Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.


View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
1139 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 462
Inactive user


  Reply # 1522677 30-Mar-2016 10:22
Send private message

Fly First Class with Emirates to the UK


806 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 166


  Reply # 1522695 30-Mar-2016 11:01
Send private message

jmh:

Speak a foreign language.  I did French and German at school, studied French online and did another course.  Went to France several times, and I can't get much further past than asking for a coffee.  The rest of family picked up easily, including my little nephews.  I have recently read that around 10% of the population struggle to learn a second language.


I'm educated to Masters degree level, so not stupid and make my living writing, so you would think I should be able to pick it.  No doubt if I lived in France I'd get it eventually, but I just don't seem to be able to remember the words and the order to put them in.  My dad, who has dementia, can still manage to speak French, although I see them cringe when he mangles the pronunciation.  I have French family, so plenty of opportunity to practice.


 



Michel Thomas helped me learn Spanish. I listened to a 2 CD set of his just once and picked up hundred of words and some phrases. That's because his methodology is so effective. He also has French CDs, he is a very good teacher, no bookwork or rote memorising required. http://www.michelthomas.com/ His CDs are in the libraries.

Michel was a kid during World War II and in order to survive had to flee several countries. In each new country, he had to learn its language quickly. As a consequence, he became quite the polyglot and an excellent learner and teacher of foreign languages. I suspect the grief you've experienced learning French has come from the teaching methodology you've been exposed to rather than your ability to learn French. After all, if you were born and raised in France you'd be speaking French fluently now.

I learned Spanish and Maori as an adult and these are the things that helped me the most.
1. Converse with native speakers (as opposed to just reading books)
2. Speak with yourself and non-native speakers, repeating phrases and sentences over and over again until they feel comfortable and natural in your brain.
4. Read aloud, this gets your tongue and brain practised in the new sounds, and your subconscious mind will learn the rules of grammar and sentence construction just through repeated exposure. Just like you did as a kid.
5. Your brain links new things to things it already knows, So focus on learning complete sentences. Learn individual words within the context of a complete sentence. i.e. to learn table, memorise "La nourriture est sur la table" (The food is on the table), instead of la table by itself. You will automatically learn that table is feminine, your brain will link the new word, table, to words you already know, your subconscious mind will pick up the sentence construction, adverbs, adjectives, plurals, verb conjugations etc. Next, you can modify the sentence slightly e.g. the drinks are on the table. the cat is under the table, the cat is sleeping under the table, the cat slept under the table etc. Michel Thomas does a lot of this.
6. Learn the words and the sentences on the day they'll be used. No need to get ahead of yourself and learn words that you don't need to use right now.
7. Can you learn a new word in English and use it correctly? You've done this thousands of times already. So it's the same with learning a new word in another language. Your brain already knows how to do this. Trust you mind to figure things out.
8. Speak without fear, do not worry about mistakes, your subconscious mind will hear native speakers and self-correct you. I've heard that when we are learning a language our ability to understand a language is about 5 months ahead of our ability to speak the language. Little kids are the same.
9. Have fun with the language. Cook using recipes written in French, read kids books, read the same topics you read in English.

That said the best way to learn a language is to live in a country that speaks the language.


 
 
 
 


12155 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 3965

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1522696 30-Mar-2016 11:05
Send private message

DaveB:

 

Fly First Class with Emirates to the UK

 

 

 

 

I'll second that one!

 

A friend of mine and I met up in SE Asia a few years ago. He's pretty well healed and works in the film industry. He flew Business from LHR on Emirates.

 

They collected him from home in a complimentary limo, drove him to their special car park area, escorted him through formalities in a speedy private channel and ensconced him in the lounge that has direct access to the upper deck of the 380! He said the hardest part was deciding what time slots to book for his on-board showers...!

 

I'd spent a hideously uncomfortable 14 hours in cattle, wondering if I would ever sit down without screaming in agony again.

 

B*****d!






12155 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 3965

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1522702 30-Mar-2016 11:18
Send private message

Kiwifruta:
jmh:

 

Speak a foreign language.  I did French and German at school, studied French online and did another course.  Went to France several times, and I can't get much further past than asking for a coffee.  The rest of family picked up easily, including my little nephews.  I have recently read that around 10% of the population struggle to learn a second language.

 

 

 

I'm educated to Masters degree level, so not stupid and make my living writing, so you would think I should be able to pick it.  No doubt if I lived in France I'd get it eventually, but I just don't seem to be able to remember the words and the order to put them in.  My dad, who has dementia, can still manage to speak French, although I see them cringe when he mangles the pronunciation.  I have French family, so plenty of opportunity to practice.

 

 

 

 

 



Michel Thomas helped me learn Spanish. I listened to a 2 CD set of his just once and picked up hundred of words and some phrases. That's because his methodology is so effective. He also has French CDs, he is a very good teacher, no bookwork or rote memorising required. http://www.michelthomas.com/ His CDs are in the libraries.

Michel was a kid during World War II and in order to survive had to flee several countries. In each new country, he had to learn its language quickly. As a consequence, he became quite the polyglot and an excellent learner and teacher of foreign languages. I suspect the grief you've experienced learning French has come from the teaching methodology you've been exposed to rather than your ability to learn French. After all, if you were born and raised in France you'd be speaking French fluently now.

I learned Spanish and Maori as an adult and these are the things that helped me the most.
1. Converse with native speakers (as opposed to just reading books)
2. Speak with yourself and non-native speakers, repeating phrases and sentences over and over again until they feel comfortable and natural in your brain.
4. Read aloud, this gets your tongue and brain practised in the new sounds, and your subconscious mind will learn the rules of grammar and sentence construction just through repeated exposure. Just like you did as a kid.
5. Your brain links new things to things it already knows, So focus on learning complete sentences. Learn individual words within the context of a complete sentence. i.e. to learn table, memorise "La nourriture est sur la table" (The food is on the table), instead of la table by itself. You will automatically learn that table is feminine, your brain will link the new word, table, to words you already know, your subconscious mind will pick up the sentence construction, adverbs, adjectives, plurals, verb conjugations etc. Next, you can modify the sentence slightly e.g. the drinks are on the table. the cat is under the table, the cat is sleeping under the table, the cat slept under the table etc. Michel Thomas does a lot of this.
6. Learn the words and the sentences on the day they'll be used. No need to get ahead of yourself and learn words that you don't need to use right now.
7. Can you learn a new word in English and use it correctly? You've done this thousands of times already. So it's the same with learning a new word in another language. Your brain already knows how to do this. Trust you mind to figure things out.
8. Speak without fear, do not worry about mistakes, your subconscious mind will hear native speakers and self-correct you. I've heard that when we are learning a language our ability to understand a language is about 5 months ahead of our ability to speak the language. Little kids are the same.
9. Have fun with the language. Cook using recipes written in French, read kids books, read the same topics you read in English.

That said the best way to learn a language is to live in a country that speaks the language.

 

 

 

I'll agree that the best way is to spend time amongst native speakers.

 

I studied French from age 8 to 16 and of course, growing up in the UK France is closer than the South Island is to the North Island (45 minutes on the ferry for $100!) so I went many many times. I was fortunate enough to have a native Frenchman as an French teacher (never understood why more English schools do not do that - and French schools have native English speakers to teach French kids English) and that helped a lot.

 

However, I rarely get to practice now and as a result my spoken French is less competent than it used to be. I was in France for a few weeks a while back and it does come back. If French people ask me if I can speak French, my usual reply is to tell them "Yes, like a child if you speak slowly!"

 

As a schoolboy I would have known all the correct tenses and grammar for written French too but that has long since been replaced by more useful information in my internal HDD I fear! I can read it quite well - well enough at least to read the newspaper or a book and get 85% of the story (some more esoteric vocab means resorting to Google for assistance!)

 

I'm going to check those CD's out - maybe I will get some practice!






806 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 166


  Reply # 1522707 30-Mar-2016 11:39
Send private message

Geektastic:

Kiwifruta:
jmh:


Speak a foreign language.  I did French and German at school, studied French online and did another course.  Went to France several times, and I can't get much further past than asking for a coffee.  The rest of family picked up easily, including my little nephews.  I have recently read that around 10% of the population struggle to learn a second language.


 


I'm educated to Masters degree level, so not stupid and make my living writing, so you would think I should be able to pick it.  No doubt if I lived in France I'd get it eventually, but I just don't seem to be able to remember the words and the order to put them in.  My dad, who has dementia, can still manage to speak French, although I see them cringe when he mangles the pronunciation.  I have French family, so plenty of opportunity to practice.


 


 




Michel Thomas helped me learn Spanish. I listened to a 2 CD set of his just once and picked up hundred of words and some phrases. That's because his methodology is so effective. He also has French CDs, he is a very good teacher, no bookwork or rote memorising required. http://www.michelthomas.com/ His CDs are in the libraries.

Michel was a kid during World War II and in order to survive had to flee several countries. In each new country, he had to learn its language quickly. As a consequence, he became quite the polyglot and an excellent learner and teacher of foreign languages. I suspect the grief you've experienced learning French has come from the teaching methodology you've been exposed to rather than your ability to learn French. After all, if you were born and raised in France you'd be speaking French fluently now.

I learned Spanish and Maori as an adult and these are the things that helped me the most.
1. Converse with native speakers (as opposed to just reading books)
2. Speak with yourself and non-native speakers, repeating phrases and sentences over and over again until they feel comfortable and natural in your brain.
4. Read aloud, this gets your tongue and brain practised in the new sounds, and your subconscious mind will learn the rules of grammar and sentence construction just through repeated exposure. Just like you did as a kid.
5. Your brain links new things to things it already knows, So focus on learning complete sentences. Learn individual words within the context of a complete sentence. i.e. to learn table, memorise "La nourriture est sur la table" (The food is on the table), instead of la table by itself. You will automatically learn that table is feminine, your brain will link the new word, table, to words you already know, your subconscious mind will pick up the sentence construction, adverbs, adjectives, plurals, verb conjugations etc. Next, you can modify the sentence slightly e.g. the drinks are on the table. the cat is under the table, the cat is sleeping under the table, the cat slept under the table etc. Michel Thomas does a lot of this.
6. Learn the words and the sentences on the day they'll be used. No need to get ahead of yourself and learn words that you don't need to use right now.
7. Can you learn a new word in English and use it correctly? You've done this thousands of times already. So it's the same with learning a new word in another language. Your brain already knows how to do this. Trust you mind to figure things out.
8. Speak without fear, do not worry about mistakes, your subconscious mind will hear native speakers and self-correct you. I've heard that when we are learning a language our ability to understand a language is about 5 months ahead of our ability to speak the language. Little kids are the same.
9. Have fun with the language. Cook using recipes written in French, read kids books, read the same topics you read in English.

That said the best way to learn a language is to live in a country that speaks the language.


 


I'll agree that the best way is to spend time amongst native speakers.


I studied French from age 8 to 16 and of course, growing up in the UK France is closer than the South Island is to the North Island (45 minutes on the ferry for $100!) so I went many many times. I was fortunate enough to have a native Frenchman as an French teacher (never understood why more English schools do not do that - and French schools have native English speakers to teach French kids English) and that helped a lot.


However, I rarely get to practice now and as a result my spoken French is less competent than it used to be. I was in France for a few weeks a while back and it does come back. If French people ask me if I can speak French, my usual reply is to tell them "Yes, like a child if you speak slowly!"


As a schoolboy I would have known all the correct tenses and grammar for written French too but that has long since been replaced by more useful information in my internal HDD I fear! I can read it quite well - well enough at least to read the newspaper or a book and get 85% of the story (some more esoteric vocab means resorting to Google for assistance!)


I'm going to check those CD's out - maybe I will get some practice!



Sounds like you are just out of practice and need to go and live in France, Tahiti etc for 6-12 months to solidify things.

My Spanish and Maori aren't perfect, just high intermediate level. Another 6-12 months in South America and I would have been fluent. But here in NZ, without practice, I can feel Spanish slipping away too. My wife is a native speaker of Spanish but prefers to speak English. So I'm kind of in the same shoes you are in. I found Spanish and French speaking clubs in meetup.com. If my wife weren't suffering from morning sickness I'd be attending the Spanish group more than the one time I attended. Next my wife and I want to learn French, she studied it and English at university in her home country.

Years ago in Auckland, I met an Italian man who married a Tongan woman. He spoke Italian, English, Tongan, French and Spanish fluently. His Italian, French and Spanish were good enough that he had worked as a translator. I asked him how he retained all the languages and he told me he read in each language for 10 minutes a day.

1397 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 588


  Reply # 1522711 30-Mar-2016 11:52
Send private message



That said the best way to learn a language is to live in a country that speaks the language.

 

I was told that the best place to learn a new language is in bed...

 

 


Mad Scientist
19340 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 2531

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1522717 30-Mar-2016 11:57
One person supports this post
Send private message

Rich pretty and completely unfamous.




Swype on iOS is detrimental to accurate typing. Apologies in advance.


2547 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1238

Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1522735 30-Mar-2016 12:09
Send private message

Kiwifruta:

 

I learned Spanish and Maori as an adult ...

 

I'm curious how you get on... I learnt French up to 6th form at school (plus some token Maori at primary), then learnt (1 year, night school) German as an adult before going to Switzerland. I lived in Zurich (German-speaking). However, early on I went on holiday to the French-speaking part, expecting it to be a compariative breeze (4 years French from school vs 1 year German tuition). I vividly recall being in a shop, mouth opening and closing like a goldfish, and completely unable to retrieve any French words at all. I could only translate my thoughts into German :(

 

 


1748 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 361

Trusted

  Reply # 1522757 30-Mar-2016 13:00
One person supports this post
Send private message

Attend a major rocket launching ( ala Apollo-sized)





My thoughts are no longer my own and is probably representative of our media-controlled government


806 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 166


  Reply # 1522824 30-Mar-2016 14:44
Send private message

frankv:

Kiwifruta:


I learned Spanish and Maori as an adult ...


I'm curious how you get on... I learnt French up to 6th form at school (plus some token Maori at primary), then learnt (1 year, night school) German as an adult before going to Switzerland. I lived in Zurich (German-speaking). However, early on I went on holiday to the French-speaking part, expecting it to be a compariative breeze (4 years French from school vs 1 year German tuition). I vividly recall being in a shop, mouth opening and closing like a goldfish, and completely unable to retrieve any French words at all. I could only translate my thoughts into German :(


 



Mate it gets all messed up, I learned Maori and then Spanish. Now when I try and speak Maori, Spanish words that sound like Maori words jump into my head. I told a multi-lingual friend of mine my trouble and he tells me its common, and it's called language interference. To get around it, when he learns a new word, he imagines a series of doors, a door for each language, and each door labelled with the name of a language he speaks. He then imagines the new word going into the door of that language. i.e. Hola goes to the Spanish door. Bonjour to the French door.

I have read that language interference happens when a language is not fully solidified in the brain. Which in my case is true for my Spanish and Maori, I'm an intermediate speaker of both but never attained full fluency in either.

So perhaps the solution for you (and me) is to get one language 100% down pat before moving on to the other. But that's not always practical, and intermediate level fluency gets me by enough for my needs.


4552 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 2521

Trusted

  Reply # 1522895 30-Mar-2016 17:40
Send private message

Reveal my super-secret identity to the world.


1256 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 163


  Reply # 1522898 30-Mar-2016 17:59
Send private message

Commercial pilot, why I'm not = medically disqualified.

 

Ride Deadhorse (northern end of the road North America) to Ushuaia (southern end of the road South America) - why I haven't = way too hard/complicated with work, medical and other considerations, maybe when I'm wealthy and retired... which is probably never.

 

 





---
James Sleeman
I sell lots of stuff for electronic enthusiasts...




2635 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 185


  Reply # 1522911 30-Mar-2016 18:49
2 people support this post
Send private message

DarthKermit:

 

Reveal my super-secret identity to the world.

 

 

 

 

Well I'm Batman, so we know you aren't him...


Glurp
8718 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 4004

Subscriber

  Reply # 1522919 30-Mar-2016 19:08
Send private message

Finch:

 

DarthKermit:

 

Reveal my super-secret identity to the world.

 

 

 

 

Well I'm Batman, so we know you aren't him...

 

 

I think Superman would like a word with you.

 

 





I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage
 




2635 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 185


  Reply # 1522948 30-Mar-2016 21:01
Send private message

Rikkitic:

 

Finch:

 

DarthKermit:

 

Reveal my super-secret identity to the world.

 

 

 

 

Well I'm Batman, so we know you aren't him...

 

 

I think Superman would like a word with you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Inserts BvS Spoiler*


1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic



Twitter »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.


Geekzone Live »

Our community of supporters help make Geekzone possible. Click the button below to join them.

Support Geezone on PressPatron



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.