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Everything posted by rodserd

  1. No I don't, however, I do find the study of accents very interesting.
  2. Probably Henry V. The Band of Brothers speech gives me chills when performed properly.
  3. When I was in college it was awful, I could never stay motivated. My biggest problem was that everything came very easy to me (I know, complaining about the wrong thing, right?), which lead me to not being prepared for the really difficult classes I eventually had (since I did not build the correct foundations). In my second BS, though, I am studying a lot of stuff I find interesting and challenging. I think that is key for me, it has to hold my interest, and has to challenge me, or it will not win out against procrastination.
  4. There's a chart somewhere I cannot find that lists languages into four categories with English (and Romance languages) on one side, and Chinese and Japanese (and similar languages) on the other, with others in between. Every step through the chart you took was a degree harder, so in the same category was the easiest, but learning Japanese as an English speaker was considered hard (Mandarin was the hardest I believe).
  5. I don't think English will remain the "universal" language. I think the prevalence of the British empire started it, and America's economic power perpetuated it, but with China and India becoming larger and larger world players economically, I don't think English will remain the dominant language forever.
  6. I think one world language would help, whether that was English or something else. Communication can solve many differences that arise in the world from culture conflicts and misunderstandings.
  7. My grandpa was raised speaking german, but then WW2 happened and he learned and used English. Seventy years later, he can understand German words, but can't speak it anymore.
  8. I find reading a lot of diverse works helps. This exercises different bits of the brain, and keeps things flowing.
  9. I cannot think of any specifics (if I asked my sister or wife they would probably have some examples) but I do this all the time. I overthink things, and unless I know it is a figure of speech or an idiom, I take it literally.
  10. Non-verbal cues can go both ways. Think someone is talking about you? Stare at them until they stop. I'm joking, but, yes, I have had this experience. I just kept walking.
  11. I feel like an idiot when I speak another language. I don't speak very quickly or very well in another language, which is completely the opposite of how I am when I speak English.
  12. I think there's value in understanding the nuances of such languages, as they were part of the developing linguistics of most of the western world, but its not like you're going to stop on the street and have a conversation in Latin.... but if I had a couple friends who were willing to learn it with me, I'd definitely do just that. Have conversations in public places in latin or some other dead language, just to see what other people do.
  13. The brain is extremely lazy. This is why so many optical illusions work. The brain tries to shortcut things, and ends up with interesting results.
  14. I am not sure if this is regional or what, but I haven't heard this idiom in a long time. Maybe it is more popular with older people.
  15. I don't think taking a picture of the test is any different than memorizing it, or whatever. What I would do as a teacher is have 3 or 4 versions of the test, all very similar but slightly different, and give a version to each class. Most people who cheat do so the easiest way possible (memorizing answers) and this would cause them to fail the test. When you compared their answers to the answer sheet for the other version and it matched perfectly, then you could show they were cheating (and if you designed it right, they got a 0 anyway). If students know you have 4 versions of every test, they also know that it will not benefit them to cheat, but to actually learn the material.
  16. I would say no. Language really needs people to learn effectively, and a tutorial or book can't do that.
  17. My grandpa grew up speaking german, and he taught my mom some. She occasionally calls me what translates to "stupid jackass" but she always told me it only meant "dumb mule."
  18. Short sentences reduce the likelihood of having complex grammar structures. For example, this sentence has many samples of complex grammar structures, and it is not something that a non-native speaker, such as a foreign exchange student, could master easily; unlike a short sentence. I also cannot guarantee that the above sentence is grammatically correct (I have questions about the semicolon for sure), but you get the idea. I could have expressed the above as follows: The above sentence contains complex grammar structures. It is not something a non-native speaker could master easily. A foreign exchange student is a good example of someone who would have trouble with that sentence. Short sentences are recommended to avoid these complex grammar structures. That said, the above four sentences are, jointly, longer than the example.
  19. Soft H, as mentioned, makes "an" appropriate, but in conversation I usually say "a hour" which sounds like "uh owerr." My favorite word that demonstrates this: An Harmonica.
  20. Learning latin prefixes is very helpful in learning English. however, you cannot rely on them 100%
  21. This is one topic I find extremely interesting, because shouldn't they all make the same noises? You can definitely see the similarities and it helps to see what sounds are not as common in some languages.
  22. Definitely a tie between Tale of Two Cities and a Christmas Carol
  23. Also, the Latin things like Ad Hoc, Ad Infinitum, Et Cetera.
  24. The English language doesn't make any sense at all, and that is what is so lovely about it.
  25. This is a really interesting question and very hard to answer. To me, there has to be a narrative flow, the characters have to be three dimensional, and the plot has to be sound.
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