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Sarnek’s Log - TAC ’15 (Rätsel, Sleipnir)

 Language Learning Forum : Language Learning Log Post Reply
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Sarnek
Diglot
Senior Member
Italy
Joined 2612 days ago

308 posts - 414 votes 
Speaks: Italian*, English
Studies: German, Swedish

 
 Message 1 of 176
19 December 2013 at 1:28pm | IP Logged 
So here we go.

This is not only my first TAC but also the first time I try to keep a journal like
this. I decided to partecipate in the tournamente as this would give me the
opportunity
to "force" myself to write in here and
therefore keep my motivation high.

I'm a 19 years old guy from Italy, currently living in Milan, studying Languages
(German and Swedish) and Literature (From German-speaking countries and Scandinavia).

I'd decided to take this course just a few months before it started, as I've always
imagined myself studying for a Computer Science degree. But eventually (and luckily,
I'd say), my passion for languages took over and
since I've also found an amazing new world with Literature studies I don't see myself
regretting this choice at all.

You might now be wondering how can I be sure to have such a fervent passion since I
only know English as a L2. Well, I've always been in contact with different languages
as far as I can recall: my mother teaches
English, French and Spanish and my father speaks German. I can remember that when I
was
a kid I used to take old dictionaries and grammars from my parent's bookshelves and
remain in awe just leafing through them (for a
reason still unknown to me), and I also used to scribble on notebooks things that
somewhat resemble Chinese idiograms. But I just kept this as a secret passion, as
I've
always thought I'd work for a Software House one
day (my grades were great and I had an offer from Glasgow University). Later, as I've
experienced how English broadened my horizons, letting me know people worldwide and
get
jobs fairly easily, I knew that languages
were my path. Besides, I've also got a strong interest in linguistics, historic
linguistics, etimology, sociolinguistics, philology and whatnot, so the choice was
kind
of obvious anyway.

Getting to the point of the topic (for those of you still following! :D) these are my
plans for 2014:

Swedish:
I'm starting from scratch and I aim to reach a solid A2 by the end of 2014.
For Swedish I'm using two textbooks: the Assimil course and "Lagom Lätt". Then the
Pimsleur Swedish Comprehensive course and a small handbook of essential grammar. As I
come accross new words I put them on Anki.
The reason I'm studying this language is because I find the way it sounds incredibly
attractive and appealing, and I'm also attracted to its culture.

German:
I studied it for about 6 months a year ago but then had to stop for quite a while so
I've lost much of what I'd learned.
For German I'm using the textbook "Klipp und Klar", and I might later start using
Assimil, too. Then the Pimsleur German I course, the book "Lernwortschatz Deutsch"
combining it with Anki for learning new words, a
small handbook for grammar and various fiction books.
The grammar does seem complex but not because of the cases and declensions of names
and
adjectives, but rather because of the gender of words and their plural.
The reason I'm studying this language is because (call me crazy if you want) I am in
love it.

I wouldn't normally use Anki and I was quite sceptic about it at first, but now I
think
it's a great tool for German and Swedish to memorise the gender, which is often
impossible to know beforehand, and the plural forms of words, which I find
particularly
hard.

I've joined the Scandinavian Tea and the team STARtbecause I've never gone through
the
process of learning a new language (English is something I've learnt unconsciously).

I guess that's all for the moment, so hej då and aufwiedersehen!

Edited by Sarnek on 28 January 2015 at 9:04pm

4 persons have voted this message useful



Via Diva
Diglot
Senior Member
Russian Federation
last.fm/user/viadivaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 2631 days ago

1109 posts - 1427 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, English
Studies: German, Italian, French, Swedish, Esperanto, Czech, Greek

 
 Message 2 of 176
19 December 2013 at 1:38pm | IP Logged 
Hi :)
Anki doesn't work for me, and if you get bored, I can recommend Memrise. Also if you have an Android device, I can say that there are apps about German articles and words :)
1 person has voted this message useful



Sarnek
Diglot
Senior Member
Italy
Joined 2612 days ago

308 posts - 414 votes 
Speaks: Italian*, English
Studies: German, Swedish

 
 Message 3 of 176
19 December 2013 at 1:50pm | IP Logged 
Via Diva wrote:
Hi :)
Anki doesn't work for me, and if you get bored, I can recommend Memrise. Also if you have
an Android device, I can say that there are apps about German articles and words :)


Hey there,
I've tried Memrise but I find it slow when it comes to putting new words into it. With
Anki I can quickly make new entries and review them instantly. Memrise has a better
layout though, that's for sure.
2 persons have voted this message useful



Via Diva
Diglot
Senior Member
Russian Federation
last.fm/user/viadivaRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 2631 days ago

1109 posts - 1427 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, English
Studies: German, Italian, French, Swedish, Esperanto, Czech, Greek

 
 Message 4 of 176
19 December 2013 at 2:06pm | IP Logged 
Well, if you prefer to learn words that you choose by yourself it's hard to find something better than Anki. I've tried to do it, but my list was short and stupid, so I've come to Memrise. I think there are one book which I can use for Anki, but I'm not at all sure that I won't get bored even in that case, hehe.
1 person has voted this message useful



Emme
Triglot
Senior Member
Italy
Joined 3744 days ago

980 posts - 1593 votes 
Speaks: Italian*, English, German
Studies: Russian, Swedish, French

 
 Message 5 of 176
19 December 2013 at 10:29pm | IP Logged 
Welcome to the Scandinavian team!

I hope that the coming year will be a great adventure for all of us learning a Nordic language and that we will manage to achieve undreamed of goals.

Lycka till med TAC 2014!

1 person has voted this message useful



Kez
Diglot
Senior Member
Netherlands
Joined 2754 days ago

181 posts - 212 votes 
Speaks: Dutch*, English
Studies: Swedish

 
 Message 6 of 176
21 December 2013 at 2:55pm | IP Logged 
Hey Sarnek,

Lycka till med din svenska studie i 2014! I will be following your log, nice to follow
someone who started from scratch. If you need any tips/sources, tell me!

Hej då!
1 person has voted this message useful



Sarnek
Diglot
Senior Member
Italy
Joined 2612 days ago

308 posts - 414 votes 
Speaks: Italian*, English
Studies: German, Swedish

 
 Message 7 of 176
22 December 2013 at 4:44pm | IP Logged 
Tack så mycket, Emme och Kez!

I moved to my family for the Holidays, therefore I wasn't be able to study much
Swedish, but I still managed to get to Assimil's lesson 33 and it's getting harder and
harder to memorise new words. Some words are pretty close to the German ones, like
Gurke/gurka, Tomate/tomat and so on, so that helps. But for other words it's quite
tough, especially because I have to remember the tone and the lenght of vowels.

As far as oral comprehension is concerned, I'm not spending too much time on that for
the moment for I want to be able to understand written texts first. But when I do
happen to wander around http://www.svtplay.se/ I can understand quite a few words and
guess others by context/similarity with German and English.

For German I've been focusing on shoveling new words into my brain creating flashcards
on Anki with the words from the book "Lernwortschatz Deutsch". The amount of new words
I study is currently 30-ish a day (aiming for 50 once I'll have more time). I do retain
quite a lot of those words, but unfortunately I need to look some others a few times
before I can recognise them into a text.

Pimsleur's working greatly and it's revealing itself to be a great tool. My
pronunciation, especially for German, has improved A LOT, and I'm figuring out new
sounds and tiny details every time (like aspirated consonants and glottal stops and
vowels length).
Swedish is still quite hard to pronounce as far as connected speech is concerned, but I
think I'm getting better. Some sounds are hard (but do-able) to utter for me when
speaking, and some others, like the vowel "i", totally impossible.

1 person has voted this message useful



Sarnek
Diglot
Senior Member
Italy
Joined 2612 days ago

308 posts - 414 votes 
Speaks: Italian*, English
Studies: German, Swedish

 
 Message 8 of 176
30 December 2013 at 12:12pm | IP Logged 
This week has been great for my studies, despite parties and whatnot.

I'm starting to get my own routine and I'm not feeling tired at all.
Swedish: Got to Assimil's lesson 41 and made a good progress. The active wave will
start next week, and I'm looking forward to it. I must say that, while my pronunciation
(and prosody) is getting slightly better, grammar is getting more and more difficult.
I guess it's normal so I'm not worried about it, yet.

Wierd things happen to me whilst sleeping. A couple of days ago I dreamt about the word
överrasking (don't ask... I don't know what's going on in my brain :P) and after a
while (in the same dream) the German word Überraschung popped
out. Once awake, I didn't know what Überraschung meant, so I went and looked it up in
the dictionary and found out it has the same meaning as överrasking. After a while, I
remembered of an Assimil lesson (German) I had done 9 months before in which
there was this word, and it had apparently got buried deep down in my head. Still
pretty amazing, no? How should I interpret this (for the psychiatrists amongst you. Am
I going crazy?!)?

Back to the topic, I haven't touched Pimsleur for a while, and I'm not doing any words
lists for Swedish, but rather focusing on grammar and pronunciation.

For German I'm doing the exact same opposite, that is, just words lists and reviewing
no grammar whatsoever. I guess my vocabulary has about 700 words at the moment, but
obviously it's hard to say. I'll start using the Assimil course
from the beginning again once I reach like 1000 words.

If you have any good websites or apps for Smartphones to suggest, which I can use to
exercise my grammar skills and vocabulary (for both Swedish and German, but for the
latter in particular), please go ahead!

Edited by Sarnek on 30 December 2013 at 12:15pm



1 person has voted this message useful



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