speak or are learning another language(s), tell us what it is, your impetus for learning it, learning resources, etc.

Exclamation If not, why not? Would you like to learn another language?

Exclamation What are your experiences with languages other than your own?



Arrow People learning (or have learnt) languages:
    LillieRose
    Ratwyrm
    Blazestorm




Speak!
Parla!
Parles!


Blazestorm
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Queen of the Realm
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Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:50 pm
[conversational background]

Ratwyrm wrote:
Self-teaching myself a new language is hard. Gendered nouns for things like chocolate and table.



Blazestorm wrote:
...I'm trying to work out some kinks in my understanding of Italian ...



Ratwyrm wrote:
Your Majesty
If I learned to speak Hindi, I could effectively speak to a third of the world population Exclamation It's home to a deep, rich culture dating as far back as the Silk Road. USA didn't even exist yet(?) Yes, it's a very romanticized vision. In reality, I'm probably going to be forked outside of the tourist zones, but what I wouldn't give to visit every obscure hindu temple. ALSO THE STREET FOOD! If I die, then I die. SHRUGS 🤷‍♂️ I ain't going back to the US for my medical issues lmfao.

What about you? What's your inspiration for learning Italian? French? French-Italian?

Duolingo's teaching style is not something I'm used to. I prefer grammar structures explained to me before using it rather than being thrust in the middle of nowhere and suddenly forced to regurgitate a phrase. But by all means, it's a great app to sample or review a language tho, like a dipping a toe in before committing to a textbook.
Blazestorm
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Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:53 pm

Ratwrym, do you have plans to go to India or is it just a dream at this point?

Yes - I agree with you about having the grammar structures explained before being thrust in to the middle of something - it's one of my biggest gripes about working with DuoLingo, despite working with textbooks and other sources on my own.

Why did I choose to learn Italian? Well, my ethnicity is partly Italian (1/4), and we had a trip to Rome planned at the time I started learning it, but mostly because I learned French in high school, was decent at it and enjoyed it despite the obstacles of lazy classmates and a less-than-demanding teacher as we progressed through the language (I had 6yrs of French total through Jr. High and High), and nobody to speak it with, so I lost pretty much any knowledge of the language as time went on. I wanted to reclaim it, but kept stumbling in to the whole head-banging thing of "but I should know this!" expectations of myself.

So I switched to Italian, thinking that having some idea of the language would be a very good thing if we were going to be in Italy (despite most of them speaking English fluently), and knowing that it was similar enough to the French in some ways, while still being distinctly different from it... thinking that maybe that would be a good way to transition from one language to the next, while picking up a new one in the meantime.

It is working, as much as is possible going mostly through DuoLingo's weird teaching style. I'm picking up some Italian, it definitely helped when we were in Rome (more for reading than for speaking it, but still...) and the French, when I switch to that language track, is coming back quite quickly now.

I definitely prefer a different teaching style, though. Honestly, I'm still stumbling over identifying the infinitive verbs from their conjugated forms, and some basic verb conjugations that at this point I really shouldn't be, and it's because of being thrown in to the mix of game-ified language learning of psuedo-immersion and regurgitation, and DL's belief that you learn more through making mistakes despite not having adequate explanation of the "exercises".

And I like languages. They're fun. I like learning new things, and after spending so much time teaching my kids over the years (I home-schooled them; one just graduated high school and college with two associate degrees (yes, I'm proud of him) - the other is finishing up a similar coursework schedule), it was time to learn something for myself.




Ratwrym, I completely agree with you about the rich culture, being able to visit the temples and understanding what's being said, the street food, etc.! It would be an interesting language to know!


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Wed Jun 17, 2020 6:18 am
It's definitely on my bucket list of places to visit.

Duolingo does a great job with nagging and daily reminders tho. Textbooks just...passively sit there in your peripheral vision until you remember to review it lol. I think Mango Languages does a good job with introducing grammar points (until the upper? intermediate level) even tho it's less intrusive than Duo.

That's super cool. It's like going back to your roots. Are you going to pay homage to your other 3/4s?
And that loss of language due to your geolocation is hella relatable. Re-learning French should be easier though! Like revisiting an old friend. But I also understand the feeling of wanting to start a clean slate. I'm glad you found what works!
With Japanese, I'm struggling with their formal speech. Some of them look the exact same, but just pronounced differently.
Like bruh 後 (nochi - after (formal)) and 後 (ato - after) mean the exact same thing, but I'm expected to know how to read these based on context.


(Congrats on raising such bright kids!) With that much teaching experience, teaching yourself should be a breeze. 💪
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bohemian
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Wed Jun 17, 2020 6:53 am
Bo is attempting to learn Italian, Dutch, Russian and probably Icelandic if I can find another app other than Duolingo that has it. I did have Memrise? but they kept upping the yearly price, so I deleted it. I was also learning Chinese and know a few words from that.
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Blazestorm
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Wed Jun 17, 2020 12:54 pm
LOL - thanks, Ratwyrm. Yes, it is kind of an homage to my roots, I guess, and it was kind of a reason why I decided to learn it; I grew up hearing a smattering of it from my grandmother, and in various little pockets of the places I've lived over the years. If I were to continue on that thought though, I'd have to also learn Portuguese - the other 1/2 of my ethnicity is already covered by French and native English (although I suppose I could "learn" England's English XD - I wonder how DuoLingo would handle that - LOL!! ) Yes, I'm a mutt... 2nd generation all the way around, I think.

... Oh! Those context meanings... ugh! Italian has a heap of them as well! They can be so annoying, especially when you're still new to the language, and when it's combined with the formal/informal... lol... languages are so much fun, aren't they? XD It sounds like you really did go from Hindi to Japanese, huh? The Hindi was that challenging? Do you think you'll go back to trying to learn it at some point? What got you wanting to learn a language to begin with?



Bo! Well, you and I can work on Italian together if you'd like. And I've always wanted to learn Chinese (for me, this will wait until I am more comfortable with the Italian and French - or until I just seriously need a break from the romance languages). I did start learning a teensy bit of Chinese when I was spending a lot of time in Chinatown lots of years ago. What has you learning all these languages ... and why these? How long have you been working on these languages?



DuoLingo certainly has its faults, but yes, it is good at giving the constant reminders to practice. Lately, I've been doing enough online there to keep hearing the language and to practice a little bit, but then switching to textbooks for "real" learning and review. I just downloaded Memrise, but haven't looked at it yet. Babble, of course, is another option (again, I haven't looked at it recently), then all Berlitz and Rosetta Stone type options. What I'd love, though, is to find an in-person class, but that doesn't seem to be an option these days -at least not around here- unless you want to learn Spanish or sign language, and I have zero interest in learning either of those.

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Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:23 pm
Your Majesty
Fantastic! I also heard Italian from my grandmother, but only when she said spaghetti, pizza, and macaroni haha.
Diversity is always good. You have multiple places you can call home, and it makes your family tree more interesting. It's also great you still know where you came from. Most Americans lost their lineage history to time. (like me. lol.)
(Australian English is even more wack lol)

No pain, no gain amirite? Suffering is good, and therefore learning a new language is for masochists. 🧐

LOL yeah, I wanted to start a clean but similar slate. I learned Mandarin (Chinese) in high school, so it's slightly easier for me to learn Japanese since some of the words are borrowed from Chinese. I think JP will be more useful to me (like playing games and reading manga/comics when they're actually released instead of waiting for them to be localized---which can take years, and being able to read the paintbrush labels on Japanese art programs. They have really good art programs I tell ya. and something something 3rd world economic power, US's big trade partner if I want to sound edumacated or something.) Hindi is more of a soul-search. which I will get to. but not now. XD

bohemian
Mango Languages has all 3. Cool Check if you can get it for free through your public library because that's how I found out about it.
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Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:29 pm
I keep wanting to learn nee languages, but I tend to get bored and stop a few words in. I think because there's that little voice in the back of my head saying "why bother, you're never going to travel anywhere". And also because where I live isn't very diverse so I don't really have the ability to practice or maintain a language.
I took I think 4 or 5 years of Spanish in school, but barely remember any of it. I could probably manage well enough in getting directions or asking the time, but beyond that, not much.
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LillieRose
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Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:26 am
Aha, so this is why my ears were burning. XD

Indeed, over the course of my life, I have learned five languages: Hungarian, Serbian, English, German and Spanish.

And no, English is not my first language, it's actually the fourth one I had learned during my life. XD

I'm fluent in three of those, the other two, I understand more than I can say, mostly due to the fact that I did not have the opportunity to practice using them. Sadly.

I used to teach English as a foreign language before I moved to New Zealand (if you think Australian English is weird, try listening to Kiwi English XD).

I found Duolingo useful for practice but for language learning, what you really need is good motivation and a good teacher.

Being face to face with someone who can explain things to you helps a lot. You also need to start with basic things such as building up basic vocabulary with pronouns, common nouns and common verbs, then slowly adding other parts of speech as you go. Also, basic grammar, simple present and past first, then the more complicated tenses and gerunds and subjunctives. Don't even try with idiomatic expressions until you have your basics down.

Reading and listening on your target language also helps a lot, more than people realize. Newspaper articles, online articles, music and films on your target language are your best friends.

Also, one little teacher trick is to try to have a conversation with yourself in the mirror. It removes the stress of having to talk to another person (whose judgement you might be afraid of, even though we all make mistakes) and it helps you actually sound things out loud. Rather than being silent while you practice your phrases in your head. Reading aloud is also helpful. I did this all throughout my first year of uni, it helped tremendously.

Other than the above, just persistence and motivation. If you really want to know this new language you are learning, you have to keep at it and motivate yourself to retain the knowledge.

Being in love with the culture associated with the language (my example: I love Argentine tango, thus I try to retain as much of Spanish as I possible can) is also a massive help. :3

If you have questions, ask away, I shall endeavor to answer to the best of my knowledge. :3

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Thu Jun 18, 2020 11:11 am
LillieRose wrote:
(if you think Australian English is weird, try listening to Kiwi English XD).

Excuse you Lillie, how exactly is Australian English weird? *glares at Lillie* Mad Mad Mad

I've never left Australia, but apparently, I have a slight Kiwi accent that is from the southern tip of the south island. Shrug

I can speak a little Chinese, mostly just "Hello", "Drink Up!"...and I can remember how to say something that I think vaguely translates to, "Come on, lets go!" I was trying to learn Chinese a few years ago while I was still kinda heavily medicated for my health issues. thunk

A year prior to that I was trying to learn Dutch and the only thing I remember is similar to the last Chinese phrase, except it is just, "Lets go." Laughing

I can only say "Yes" in Russian, so not exactly helpful. XD

I have absolutely no real idea why I settled on Italian, aside from the fact that a few short stories that I have read has Italian with the translation at the end of the quote.

Not exactly a fan of the way Duolingo goes about introducing the language, which is basically, this is boy, this is girl, this is man, this is woman. I think I prefer Memrise's way of doing things. I might re-invest in it again. But in the meantime I might end up purchasing a language book for Italian and see if that will help me with understanding the important parts of the language.

Anyways, this should be a link to my Duolingo profile if anyone wants to follow me, if it even works: https://invite.duolingo.com/BDHTZTB5CWWKTD7OTVJOZQ5CIY?v=la
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Rayven: *gets hit in the face with some underwear* Wow Bo sure likes to get naked! XD
Riley: Bo, the Goat Whisperer. XD
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Rayven
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Thu Jun 18, 2020 7:04 pm
As I've mentioned before, I'd love to learn Scottish Gaelic. If I ever get around to learning that, it's my understanding the learning Irish shouldn't be too much of a bother.

I'm just lazy about it. Embarassed And it seems so hard. Like Kaderin, I also fear that I'll never get to really use it. It's a dying language that they're trying to revamp but I doubt it will ever see its former glory. Sad There's a lot of Scottish people that don't know it.

I know precious little French and Tagalog. I can count to 10 in Spanish and a few other words. I know what most people probably know. *shrugs*
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Thu Jun 18, 2020 9:20 pm
Icelandic is a dying language as well, so even if I were to go to Iceland, people would still be able to understand me and interact with me because English is more commonplace thanks to, I can't remember if it was YouTube specifically or not, but videos made in English means that a lot of, if not the majority of the youth, speak English and don't know or bother with Icelandic.
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Court Jester? Bo? Tasty
Bo, official Zantarni nudist. eBil
Rayven: *gets hit in the face with some underwear* Wow Bo sure likes to get naked! XD
Riley: Bo, the Goat Whisperer. XD
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Rayven
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Thu Jun 18, 2020 10:26 pm
That's so sad. Crying or Very sad I hate it when animals, languages, etc. die out. "Gone forever" is a long time.
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bohemian
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Fri Jun 19, 2020 12:12 pm
I agree Rayven. I wonder, in modern times at least, how many languages we have lost in the last two centuries. Regional dialects being ground down to being nonexistent in terms of the national language, tribal languages becoming nonexistent because the tribes either get wiped out, or are forced to integrate into a culture and society that they have no understanding about how it works.

I just re-downloaded Memrise and I have to say it is DEFINITELY much better than Duolingo. I'm also going to invest in a "For Dummies" book for learning Italian. I had a quick look through it and another 2 books and it seemed like the best, especially since it is like 4-5 books in one. Not to mention that it "sounds" out how to say words, so I think I will find it helpful.
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- Ignis Fatuus -
Court Jester? Bo? Tasty
Bo, official Zantarni nudist. eBil
Rayven: *gets hit in the face with some underwear* Wow Bo sure likes to get naked! XD
Riley: Bo, the Goat Whisperer. XD
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Blazestorm
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Fri Jun 19, 2020 1:18 pm
Ratwyrm wrote:
I also heard Italian from my grandmother, but only when she said spaghetti, pizza, and macaroni haha.

... farfalla (butterfly in Italian (and if you're in the U.S. (at least), it's a type of pasta)), mangia ((you) eat), ciao! (hello/goodbye), cappuccino (coffee), etc. ... exactly! LOL!

So you're basically doing the same thing I'm doing with the French and Italian, only in your case it's Mandarin and Japanese, Ratwyrm.


You could always learn a language just for the mental challenge, Kaderin... or, just because you want to, and you find some joy in that! Yes

Yes, it's difficult to maintain fluency of another language in the U.S. unless you're part of a very ethnic neighborhood, culture, and/or family where another language is spoken regularly. It's unfortunate, really.


Ironically, I should have learned Italian while I was still living in the northeast and it was relatively easy to find pockets of "little Italy" scattered around... and if I had any desire to learn Spanish, I could probably use it here in Florida, where there are a lot of Spanish-speaking people. I could probably also make use of Hindi here too, if that was a language I wanted to pursue right now.


Lillie! Thanks for weighing in, and for the hints and tips! Heart


I have been taking an online class on Italian Opera (which I really need to finish), which, I've noticed was helping with the Italian - especially when I could watch/listen to a video with double subtitles, and I just bought a couple books (both Italian and French) with short stories that are aimed at language learners. I'm also delving in to other language-learning web sites more to test, try, and round out my current understanding of Italian. And again, doing more textbook reading.


Bo, I sent you a friend request (or "followed you", or whatever it's called) on DuoLingo. My username there is Monnicchio. Any of you - please feel free to add me if you'd like.


Rayven... Scottich Gaelic and Irish. Wow - those are, to my understanding, tough languages to pick up! ... but you should try!! Yes *go! go! GO!*



EDIT: Bo, I have the 6-in-1 "Dummies" book for Italian. It's actually the book I'm using the most right now, of the three 'learn Italian' (non-story-reader) books that I have. Good to know about Memrise - I really should follow up with that program and check it out. Yes
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