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Know a language without learning how to write or read it?


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I'm looking for short-cuts to learning Hebrew. I'm not very much interested in reading 'Hebrew Literature' but would like to learn how to speak the language without having to go through the lengthy processes of learning the alphabet and stuff.

Do you think it's possible for one to learn a language without going through the formalities of having to learn the basics [the alphabet, basic words, etc, etc]?

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I'm looking for short-cuts to learning Hebrew. I'm not very much interested in reading 'Hebrew Literature' but would like to learn how to speak the language without having to go through the lengthy processes of learning the alphabet and stuff.

Do you think it's possible for one to learn a language without going through the formalities of having to learn the basics [the alphabet, basic words, etc, etc]?

Absolutely not.

You have to take the time to learn the nuts and bolts of the language you want speak. So, you do need to know the alphabet as well as how to read some words.

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Boy! Hmmm. . .OK. Since it's obligatory for me to learn Hebrew, I guess I'll have to 'learn it all' [writing, reading and speaking]. But the fact that the written language has no vowels sort of scares me. It means that it'll be a long time before I'm able to either read or write Hebrew correctly.

Anyway, thanks for your response.

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Even if you are a very intuitive learner, I think you have to know the basics before you just dive into the language.

At least this has been my experience. As soon as I know basic Spanish, for instance, I can just dive into it and read books, watch movies, read websites in Spanish, and expand my knowledge of Spanish.

You would have to learn the basics, at least. Especially since it's a very hard language, like Greek or Hebrew.

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Learning a language without learning how to read and write it is going the long way round! It would probably take you longer to learn that way. But just focus on the simple things first, the alphabet, common words, etc. But a language is always easier to learn is you can "see" what you're saying

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Dennis, I had Hebrew a while ago... I learnt to read it, but I have almost forgotten everything. Reading the lanugage is NOT hard at all, believe me, it's actually super easy, specially if you are reading religious texts, because most of them have ''nikkud'', which makes everything so easy to read.

I don't agree with a posted that said you have to learn the alpabeth and how to read it in order to learn hebrew, this person obviously has zero experience with hebrew!  Truth is you can learn to speak hebrew without writing it or reading it, but know how to read it would give you a clear adventage. 

If you want to learn some basic phrases in hebrew then you must check the Pimsleur approach, I know a lot people don't like it and isn't for everyone, but if you are just looking to get to speak this language as soon as possible, then you must give it a try.  Once you learn some basic words and start to recognize the sounds everything will go smoothly! 

After that you can start learning to read it :)  Which is supper easy!  Writing it in the other hand will take a while, but with some patience you will make it. Just focus on learning as much hebrew as you can and ignore all those people that say you can't!

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When we learn another language, all skills must be developed: reading, writing, speaking and listening. We cannot simply skip the other areas for all of them are interconnected with each other. You cannot just speak a language without learning how to write it nor read it first and foremost and vice versa.

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I agree. I think it would be very difficult to learn without learning how to write and read the language. Even just structurally, it's hard to comprehend without reading it. I always find that envisioning the word in my head when someone speaks allows me to comprehend it further if I have any question as to which word they are saying.

It's also important to learn the grammar of a language, and this can really only be done by reading and seeing examples.

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I am not familiar with Hebrew, but I imagine it's a language like the others. If you're living in a country that speaks that language I am sure you will be able to learn how to speak it bypassing the normal teaching way, but this would require that you're living in the country with the actual need of learning it. Studying the language would make it easier for sure.

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I would definitely say it's possible to learn a language without knowing how to read or write it, but as others have said it'll be more difficult at more advanced levels. If you cannot look up a word in a dictionary, how do you know you're using it properly? How can you even learn new words?

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When we learn another language, all skills must be developed: reading, writing, speaking and listening. We cannot simply skip the other areas for all of them are interconnected with each other. You cannot just speak a language without learning how to write it nor read it first and foremost and vice versa.

That's funny, because I (and I know a lot of other people in a similar situation), where my parents can speak to me in Hindi, and I can understand every single word they are saying.  But if you asked my to write it down or read it, it'd be very difficult for me to do.  Even speaking to them , I can say certain phrases, but anything beyond that difficult.  I guess though that learning as a child without really having a choice is much different then choosing to learn as an adult!

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Hebrew is awesome first of all! I would love to learn it as well. And to answer your question, it's possible to learn without going through all the details of the alphabet and other technicalities. You can learn a language just by hearing it all the time and practicing what you hear.

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In order to learn a new language you need to learn all the ins and outs of it.  I believe that if you start with just some common phrases, that the rest will come.  The alphabet is a must just so you will know how to pronounce the letters and sound.  To be successful with a new language you should immerse yourself in it, I would suggest reading some Hebrew literature and trying to interpret it, it may make the language come a lot faster to you.

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I don't see how you can learn a language without being able to read it. Doing so just seems so hard to me, I mean you would be able to understand that language and interpret it, but it is like you are not fully understanding it really.

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