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megshoe's Achievements


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  1. I find these charts to be really adorable and fun Hope you enjoyed them!
  2. It's easy to fall into the trap of using the same basic words over and over, so here are some more descriptive and precise replacements words. I'll start off with "gehen" (to go or to walk). Bummeln - to stroll, wander Eilen - to hurry, go very fast Flanieren - to saunter, stroll, amble Flitzen - to speed, to whiz Stapfen - to trudge, to plod Schlurfen - to shuffle (with feet), to drag your feel Huschen - to rush, to dart by Schleichen - to crawl, to creep Hope these were useful!
  3. Jeden Tag habe ich viel Stress, weil ich als Au-Pair-Mädchen arbeite, und muss viel putzen und auf die Kinder aufpassen. Am Ende des Tages, rede ich mit meinem Freund, und lese ich ein bisschen vor ich ins Bett gehe. Was ist Ihr Ausgleich gegen Stress?
  4. Thank you for this breakdown! This is debated, but personally I find it extremely useful to have an understanding of the basic or root meaning of a kanji. Of course you'll come across kanji compounds whose meaning is indiscernible from their components, but I think it's important to have a deep understanding of the characters to remember them.
  5. My favorite German word is probably "Glühbirne." It means a lightbulb, but literally says "glow pear." I just find it to be a really adorable and accurate image
  6. There's probably not a student of French who hasn't laughed or scratched their head at "quantre-vingt-dix-neuf." French numbers past 79 can be a pain to read out. However! If you decide to travel to Belgium or Switzerland you won't have this problem. In Switzerland "huitante," is 80 and though they also use huitante in Belgium, "quatre-vingt" is still more common. In both countries, however "nonante" is the standard for 90. I've also heard "octante" in parts of Switzerland and Southern France, but you're safer with huitante. Just thought I'd share this interesting little tidbit
  7. No problem! It's definitely a vital tool to make sure you're writing correct and/or natural sentences. It can be easy to think you understand everything because you can complete the textbook exercises, but posting to lang-8 was definitely a wake-up call for me. I'm improved so much through that site!
  8. It took me a while to figure out the difference between "damit" and "umzu," so I thought I'd make a post here in case anyone else was confused by this. Both words indicate a reason for an action. You'd use them if you wanted to say "I went to the store to buy eggs," or "I spoke slowly so she could understand me." The difference between when to use the two German words is already evident in the examples I just gave you. Umzu is used when the subject of both clauses is the same. So, in the example I gave, the umzu sentence would be " Ich bin zum Supermarkt gegangen, um Eier zu kaufen." Umzu also gets broken up, with the "um" directly after the main clause, and "zu" before the infinitive verb. Obviously "I" isn't used twice in this sentence, but "I" as the buyer of the eggs is implied. Damit is used when the subjects differ. For example: Ich habe langsam gesprochen, damit sie mich verstehen konnte. I am doing the speaking, but "she" is doing the understanding in the second clause, therefore this sentence requires "damit." Also note that damit is not broken up in the same way umzu is, and that the infinitive in damit clauses (here, verstehen) does not come at the end of the sentence, but rather before the main verb (konnte). I hope that was clear and helpful!
  9. Immersion is obviously the quickest and most helpful way to learn. That being said, my flawless English speaking German boyfriend had never been in an English speaking country until he came to visit me in the US, so it's definitely possible to attain functional fluency without traveling. Here are some tips that I think will make your life a lot easier learning Japanese: 1. Take time to learn the onyomi and kunyomi of the kanji, as well as the basic meaning of it. This won't always work out to help you guess the meaning of a kanji, but it often times it will, and it will definitely give you a much fuller and deeper understanding of the characters, which helps with memorization. 2. Use lang-8.com to post your writing samples in Japanese and have it corrected by native speakers. Without a teacher or a Japanese friend, this is your best bet for getting a native speaker to help you, and it's free! Everyone will correct your writing, and lots of Japanese people are willing to be language exchange skype buddies. 3. Download rikai-chan mouseover translator extension for firefox and use it to help you read Japanese online. You'll learn so much faster and retain more vocab the more authentic Japanese you read, and this app will make finding the readings of all those kanji much easier. 4. Watch some Japanese TV on a site like asianrice.tv The more exposure you have to the sound, pace, and rhythm of Japanese, the more your listening skills will increase, and the more precise your pronunciation will become!
  10. The Goethe Institute offers tons of great resources on the website, and one that I find most interesting are German language learning games. It seems they can be played online or with a smartphone. There's two as of right now, one for A2 level and one for B1. They can be a little cheesy, but I find that playing through the game helps create memory links for vocab/grammar. Check it out! http://www.goethe.de/lrn/duw/lad/enindex.htm
  11. I would suggest reading novels, and reading/listening to news reports. I find that novels especially expose you to a different kind of writing and use of language than you'll find in normal conversation. My German boyfriend is totally fluent in English, but has trouble reading adult novels in English because it's a much more advanced, complicated style. I think you could also pick up a lot of unique/advanced vocabulary from news reports. Just read something that would be somewhat challenging to you even in English!
  12. Here are two really useful smart phone apps for practicing/looking up the gender of a noun: 1. Der Die Das It's basically a dictionary, but the only thing it tells you is the gender of the noun. You can click an extra button to show you the translation, but if you want a really simple interface just for finding out the gender, this app is for you. I prefer using it over a normal dictionary like dict.cc when I just need to know the gender really quick. 2. German Nouns This is a quiz app that has a few different options for game play, but essentially just quizzes you on the gender of German nouns. You can create custom lists of vocab, or simply use the pretty extensive ones that come with the app. It also includes really handy rule lists for memorizing gender.
  13. AsianRice (http://www.asianrice.tv/) is my favorite website for streaming Japanese TV shows. It's not live TV, but they have a really huge and great collection of different dramas and live-action shows. There's not a lot of anime on there (I would suggest crunchyroll for that), but it's updated pretty frequently and has many Chinese, Korean, and Thai shows as well.
  14. In Japanese schools (and Japanese language classes) they use grid composition paper rather than western style lined paper. Though this paper can be a pain to write on (think: if you mess up one character the rest of the composition is thrown off), it's fun and authentic to use, and it can help you practice keeping the size of your characters consistent. Haven't we all written beautiful stings of hiragana only to have it thrown off by an abnormally large and awkward kanji? Here is a link to an explanation of how to write on genkoyoushi, with PDFs to print out at the bottom of the page: http://www2.palomar.edu/users/ftachibana/about_genkoyoshi.htm
  15. Lang-8 is an absolutely amazing resource for having your writing corrected. You can just just upload anything you've written, in any length, select the language, and other users on the site will correct it -by-line. It's completely free and the community is really nice. I've never waited more than a couple hours to have something corrected, from small paragraphs to full essays. Highly recommend!
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