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TAC ’15 French Spanish Celtic Adv Study

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Kerrie
Senior Member
United States
justpaste.it/Kerrie2
Joined 3991 days ago

1232 posts - 1740 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish

 
 Message 121 of 336
14 January 2013 at 2:28pm | IP Logged 
sctroyenne wrote:
I'm back! One of the main reasons for my absence is that I used my Amazon gift card and
got a Kindle! I'm pretty much in love with it, especially with my ability to load a
French dictionary and get instant pop-up definitions.

That's awesome. Merry Christmas. :)

I love my Kindle for that, too. I try to have a notebook with me when I read, and just write down the vocab I don't know, then put it into Anki. I've also found that it's easier to find foreign language books (in general) for the Kindle than it is to find paper books in the US.
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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 122 of 336
14 January 2013 at 7:29pm | IP Logged 
geoffw wrote:
Good luck! I have my copy of Le Seigneur des Anneaux right next to me
ready to go in my bag when I leave for my
commute to work. French literature will come in due time.


Thanks. For me it's a nice break from French literature which can get pretty heavy and
sometimes bleak (at least the stuff I have lined up to read).
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songlines
Pro Member
Canada
flickr.com/photos/cp
Joined 3805 days ago

729 posts - 1056 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French
Personal Language Map

 
 Message 123 of 336
04 February 2013 at 5:38am | IP Logged 
sctroyenne wrote:

Thanks. For me it's a nice break from French literature which can get pretty heavy and
sometimes bleak (at least the stuff I have lined up to read).


If you'd like an even lighter break from heavy French literature, come and join us on the Pax thread for some
songs and music!   We're trying our respective hands at a group activity which Kanewai suggested. See post
105, 108, and on.


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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 124 of 336
03 July 2013 at 11:44am | IP Logged 
Well, hello everybody! It's been quite a while now. Got sucked into some personal
projects and spent more time away from browsing internet forums (which can be
considered a good thing). I got two "promotions" at my job (starting the new position
in a week or two) so not too shabby I'd say.

On the language front I haven't spent a lot of time formally studying but I've been
maintaining through reading, language meetups, etc. Last week I bought a couple
magazines in Spanish and with access to a dictionary I can understand almost 100%
without any difficulty, without a dictionary it drops a bit but I definitely can
understand the gist. I spoke Spanish at a general language exchange meetup and didn't
do too badly. Understanding a full speed native speaker in a bar was challenging,
though. I will definitely need to practice verbs some more, though.

I've banked a good amount of paid time off and I was thinking of my different options
for using it. I discovered that I can do a two week Spanish immersion trip to Guatemala
for around $850-$950 which isn't too bad. Though sometimes I feel bad about spending
any money at all...

I'm thinking of concentrating this month on Irish, which has been pretty neglected.
There are a few fledgling Irish study groups that are trying to drum up interest so
I'll try to check them out and follow a regular course.

Apart from that I've discovered meditation. As language learners we like to think about
how much studying and immersion we can cram into our day but it's important to take
some time every day to rest the mind. It helps a lot for concentration and focus among
other things. So sometimes it's good to turn off the radio, movies, MP3 players, etc.
Just be sure to replace it with mindfulness rather than with mindless TV or other
distractions.

Hope everyone has been doing well!
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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 125 of 336
04 July 2013 at 3:31pm | IP Logged 
Oh, need to mention a great resource I got for Spanish:

ie=UTF8&qid=1372944425&sr=8-1&keywords=laugh+and+learn+spani sh">Laugh and Learn
Spanish


It has a lot of useful information, even in the "beginning" section (you need to have
more than a beginning level of Spanish to work through this level without a lot of
difficulty). It's based off of For Better or for Worse comic strips which is actually a
good choice for learners as it has a lot of everyday language used between family and
friends. Too bad they don't have it for more languages.
1 person has voted this message useful



sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 126 of 336
28 September 2013 at 2:07am | IP Logged 
Another quick update. I've been busy adjusting to being a day person again after my
promotion at work. A downside to my new position is that I don't really get downtime in
which I can read and browse the internet which means fewer opportunities to study
throughout the day. I can listen to podcasts though, thanks to my new iPhone, but I
have to be doing a pretty mindless task in order to be able to devote my full attention
to it.

I've started volunteering with a refugee organization as an English language tutor.
I've been matched with a woman from Burma (she's Karen) whom I meet with every week for
a couple of hours. It's pretty challenging since as a refugee in a pretty precarious
position she doesn't have access to all the useful resources the internet and TV has to
offer. I'm looking for cheap ways for her to be able to immerse herself the rest of the
week that don't require a computer or TV.

I saw that they're planning on having the polyglot conference in Montreal and NYC next
year and I'm thinking of going. I've been wanting to go to Montreal for a while now and
I get fairly generous vacation time so why not? But if I am to attend I feel like I
don't want to have to put an asterisk by my Spanish and Irish since I'm definitely
still just learning. A year is plenty of time to level up in both and maybe even
acquire some foundations of another language.

I've been going back and forth regarding which language I want to focus on, but thanks
to finding this resource I've decided to
focus my study on Irish for the next three months (at least). It looks like just the
thing to spoon feed me the language the way I want. It's really easy to listen to the
audio clips over and over again and gives me pretty clear targets.

If I were to add another language, Portuguese is definitely on my short list. But now
that I'm teaching A Karen woman from Burma, I'm also toying with the idea of pursuing
at least some Karen or Burmese. There are very few Karen resources but it looks like
enough to give myself a token amount of knowledge of the language:
http://karenkonnection.org/Say_It_in_Karen.php3 and
http://ktwg.org/Library/KTWG%20Karen%20Language%20Course.pdf . And it would be really
cool to be able to write in the really cool Burmese script.
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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 127 of 336
28 September 2013 at 7:29pm | IP Logged 
Did some research into Sgaw Karen. There are obvious difficulties: the rarity of the
language, the lack of commonalities with English or Romance languages, the lack of
courses or materials, the script, the tones, etc. Here are some descriptions:

Quote:

The Karen languages are difficult to categorize as to linguistic family. They differ
from other Tibeto-Burman languages in certain aspects, and yet they do not seem to fit
other classifications. Many linguists now refer to them as the Karenic group of the
Tibeto-Burman family.

All Karen languages are monosyllabic agglutinated speech, with no final consonants in
Sgaw Karen and with nasals and finals in other dialects. These are all marks of Sinitic
speech. Dr. D.C. Gilmore believes that the Pwo dialect branched off from the parent
stem earlier than the Sgaw, but kept the original nasals and, being in closer contact
with outside races, adopted more outside words. The Sgaw has dropped the final nasals,
because they were more difficult to pronounce, but has kept the original form of the
language to a greater extent than the Pwo. Pwo Karen has six tones. In Burma a Burmese
script is used to write down the language, in Thailand a modified Thai script is used.
There are only 26 of the 44 Thai characters used, in the Thailand Pwo Karen Script.
http://www.infomekong.com/peoples/karen/

Quote:
They are almost unique among the Tibeto-Burman languages in having a subject–
verb–object word order; other than Karen and Bai, Tibeto-Burman languages feature
asubject–object–verb order.[4] This is likely due to influence from neighboring Mon and
Tai languages.[5] The languages are also considered unusual for not having any Chinese
influence.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karen_languages

And information on the Burmese script: http://www.omniglot.com/writing/burmese.htm

I've found some pretty good guides that were developed initially by missionaries and
later refugee aid groups (in addition to the ones I posted above, I also found A
Grammar of the Sgaw Karen which looks like a good breakdown:
http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks09/0900201p.pdf).

Grammatically it doesn't look like the hardest language to learn and the phonetic
system seems pretty straightforward. There's no Pimsleur or Assimil that will spoon
feed the language to me but I think I can take the audio and written materials
available, split them up to put into Anki (or other tools) and start learning the
alphabet and basic words and phrases.

Any tips for approaching a language project such as this?
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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 128 of 336
29 September 2013 at 2:39am | IP Logged 
As for Irish, I found another handy tool that will be very encouraging: a Gaeilge IPA
Anki deck. The phonetic system is hands down the most intimidating part of the language
at the beginning and this ought to help me make more sense of it. The deck seems to
present the information very well and has pictures and audio. Unfortunately there isn't
one for Karen but I think I can make one with the materials I have which will be my first
step in the language.


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