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What Expug is doing in 2015 (TAC n more)

 Language Learning Forum : Language Learning Log Post Reply
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mrwarper
Diglot
Winner TAC 2012
Senior Member
Spain
forum_posts.asp?TID=Registered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3857 days ago

1493 posts - 2500 votes 
Speaks: Spanish*, EnglishC2
Studies: German, Russian, Japanese

 
 Message 73 of 364
10 February 2015 at 2:48am | IP Logged 
Please don't get me wrong, I don't think you think it's a kind of magic ;)

I was trying to point out that the more advanced we get and the subtler those "missing parts", the lazier we become about explicitly finding them out, and I wanted to suggest that making that particular effort is actually one of the most beneficial things we can do instead of letting those little buggers take care of themselves.

The way I see it, the potential benefit is three-fold:

1. It ensures an ongoing source of directed effort, which is progressively important as per the diminishing return of the more advances levels we start knowing less and less what to do. This minigoal mine makes it easier: keep looking for whatever doesn't click just yet when you face new bits of your TL. (Complete bollocks for a newbie, I know, but hopefully not for experienced learners.)

2. Then, it's likely to provide very valuable general information about our own cognitive processes, and with any luck we'll be able to analyze and reuse it for our benefit. I always find something more to learn from introspection.

3. Finally, I think part of this insight might provide us with specific yet language-independent information (or specific in how it's tied to particular language(s)) on how our specific needs evolve as we get a firmer grip on a language, providing us with a personalized road map of sorts for our next languages. Something along the lines 'I did first, that bit worked, that other didn't; then I thought I'd need to <depend less on punctuation> but I realized I needed to <get less distracted by intonation> first, then the next thing I bumped into was <further automate recognition of important but infrequent words> but after that I noticed I got stuck <but all I didn't get was cultural references>'. Just silly examples, of course, but hopefully next time you know what to do, in detail.

I guess I'm not a 'go with the flow' kind of guy anymore, I have a deep feeling that we better be in command of our mental processes at all times to properly choose when to 'let go' :)
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Woodsei
Bilingual Diglot
Winner TAC 2012
Senior Member
United States
justpaste.it/Woodsei
Joined 3428 days ago

614 posts - 782 votes 
Speaks: English*, Arabic (Egyptian)*
Studies: Russian, Japanese, Hungarian

 
 Message 74 of 364
10 February 2015 at 3:08am | IP Logged 
I think you said it better than me, mrwarper. Like I said, I'm not able to explain it
properly :) I think what I meant in the first post was that yes, exposure has helped
me get a feel for the language, but at only the level I was in because I stopped
trying to put in the effort and challenge myself with more advanced material, and as
such, while I was good where I was, I wasn't good at higher levels. I find myself
doing more of what you listed lately, just actively looking for those sticky points
until they click. I didn't do that at first and just let the language come at me, but
as I progressed, I noticed some things were improving while others were lagging, and
I've gotten tired of just letting it "sort itself." I know that with putting in the
effort, this whole experience will definitely replicate itself at a point where I can
call myself fluent. That's why you're right, as we get more advanced, we can't afford
to get lazy.

Hope you didn't mind me unintentionally hijacking your log, Expugnator. The
discussions here are really interesting.

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Expugnator
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Brazil
Joined 3797 days ago

3335 posts - 4349 votes 
Speaks: Portuguese*, Norwegian, French, English, Italian, Papiamento
Studies: Mandarin, Georgian, Russian

 
 Message 75 of 364
10 February 2015 at 8:58pm | IP Logged 
I agree with you at this respect, mrwarper. As much as I think it's important to have a lot of input at the intermediate stage, I'm convinced that if you want to brush up a language by getting rid of the most common mistakes then it's important to do explicit learning, through output practice and through paying attention to the details, by doing things such as sentence analysis, syntax, morphology etc.

And I don't mind the discussion either, Woodsei! Like mrwarper, I ceased to be a 'go with the flow guy'. Actually I had never been so before, but I tried it last year to my despair. It was a year of much effort and little result, which I could have fixed with a more driven approach. This is a topic one can never discuss enough, if only just to keep us reflecting upon our own learning approaches and reinventing ourselves as we advance
in different languages.

--------------

Accomplished Language Textbook: Learn Norwegian

This books ranks high in the list of best language textbooks I've ever used. It is the definite guide for learning Norwegian. The lessons are comprehensive, the texts are very interesting and the dialogues are long enough to sound natural instead of bookish. I just don't recommend it as a first textbook because it would easily overwhelm learners.

Things went better with Newspaper Chinese today. It is really important for me to get used with the syntax of the news in Chinese, and it can serve as a warm-up for my next work with podcasts. I had a little extra work of copying, selecting and pasting the portions of text so I could make my own parallel text, but I think it was worth it, because I could give the second text a better use after reading the first one (the one that has interlinear pinyin and translation).

Once again a good day of reading in Georgian. Unfortunately the sequel to the book I'm reading hasn't been published in Georgian yet (at least not as an ebook), so I can't use the free voucher I received today. I'm in about 20% of the book and I'm sure if I had a simpler way of reading I could be reading more...Wait, I do have it, I can read it at home while opening the Georgian in one tablet and the translation in the other. I should remember this for the extended holidays that are coming.

I've finished the book I was reading in German+French, Les nouveaux maîtres du monde, by Jean Ziegler. Now I'm back at German-English, which I don't like that much as a combination (I don't like reading English that much), but it's a different theme.

My Chinese paraghraph from yesterday got corrected. I thought it would be worse, but on the other hand I saw new characters in the corrections which I had to look up:

Idiom of the day in Italian: aver torto (avoir tort). From the Goethe Verlag's texts, not from Duolingo.

At Duolingo I studied conditional. It is easy to confuse it with the future, because some forms may sound like the future in Portuguese. Some forms seem to be used as polite imperatives, so the confusion is even stronger. The fact the sentences are stand-alone instead of being presented in subordinate clauses as is the most natural doesn't help either. (Actually this is a problem with every language course that tries to teach the conditional or the subjunctive out of a real context first). Anyway. I need to see some comparison charts.

价格的问题

价格在上涨。我不知道这是暂时的还是会持续 很久的。电价小幅上涨,汽油贵了很多。我的 工资还没增加,我希望工资能涨一些。我们必 须节约用电和水。我国经济今年不太好可是我 想这是一个全球性的问题。我认为人家并不关 心世界和邻居的问题。他们只是想多消费,多 污染。我真希望大家开始重视友谊和环境问题 ,而不是只重视金钱。

What I learned from this correction? It is important to pay attention to what is being corrected and translate it back, because people often correct your text with their own idea in mind of what you meant, even when the translation is following along. I combined both corrections I got. The second one was more strict most of the times, but in the most complex periods the guy didn't change what I meant.

The word for capital city in Turkish is başkenti. Am I wrong or Tashkent in Uzbek just means capital city? (I know, Uzbek is still a couple of months ahead in the Turkic Challenge).
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vonPeterhof
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Russian FederationRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3403 days ago

715 posts - 1527 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, EnglishC2, Japanese, German
Studies: Kazakh, Korean, Norwegian, Turkish

 
 Message 76 of 364
10 February 2015 at 9:11pm | IP Logged 
Expugnator wrote:
The word for capital city in Turkish is başkenti. Am I wrong or Tashkent in Uzbek just means capital city?
Nope: baş (Turkish)/bosh (Uzbek) = head, taş/tosh = stone. On the other hand, Kazakhstan's Astana does literally mean "capital (city)" in Kazakh, although that one's a Persian loanword that means "threshold" in the original language.
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Serpent
Octoglot
Senior Member
Russian Federation
serpent-849.livejour
Joined 5228 days ago

9753 posts - 15778 votes 
4 sounds
Speaks: Russian*, English, FinnishC1, Latin, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
Studies: Danish, Romanian, Polish, Belarusian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Slovenian, Catalan, Czech, Galician, Dutch, Swedish

 
 Message 77 of 364
10 February 2015 at 9:18pm | IP Logged 
And the origin of башка in Russian? :o
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vonPeterhof
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Russian FederationRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3403 days ago

715 posts - 1527 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, EnglishC2, Japanese, German
Studies: Kazakh, Korean, Norwegian, Turkish

 
 Message 78 of 364
10 February 2015 at 9:44pm | IP Logged 
Looks like it, since the word is баш in Tatar. Don't you just love these little epiphanies? ;)

Speaking of Central Asian capitals, even though I had known the Persian-derived names of the days of the week in Kazakh since childhood, it was only after I read up a bit about the consonant shifts in various Turkic languages a couple of years ago that I made the connection between дүйсенбі and Душанбе. "Wait, is the capital of Tajikistan really just called 'Monday'?!" :D
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Expugnator
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Brazil
Joined 3797 days ago

3335 posts - 4349 votes 
Speaks: Portuguese*, Norwegian, French, English, Italian, Papiamento
Studies: Mandarin, Georgian, Russian

 
 Message 79 of 364
11 February 2015 at 9:41pm | IP Logged 
I started reviewing the Georgian Newspaper Reader, and this was a wise decision. I am far from mastering the content in those texts, especially the grammar. Actually, I have to pay attention not to overlook portions of the larger texts again. I have to work on these texts really intensively this time, so that I can try reading news more comfortably later. Up to now I'm just throwing news at Google Translation and having a vague idea of what is going on, because my knowledge of grammar still doesn't allow me to interpret all the sentences consistently, especially when there are specific verbal forms that involve irregularities and root supletion.

The software at the online Georgian bookstore I'm reading the book from now is quite slow; today I decided to start it while I was still doing another activity, so as not to miss a lot of time the way I did yesterday.

New book, new challenges. I'm speaking of reading in German. This book has less unknown words because I've already read its 'prequel' (it's non-fiction anyway), but the pages seem to be longer and the subject is more complex and more critical to me. It's not that bad, and the time spent isn't that long either, but I really hope to get used to it and read less full paragraphs in English previously or afterwards.

This month's challenge for Team Sleipnir took me two days, i.e. I started it yesterday but 30 minutes wasn't enough. It was the longest text I ever wrote in one of my TAC languages. I could have written less, for sure, but I think it's time I push my stronger languages to write what I would have written in Portuguese or English. I took no shortcuts or roundabouts, and that's how I should behave for French and Norwegian at least in the writing practice. Well, I know a longer text diminishes the probability of corrections, but my fingers are crossed.

The point is: I'm writing consistently in my target languages. Even when I don't feel like writing in Georgian, I go ahead and do it; same goes for Mandarin. I don't resort to writing always in my stronger language (French). Actually, I'm writing about the same in French as in the other languages. I'm really happy about this and I want to keep doing so, as it was one of my resolutions to 2015. I admit I'm not studying the corrections I'm receiving in depth, drilling, SRSing or anything, but that's already a start. I believe I have to write the same situation several times until I 'master' it, especially when it comes to write some 'islands' that I had only seen in my early textbook stage which is years behind in Mandarin, Georgian, French and Norwegian. I'm not ashamed of making the same mistakes again, I just have to be sure I will pay attention to them the second time and next time I will recognize them as mostly a typo instead of absolute lack of knowledge. I also hope the massive input I'm getting helps me figure out what sounds right, and I noticed this has been indeed the case when I look sentences up in Google Translator or Google itself and manage to recognize what sounds more natural from what I can remember of my exposure.

Watched Kuxnya again. It was a good episode and I am learning a lot of Georgian. I even anticipated a few lines when looking previously to the translation (I post the Russian subtitles at Google Translator and just use the English translation Google does).
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Expugnator
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Brazil
Joined 3797 days ago

3335 posts - 4349 votes 
Speaks: Portuguese*, Norwegian, French, English, Italian, Papiamento
Studies: Mandarin, Georgian, Russian

 
 Message 80 of 364
12 February 2015 at 8:59pm | IP Logged 
Today I noticed more progress in Chinese, even though the textbook Newspaper Chinese isn't that appropriate. Finding the N+5% materials seems hard for Chinese. Even we have too easy textbooks or too hard ones. It is better to work with short podcasts then; Will do so after Carnival, since there are only 10 lessons in Newspaper Chinese and I want to finish it. Anyway, it was especially good with the Singaporean series (in the sense that I could lear much from the dialogues).

I miss doing a more intensive reading for Norwegian again, after having worked on the excellent Learn Norwegian. Hunden fra Baskerville was brain-mass consuming and so I expect to read a less critical book next and stop on the words I find most important to learn, that is, words I recognize but still am unsure about the meaning of.
My February Challenge remains uncorrected.

Today I learned that 'fiore' is masculine in Italian, unlike flor and fleur. I just saw a couple of sentences in Duolingo with 'un fiore'. I don't need to read a list of non-matching genders to memorize by heart. That's of the situations where learning through exposure can really be more efficient.

I finished the first part of Le turc tout de suite, the one that has more sentences and grammar explanations, plus audio. Now each lesson has a thematic word list followed by some exercises and cultural explanations. Will keep working on it, but until March I will surely have finished this book and will have to pick another one, preferably one I don't plan to get back to later as one of my main sources. I want to listen to Turkish a lot before trying more grammar-oriented books such as the old TY, because I want the language to feel natural.

I took a break from Kuxnya today. It was starting to become routine, and I took an early decision that anything I'd work on after Bednaya Nastya during the day wouldn't be part of a schedule. I did the Team Advanced English challenge and there are other challenges left. I plan to work on one a day as my active practice of the day till I'm done with them and resume writing short paragraphs or dialogues. I'm almost in the mood to write French but I will pass. I was about to finish the day without even writing a report, given the sense of repetition I felt today, so I better take it easy at least just today. I chose 10 minutes of Revolution with subtitles in Norwegian, for a change.


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