The Language-Learning Thread

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Parksey
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Parksey » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:46 am

I went to Germany a few years ago and I used Duolingo before I went. I maybe got 2/3s of the way through and it definitely helped me (I was a tourist there still but trying to use no English).

Listening is still really hard as you've only ever practiced with a limit range of single sentences, but I could read quite a lot of basic tourist stuff and I could ask questions and say basic tourist stuff (ordering, generic manners etc).

If you're girlfriend is French, you're not going to suddenly be discussing the politics of the day or planning beautiful bilingual children but you might be able to send the odd message.

If's probably a very low GCSE grade when you've finished. Some stuff with German was quite knotty grammatically, but because it's still only giving you once sentence at a time, you aren't really testing your reading or listening skills much.

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Rex Kramer
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Rex Kramer » Tue Apr 25, 2017 7:59 am

Noticed that this book is 99p on the Kindle today, might be of interest to some.

French: Short Stories For Beginners - 9 Captivating Short Stories to Learn French & Expand Your Vocabulary While Having Fun

https://read.amazon.co.uk/kp/embed?asin ... .ybNK1MP6T

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Knoyleo
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Knoyleo » Tue Apr 25, 2017 4:20 pm

Rex Kramer wrote:Noticed that this book is 99p on the Kindle today, might be of interest to some.

French: Short Stories For Beginners - 9 Captivating Short Stories to Learn French & Expand Your Vocabulary While Having Fun

https://read.amazon.co.uk/kp/embed?asin ... .ybNK1MP6T

Just grabbed this, thanks for posting.

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Oblomov Boblomov
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Oblomov Boblomov » Tue Apr 25, 2017 8:52 pm

Tafdolphin wrote:
Oblomov Boblomov wrote:Broke my 149 day streak on Duolingo :slol:.

I've completed all subjects, so I'm going to move on to Babbel, which is a lot better anyway.


Have you actually found that it's helped you? Duolingo I mean.

Had a quick look at Babble. Looks good, but I don't want to pay for an online course at the moment as I'm about to start a full time set of classes

It's definitely helped. As Parksey says, it's the listening that remains horribly difficult.

I can read bits and bobs now and often get the gist of a sentence in articles, newspapers etc.

Listening? No bloody chance. I might pick up on one word per sentence, maybe two if I'm lucky.

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Parksey
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Parksey » Wed Apr 26, 2017 4:41 am

I'm always surprised how people - or at least those studying for the JLPT - finding listening the easiest by far. They tend to accrue close to full marks in that section, leaving them less to do in the others. I'm the opposite, in that I do better at vocabulary and grammar and need those points to offset my listening.

I just don't get how if you know a word, it's easier to here it spoken once, with an accent, squished in to a full sentence or conversation and at natural speed, compared to reading it at your leisure and being able to mull it over.

My problem is with the longer listening practices (as at the level I am at it's fairly involving stuff) is that I am terrible for losing focus, zoning out and treating it like TV static. I am so used to passive listening I am really bad at a actively doing it. What we do in English isn't really listening, as we're probably doing three other things too and just picking it up as background noise.

I also have a tendency to translate one sentence but already be knee deep in the next when I am done and end up hopeless lost.

My advice would to probably just keep listening. I practice listening the least and it shows. My home life is still largely in English. My apartment is an English cave. If you listen to stuff, even if it is passively and not really studying, you might get one word or two drop into your brain and the more times that happens, the fewer words you need to actively listen and translate for.

Remember, as a baby we probably spent one year or so just listening (through no choice of our own, as we were literally as clever as a potato). I think when learning a language we do it the other way round, and stick a bit of grammar or vocabulary groundwork in and then get frustrated when we can't understand them in conversation. I know that's what I am like.

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Tafdolphin
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Tafdolphin » Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:56 am

Oblomov Boblomov wrote:
Tafdolphin wrote:
Oblomov Boblomov wrote:Broke my 149 day streak on Duolingo :slol:.

I've completed all subjects, so I'm going to move on to Babbel, which is a lot better anyway.


Have you actually found that it's helped you? Duolingo I mean.

Had a quick look at Babble. Looks good, but I don't want to pay for an online course at the moment as I'm about to start a full time set of classes

It's definitely helped. As Parksey says, it's the listening that remains horribly difficult.

I can read bits and bobs now and often get the gist of a sentence in articles, newspapers etc.

Listening? No bloody chance. I might pick up on one word per sentence, maybe two if I'm lucky.


Is this Japanese you're learning then?

I just signed up to a 10 week course in French with Alliance Francais. They're apparently associated with the French Embassy and their setup was really swish, more like a French centre for the city of Manchester than a school; there's a library, common room, load of classrooms, "iPad bar" etc etc. I had to do an assessment before signing up so they could determine which level to put me in at, and I wasn't the shittest! I'm starting Elementary French 1 (a step above the lowest "Beginner" class) next week. 3 hours a week, every week for 10 weeks.

Merde, mais c'est la vie.

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Oblomov Boblomov
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Oblomov Boblomov » Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:37 pm

Tafdolphin wrote:
Oblomov Boblomov wrote:
Tafdolphin wrote:
Oblomov Boblomov wrote:Broke my 149 day streak on Duolingo :slol:.

I've completed all subjects, so I'm going to move on to Babbel, which is a lot better anyway.


Have you actually found that it's helped you? Duolingo I mean.

Had a quick look at Babble. Looks good, but I don't want to pay for an online course at the moment as I'm about to start a full time set of classes

It's definitely helped. As Parksey says, it's the listening that remains horribly difficult.

I can read bits and bobs now and often get the gist of a sentence in articles, newspapers etc.

Listening? No bloody chance. I might pick up on one word per sentence, maybe two if I'm lucky.


Is this Japanese you're learning then?

I just signed up to a 10 week course in French with Alliance Francais. They're apparently associated with the French Embassy and their setup was really swish, more like a French centre for the city of Manchester than a school; there's a library, common room, load of classrooms, "iPad bar" etc etc. I had to do an assessment before signing up so they could determine which level to put me in at, and I wasn't the shittest! I'm starting Elementary French 1 (a step above the lowest "Beginner" class) next week. 3 hours a week, every week for 10 weeks.

Merde, mais c'est la vie.

Nope, French. I'm just obviously a very slow learner with languages!

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lex-man
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by lex-man » Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:44 pm

Parksey wrote:I'm always surprised how people - or at least those studying for the JLPT - finding listening the easiest by far. They tend to accrue close to full marks in that section, leaving them less to do in the others. I'm the opposite, in that I do better at vocabulary and grammar and need those points to offset my listening.

I just don't get how if you know a word, it's easier to here it spoken once, with an accent, squished in to a full sentence or conversation and at natural speed, compared to reading it at your leisure and being able to mull it over.

My problem is with the longer listening practices (as at the level I am at it's fairly involving stuff) is that I am terrible for losing focus, zoning out and treating it like TV static. I am so used to passive listening I am really bad at a actively doing it. What we do in English isn't really listening, as we're probably doing three other things too and just picking it up as background noise.

I also have a tendency to translate one sentence but already be knee deep in the next when I am done and end up hopeless lost.

My advice would to probably just keep listening. I practice listening the least and it shows. My home life is still largely in English. My apartment is an English cave. If you listen to stuff, even if it is passively and not really studying, you might get one word or two drop into your brain and the more times that happens, the fewer words you need to actively listen and translate for.

Remember, as a baby we probably spent one year or so just listening (through no choice of our own, as we were literally as clever as a potato). I think when learning a language we do it the other way round, and stick a bit of grammar or vocabulary groundwork in and then get frustrated when we can't understand them in conversation. I know that's what I am like.


I'm the same I find the listening section the hardest. Although I practice reading and writing far more than the listening stuff. Although I find it really hard to pick up certain words as they're so short.

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Oblomov Boblomov
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Oblomov Boblomov » Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:12 pm

Tafdolphin wrote:I just signed up to a 10 week course in French with Alliance Francais. They're apparently associated with the French Embassy and their setup was really swish, more like a French centre for the city of Manchester than a school; there's a library, common room, load of classrooms, "iPad bar" etc etc. I had to do an assessment before signing up so they could determine which level to put me in at, and I wasn't the shittest! I'm starting Elementary French 1 (a step above the lowest "Beginner" class) next week. 3 hours a week, every week for 10 weeks.

Merde, mais c'est la vie.

How was it?

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lex-man
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by lex-man » Mon Sep 18, 2017 2:07 pm

Has anyone had any experience using We speke? Apparently you can sign up and chat to people in other languages for free.

Probably going to give it a try later.

https://www.wespeke.com/

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Oblomov Boblomov
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PostRe: The Language-Learning Thread
by Oblomov Boblomov » Mon Sep 18, 2017 2:09 pm

Oblomov Boblomov wrote:
Tafdolphin wrote:I just signed up to a 10 week course in French with Alliance Francais. They're apparently associated with the French Embassy and their setup was really swish, more like a French centre for the city of Manchester than a school; there's a library, common room, load of classrooms, "iPad bar" etc etc. I had to do an assessment before signing up so they could determine which level to put me in at, and I wasn't the shittest! I'm starting Elementary French 1 (a step above the lowest "Beginner" class) next week. 3 hours a week, every week for 10 weeks.

Merde, mais c'est la vie.

How was it?

Come on then, spill the beans!

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