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Everything posted by rgaz83

  1. That's a new one for me, but it looks interesting. Hopefully, it'll stay interesting once I actually play it. I really hate when these things look interesting, but end up being boring to play.
  2. rgaz83


    I don't know about Dutch, but I know some of the other language courses do this for some of the later lessons. There's one for Spanish and, I think, Italian or German, at least.... Apparently, Dutch may have this as well? http://www.pimsleur.com/Learn-Dutch/Dutch-Phase-1-Units-1-30/9781442319134 The description mentions a reading booklet, at least. It's been a few months, how's your Dutch-learning going?
  3. Subtitles are helpful, but it's not going to be all that great either. If you're watching translated subs, then the translation accuracy is probably not going to be all that good, with a few exceptions. If you're watching regular subs (an English movie with English subtitles), I can tell you that they often leave out a LOT of the context for some scenes. Depending on how busy a scene is, they may have only transcribed what they felt was the "most important" dialogue, so a lot of meaning gets lost. I've seen a few scenes where only one line out of three was transcribed, and even those were missing words. I feel bad for people who can't hear and have to rely on these things, they end up missing out on quite a bit due to laziness or lack of room on the screen for more dialogue.
  4. I've never had a class like this, but I think it would be a great way to learn. I've heard of some classes where you spend the first week or two in English, learning basic Spanish vocabulary, then the teacher switches to full Spanish. It would probably be super confusing at first, but I think it would really help in the long run. The sooner you're using the language as a language and have a reason to use that language, the easier it is for your brain to make sense of all those new, "random" words it's being forced to remember.
  5. I totally agree with this. I was never taught the verb tenses for English either. We barely learned the difference between an adverb and an adjective. Actually, I think Schoolhouse Rock taught me more about grammar than school did. However, even if I have trouble with some of the verb conjugation, I think my main weakness is vocabulary. I need to buckle down and study more, but I get really frustrated when so many words just don't seem to stick, even after repeated study.
  6. This is a great idea! Of course, you'd still have to figure out how to charge your phone, but that could work. Very creative use of a phone. It's not supposed to be entirely realistic! It's a thought exercise/game. Do you know enough to survive or will you get lost just trying to find a restroom? And finding a way home is cheating. As for me, I would probably last somewhere around a week. I know enough to find the basics, but landing a job would be difficult at the level I am now.
  7. Whatever language you're learning right now, imagine that tomorrow you found yourself kidnapped and dropped on the streets of a country that speaks that language. You can't find anyone that speaks English or any other language you might know. You have no dictionary, only what's in your head right now. For whatever reason, you've got about a week's worth of wages of currency from your new country and the clothes off your back. How long do you think you'd last before you either died or got arrested? Could you order in a restaurant? Go grocery shopping? Get a job? An apartment? No buying a bus ticket to another city, that'd be cheating.
  8. The new forum looks very nice and I'll have to keep it in mind for later. But I want to learn Spanish, at least, before I go delving into any Asian languages. Good luck on your endeavor, though!
  9. I'm not particularly fond of most poetry myself, so I don't have any recommendations, exactly. However, I do know that things like poetry and song lyrics translate somewhat badly from one language to another. In order to make sure the poem scans properly in the new language, you often have to sacrifice some of the meaning from the original. The best example I can think of is 99 Luftbalons/99 Red Balloons. The songs sound very similar, but I'm told that the English version sacrificed quite a bit of meaning so that it'd work in English.
  10. I'd like to read some science fiction stories in Spanish, but I'm not even sure where to start. I know Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, etc. for English, but who would be a good Spanish scifi author to look for? Also, I know that some of the English scifi started getting a bit risque in the 70s or so, so I'd rather avoid anything like that in Spanish (if possible).
  11. Duolingo is great no matter if you have Android or iPhone. If you have an iPhone, I have a couple more recommendations. There's "Learn Spanish with Lingo Arcade" and that's pretty good. It's free to try, then you can buy more levels. Up to 27 levels are $0.99, and the rest of the 170+ levels are $4.99. Or you can buy all the levels at once for $4.99. The main issue with the app, however, is that some of the verbs are conjugated a bit oddly, at least at the beginning. For example, it might tell you that "correr" is "running" instead of "to run". But if you can get past that, then it's a fantastic way to build up speed with Spanish recognition. Then there's Mind Snacks presents Spanish. This is a set of cutesy games that are surprisingly difficult to master, and not (in my opinion) boring. You start off with only one game unlocked and have to build up to being "allowed" to play the others. This one is also free to try and comes with one free lesson. If you want all 50 lessons, it's $5. Or you can get ALL the lessons for Portuguese, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, Italian, & Mandarin for $20. I plan on buying the $20 option when I have some spare money to throw at it, I think the app is that useful.
  12. I can highly recommend https://www.duolingo.com/ for (re)learning a language. When I remember to do it, it's very helpful and I learn a lot. The trick is to remember to actually do it daily. With Duolingo, you can start at the very beginning or test out and move onto something more advanced. So you don't have to relearn colors and numbers, for example, and can instead move on to adjectives and pronouns. It's kind of "cutesy", but still very helpful and not at all childish.
  13. I can kind of roll my Rs, with practice. But not very well. I felt better about this, though, after I found out that it's common-ish for someone to not be able to roll their Rs, even if they grow up speaking a language that has them. But it's still frustrating and I hope that, one day, I'll be able to roll my Rs as well as anyone can.
  14. I think I remember being told by an Italian friend that Pinocchio might be too difficult to start out with. I definitely agree with not reading anything too old. I've also been told to avoid several webcomics (at least at first) as they employ slang that isn't exactly valid and would get you some funny looks if you tried using it outside of a webcomic. But as for what to actually read, I'm not really sure, sadly.
  15. rgaz83


    I have an old book with Hawaiian phrases in it around somewhere. ButI'm not sure where the book is and I can't really recommend any sites to learn Hawaiian with. Too bad, since I agree that it's an interesting language and worthy of more study.
  16. I'm an American, but I've read quite a few books written by British authors. As a result, though I don't spell it "centre" or "colour", I'll quite happily use "dreamt" when I think it looks better than dreamed. There's another one that I do as well, that I can't remember what it is, but it drives some people crazy since my writing isn't fully British or fully American. :grin:
  17. From what I understand, Don Quixote is often difficult for adults to understand due to its slightly antiquated words and phrases. I wouldn't suggest it for a child, personally. Maybe when the newphew gets older.
  18. The wrong way to learn Spanish, or any language, is not to study at all. Or to study infrequently. If you do that, you'll never obtain fluency.
  19. When putting in a request to have something for later, whether it's a table at a restaurant, a hotel room, or something else, the act is making a reservation. The present-tense version is 'reserve': "I will reserve that table for 4 for tomorrow." I hear a LOT of people who speak English natively saying "res-er-vate". This is wrong. Perhaps it makes more sense, in a way, but you do not "reservate" anything; you "reserve" it.
  20. I would definitely say it's possible to learn a language without knowing how to read or write it, but as others have said it'll be more difficult at more advanced levels. If you cannot look up a word in a dictionary, how do you know you're using it properly? How can you even learn new words?
  21. To some degree, it's not necessary. You can be highly successful if all you speak is your native tongue. That said, I do believe that knowing two or more languages opens up more POSSIBILITIES to be successful than only speaking one language. It all depends on what you want out of life.
  22. It doesn't really help you retain any more than if you actively listen when you're awake. It is, however, a good idea for getting in "extra" listening time that you might otherwise not get. In that case, it may help you. But it's definitely not the "magical fix" that some people make it out to be.
  23. One thing nobody's mentioned is that "lo siento" is probably not what you're looking for. Nobody really mentions it to beginners, but "lo siento" is, from what I can tell, more along the lines of "I'm so incredibly sorry about X". When somebody dies, you use "lo siento". If it's a casual apology, like bumping into somebody, you use "perdon".
  24. This? http://www.cambridgescp.com/Upage.php?p=clc^top^home I don't have it, but it looks interesting and is fairly reasonably priced. $99 for each unit or $150 for both isn't bad at all.
  25. rgaz83


    I haven't used Pimsleur for Dutch, but I've listened to the Spanish and German ones. They're okay, and I'd definitely recommend them for pronunciation, but I'm not completely convinced that it helps with speaking and grammar.
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