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Everything posted by TheStoryteller1

  1. I'll admit right now, I haven't! I am hoping to one day soon read fiction in Serbian, Spanish, French and may be German. How about you guys? What have you read, or hope to?
  2. Well, I can't really afford a tutor right now. I'm changing jobs now, so I may have that option soon. But in the meantime, I don't want to sit and wait until I can afford it. I used to be the same way. I guess life changes us. Both languages I am learning now I can actually apply, but I have been a lot more socially anxious the past year, and the idea to say something that might have grammar mistakes or might be entirely wrong, frustrates me a lot more than it would have before. And therefore it's a lot easier to fall into speaking in English with everyone with whom that is a possibility. I'm
  3. LOL...yeah I used to be like that. That's why getting into university was a blast instead of a problem for me:D. However I have gotten into bigger problem period/issue. It's very complex, and it has many issues coming up all the time, and so sometimes it feels that I have to take time for that over everything else, or I should be using all my time to solve it(which of course doesn't help because it's an issue that needs time anyway). So while I am solving it, sometimes I can not concentrate on studies at all, because it doesn't feel like I can stop thinking about problems even for a moment...
  4. I know what you mean. Dancing ballet is learning me to be more patient with improvements, but still...With kanji I am like that- I don't know enough yet, but if I did- I have no way of knowing if I have learned it completely wrong. What do you mean by cannot grasp exactly? Well, may be it's that those things you learned came naturally to you, but then German didn't. I tend to not have too hard time with languages, but then I took French in university. I missed the first 2 classes, and the class was supposed to be fully in French, no English translation unless absolutely necessary. First few w
  5. I haven't managed to do it lately, but here is what is the best motivator for me: entering a whole new world. There is a stage at which you are learning and learning and piecing things together bit by bit, just for learning the language or another reason. And then you move on to the part you are fluent, and just need occasional additional work. That's the moment. From then on, it's a part of you and it opens you to new things. You can watch movies in that language without subtitles and talk to people from that country without feeling inadequate. You can listen to songs and read a whole bunch
  6. I was always good in learning languages, or at least that's how it went with English and anything else in high school and university. Lately I want to learn 2 languages at least(Serbian and Spanish) and I keep studying sporadically, but I don't make consistent effort. And the more time passes, the more I'm afraid that somehow I can't learn them properly, and that even if I do I may make mistake that I don't have a clue about...with both, I'm still at the stage where it's a new language. It will be a while before I'm at the stage where I am fluent and only add new words and brush up on things a
  7. Just the same as with any other language I suppose. Try to follow the structure of TEOFL exams. What I mean is, leave some time for the 4 basic components- writing, speaking, listening, reading + grammar and vocabulary. Try to listen to spanish movies with subtitles, and later when you have partial understanding- radio etc. Also songs. Youtube videos. You won't have a problem with reading, I'm sure there are a lot of news and magazine webpages in spanish. For writing once you have a grip on some grammar and words, give yourself a topic and write a paragraph about it. Or, if you know anyone wh
  8. Interesting, that one was really easy for me to learn, I think. I remember we had one of those fully sentences for studying English with it though, may be that's why I ended up learning it so easy. It was one of those sentences in which everything sounds the same if you say it fast...something like: Two(2) teas for 222. (someone ordering room service in a hotel room 222) In any case, if you say 222 as two-two-two the whole sentence is very funny:).
  9. Anyone ever made that mistake? For some reason, took me quite a while to differentiate them...and I still mess up sometimes... :shy: Have you done that? How did you learn which is which?
  10. Those are good ideas, thanks! I have music player in the kitchen, and I usually just put CD in or connect it to my mp3...I keep forgetting that I can put the radio on and listen to the language while I am cooking, that may be useful even if I don't understand all. I never buy newspapers, but that is a good point. I do have some books and magazines in the language, which I can use to improve. I agree and disagree at the same time. Sometimes I have weeks when I work 12-14-16 hours a day, and by the time I'm done I'm too tired for anything. But at the same time now I am training a lot, which I
  11. My question is for all those of you who want to know more than just 2 languages(which on this forum I assume are a lot of us). How do you study? Do you learn 1 language to a point of fluency and only then tackle another, or do you study few at a time? And if you are doing the second one, what advice do you have for people trying to do that? I am trying to study 2 languages at the same time now(Spanish and Serbian, so they are as different as it gets) and I am wondering if this isn't slowing my progress. I don't know if I shouldn't give up one until I'm fluent in the other. But at the same time
  12. I don't like the shortcuts like w8, I don't know all of them so it would be hard to read a message fast like that. However I do use shortcuts often, just things like "u" instead of "you." I have a limitation for sms how many characters you can use in one on my phone, and I have prepaid number, so when I need a lot of messages to someone, and don't have the money, this is a good solution.
  13. A little of both for sure. Generally I like learning alone until I'm at least semi-proficient. I learn better that way. However I have found that I only really became fluent in English when I was in international university with a lot of English-speaking students and that was the only way to communicate with them. I am now suddenly surrounded by a lot of Spanish speaking people, so I think that's the perfect chance to learn Spanish well, finally.
  14. I think that happens in anything you start doing that isn't your main thing in life at the time(meaning studies/work/child etc). It's like hitting a wall with the amount of information you can get in yourself, or the amount of training you can do or anything really. You have covered the basics and once you have, improvements start getting slower and harder to get to, while it becomes increasingly harder to find the time for all that. It's natural. And yes, happens to me with all languages I'm studying, all the time. In fact, I took breaks of each of them at times. I used to be very all or noth
  15. We are talking about things you don't HAVE to necessarily learn right away, but you just want to learn them anyway. My method is 5 min a day- if you don't have time for something, 5 min is still better than nothing. I've am one of those people that study a lot of languages at a time. So consequently when work gets busy, I leave some of them and forget about them. I left Japanese for example, about a year ago. I'd studied about half of the first level, and my schedule got busy. Japanese was the language I was learning the most "for the fun of it" and didn't even have with whom to practice, so I
  16. English has better exposure for sure, so for that reason it can be easier to learn. That doesn't make it an easy language but it is certainly easier than some others. For me so far Spanish has been easiest, and I have had many people tell me the same. As far as hard goes, I've been told that my language as well as some similar Balkan languages are hardest to learn because of the structure of grammar. I am Bulgarian and live in Serbia. I've heard that Russian is hard to read. I'm currently learning Serbian. It's similar to my language, but if I want to really be fluent I do have to actively stu
  17. I think that reading aloud requires bigger concentration, so it may take some getting used to, to start paying attention to the content and not reading itself. However, I've read scientific studies that had said that reading aloud helps you memorize things better and if you truly want to remember something you should read it out loud for sure. I think solution to the concentration thing would be to read whatever it is once by yourself and then out loud, then you get the information in every possible way.
  18. At certain point the music channels in my country were mixing things a bit more, so I got to some Indian and Spanish songs etc. But also, after that I went to international university. It's a small university, but we have 60% international students, and from at least 36 different countries by this point. And during that period I worked abroad 2 summers too, and I was at places in States where other students from different countries came to work for the summer. Songs are in a way like pictures to me, they have memories in them. So every time in university, I picked song here and there, from dif
  19. Grammar has always been my weak link, but as I went into university where I had to study in English, things got busy fast and I never got enough time to work more on it. Of course, I improved with the years, but I am pretty sure my grammar needs a lot of work. I have some books on basic grammar, as well as "Elements of Style", but I have no clue where to start. I would like to find a way to figure out exactly where I stand with my grammar, and what to work to improve, instead of just randomly going through all information I have, but I have no clue how to start. How do you guys work on your g
  20. I used to do it way back. I would find new word in book or magazine, find its translation, and write the word on one side of piece of paper and the translation on another side. And then I would go through the pieces of paper to learn all the new words. Now I go to dictionary.com. I have to admit that my learning of new words has definitely decreased. Should do something about that, but I've been trying to learn 2 more languages, and I guess it's been overwhelming.
  21. I actually have songs in more than 15 languages on my mp3(including korean, chinese, indian, romanian, etc.). I love to listen to songs that I like, language is secondary. And then it's even more satisfying to find the translation of a favorite song from whatever language, and add the meaning to the song. It's like a magic trick, that adds another layer to the song. I love that. And that can actually get you started on learning that language as well. That's how I started learning English.
  22. Has any of you seen this sight? I think it's awesome. It shows you how to learn Chinese by connecting each word symbol with simple graphic picture over it, to use your visual memory as well and make it easier to remember words... Go check it out if you haven't, I think it's really helpful. well, for me at least since I'm more of a visual learner. http://chineasy.org/
  23. Our better English teacher did that, as well as involve us in board games and other interactive activities during class. This may be the only English teacher who really got me to study English well. I think you need to find what the group you are teaching can be interested in (more games if they are smaller and so on).
  24. Honestly, I moved to another country months back, and there are still huge moving/visa/etc. expenses, so my budget for languages is about 0, however big priority they are. Thankfully internet is filled with free resources, and I've borrowed some textbooks from friends as well. I also have from before Rosetta Stone, which is a really good thing to have when you can't afford even buying a dictionary (I could technically afford it, but any money I get need to go into a whole list of things the moment I receive them).
  25. Good advice, thank you. Well, I moved to Serbia for my partner. I'm trying to study Spanish and Serbian at this moment. Spanish, because I love it and want to travel to Spain often. Serbian because I live here. But while I was settling here (the first 6 months) that wasn't a good enough motivation. My partner and I get along in English, the friends I do know know English...I work online (I need money and it's faster starting work online right away here instead of waiting months to learn proper fluent Serbian) and so on...BUT now I have been here for a while, and met some people, but not that m
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