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Everything posted by Saoirse

  1. I am American and lived in the states for most of my life, but two years ago I married a Canadian and moved to British Columbia. It's nowhere near the French-speaking mecca of Quebec, but it's on the streets enough to pique my interest. There is also the novelty of every product label being in both English and French (being American, I am more used to seeing Spanish on labels). I have been juggling the idea of seriously taking up French since moving, but haven't fully committed yet. I have learned some words and phrases and picked up on things from the aforementioned labels (that immersion aspect is admittedly pretty great). Sometimes I wish I could teleport to Montreal for a few days , to experience complete immersion and see if its something I want to pursue - after learning my first foreign language, I realized seriously committing to a language isn't something I take lightly. The other reason I am curious about French is the music - the music can be so beautiful! For some reason, I especially love rap in French! The flow of the language works so well in it.
  2. A bit late to the party, but I will share my resources. I've been a casual (sometimes serious) learner of Irish for about five years now and it's taken a lot of trial and error to find good websites! Hopefully this list will help someone else. TG4 - Irish language TV. (You can stream many of the shows in North America. Check out the dramas, especially Ros na Rún and Corp + Anam!) Nós Magazine. (Both online and in print - it has a lovely sleek design and modern feel) Raidió Fáilte Podcasts. (Podcast lessons, along with regular interviews and radio programs. Mostly in the Ulster dialect) Pota focal Glossary (This is a dictionary, but so much more. After typing in a word or phrase, hit the tab that says "Beo!" and you can find examples of the word used in Irish language texts across the web. One of my favorite tools!) Talk Irish. (Word a day site - there are several hundred proverbs and words used in sentences, with accompany mp3s for each one). Vicipéid - Irish Wikipedia. (This is awesome! It's not the most comprehensive thing ever, but it's really neat that it even exists, and there is opportunity for growth) I'm sure I have more if anyone is interested, but this should be a good starting point.
  3. There are not that many resources for translating Irish, so I actually use Google translate all the time. It's not without it's faults, but coupled with an Irish/English dictionary and a little previous knowledge works well. The main thing is being able to properly evaluate your level with the language - if you are an extreme beginner, Google translate will probably lead you astray more often than not. If you are an at an intermediate level - you know lots of vocabulary and basic grammar, and just struggle with long walls of text - it's a really great tool to nudge you in the right direction. I can usually tell when a translation is off/wonky and not to trust it. At a certain point in your language learning you should reach a level of intuition in your target language. I would never use it to write a dissertation or translate a tattoo, but to help understand a news article, why not?
  4. I study Irish and one of my favorite things about learning is discovering words that have funny or endearling literal definitions. I'm sure each language has their own set of these, but some of my favorite Irish ones are: jellyfish - smugairle róin ("seal snot") ladybug - bóín dé/ bóín shamhraidh ("god's little cow"/ "little cow of summer") I also really loved learning the spelling/pronunciation system of Irish, it almost felt like cracking a secret code! At first glance the words look impossible to pronounce, but the systems is very regular within itself and soon it makes perfect sense that "aghaidh" is pronounced "eye" Edit: my native tongue is English, but I preferred to share this about my learning language!
  5. I am currently living with my in-laws, and my mother-in-law is Filipino She speaks Tagalog all the time on the phone to her friends and family and while I don't understand much, it is fun to listen to! It is such an energetic language when spoken. (My husband was born and raised in Canada so he is not fluent). I never considered Tagalog before marrying- always assumed if I picked a language from anywhere in Asia it would be Japanese - but it is hard to pass up the opportunity have a fluent language partner in the same house. I have picked up on certain words and phrases and would love to learn more. She encourages me to learn, and often emphasizes how Tagalog is pronounced the way it is spelled (in regards to English phonetics). After learning the whacky spellings and pronunciations of Irish, that sort of easy introduction is very welcome!
  6. When I first started learning Irish (self-taught here) the dialects were so incredibly overwhelming. It almost put me off learning the language. It helps to remember that every language has dialects - English on its own has hundreds. Rather than give up I told myself "It's only three, I can do this." I find Ulster the most beautiful to listen to - it has a light, musical sound to it, as opposed to the thick, sometimes surly sounds of Connacht. Ulster was my initial goal because it was simply the prettiest, but then I realized most of the resources for learning (especially visual/spoken media) are in a Connacht, or at least a mixed/standard variety. TG4 is my favorite resource (especially watching Ros na Rún) and I've unintentionally learned mostly Connacht. When attempting speaking myself, it just comes out that way because it's what I'm most used to hearing. The beauty is I appreciate all the dialects now, and find Connacht just as lovely as Ulster (in a different way). I will say that Munster grammar still trips me up from time to time and is probably the most frustrating for me.
  7. I have been subscribed to TG Lurgan for a few years now and they just keep getting better and better! I love the videos they put together too - I often get chills watching them, seeing all those young voices in unison as they help to preserve their language. I don't listen to much pop music in English but it is so lovely to have the option in Irish - otherwise our option is mainly folk music. I love traditional Irish music but it is high time for more variety in this language. Some of my other favorite covers: Fun. - Some Nights Imagine Dragons - It's Time Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - Can't Hold Us
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