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Everything posted by petesede

  1. I found it funny of the difference in english. In spanish, the word for hug is based off of the word for arm. So basically wrapping arms around them. But in english, if you make a verb from arm, ´ I am arming my son´.. it means to give them a weapon.
  2. That is why the Lone Ranger is so funny, for those who don´t know, his side kick was an indian named Tonto. Many people believe that it was a bit of hidden racism from the writer. The funniest ones for me are the gordo/a and gordito/a.. But basically you can take any part of their appearance, add ´ito´ and it can be used that what, weight, hair color, including skin color which really can be a shock. Being from the hyper-politically correct USA, it still makes me feel uncomfortable when someone says ´mi negrita´. but when they say ´my heaven´ or ´my life´ is sounds much more auth
  3. That really is the very nature of idioms and why we call them idioms, because they have a meaning beyond the literal translation. In this case, the poster above is very accurate, if you say ´ money saved is twice earned´ they know exactly what you mean,
  4. I am the same way, I am only able to isolate a few words enough to learn what they mean, and then I get back home and find out they are mostly slang or local words anyway. But here is a challenge, just to shock yourself. When you are home and the next time you have a conversation with someone in your native language, listen to how much of what you and they are saying that is either slang, or proper nouns. It is very high usually. We do not speak in proper sentences nearly as much as you would expect.
  5. A lot of people just learn better alone, with their own material. You can put yourself in an environment that is comfortable for you, you can take breaks when you feel you need them. In your case, it could also just be that some people are uncomfortable learning in a small classroom. I am like that, I preferred either the huge halls with over 30 students, or studying alone. I had a few college classes where there were only a handful of other students, and the dynamic just made it uncomfortable. I think it mainly comes down to discipline. Many people do not have the discipline to stud
  6. I saw a similar semi-documentary where someone was able to learn a language just from watching the Harry Potter series. He said a big part of it was just the fact that he had the movies basically memorized in english, so every sentence he was able to translate while the movie was still going on. For books and movies, that is probably very important.. if you already are very familiar with the books or movies, it makes translating faster and easier.
  7. Watch movies and TV shows that you already have see in english. That is probably my biggest help right now. I am addicted to Game of Thrones, so will usually watch an episode Sunday Night, and then again on Monday.. so I see it twice in English... then later in the week, i watch it again in spanish. If you already know the plot, and know most of the dialog, you don´t get ´lost´ when you fail to recognize a word. The other, probably more advanced is soap operas and Telenovelas ( in spanish). The actors and actresses generally are trained to have very neutral dialects because it is mea
  8. I read the title and I thought someone was paying people to learn a new language!! Wouldn´t that be cool. There probably is some truth to your statement, but there are also many, and better ( in my opinion) reasons to do it for free. The biggest for me is just flexible scheduling. If I want to have a 4 hour marathon study session in the middle of the night, duolingo is always there, I am not sure a spanish teacher would appreciate me calling them.
  9. Acting Like a Child and Leaving your comfort zone I cannot agree more with these two. Two of the biggest problems adults have when learning a new language is a fear of making mistakes and looking silly. I sometimes criticize my fellow americans for causing this, because we really are the only culture ( that I know of ) that openly mocks people from other countries who misprounounce words and do it in a derogatory manner. I think this makes us Americans more hesitant to try other languages, because we think ´they´ will laugh at us also. Every time I hear a movie or tv show mock orie
  10. With the coming of cheap tablets and smartphones, actual physical flashcards have much less use for me. It is just too easy to use apps that basically provide the same functionality, but without a cost or hassle of making them. It is also easier to build your vocabulary. For me personally, I hated making flashcards and trying to think of what words to include on them. ´Ok, I want 100 with this batch´.... meh.. I just use websites now that do all the auxiliary work.
  11. Yeah, I was going to say the same thing. It sounds like a good way to learn, but really if you are going to devote that amount of time to it, almost any form of learning a language is going to work. That is a really huge amount of time. Just take a book and time yourself writing out one page from a novel, then multiply it by how many pages are in the novel, then add another 50% because you will be writing in a different language and looking up some words. My guess that method would take over 1000 hours of actual work.... where most ´students´ of a language are lucky to put in 300 hours o
  12. It is very hard to learn food from books because so much of it is local. Fish is absolutely insane in central america, basically every country has a different name for every type of fish (aside from salmon and tuna). I can go from Nicaragua to Hondorus and half the food would be the same, but with a different name.
  13. Overall I agree, but you have to pick a sweet spot and not go too young or you risk running into the Dr. Suess problem. Can you imagine trying to learn english using Dr. Suess Books? yeah, stuff like one fish, two fish, red fish blue fish might help, but so many of the books have fake words, which is often the case with books and shows for very young children. I found that books in the 8-12 age area are great for learning, stuff like Judy Blume ( any excuse to read Superfudge again!!)... or the pippi longstalking books. But I really would not go much younger than that.
  14. Probably doesn´t count, but where I live we get Game of Thrones about 6 hours before it is available in the USA or internet. But it is dubbed into spanish, and also subtittlled into spanish. So you don´t hear the actors real voice, but you can read along in spanish because sometimes it is very hard to understand what they are saying. I stopped watching it though because the translations were done so poorly, they took all nuance out of the dialog. Characters like Tyrion have completely different personalities because his sarcasm and satire are not translated, so you think he is just de
  15. I have had two experiences living overseas. The first is living in South Korea for a year. A few weeks before getting there, I bought a book and learned the alphabet and pronunciation of the different letters and how words and syllables were formed. I also learned a few basic words and phrases, but not much. The actual reaction from the people was amazing. I was in the military, and so few soldiers that go over there for a year bother to learn any of the language besides a couple of words. I studied pretty hard and by the end of my year was about to understand a lot. As far as being
  16. The truth is that it will take you about 30 minutes to understand the construct of words ( each ´block´ is actually a syllable), it will take you a day to memorize the letters, and another day to learn the more difficult pronunciations. It took me literally no time at all, less than a week until I could read everything in Korean. What really makes it fun is that often times you will read a sign, and as you pronounce the words, you realize it is just the korean characters spelling an english word..... so you already know how to pronounce it.
  17. But once you really understand the language, you realize how easily the other person can anticipate the meaning of the word you are using. There are a million things when learning a language that you are better off just not worrying about. Sometimes you may say something awkward, but if you worry too much about it, you will slow down how fast you learn the language.. just go with the flow.
  18. I don´t think my problem can be solved. I think the internet is the problem, or at least text messages on cell phones. 30 years ago, languages were much more formal and what you read in books was ´the language´.. but nowadays, especially with anyone under 30, languages are changing drastically and becoming much less formal and structured. Slang is getting incorporated into language much faster than it used to in the past. And for languages like spanish, the actual language is being fragmented very rapidly in latin america. The amount of expressions and idioms that exist in different re
  19. Yeah, I would not try something like spanish and italian at the same time, it would be too easy to confuse words, and memorizing verb endings would be a nightmare ( already difficult in any language). I would do Japanese or Korea at the same time as a romance language since there would be no overlap. I thought learning korean was my favorite because the alphabet just made it so unique, but learning spanish after french was kinda boring..
  20. One thing I found useful and fun is to find your favorite songs on youtube that are subtitled into the language you are trying to learn. Because you already know the real words, it is easy to follow the foreign language. If it is a European language, you are almost assured to find your songs translated into any language.
  21. reading books is great, but after you have a decent sized vocabulary memorized. Books allow you to learn things like conjugating verbs and word order placement. But I do not think books are a great way to learn vocabulary. Nothing other than straight out memorization works for that. With books, you can know all the words, but then use the setting of the story to figure out the little sentence nuances and what they mean.
  22. That is pretty cool, I also am a Unity user, but have used it mainly for a traditional RPG. I was thinking of how easy it would be to create a Unity game to learn languages in a 3d environment, especially since there is so much free art available. Of course I would have to throw in an orc too.
  23. My experience is that you do not see as near as much of a blend in music as you do in the USA. there is either folk music, or there is rap and club music. You do not see more mainstream music like the USA. Or maybe that is just my age showing.
  24. You are already seeing it. Go to any country and you will see that everyone with any amount of money is already trying to learn english. I think the confusion in this thread is that many people think of the question as forcing the language on a person.. when the reality is that most of the well educated people from Russia, China and Japan are already learning english as a way to improve their economic outlook. In many poor countries, learning english is your ticket to a new life. Where I live, a person who can work at an english call center earns way more than an architect, nurse or othe
  25. I use duolingo, and also I just use plain old memorization. Every week I write down 100 words I don´t know in spanish, and then just memorize them throughout the week. I would give my right arm for like a HS or College spanish book, but they just are not available where i am. Having a good vocabulary is one thing, but the grammar theory makes it easier to take what you learn from one verb and transfer it to another verb. The rules of conjugation etc.
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