Advice for Danish

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Zarkos
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Advice for Danish

Postby Zarkos » Sat Oct 08, 2016 8:33 pm

Hello,
In the last three years I invested hundreds of hours learning Swedish. After Assimil and several other courses I focused on Listening/Reading and it really worked great for me. I am fond of books and it was great to discover some new writers as well as to rediscover some well known but this time in Swedish :D My grammar is still not perfect but I am able to read, speak and understand almost everything what I desire. I really love this language and how does it sound.
Two years ago, I started working for a Danish company. Many of the documents that i had to read and work with were written in Danish. It was difficult in the begining, but knowledge of Swedish was advantage and after six months I was able to follow instuctions and read documents without much difficulties. After year and half it started to be much easier then at the begining.
In the early spring I started to do as much L/R as I could. I decided to learn to speak Danish. I like L/R, it helps me to pick up many new words but I still have trouble when i want to speak Danish. Maybe i have not reached enough input in order to start speaking '' automatically'', like I experienced with Swedish, but i feel a bit frustrated. When I start reading Danish i understand the main idea, i am able to follow the story, but when i start speaking it does not sound well. In does not sound natural. It is mix of Danish and Swedish. It is wierd because I have never experienced something similar before.Even though they are close related languages, rythm of Danish is different .
I would like to ask native Scandinavian speakers as well as members that speak two or more Scandinavian languages to give me advice how to solve this issue. I have strong desire, 2-3 hours daily that i can invest in Danish and really burn to start speaking this beautiful language well.
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Ogrim » Mon Oct 10, 2016 2:09 pm

I am Norwegian so I don't speak Danish or Swedish but I understand both languages without any difficulty, and I have also learnt other closely related languages, so I hope I can give you some advice.

Firstly, Danish phonology/pronunciation is very different from Swedish (or Norwegian for that matter). There are sounds you don't find in the other Scandinavian languages and the prosody is also different. I am sure L/R helps, but I would advise you to do some more intensive pronunciation exercises as well. I myself have experienced that, although I know exactly how a word or a sentence should sound, it does not come out right when I say it loud. Listen to short sentences and repeat them, if possible recording yourself, then try to figure out what you are not doing right. If you can, find a Danish tutor to help you work on your spoken production or, if you do not want to pay a tutor, see if a Danish colleague is willing to help you. Try to imitate the way the Danish speak. Listen to Danish Radio or watch news in Danish - newsreaders are normally expected to pronounce clearly in a standard language.

It is natural that your Danish is "flavoured" by Swedish, because you know that language better and as you say, you have invested a lot of time in learning it. Your spoken Danish can only improve with practice, but you need to put in the time, especially when it comes to a language like Danish with might be phonetically more challenging than many others.
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby tarvos » Mon Oct 10, 2016 6:51 pm

The fact your Danish is flavoured isn't really a big issue. If you want to pronounce correctly, you need to do the physical legwork and learn how to pronounce the Danish sounds. Those that you cannot produce accurately you need to enlist help with, preferably from someone who knows what they're doing (most tutors in my experience don't have the foggiest idea what they're working with when they work on pronunciation).
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby stelingo » Mon Oct 10, 2016 7:07 pm

Watch these videos from Norwegian TV. They have some excellent advice. :mrgreen:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-mOy8VUEBk&list=RDs-mOy8VUEBk&index=1
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Zarkos » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:50 pm

Thanks so much for your reply Ogrim. I have already started stopping audio books and repeating sentences while i look in text. Sometimes I repeat without book. If sentence is too long I stop it twice or even three times. Doing like that I feel like i am making much more progress then when I try to repeat whole sentences at once.
I decided to do repeat between 80-100 hours and that measure how far am I. If I am not satisfied with my progress I will try some other activity.
I have never tried to record myself, but this is an interesting idea - i will try that for sure and let you know results.
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Zarkos
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Zarkos » Mon Oct 10, 2016 9:23 pm

stelingo wrote:Watch these videos from Norwegian TV. They have some excellent advice. :mrgreen:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-mOy8VUEBk&list=RDs-mOy8VUEBk&index=1


Haha, this is really funny :) ! Thank you.
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Zarkos
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Zarkos » Tue Oct 11, 2016 5:58 pm

tarvos wrote:The fact your Danish is flavoured isn't really a big issue. If you want to pronounce correctly, you need to do the physical legwork and learn how to pronounce the Danish sounds. Those that you cannot produce accurately you need to enlist help with, preferably from someone who knows what they're doing (most tutors in my experience don't have the foggiest idea what they're working with when they work on pronunciation).


Hello tavros,

I would not have anything against slightly flavoured Danish :) However, at the moment my Danish sounds like broken Swedish with many Danish words. I will keep working on pronanciation and I hope I will succeed.
In the other hand I will soon move to Danmark and I hope that will be benificial for my language learning. I have never before been emerged in a culture and language that i wanted to learn. It is completly new chapter in my life and my language studies and I hope it will help to my speaking skills.
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Susanne157 » Tue Oct 11, 2016 6:27 pm

Hello Zarkos,

I learned two scandinavian languages but I am only able to converse in one of them..

I am German and I lived in Denmark for a while where I was studying Danish intensively. I was living with a Danish host family and I took language courses after University. I was able to read a lot but I never got the pronunciation right.

Then, directly afterwards, I moved to Norwayand I started learning Norwegian after the same method. I lived with Norwegians and took language courses.

Then a strange thing happended: In the beginning I spoke a mixture of Danish and Norwegain but it never felt right. Then, slowly, the Danish began to fade. Actually I don't know why but I can't speak it anymore. There comes only Norwegian out. But this happend almost automativally while experiencing immersion of the language.

So its probably not so much help for you but that is my experience wth learning two scandinavian languages. I remember that I listed to the radio every day. Maybe its a question of time? However both Swedish and Danish are beautiful!

Susanne
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Speakeasy » Tue Oct 11, 2016 10:40 pm

Please note that I have not studied Danish and that I have no intention of doing so. Nonetheless, it is possible that Zarkos will find solace in the following discussion thread:

Danish Pronunciation guide
http://forum.language-learners.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=1962
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Re: Advice for Danish

Postby Ogrim » Wed Oct 12, 2016 12:14 pm

Zarkos wrote:I will soon move to Danmark and I hope that will be benificial for my language learning. I have never before been emerged in a culture and language that i wanted to learn. It is completly new chapter in my life and my language studies and I hope it will help to my speaking skills.


That will certainly be very beneficial for your Danish, but maybe not so good for your Swedish.

Susanne157 wrote:Then a strange thing happended: In the beginning I spoke a mixture of Danish and Norwegain but it never felt right. Then, slowly, the Danish began to fade. Actually I don't know why but I can't speak it anymore. There comes only Norwegian out. But this happend almost automativally while experiencing immersion of the language.


I have met very few learners of Scandinavian languages who are able to speak two of them well. Normally one will dominate and the other will be heavily influenced by the one you know best. (A bit like learners of both Portuguese and Spanish often experience.) The few people I know who can be said to speak fluently both Norwegian and Danish or Swedish and Danish have normally grown up in a bilingual Scandinavian family or have parents from one country but having grown up in the other.

Anyway, I wish you all the best with your move to Denmark and hope you will have a great time. I am sure you will learn to speak Danish well in a very short time, being immersed in the language and the culture.
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