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Everything posted by tulosai

  1. For me it is 1. Time commitment, plain and simple. More hours = greater mastery. 2. Interest. Without it you'll never keep at it. 3. Help. Others assistance in you mastery is invaluable.
  2. I once got a henna tattoo that they told me said 'disobey' in Chinese. Turned out that wasn't it. I don't remember what it said instead (it wasn't particularly embarrassing or memorable) but I sure was glad it was henna and not real ink!
  3. At heart I want to be a good reader and writer. Writing especially is very important in my job, and this motivates me to continue to master my English Language skills.
  4. Moi jJ'habite à Chicago, une grand ville aux États-Unis. Chicago est célèbre pour la Tour Sears. Mon chose préférée à Chicago est Millenuium Parc.
  5. My most embarrassing moment was when I tried to swear in French and no one understood what I meant. What good are swear words if no one can understand them I guess actually it wasn't that embarrassing though since no one did understand. There was also the time in Belgium when no one believed I was a native English speaker for reasons unknown.
  6. If you know NO Spanish and can't take a class, I think the BBC series mentioned above and Rosetta stone are great. If you live in the USA you should also be able to find a 'language exchange' though and find a Spanish speaker who will teach you Spanish in return for you teaching them English. The only con of this is that you do have to put forth effort to teach yourself- you will have a built in conversation partner and to me that is the most useful thing. If you're further along and seeking to maintain skills you already have, read in Spanish, watch movies in Spanish,and find people to talk to in Spanish!
  7. This is very true. When I was living in Germany I was surprised at how easily I did pick up on their figurative expressions (some of which overlap with English ones) and slang. It is so seeped into the language that it's hard to avoid.
  8. If you are just starting I recommend trying to pick up a children's classic you already know and love. If you are fairly far on in Spanish this need not be a really 'easy' book but can be of more intermediate difficulty/for teens. An example of the kind of thing I'm talking about is Harry Potter (which is surprisingly hard to read in a foreign language in my opinion).
  9. Et encore, j'ai corrigé quelques erreurs aussi. N'oubliez pas les accents! Je suis très content de lire les messages en français.
  10. Merci beaucoup! Je veux améliorer mon français. Comment avez-vous appris à parler français?
  11. What foreign languages have you learned well enough that you are truly conversational in them and how long did that take you? At one time I was conversational in German. That took a little over a year (including 3 months in Germany). I no longer am, unfortunately. I am still okay with basic conversational French but I couldn't call myself 'truly' conversational anymore in that language either. It took me much longer than German- probably about 4-6 years including a whole year living in France.
  12. Guten tag! Ich heiße Kate. Ich bin glücklich, dieses Forum zu haben.
  13. Salut! Je m'appelle Kate. J'habite en Maryland. Aujourd'hui, je mange une orange et je travaille.Je n'aime pas travaille a Dimanche.
  14. The English language is like London: proudly barbaric yet deeply civilised, too, common yet royal, vulgar yet processional, sacred yet profane. Each sentence we produce, whether we know it or not, is a mongrel mouthful of Chaucerian, Shakespearean, Miltonic, Johnsonian, Dickensian and American. Military, naval, legal, corporate, criminal, jazz, rap and ghetto discourses are mingled at every turn. The French language, like Paris, has attempted, through its Academy, to retain its purity, to fight the advancing tides of Franglais and international prefabrication. English, by comparison, is a shameless whore.” ― Stephen Fry Love the other quotes you guys have mentioned too!
  15. I didn't. That was okay for me, but to be honest, I really wish I had a French pen pal NOW. It would be really cool to be able to write to someone in French
  16. That's really interesting but it wasn't long for me before I messed up- I think I got two right before my first miss. Thanks for the interesting link!
  17. In today's day and age, do you think owning a good foreign language dictionary is useful? I still keep a French one but am starting to think that, with Google translate, this may be an outdated notion.
  18. This is pretty much my feeling too. For short sentences with basic meanings it is fine, and for individual words it is great. If something is in a totally foreign language to you and you have no idea and just want the 'gist' it is also fine. But for anything else, it's not great.
  19. I think it depends on what other languages you speak and how quickly you pick up on languages in general. To me it sounds kind of daunting to try to keep up with someone who's taking a structured class when you're not, but if you pt your mind to it you probably can do it. Have you thought of Rosetta Stone? At the end of the day how fast you can learn also depends how much time you can put into this.
  20. I am a native speaker and have studied it. I do not think it has helped me the slightest in my understanding of the English language, but I do like the works in their own right for other reasons. I think the language is hopelessly confusing though, and I say that as a native speaker- I can't imagine reading it in English as a non-native speaker.
  21. Someone else touched on this above, but another reason to start as soon as possible is that after a certain number of months, kids lose the ability to say/hear certain sounds. This would not be much of an issue with the languages you mention but the reason Americans and Chinese people have so much trouble pronouncing the other's language is actually to do with a lack of exposure to the sounds. As for how to teach your child, if you are fluent in the other languages, just speak them to the child a large percentage of the time. If you are not, and are financially able, hire someone who is to fill this role.
  22. I'm not from India but my understanding is no. I have a close friend from the North who says the languages in the south are indecipherable to her. Hopefully someone actually from the country can elaborate.
  23. Did any of you have a foreign language teacher that inspired your love either for a specific language or for languages in general? I had a high school French teacher who had us watch a French Opera as part of a French language course. I think that's when I really fell in love with French. Has anyone had an experience like this?
  24. You beat me to it, that was my absolute favorite subplot in that movie!
  25. I LOVE to watch French movies as a way to improve my French language skills. What are some of your favorites? I love La fille sur le pont a great deal. I am NOT a fan of Amelie. I love the rouge, bleu, blanc series. What are some of your favorites?
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