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TAC ’15 French Spanish Celtic Adv Study

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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 241 of 336
07 March 2014 at 8:26pm | IP Logged 
French

I had my French lesson the other day. We worked on a listening comprehension exercise
which was GREAT! It's really good to work on listening comprehension with a teacher
because once you get to a high level where your general comprehension is good enough
that you don't even notice what you don't understand, it can be hard to work on on your
own.

She got the material off of the TV5 Monde "Enseigner le Français" site. From there you
can go straight to "A Télécharger" then sort the lessons/documents by level. She had me
work on this one (will turn into a clickable link later):
http://enseigner.tv5monde.com/fle/les-banques-cooperatives-e ntretien-avec-bernard-bayot

It has to do with banking, which is already a difficult subject. There were definitely
a couple questions where I knew while watching that I wasn't comprehending at 100%
especially when they had to do with the history of regulations and the political
response to the 2008 crisis. Also, the fact that I lacked some knowledge of the banking
structure of Europe, Belgium, and France and some of the business regulations meant
that it was harder for me to respond. This was not a "Banking 101" interview so lack of
background knowledge can interfere with comprehension. She had me watch it again with
the transcript (provided with the documents on the site) and highlight anything I
missed. There wasn't a lot overall, but the difficult portion I mentioned above
definitely had some.

It's really good to have a collection of audio documents and a method for improving
listening comprehension!


Irish

I started the unit on past tense. I have to say that for regular verbs, the past tense
is quite easy (and considering that practically nothing in this language comes easy,
I'll take it!). But Irish never lets you off that easy. Past tense is really hard for
the irregular verbs. Buíochas le Dia that there are only 11 of them. And actually, not
all 11 are *that* irregular plus I've already worked quite a bit on "Bí" so it's not
that bad. I'll have to do a lot of practice though. The unit content stays relatively
simple plus the following unit on travel reviews past tense and a lot of the other
previous content (I've already been previewing the audio).

Now for the exciting part! After all the work with verbs starting with the imperative
unit, reviewing the daily life unit, and now with past tense (and a bit of previewing
of future tense) my comprehension rate of Aifric has skyrocketed! I'm talking
something like a four-fold increase. And because all the verbs are coming through more
clearly, I'm able to hear a lot more of the little words around them as well. I love it
when listening comprehension boosts itself overnight like magic! I'm sure I'm due for
other major upgrades when I work more on prepositional pronouns and on verbal nouns.
2 persons have 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 242 of 336
09 March 2014 at 3:48am | IP Logged 
So I just participated in a dictée at the Alliance Française. Participants were split into multiple groups: adults
were split into Francophiles, Francophones, and Francophones Pro (those who work as translators, writers,
etc) while kids were split into age groups. We had a text specially-made for the event by someone who writes
them for a living and it was filled with pièges and jeux de mots. After grading, I was tied for first in the
Francophile category with nine mistakes but after being reviewed by the jury, the other person had one
mistake taken away so I came in second.

The top three of each category was placed in a drawing for three prizes: a three-month book rental gift
certificate for the online French bookstore Les Petits Livres, a gift certificate for the European Bookstore in
Oakland, and a round trip ticket between San Francisco and Paris. The three people who were picked in the
drawing were a little girl from the poussins category (under 5 or 6 I think), an older boy, and yours truly.

Guess what I won?

That's right!

The children's book rentals!

The little girl won the plane ticket. No luck getting her to switch...

And just for fun there was one mistake that I shouldn't have made but I did. It's hard catching them all
because you start second-guessing everything. There were two things I was tempted to change at the last
minute but didn't which ended up being right and one that I did change that I would have gotten wrong
otherwise so that's good. But I should have caught this one (let's see if one of you can catch it):

Mais comment peut-elle couper court à cette pratique quand ses copines se poilent si elle ne s'est pas épilée le maillot ?

Edited by sctroyenne on 10 March 2014 at 6:33am

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 243 of 336
09 March 2014 at 8:16pm | IP Logged 
Spending a lazy post-Daylight Savings day watching In the Name of the Fada, comedian Des Bishop's quest to learn Irish. It's funny and very inspiring. For those of you not learning Irish, it's still good to watch because it shows how to get the most out of learning in an immersion environment and it shows what a difference it makes when you start learning a language because you want to.

In the Name of the Fada
1 person has voted this message useful



Mohave
Senior Member
United States
justpaste.it/Mohave1
Joined 2603 days ago

291 posts - 444 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French

 
 Message 244 of 336
09 March 2014 at 9:32pm | IP Logged 
sctroyenne wrote:
After grading, I was tied for first in the
Francophile category with nine mistakes but after being reviewed by the jury, the other person had one
mistake taken away so I came in second.

The top three of each category was placed in a drawing for three prizes: a three-month book rental gift
certificate for the online

Guess what I won?

That's right!

The children's book rentals!


Congratulations! Well done!
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 245 of 336
12 March 2014 at 5:07pm | IP Logged 
To anyone wondering what I spend so much time listening to in French, I'll share some
of the radio programs I listen to a lot:

FRANCE CULTURE:

Concordance des temps - an historical show

La suite dans les idées - deep discussions of general topics of society, politics, etc

Les enjeux internationaux - a short analysis of international politics and events

L'économie en question - deep discussion of economic issues - this one is frequently
too difficult due to the subject matter, lack of familiarity with what's being
discussed, and general dry nature of the subjects


FRANCE INTER:

Service Public - a general interest show that discusses issues that effect French
people everyday

Si l'Amérique m'était contée - a show about the US from the French perspective. Really
insteresting!

Là-bas si j'y suis - a show by radio personality Daniel Mermet. The subjects are all
over the place from exploring the attraction the French have to Dieudonné and
investigating the Dassault vote-buying scandal to playing a recording of a woman going
into labor and giving birth. He tends to be very anti-mondialiste, and he likes to
present a lot of alternative views. He plays messages by callers at the beginning of
his program which can sometimes be a little unhinged.

Les petits bateaux - a show where experts in various subjects answer questions about
the world submitted by children. It's not too simple for adult learners.

Inter Activ - part of Patrick Cohen's show where he usually interviews someone in
politics or otherwise newsworthy.

La marche de l'histoire - another historical show. Lately they've done a few shows
where they reconstruct parliamentary debates with the help of actors from the Comédie
Française which have been pretty interesting.

Le téléphone sonne - a call-in show that features a different theme (typically based on
current events) with a panel of experts who debate. It's fun seeing what themes will
end up being the most heated debates. So far the notion of selling prescription glasses
in large stores like Carrefour was the most heated debate (even more than the proposal
to sell pregnancy tests in large stores, which was discussed in the same show).

Rendez-vous avec X - Stories about secret missions, the CIA, etc. Really fascinating!

RFI:

Accents d'Europe - various special-interest stories from around Europe.

2 persons have 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 246 of 336
12 March 2014 at 5:08pm | IP Logged 
Mohave wrote:
sctroyenne wrote:
After grading, I was tied for first in the
Francophile category with nine mistakes but after being reviewed by the jury, the other
person had one
mistake taken away so I came in second.

The top three of each category was placed in a drawing for three prizes: a three-month
book rental gift
certificate for the online

Guess what I won?

That's right!

The children's book rentals!


Congratulations! Well done!


Thank you!
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 247 of 336
20 March 2014 at 5:10pm | IP Logged 
I've still been going strong. By the end of last week I started feeling a bit of
burnout so I allowed myself a break to watch some Law and Order (in English) and to
read a bit in English. Even so, I still got a few hours in on Saturday and there was a
Language Hunters Irish session here that lasted a few hours on Sunday.

Sunday/Monday, we found out that Duolingo plans to add Irish! It's thanks to the strong
Irish language community that turned out for a Reddit poll that we'll have another
great resource. I find that despite the challenges of learning a small, endangered
language, the learning communities can be quite strong.

Since I'll be adding Duolingo Irish when it becomes available, I went ahead and started
to check it out in Spanish. So I'll actually have some Spanish study time recorded this
month!

I finished the Memrise Gaeilge gan Stró course. I've also created a set of interactive
flashcards for myself to study the verbs, sentence structures, etc (interactive meaning
that I have the different particles, the úrús and séimhiús, subject cards, adverb
cards, etc). I still need to review the last two units in more detail and review the
book as a whole (especially the dialogues and the talking heads) but other than that
I'm ready to move on to the intermediate level.

I had my French lesson yesterday. We practiced oral skills. She tested me by having me
talk about three subjects: narrate something I did recently, talk about a topic in the
news (the Malaysian plane disappearance), and present multiple arguments about a topic
(Crimea). As expected, each one was more difficult than the last and it was good for
finding my limits. For news subjects, it was immediately apparent the importance of
having the precise vocabulary (especially in the case of the plane). Nonetheless, she
said that I did well, especially with relations of time (use of plus-que-parfait), and
that I'm good at argumentation and going deep into a subject. I think I'll try one of
the suggestions in my "Finding Holes" thread and record myself speaking, write what I
said, and then analyze how well I did.

I'm planning on entering the Learning Challenge so I'm thinking of goals I can set for
that.
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 248 of 336
27 March 2014 at 12:30am | IP Logged 
I think I've come up with my Learning Challenge list. I'm torn as to whether or not I
want to try the Super Challenge. It just seems to be so much of a commitment. But I've
been searching around for good history bibliographies and found these:

Histoire Globale (PDF)
Bibliographie

If I can get a good number of these cheaply/easily than I'd like to tackle the list but
nonfiction can be trickier.

This site looks really good as well. I may consider subscribing to get unlimited access
to the archives (6 euros a month):

Sciences Humaines

Edited by sctroyenne on 27 March 2014 at 6:05am



1 person has voted this message useful



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