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Polish: another attempt

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BelgoHead
Senior Member
Belgium
Joined 6172 days ago

120 posts - 119 votes 
Studies: French, English*
Studies: Esperanto

 
 Message 57 of 154
24 February 2008 at 11:13pm | IP Logged 
Your progress absoloutely astounds me. I find it amazing you've kept up with polish so well and seem to making good progress at that!!! If anyone is likely to master Polish its you man.

Just a note on the radio thing. I find that on Radio France they play more English songs then French ones at times similar to what you noticed with Polish Radio.

Its interesting to hear that this phonomenom is not only confined to French Radio.

Edited by BelgoHead on 24 February 2008 at 11:16pm

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Volte
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
Joined 6308 days ago

4474 posts - 6726 votes 
Speaks: English*, Esperanto, German, Italian
Studies: French, Finnish, Mandarin, Japanese

 
 Message 58 of 154
25 February 2008 at 5:23am | IP Logged 
BelgoHead wrote:
Your progress absoloutely astounds me. I find it amazing you've kept up with polish so well and seem to making good progress at that!!! If anyone is likely to master Polish its you man.


I still wish it were faster - but I have a limited amount of concentrated time and mental energy, and I can't L-R when I know I'm about to be interrupted in 5 minutes.

I'm definitely making progress, but it's still limited - in some parts of "The Master and Margarita", like chapter 16, which I did early this morning, there's still a lot I can't really understand without referencing the English, and I still miss some details even when I cross-reference the languages (albeit at L-R speed, not in a focused, detailed way). I strongly suspect that it corresponds to the amount of energy/attention I put in the first time through, but I don't have detailed enough logs or recollections to be positive.

The most aggravating thing is that I can barely make heads or tails of songs at all; I'm starting to wonder if I'll need to read lyrics at the same time as listening to get the hang of them. That helped a lot in Dutch. Still, I'll let that wait until I can -consistently- natural-listen, rather than only as a fluke (simple, short news snippets that use a lot of 'international' words and aren't particularly complicated in content, diction, or grammar barely count!).

On the other hand, where I am is probably more or less in line with what atama-ga-ii's posts suggest - at least 40-60 hours, possibly 80, with at least 20-30 hours of new texts, if not 40 (maybe 10 for an exceptional learner with a really close language), doing L-R on each text about 3 times. At least, that's my understanding.

I'm almost definitely paying a fairly high penalty for not doing it in long, focused sessions. It's -amazing- how foreign Polish looks to me when I start a session, especially when tired; 10 minutes later, things are a lot clearer, and it starts to 'flow' again (albeit still too much like maple syrup in winter...).

Still, given that I'm still at under 30 hours for this trial (time spent listening to music doesn't count, as it's almost never -comprehensible- input yet, sadly), and rather more spaced out/less intense than ideal, it's not going too badly.

BelgoHead wrote:

Just a note on the radio thing. I find that on Radio France they play more English songs then French ones at times similar to what you noticed with Polish Radio.

Its interesting to hear that this phonomenom is not only confined to French Radio.


It seems to happen with every station that isn't 'language-oriented' in the sense of either having a 'only language X' policy, or more rarely, having programs at set times in various languages. By station and language, the frequency varies (ie, I've been unable to find a Dutch station that doesn't play English songs).

Esperanto stations tend to be good about not playing English. Some Japanese ones also are. Most other languages I've dabbled in definitely make such stations harder to find (even '100% Dutch' stations aren't, which is a bit exceptional).

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Volte
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
Joined 6308 days ago

4474 posts - 6726 votes 
Speaks: English*, Esperanto, German, Italian
Studies: French, Finnish, Mandarin, Japanese

 
 Message 59 of 154
25 February 2008 at 6:42pm | IP Logged 
Day 16:
Barely over a half hour of L-R, in the very early morning; after that, my day was so busy that I didn't get home until 1am the next day (about half an hour ago). I did chapter 16, which was tough (it's not a chapter I find easy to get into, and it's full of military terms), and made all the tougher by the fact I was quite tired.

Beyond that, I listened to Polish music. I can pretty consistently pick out 'tylko'; most other words are more variable, especially the first few times I hear a singer. If I can understand some words from the title, I can usually recognize them in a song as well, but that's about the limit still.

On the good side, this evening's activities allowed me to make (very) minor Polish/Serbian/English comparisons, and cleared up a bit about word order for a few modifiers too.

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fredomirek
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Poland
Joined 6775 days ago

265 posts - 264 votes 
Speaks: Polish*, EnglishC1, Italian, Spanish
Studies: Portuguese, Japanese

 
 Message 60 of 154
26 February 2008 at 11:06am | IP Logged 
As for a good page with several radio stations, I might recommend www.polskastacja.pl . Most of them play mixed songs, not only Polish, but I believe "Polskie Niezapomniane Przeboje" plays only Polish songs (as the name says).

I have a question regarding your Polish study. When, do you think, are you going to start devoting some of your study time to 'scriptorium' method in Polish? Are you going to wait until 'natural-listening' has been achieved? I'm using L-R with Portuguese now, and although I understand passively a lot, it's tempting to use the scriptorium method as well.
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Volte
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
Joined 6308 days ago

4474 posts - 6726 votes 
Speaks: English*, Esperanto, German, Italian
Studies: French, Finnish, Mandarin, Japanese

 
 Message 61 of 154
26 February 2008 at 12:46pm | IP Logged 
fredomirek wrote:
As for a good page with several radio stations, I might recommend www.polskastacja.pl . Most of them play mixed songs, not only Polish, but I believe "Polskie Niezapomniane Przeboje" plays only Polish songs (as the name says).

I have a question regarding your Polish study. When, do you think, are you going to start devoting some of your study time to 'scriptorium' method in Polish? Are you going to wait until 'natural-listening' has been achieved? I'm using L-R with Portuguese now, and although I understand passively a lot, it's tempting to use the scriptorium method as well.


Thanks for the radio station suggestion; I'll check it out!

I'm going to wait until I reach natural listening to even consider using the scriptorium technique for Polish. Most likely, I won't use it (immediately) even then; I'll start with atama-ga-ii's "write out the sentences you want to" technique when I'm ready to start writing (which, happily enough, matches some of my preconceptions on how to best learn).

There are a number of techniques I intend to try out, or have tried but want to try for longer periods of time and/or on a more regular basis:
- reading daily in the target language (this helped my Italian a fair amount, especially in terms of structure/vocabulary)
- scriptorium (I've only used it a little, but found it -extremely- good for illustrating where my mental model of Italian was wrong). Specifically, I look at the text, and then write things out, without looking at the text as I write - I may go up to a few words without looking at the text. For areas that I'm systematically making mistakes in, I manage to -introduce- those mistakes - and then see that I'm making them and correct myself. It's a very fast turnaround cycle, unlike having someone else correct me.

And, finally, a relatively obvious variant on L-R that I haven't seen described:
I'd like to try putting chunks of the audio I'm L-R'ing on my mp3 player, and listening to those in the background, similar to how AJATT describes using chunks of movie soundtracks - specifically, I'd do this -instead- of listening to music. I'd expect roughly the same benefits. I'm intentionally -avoiding- this for this experiment, so as not to diverge even farther from the method as given (as no one else has written detailed public daily logs about their use of L-R, as far as I know, and because I want to have a personal baseline to compare against).

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fredomirek
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Poland
Joined 6775 days ago

265 posts - 264 votes 
Speaks: Polish*, EnglishC1, Italian, Spanish
Studies: Portuguese, Japanese

 
 Message 62 of 154
26 February 2008 at 2:33pm | IP Logged 
Volte wrote:
I'll start with atama-ga-ii's "write out the sentences you want to" technique when I'm ready to start writing


Could you say something more about it? Either I have not read about it, or I simply don't remember.

Thanks
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Volte
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
Joined 6308 days ago

4474 posts - 6726 votes 
Speaks: English*, Esperanto, German, Italian
Studies: French, Finnish, Mandarin, Japanese

 
 Message 63 of 154
26 February 2008 at 2:57pm | IP Logged 
fredomirek wrote:
Volte wrote:
I'll start with atama-ga-ii's "write out the sentences you want to" technique when I'm ready to start writing


Could you say something more about it? Either I have not read about it, or I simply don't remember.

Thanks


I'll go by memory, because it's the kind of thing that can be a huge pain to search for. Basically, in the initial L-R post, atama-ga-ii mentioned a writing step. Several people expressed incredulity at the idea of writing out a whole book. Atama-ga-ii then clarified that that's not what s/he meant, and at some point (I'm not sure if it was on the forum or in an email) basically said that s/he writes out the sentences that s/he particularly likes.

This strikes me as a sound tactic, for several reasons. One is that some phrases just do seem particularly interesting at any given time - I found that most strongly with Dutch, for some reason. Beyond that, it allows one to focus on sentences that are currently at the 'right' level; I see little point in getting a cramped hand writing out things which are far too easy or difficult.

One of my better teachers in high school occasionally mentioned how to study well, illustrating it with examples. For instance, when his daughter (an elementary school student at the time) had to prepare for a test on the times tables, he told her not to study the ones she already knew, but to focus on the 5 or so that she didn't. She followed the advice, and consequently solidly knew them all. If she'd tried to focus on all of them, she probably wouldn't have learned all of the ones that were giving her trouble, and may have gotten confused on some she already knew from sheer overload.

I think a similar principle may apply with active use of languages. I could be wrong.

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Volte
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
Joined 6308 days ago

4474 posts - 6726 votes 
Speaks: English*, Esperanto, German, Italian
Studies: French, Finnish, Mandarin, Japanese

 
 Message 64 of 154
27 February 2008 at 5:53am | IP Logged 
Day 17: 1 hour L-R, a few hours listening to music.

I L-R'd chapter 17 and part of chapter 18; they were much easier than chapter 16. Sometimes it feels like I've picked up a fairly limited amount, but a few things are encouraging, if strange.

For instance, while L-R'ing, I see a few sentences/phrases per chapter that I can't make sense of and get a feel for how they're put together, because I don't recognize at least 2 or 3 of the words; this is so unusual at this point that it jars me. With reading actual Polish, for instance on wikipedia, the sensation is even stranger - I can make sense of random articles, but I'd be at an utter loss to give a word-for-word translation for most of the words. That's not a sensation I'm used to; it's very odd.

In general, Polish seems 'half familiar' at this point. There are a reasonable number of words I'd say that I -know-, and even could use actively if I dispensed with grammatical niceties, but they're a distinct minority. On the other hand, I seem to 'recognize' most words in "The Master and Margarita" at this point: not well enough to define them in isolation, but more than well enough to figure out which word is which in a phrase when I have a translation. I learned the word 'bone' (kość) well enough to do this in the last few days, for instance - I didn't know which word was which for sure when I saw the equivalent phrase to 'marrow bone', but it became clear when I saw the word 'bone' again a few chapters later. That particular example had my conscious attention more than most, so I can also actively use the word. Googling because I can't easily type accented characters, I came across the phrase "psia kość", and I knew it meant "dog bone" as clearly as if were English, with no doubt whatsoever. I find it mildly amusing that I can't think of how to say "dog bone" in Italian off the top of my head, although I'd be able to express it through circumlocutions.

My Polish vocabulary is a bit strange. I know words like 'immortality', but not, for instance, 'computer' (though I'd guess it's likely to be a cognate), or any number of other common words.

I've also started consistently picking more words, such as mnie, out of songs.



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