The best way to learn a language?

Discussion in 'The Clubhouse Bar' started by QLD, Jan 20, 2010.

  1. QLD

    QLD Guest

    I want to speak learn Spanish. I've got a book and tape but unsure where to progress from knowing how to pronounce the letters, the and a few words..

    Someone told me they went to Italy with no clue about the language and they could speak it within 7 months.. so I presume the best way would be to live in a country where you can pick it up easily.

    How much time every day should I do it and should I fork out money for lessons?

    I think it's an easy language to learn but than the masculine/feminine thing is hard to grasp.
     
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  3. Charles

    Charles Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Dale @ Jan 20 2010, 12:41 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    The best way is to go in a spanish speaking country and take lessons. The masculine/feminine thing is something that will follow you even if you reach a very advanced level. You'll just hace to learn it for every noun, as there is no rule. Also one of the biggest challenge will be accent, as is for every anglosphere person who tend to have a cery strong accent when speaking a foreign language.

    Do you already speak another language ?
     
  4. Laetca

    Laetca Guest

    Never tried it myself, but perhaps you should check livemocha, it's a website that keeps popping up in conversation when talks go of learning (or improving) a language. Not sure what the set up is though.

    Best way to learn is to be surrounded by it, play Spanish music to get a feeling for the rhythm of the language, watch Spanish television programs, I can recommend Los Cariñositos and David el Gnomo, but I doubt they'd be anyone's cup of tea here. Although there is something to be said for watching Kid's TV, the language used is often easier and slower. Last but not least, indulge in Sapnish food. Won't help at all where language is concerned, but it's SO good!
     
  5. gingergenius

    gingergenius Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Dale @ Jan 20 2010, 12:41 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>

    This is true. Before I went to Peru I spoke no Spanish. Over the course of 3 months when I was there, I obviously had to chat with a lot of locals, and by the end my Spanish is decent. I can hold basic conversation about everyday things, and I'm an expert on being crude and swearing. I had a week of lessons while chilling at a desert oasis at the beginning, but besides that everything was picked up from listening.

    With French, the same. I'd had 12 years of French in school before I actually went to stay with a woman in Paris for a week and could properly speak the language - and she spoke no English. After a week of speaking nothing but French, I was almost fluent - just a question of putting everything I'd learnt into the real-life situations that language is used for.

    So,

    1. Lessons are very helpful. Learn the grammar of the language and the vocab will follow.

    2. Immerse yourself in the culture of the language by staying there. After a day or so you'll find yourself thinking in the language, which means you're starting to feel comfortable with it, and alot of the brainwork that goes into speaking a foreign language becomes 2nd nature.

    3. Other languages help massively. Before I went to Peru, I could speak Italian and French quite well. Italian especially was useful - it is a Romance language, like Spanish and French, so the vocab was similar. but the accent and grammar are very similar to Spanish (unlike French). Unfortunately, my Spanish 'ammended' my Italian, so now I try to speak Italian to people and end up talking Spanish. I'm sure if I stayed in Italy again I could rectify this but atm it's not great.

    4. Re-immersion should rekindle your language skills - so don't worry if you feel you don't speak it as well once you've been back in Australia for a month or so. I haven't been to France since 2008, and despite having a close French friend who speaks to me in French in London, I can understand what she says but I really have to think hard to reply. However, if I were in France again, I'd get back into the swing of things and be fine.
     
  6. fcukernaut

    fcukernaut Guest

    I'm having a little of the same dilema, I'll be spending 4 months on an exchange to Sweden next year and haven't a clue of the language. I know French conversationally, and would be fluent with a long stint in Quebec or France and I know some Russian, enough for the most basic of questions on everyday life. But I learned both in a school structured environment, French in grade school and Russian in university, so I'll be going it solo on the Swedish. From what I hear, Rosetta Stone is the best you can get, haven't tried it though
     
  7. Charles

    Charles Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (fcukernaut @ Jan 21 2010, 05:52 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    Where in Sweden are you going ?

    You wont have any problem because:

    1) Swedish is very similar to English/German/Dutch

    2) Everybody speaks (very) good English anyway


    Have fun!
     
  8. DonBilly

    DonBilly Guest

    My experience is that the best way to learn a language is to have a foreign lover. My German was pretty poor until I met a German girl I spent some time with. I made unbielievable progresses... My German is poor again but it will be difficult to explain to my partner that I want to sleep with a German girl to learn the language... She's not THAT open.
     
  9. gingergenius

    gingergenius Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (DonBilly @ Jan 21 2010, 06:53 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    haha I had a thing with a Peruvian girl for a few days, purely based on us both going nuts when we were dancing - conversation was such a minor when she spoke no English and my Spanish was pretty basic! Then a your mum joke got lost in translation, she got very offended and f***ed off.

    If you're in a Spanish-speaking country, call all the chicks senorita or mamita & they love it.
     
  10. patience

    patience Guest

    Hello,
    Go to your local library and rent out a basic course with a CD or DVD and play it over and over again until you feel you have mastered it then progress to intermediate and then professional and if you reach this stage you should be able to talk as if you were Spanish, Greek or whatever language you want to be.
     
  11. Laetca

    Laetca Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (gingergenius @ Jan 21 2010, 09:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    Might come as a shocker, but a common language doesn't unite countries in every single way. Generalisations and stereotypes aren't always right, especially when applied like this.
     
  12. gingergenius

    gingergenius Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Laetca @ Jan 22 2010, 02:10 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    Might come as a shocker, but a common language doesn't unite countries in every single way. Generalisations and stereotypes aren't always right, especially when applied like this.
    [/b][/quote]

    ok well peru then
     
  13. QLD

    QLD Guest

    Charles and DonBilly, how did you learn English? Is it easy as it sounds, a lot of foreigners say it's the easiest to learn.

    If I go to Europe this year I'll definitely go to Spain.
     
  14. DonBilly

    DonBilly Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Dale @ Jan 24 2010, 05:10 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    I learnt English at school. English is rather easy to learn thanks to its grammar and many words roots come from Latin like in French (most of these words actually came from the French spoken then by the upper classes in England). What is the most difficult with English is the pronunciation. German is much more difficult to learn, its grammar is way more difficult than English' but pronunciation is much easier.
     
  15. <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (DonBilly @ Jan 24 2010, 11:12 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    I learnt English at school. English is rather easy to learn thanks to its grammar and many words roots come from Latin like in French (most of these words actually came from the French spoken then by the upper classes in England). What is the most difficult with English is the pronunciation. German is much more difficult to learn, its grammar is way more difficult than English' but pronunciation is much easier.
    [/b][/quote]

    +1, and that is why most french people will hesitate to speak english to foreigners: they usually can but they are ashamed of their accent! :D
     
  16. Charles

    Charles Guest

    Well basically I learned on my own. First when I lived in Sweden for a year with the family, and then watching movies, internet ****, rugby forums etc. Although I have to say I may be skilled at languages. Like some people are good at maths, or drawing, well for me it's languages.

    DonBilly I disagree about German. It's a very logical language with very few exceptions. And you know that there is no "difficult" language. There is just different levels of complexity...
     
  17. gingergenius

    gingergenius Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Charles @ Jan 24 2010, 02:34 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    You wait till you learn Gaelic. Its grammar is about as confusing as its possible to get.
     
  18. fcukernaut

    fcukernaut Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Charles @ Jan 21 2010, 04:10 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    Where in Sweden are you going ?

    You wont have any problem because:

    1) Swedish is very similar to English/German/Dutch

    2) Everybody speaks (very) good English anyway


    Have fun!
    [/b][/quote]

    I'm going to either Malmo or Lund depending on whether I get accepted (which shouldn't be a problem. It's good to hear that it's not too difficult as I'm pretty interested in learning it. As for everyone speaking English, that is good but also bad as it kinda takes away from the experience a bit if i rely on that too much, you know?
     
  19. Charles

    Charles Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (fcukernaut @ Jan 25 2010, 01:24 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    Where in Sweden are you going ?

    You wont have any problem because:

    1) Swedish is very similar to English/German/Dutch

    2) Everybody speaks (very) good English anyway


    Have fun!
    [/b][/quote]

    I'm going to either Malmo or Lund depending on whether I get accepted (which shouldn't be a problem. It's good to hear that it's not too difficult as I'm pretty interested in learning it. As for everyone speaking English, that is good but also bad as it kinda takes away from the experience a bit if i rely on that too much, you know?
    [/b][/quote]


    Ok. Don't forget you ice skates, prepare yourself psychologically for ridiculously expensive alcohol, and have fun !!
     
  20. Laetca

    Laetca Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Charles @ Jan 24 2010, 03:34 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    I beg to differ Charles, I spent three years trying to pass German Grammar 1, without success. What's more, a friend of mine is trying to pass that exam for the 9th time (fourth year) and she is from Switzerland. She managed to pass every single proficiency class there is for German, she passed Grammar 2 but she keeps flunking Grammar 1. She was partly raised in German-speaking parts of Switzerland. German grammar is a system of irregular verbs, rules that have exceptions, exceptions that have exceptions and too many clauses. Not saying it's an impossible or even difficult language, but I wouldn't go as far as calling it logical. I'm glad they're simplifying things in the German Language, though the academic world is vehemently opposed to it.
     
  21. Charles

    Charles Guest

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Laetca @ Jan 25 2010, 07:59 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    I beg to differ Charles, I spent three years trying to pass German Grammar 1, without success. What's more, a friend of mine is trying to pass that exam for the 9th time (fourth year) and she is from Switzerland. She managed to pass every single proficiency class there is for German, she passed Grammar 2 but she keeps flunking Grammar 1. She was partly raised in German-speaking parts of Switzerland. German grammar is a system of irregular verbs, rules that have exceptions, exceptions that have exceptions and too many clauses. Not saying it's an impossible or even difficult language, but I wouldn't go as far as calling it logical. I'm glad they're simplifying things in the German Language, though the academic world is vehemently opposed to it.
    [/b][/quote]

    I don't know, maybe for a Frenchman it's easier, as French is not logical, has tons of exceptions and unexplainable stuff that you have to remember without understanding...I'm not saying your friend is bad or anything but personally I've never had much trouble with German. Russian now, that's something else.
     
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