Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
rubberrazors

Language Learning Partners and Resource Exchange

42 posts in this topic

Pretty self explanatory. Learning a new language is a common goal among people all over the world and I know of a few people who are doing just that (and assuming that there are more). I thought this thread would be pretty nice in finding learning partners and also sharing useful resources to help out. I also thought that since we have plenty of members who already know a foreign language (i.e. NOT ENGLISH LOLOLOL) they could offer themselves as a mentor of sort to help those who are interested in their native tongue (or whatever, you multi-lingual smarties).

 

As for me, I've been on and off self-studying Weeaboo, German and French. For now I've dropped French as the only motivation I had to pick it back up is that I apathetically studied it in middle school as I didn't really care for the only other elective (Spanish) and felt the need to continue where I left off.

 

For Japanese I started with self-study (i.e. google > learn japanese), went to a high school where they actually offered the language as a class, and went back to self study after graduation. My favorite of all time learning material is Tae Kim's Japanese Grammar Guide which I find as the no B.S., I'm-totally-going-to-actually-explain-to-you-how-this-works-the-best-I-can-without-telling-you-that-this-is-just-how-it-works essential guide to learning and understanding Japanese grammar. Through this guide, a lot of "rules" actually started making sense and easier to learn for me. You can even buy the book for 15 backaroos (totally worth it). Other good doodads are Genki for a more class-style study and Pimsleur to help with speech in a Rosetta Stone-esque technique and I am totally not saying totally not at all never saying ever that you can find both of those and many other resources for free with a few easy searches. Anyways, despite the many years I've spent studying I'm still an "advanced-beginner" as I don't stick with studying for very long and usually end-up spending most of my time reviewing and refreshing my memory. This is why I'm hoping to find a partner. o:

 

As for German, I've been sticking mostly to Duolingo while looking around for other things, but Duolingo seems to be the best. I don't really have much to say on this as I just picked it up. My reasoning for studying it, as laughable as it is, is because when I was younger my family lived in Germany and my parents always tell me that German was my first language. I remember absolutely nothing but Duolingo is pretty cool in that it's easy to learn and, again, comes about in a sort of Rosetta Stone fashion. It also offers mini-lessons/notes to help you better understand what you were taught along with discussions to boot and more languages that are always being developed by members.

 

Oh, and speaking of Rosetta Stone, in my opinion I feel it is not at all worth it unless you consider it a bottom-tier supplement whether you dished out the cash for it or not. From my own experiences using the program, it's a copy-paste lesson-plan (spanning across all the other languages they offer), doesn't go into cultural aspects at all and more importantly the answers can be incredibly easy based on patterns. And not language-learning patterns, just "I can already tell what the next answer is even though I really don't actually know what the answer is to heart" pattern. Not only that but you can find better, more effective ways to "immerse" yourself into the language (Lang-8, etc.). And to close it off, usually text books offer you more material to go by and advance in than the whatever-hundreds of dollars you'd have to spend buying each Level.

 

And I guess this might be helpful.

 

Name:

Language(s) Known:

Languages Learning (and why, optional):

Materials:

Searching for:

 

 

Name: rubberrazors

Language(s) Known: English (native)
Languages Learning: Japanese (TO UNDERSTAND ALL MY WEABOOS WITHOUT RELYING ON TRANSLATIONS IF THAT WILL EVER HAPPEN)
German (german's pretty cool, yo)
Materials: See above + Anki
Searching for: Partner, more material (German)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a thread for me right? /explodes/ :3

/raises hand/ me me me! I have many resources!

Name: Shelmii/Mishal

Languages know: English, Urdu, Punjabi, Traditional Arabic?, basic Chinese(Mandarin), a few Taiwanese Characters, and Korean(south).

Languages learning: lol you're always learning a language even if you've grown up in it. One I am trying to learn at the time is the Japanese Katakana, Hiragana and Kanji.

And I actually started learning the Chinese and Korean languages because I fantasized about living there and becoming a famous entertainer so I figured they'd be surprised that a girl who lives in the middle of the United States knew this stuff. ... Still kinda working on that. but I really appreciate learning about these and getting a few sentences down because I've made TONS of foreign friends.

Materials: Pimsleur Pimsleur Pimsleur. It's the best for pronunciation, the sentences are hard to forget and now when I watch Korean or Chinese dramas/listen to music, those words it taught me sort of alert me. OH YOU KNOW THAT WORD! This might just work well for me though because a majority of the languages I currently "know" were learned verbally and through listening. I've had little experience with textbooks and note cards/computer ways of learning, but I feel that every resource (making sure it's official) put together really does the trick. If you are lacking on time, pimsleur should be the best option. Teachers on YouTube do well in making videos fun and teaching a bit of vocabulary/alphabets. Listening to the music of the language, reading lyrics, watching it's movies/dramas. My cousin learned how to better pronounce English words from watching American movies when he was young. He barely has an accent. Oh and once you know enough about the language, basics. The best resource is a native pen pal. I'm currently speaking to several Korean natives (through text/online exchange/skype) who have helped me so much! Language is best if you use it. And as for websites. I don't know them off the top of my head, but just ask if you're curious. just don't ever use Google Translate, unless you have a good understanding about the language already. Oh and I found pimsleur online for free... At least for Korean I did. My sister did tell me she found Japanese. Check your library.

Searching for: language buddies. Someone who can explain to me about the Japanese alphabet. Someone who needs my help in language materials? :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get Anki! It's a flashcard system that you can use on your computer or a smartphone. You can make your own flashcards or download premade sets. Reviewing the Kanji (RtK) is usually recommended and I believe they have stuff for Kana as well. I learned Kana in class so it was really just going bit by bit (vowels first, then ka, then sa, etc.) repeatedly writing hiragana and then moving on to katakana (which is obviously easier for being somewhat similar). And, again if you have a smartphone (particularly an android), you can download Obenkyo that let's you watch the stroke orders of Kanji and Kana and write it yourself. :D It also comes with Tae Kim minus the helpful annotations. But all in all, it's really good to just keep writing while remembering to stroke orders. Even with Kanji, you'll notice patterns that make it easier to learn/write including when you're trying to figure out how to write other things that pop up.

 

If you need any help, I can dig through my documents and send you some stuff. :>

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh dude, what a cool thread.

I remember having a choice back in high school: French or Spanish. I lived in San Diego at the time, and only about a twenty minute drive from the border of Mexico, so Spanish was the obvious choice; the demographic was largely supported by Mexicans, and the local job force was known to require bilingual speakers and to this day, I always envision some French-speaking guy trying to communicate with a Mexican at a Taco Shop.

I was taught Spanish by a Japanese-American by the name of Señor Takahashi, who loved to surf and spoke English, Spanish and Japanese fluently; he was an excellent teacher and I always had high grades in his class. But since then, I have not worked at perfecting my second language; at this point, I've mostly lost my ability to speak it. I can still read, write and understand most of it, so that makes me happy, but I'd love to actually be able to communicate with others.

I checked out Anki and it looks really cool--I just might have to give it a try.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh yes my friend was talking about using Duolingo to learn German too!

That said, I'm afraid I don't have or use any resources to learn languages. I know Chinese, a reaaaally tiiiiny bit of French, and a slightly less tiny bit of Japanese, but they were mainly learnt from school and I haven't used any online resources for them. That said, I'd just like to point out that one really learns a lot from music. Japanese songs have taught me a lot of vocabulary, or at least piqued my interest to find out what they mean.

I'm not learning anything at the moment, but I'll be pleased to help out in whichever capacity. I said I'd be Ack's Japanese buddy but I failed her. T.T But yes, if you want to ask about Chinese you can ask me! I'll also try to answer Japanese-related questions (though those may be better off directed at Timey or Wstie).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 I'll also try to answer Japanese-related questions (though those may be better off directed at Timey or Wstie).

They weren't of much use in Tokyo though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They weren't of much use in Tokyo though.

 

Pffff.

 

Also, yes. This is where Rosetta Stone fails in immersion. If you really want to immerse yourself as much as you can (other than just living in the country) it's as easy as diving face first into the language. Music, TV, podcasts, books. It may be hard to have to look everything up but that's how you learn.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am ashamed to admit I forgot a lot of the Japanese I learnt. I was never terribly good at it to begin with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Always wanted to learn a second language and so now at uni I am learning Chinese, with the intent to teach it at the high school level alongside English.

 

The only resource I use is Quizlet. It's a flashcard thing like Anki but it is built for languages only, and in addition to the flashcard thing it can create tests and things for you to practice with. Like Anki, you can make your own sets or find premade ones, and it also supports adding images and sound clips to the cards.

 

I think the best part is how easy it is to make the cards yourself. Because the interface has you choose two languages, one for each side of the cards, but it can automatically fill in either side. So, say you put in "Hello" in the English side, it then brings up a list of translations in the second language, according to what other users have put on the other side of "Hello" on their own cards - so generally the translation options will be correct since it's not a machine translation, but only shows what is in existing sets. And with that, it also automatically does the sound clips for both sides of the card, so it will read out the English and the second language without you having to manually add sound clips or such - and again it's based on existing sets, so it's not a text-to-speech thing but an actual recording of the word in the language.

 

 

 

Anyway having actual classes gives enough practice using sentences and such, so in my own time I just use Quizlet for memorization purposes. Every new word we learn in class, I put into my sets. I keep two sets - one is everything I have memorized to date, and the second is the new words I've yet to memorize. I go through the everything set about once a week or so to ensure I don't forget, and I go through the new words set daily until I have it memorized, at which point it graduates into the everything set.

 

I got that idea from a memorization technique I saw where you use physical cards and divide them into daily, weekly, and monthly piles. If you can remember a card, it graduates into the pile above it. Anytime you forget a card, you demote it into the pile before it. That ensures you don't forget what you have learned, without having to practice every single thing you've learned every single day. You basically just devise your own intervals based on how your own memory is.

 

We learn about 10-15 new words each week and with my method I have 0 trouble memorizing them. Takes me about 3-5 days, so I keep up and can even skip a day or two of practice if I'm busy. I basically just go through the new words set over and over in one sitting, until I am able to remember every word/character, then give it a rest for the day. That is usually only like half an hour. Then the next day I do the same again. And so on until I can remember all the words in the first attempt.

 

And by remember I mean I sit there with pen and paper, look at the English/Pinyin side, then write the Chinese character, and flip the card if I'm not 100% sure I got it right. Quizlet also makes it easy to reverse the set while practicing so the other side shows first. That means after I do a run writing the characters, I then reverse the set and try to write the pinyin (specifically the tone marks) for each character. Then I reverse and go back to the other way, and just alternate until I can get everything on both sides correct. 
 

 

But yeah, it's of course more than a matter of memorizing words, but at least with the words memorized I can focus in-class on how to string the words together and speak and listen and such, without getting stuck not even knowing what a word means or what the character for a word was.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yay!

 

During high school I had three options for a language: Latin, French, and Spanish. I didn't particularly have an interest in any, but if I took a language for a couple of years, I wouldn't have to take an art class. So I did one year of Latin and two years of French. I really regret not paying as much attention in French, because I would really love to learn that language in some regard later down the road.

 

I'm currently learning Japanese (as anybody that has me on Facebook would probably know by now). I'm learning so I can be a better perspective employee for Pokemon... But also because I've always wanted to learn a different language... So I guess this is just kind of a good excuse. I'm finding it's turning me into a total Weeb, as I'm just trying to find things to absorb myself in and listen/read the language as often as possible.

 

My study regime looks something like this:

  • Nihongo Master drills near daily (so sometimes skip weekends)
  • Nihongo Master lesson advancement once every one to two weeks
  • Japanese tutor every Thursday evening (where we learn from the Genki 1 textbook, as well as weekly assigned homework)
  • Textfugu chapter about once a week (or some other textbook that isn't Genki)
  • Conversations on Facebook!

I've been saying such high praise consistently about Nihongo Master, but seriously... If you get yourself into the groove, it has been the GREATEST resource when it comes to reading/writing. I absolutely need my tutor for the speaking, because I'm terrible at that, but NM has amazing tools to help keep you on track with learning. I learned all my kana within a month and a half by using it.

 

If anybody is seriously looking for study buddies for Japanese, I am SO there. I don't know much Kanji (I know about 30~ right now), and I'm still learning grammar structure and stuff... But I can at least work myself around saying coherent sentences, and would love to practice with people. X3 Also, add me on Nihongo Master if you join!

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How is nihongo master? I've always been wary signing up for things like this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, it's free. So really there's nothing to be afraid of. Just sign up and do a few lessons for a couple of days and see if it works for you. I pay for it ($5 a month) because I want to contribute for something that has helped me greatly. The paid subscription is only really necessary after you finish all the lessons and are really getting into Kanji.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

やった!私たちは日本語をべんきょうします!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ã¾ã˜ï¼Ÿï¼

"Maji" is a trendy word I learnt from touring Japanese students! It is also used in Uta no Prince-sama Maji Love 1000%. It's a trendy term that translates into "for realz?"

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

そうですか?あの。。。まじ!ははは。

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The "ha ha ha" looks lol! In Japanese the "lol" emoticon is "w" or "w w w" cuz "warau" means laugh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yeah, you can see all over the internet. wwwww

Edit: which I'm just realizing makes "wowowowow" funnier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So is は still appropriate for laughing sounds, or just the roman "w"?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The roman "wwww" is pretty much the equivalent of 'lol'.

I think they use katakana for onomatopoeia, don't they? So it won't be written in hiragana.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

 

(that is the korean laughing sound)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In online games 'zzzzzzzzzz' has been taken over from the Koreans, cause they used to spam that in Starcraft and shit. But most people took zzzzzzz as 'that was so shit i am snoring' or something. In truth, whenever a korean typed zzz it was the equivalent of 'lol'... which I guess can also be pretty BM, but most of the time it won't be used that way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Who's Online   0 Members, 0 Anonymous, 1 Guest (See full list)

    There are no registered users currently online