Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French and a pinch of Mandarin)

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Bones
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French)

Postby Bones » Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:55 am

Phantom Kat wrote:+ I'm pretty sure "pyydystettyä" is a verb along the lines of "trapped" and "caught", but I can't find the exact definition.
Pyydystää means to (attempt to) catch an animal or drive one into a trap. It can also be used metaphorically when talking about people. So, it's something along the lines of the verbs to catch, trap, entrap and snare in English.

Phantom Kat wrote:+ Is "säilytysarkkuun" some kind of conversation box, container, or cage? Like a terrarium?

Säilyttää = to store, keep or preserve. Arkku is a large lidded container, in other words a chest, trunk, footlocker or coffin. Säilytysarkku = a storage chest.

Phantom Kat wrote:+ I get the meaning that "yö oli jo pitkällä" means along the lines of, "The night was already long," but why is pitkä in the Adessive Case?
I don't know and can only speculate. The adessive has many uses and one them is in time expressions like viime viikolla = last week and kesällä = in the summer. The phrase in question could be a variation on that theme or is referring to an unspecific and implied point in time or space away from the starting point, in which case the adessive is used to indicate location.

Pitkä = Long, both in terms of time and space.
Olla pitkällä = to be far along.

Example: Projekti oli jo pitkällä, kun se lakkautettiin. = The project was already far along when it was discontinued.

Phantom Kat wrote:Let's Plays in the background
If you listen to them in your target languages, they can also be a powerful language learning tool. I can attribute much of my early progress in German to listening to German Let's Plays of games I've played in English.
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Phantom Kat
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French)

Postby Phantom Kat » Wed Mar 20, 2019 2:38 am

naqvisson wrote:
Thank you very much for the offer..This is really encouraging and motivating. I was double minded about starting Finnish or not... and after a good brainstorming session, decided to go for it... i hv a really bad history with the language learning in general and Finnish in particular. I relied on courses,teachers to teach me and failed miserably again and again...and now believe in self learning....and it has been working for me...I was lucky to find Assimil Finnisch ohne muhe in a local library.....and have turned a few pages and miraculously Finnish didnt seem very difficult...(i had taken a couple of courses in it two years ago and performed miserably)....

This time I intend to give it 100 days to see where do I stand....It would be really nice of you if you can please share the google docs. I inbox you.


I took a semester of German back when I started college, and... suffice to say, it was a bad experience. I wasn't in a good head space during that point in my life. So I totally understand how it feels to be letdown by a course. I like to think, though, that even negative experiences have something of value. I learned how not study and that the fear of speaking can really hold you back. (One day, I'll pick up German again. When the time is right.)

I'm glad you found a copy to use! And glad that you decided to pick up Finnish. :) I PMed you the info, and I hope it ends up being useful.

Bones wrote:Pyydystää means to (attempt to) catch an animal or drive one into a trap. It can also be used metaphorically when talking about people. So, it's something along the lines of the verbs to catch, trap, entrap and snare in English.

Säilyttää = to store, keep or preserve. Arkku is a large lidded container, in other words a chest, trunk, footlocker or coffin. Säilytysarkku = a storage chest.

I don't know and can only speculate. The adessive has many uses and one them is in time expressions like viime viikolla = last week and kesällä = in the summer. The phrase in question could be a variation on that theme or is referring to an unspecific and implied point in time or space away from the starting point, in which case the adessive is used to indicate location.

Pitkä = Long, both in terms of time and space.
Olla pitkällä = to be far along.

Example: Projekti oli jo pitkällä, kun se lakkautettiin. = The project was already far along when it was discontinued.

Phantom Kat wrote:Let's Plays in the background
If you listen to them in your target languages, they can also be a powerful language learning tool. I can attribute much of my early progress in German to listening to German Let's Plays of games I've played in English.


Thank you so much for the clarification! I'll add that to my notes. As for your last point, do you happen to know any Let's Play channels in Finnish? I found a couple of one-off videos around Youtube, but no channels with a consistent lineup.
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French)

Postby Phantom Kat » Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:49 am

School started again. Going from sleeping in to waking up at 5:20am is like being slapped in the face. Also, what higher up in the district decided to have everything due the week after Spring Break? Ya'll are lucky I can still remember all of my students' names. :lol:

Update!

Forest App

Best app next to Anki so far. If it didn't log in how much time I spent on each activity and what that activity was then these updates would be a lot shorter. lol

I studied 13 hours this past Spring Break, which brings up my total for 2019 to around 39 hours (not counting all the times where I didn't use the app, like during small breaks at work or while waiting at the doctor's.) I'm so close to being able to buy another tree for my forest.

Finnish for Foreigners

So I picked this lovely gem again, right on Chapter 27. I. spent. 3 hours. on it. I like to take my time by writing out the entire sentence, making notes when I correct my work, and re-reading my work aloud. This chapter dealt with the Imperfect, which was great because it's definitely the tense where I need the most practice. The textbook's way of separating the different verb groups was very helpful, and I'm going to refer to that whenever I practice.

Some things I found that I need to work on for the future:

1. Consonant gradation, such as the patterns I tend to forget (like v --> p) and which verb groups use which patterns. I'm very comfortable with verbs in Group 1 (verbs that end in two vowels). However, that means I have the habit of applying those gradation rules to other verbs. One mistake I did was omitting the K in pakata, when actually, the rule was K-->KK.

2. The verb käydä. I have a good idea how it's used and can recognize what cases to use with it, but have I actually practiced it in my writing? That's a no. Which is why that section of the Exercises was riddled with mistakes. So I'm going to read up on its usage and practice it in some sentences.

3. The reflexive pronoun joka. Here I have the opposite problem. I'm having issues deciphering exactly what it means once it's in a specific case. Practice is in order.

Lastly I still need to finish three things for this chapter. One is the Word Review, the second is a writing practice using the Imperfect (it says not to use the Negative Imperfect because they haven't covered that, but welp, I've practiced it too much to not use it), and the reading passage. Yikes is that reading passage going to take me a while. It's more of an informational piece than the narrative ones I'm used to.

Grammar

I practiced some writing using the Assimil vocabulary I hadn't added yet. Practiced a little bit of the passive.

Most notably, I practiced declining nouns into the Genitive Plural, the Partitive Singular, and the Partitive Plural. Just like when I first started conjugating verbs, it was more frustrating than fun. Checking the rules, only to go back and scratch out the wrong answer isn't the most uplifting thing, but I did see the patterns begin cropping up the more examples I used.

After that, I practiced the Partitive Plural by writing some sentences.

Assimil

I continued reviewing past chapters in 30 minute intervals. It's amazing how some things just click easier the third or fourth time you're reviewing than when you first began the lesson. For example, I noticed how much easier it was to pick up on the use of the Imperfect, Negative Imperfect, and the few examples of the Perfect without needing to stop and re-read it. Or how the expressions pitää seuraa and tehdä hallaa use the Allative (-lle) case.

Also, as I was reviewing I wrote down the vocabulary I haven't added to Anki yet. My plan is to practice writing with them before adding them in, so I'm more than just passively familiar with them.

I managed to review up to Lesson 58. I'll go over Lesson 59 and 60 sometime tomorrow before starting Lesson 61 for the first time.

Words found in the Wild

This section is also known as: "where I remember that word from a song so suddenly that I get whiplash".

+ Vaarallisia - heard it in the Darkwing Duck theme song. It came back to me when I declined "vaarallinen" and asked myself, "Where I have heard this word said menacingly?"

+ Lemmikki

+ Ruokapalkalla - finally looked up "ruokapalkka" because Assimil wasn't really clear on it, and yep; "salary enough to pay for food only" is definitely something we can relate to

Question Time!

Why does Finnish for Foreigners suck the life out of me in return for knowledge and pretty good exercises?

1. I first learned minulla on nälkä, but Assimil also uses minun on nälkä and that's the only place where I've seen it used. (Thought in 101 Dalmations I did hear just on nälkä). Can both of these be used interchangeably?
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French)

Postby Bones » Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:51 pm

Phantom Kat wrote:As for your last point, do you happen to know any Let's Play channels in Finnish? I found a couple of one-off videos around Youtube, but no channels with a consistent lineup.
Sorry, I'm not up to speed on Finnish Youtubers.

Phantom Kat wrote:1. I first learned minulla on nälkä, but Assimil also uses minun on nälkä and that's the only place where I've seen it used. (Thought in 101 Dalmations I did hear just on nälkä). Can both of these be used interchangeably?
They both mean the same thing but minulla on nälkä is way more common, at least in my experience.
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French)

Postby Phantom Kat » Wed Aug 05, 2020 5:21 am

It's been so long! I missed this log. A lot has happened since March '19. My new teaching job sucked so hard that quarantine after Spring Break was a blessing. (Is there a term for something worse than a helicopter parent? Because I had one.) My mom took in an abusive family member last August that is finally out of our home for good. I feel that I'm finally in a good place, mentally, to pick up my languages.

But one good thing? My mom, my sister, and I actually went to Helsinki last July! Our 12 days there were absolutely amazing. We went to so many museums, ate so much ice cream, and I'm pretty sure some of our blood and tears were left on the rocks of Suomenlinna. Even though I didn't get to finish Assimil: Le Finnois before I left I was still able to read a good chunk of stuff I came across. Also, it was pretty cool to listen to the Finnish audio in the tours and pick up the gist of it was saying.

God, I want to visit again. What an experience!

So any progress on Finnish?

Among the books I picked up in Helsinki, I brought back home Suomen Mestari 1-4. I have been speeding through Suomen Mestari 1 since last week. I've spent 18 hours on it, according to my Forest app. Since it's the first book the grammar is a review for me, so I've been concentrating on vocabulary acquisition. I write down and highlight in my notebook any vocab words I don't know so I can put them into Anki. Since the directions are also in Finnish, that's more vocab I can pick up to input into Anki.

Right now I'm going through Chapter 6. I need to go and review consonant gradation as it applies to the six local cases.

I reset my Anki "Finnish Vocabulary Deck" since I haven't touched that in over a year. I also made a new deck just for vocab from Suomen Mestari. Time for a major review! I have a notebook set aside just for writing sentences for every word I review on Anki.

And now I'm adding Mandarin!

I am crazy. I also accepted a teaching position in Beijing at an international school. If everything goes right with my work permit and Visa I should be leaving at the end of this month or beginning of September. I've done some work with New Practical Chinese Reader, but I'm just not jiving with this course, you know? Maybe I've just been so spoiled with Assimil's witty dialogues that these about meeting students and teachers lose my attention pretty quickly.

Another issue of mine is that I love writing, first and foremost. It's my favorite way to practice vocabulary and grammar. With Mandarin, however, the extra step of learning the character is slowing me down so much, so I feel my progress is very slow. I'll probably just focus on vocabulary and grammar right now and write in Pinyin to practice writing.

I'm also considering trying out Pimsleur for Mandarin to practice pronunciation. Time to stalk some Mandarin logs here and see what study habits I can try.
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French and a pinch of Mandarin)

Postby Phantom Kat » Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:49 pm

Fun Fact: After a year since our trip to Finland my mom remembers three Finish words: maito, kiitos, and pesula. She jokes that she can pretty much survive now. Somehow I believe her. :lol:

Finnish

Going through Chapter 7 of Suomen Mestari. Nothing too bad. Reviewing the six cases with the verb types. It's the partitive that still gets my goat with some of these verb types, but that's a sign that I need to buckle down and do some declining to start getting that intuitive feeling of whether something sounds right or not. Also, one of the things I like about Suome Mestari is that the audio is more dense, dialogue wise, than what the question is asking for you to answer. Plus it's at native speed, or close to it. After I finish Book 1 I'm going to go back and just review the audio and attempt to make some transcripts. I wonder if something like that already exists out in the internet.

I also got in contact with a Finn at Conversation Exchange that is learning Spanish, and hopefully we get to exchange some conversations and/or have some face to face conversations via Skype. I was also browsing the Finnish tutors and teachers at iTalki. I made it my goal to get in at one lesson before school starts back (the 31st) I'm sure I have enough vocab to carry at least a simple conversation about life and interests, but I'm a perfectionist, so that naturally makes me nervous to put myself up there. (Plus, I remember my sister correcting my Spanish when I was younger, and that's definitely something that's impacted myself speaking any language other than English.)

To prepare myself I did some conjugation practice in the Imperfect. I'm surprised at how much I remember just by "this sounds right", but then again, I did conjugate verbs on random scraps of paper as I was waiting to be picked up after my workday was done. Conjugation practice is my language equivalent of an adult coloring book. Great for distractions and stress relief!

Mandarin

I did the first two lessons of Mandarin Level 1 of Pimsleur. I haven't done an audio course since I dabbled with Rocket French, and it feels weird to just sit there with nothing to read or write. I don't know what to do with my hands for the half hour of the lesson! :P The lessons weren't something new in terms of vocab or grammar. I had already covered the "de" for adjectives and "bu" for standard negation, as well as tone changes for "bu".

But just focusing on speaking feels pretty good! Even being a visual learner, it's not hard to recall the short sentences and repeat them ad nauseam afterwards when I'm doing other things.

I reviewed the characters for the lesson vocab by writing them out in my notebook for Mandarin. The upside of investing nearly 16 hours of studying Mandarin back in April and May is that I'm starting to get a feel for stroke order. I don't want to get sucked into concentrating on writing, though, because I'll do very little of that when I get to Beijing. Recognizing the characters will be enough.
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French and a pinch of Mandarin)

Postby Phantom Kat » Fri Aug 21, 2020 10:08 pm

Trying to get a work visa during a pandemic? 1/10 would not recommend. BUT I have permission from China to go now, so now all the paperwork is now on their end. I suspect I'll be in China maybe by the first week of October? The Houston consulate is closed, so my stuff has to go D.C. now. From the papers I have already sent to D.C., they are not the quickest...

Teacher orientation has begun, and my workday is currently from 6pm - 11pm. It's kinda sad that I didn't have to change my sleeping schedule at all. :lol:

Finnish

Conversation Practice!

Y'all, I did it! I had my first Conversation Practice in Finnish through iTalki! For the first time I spent an entire half hour speaking in Finnish with an actual person (and not a pretend partner that Suomen Mestari assumes I have). I talked about what I did last summer in Helsinki, some things about my family, and about my upcoming job in China. I surprised myself by incorporating the partitive plural in there. (And my tutor was surprised how much I could express, with this being my first conversation.) Next time I'm going to talk about my day-to-day life as a teacher in China (or at least what I expect I'll be doing). I'm going to include some apartment-hunting vocabulary in there.

But I feel like I passed a significant hurdle in my Finnish journey.

I'm considering getting a community teacher on iTalki specifically for writing. I want to be able to write more fiction instead of just random sentences here and there in my journal.

Book Stuff

Finished Chapter 8 of Suomen Mestari. It was mostly about the dreaded Partitive Plural. I've been drilling some partitive plural practice with sentences while on my online school meetings, and really, it's the long word rules and the words that end in consonants that are tripping me up. The rest of the rules, I feel, are pretty straightforward. (Thank you, Uusi Kielemme, for the kissa/koira rule!) What I usually do is write one sentence with the partitive plural and then a second sentence with the partitive singular to get the hang of switching back and forth with the rules. It also increases my word count, and that's always good!

I've been reviewing Assimil, and I have been writing down phrases and words that I haven't used so far in my writing or that I need a refresher on. I try to use these when I'm writing sentences with my Anki vocabulary.

I also went to reddit and asked for clarification with mennä and käydä when it comes to doing actions. What is the difference? From the answers I got, it seems mennä means I can go and do an action without an exact time frame in mind about when I'm coming back. With käydä, barring some bathroom specific phrases, it implies that I'm going with a defined purpose and a timely manner.

Next step: Start and finish Chapter 9 of Suomen Mestari and go back to working on the past tense with verbs. I'll still be practicing the partitive plural when I write Anki sentences.

Mandarin

I have done Pimsleur Lesson 6 (Level 1). I can't deny that it's helping my pronunciation with all the repetition. I can see where the "picking up dates" angle is coming from. I'm not sure how much I can use: "Where do you want to eat?" "At your place." when it comes to meeting people in China. I'm going to keep at it and see how the rest of the lessons develop in terms of vocabulary and phrases.

So I caved and got Assimil: Le Chinois. (Man, Assimil got it to me, here in the US, within 3 days of ordering. Money well spent.) I did the first three lessons, and boy did I miss Assimil's dialogues. Audio is good quality, and I see the beginnings of useful vocabulary cropping up. I know I'm going to need to use an outside grammar reference to keep up. I have Chinese Grammar Wiki on hand, which I found useful so far.

(My principal mentioned that at the school, the Chinese Teachers have once a week Mandarin lessons for staff. You bet your bottom dollar I'll be taking part!)
Last edited by Phantom Kat on Sat Aug 22, 2020 2:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French and a pinch of Mandarin)

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Sat Aug 22, 2020 7:09 am

Phantom Kat wrote:Y'all, I did it! I had my first Conversation Practice in Finnish through iTalki! For the first time I spent an entire half hour speaking in Finnish with an actual person (and not a pretend partner that Suomen Mestari assumes I have). I talked about what I did last summer in Helsinki, some things about my family, and about my upcoming job in China. I surprised myself by incorporating the partitive plural in there. (And my tutor was surprised how much I could express, with this being my first conversation.) Next time I'm going to talk about my day-to-day life as a teacher in China (or at least what I expect I'll be doing). I'm going to include some apartment-hunting vocabulary in there.


Wow! This is inspiring.
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French and a pinch of Mandarin)

Postby Bones » Sun Aug 23, 2020 11:56 am

Good luck with you new job in China! Remember to get a VPN before you go to make sure you can still visit all the websites you want.

Phantom Kat wrote:I'm considering getting a community teacher on iTalki specifically for writing. I want to be able to write more fiction instead of just random sentences here and there in my journal.


I could correct your writing if you want (within reason of course).
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Phantom Kat
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Re: Kat's Finnish Log (with a dash of French and a pinch of Mandarin)

Postby Phantom Kat » Sun Aug 23, 2020 9:29 pm

jeff_lindqvist wrote:
Phantom Kat wrote:Y'all, I did it! I had my first Conversation Practice in Finnish through iTalki! For the first time I spent an entire half hour speaking in Finnish with an actual person (and not a pretend partner that Suomen Mestari assumes I have). I talked about what I did last summer in Helsinki, some things about my family, and about my upcoming job in China. I surprised myself by incorporating the partitive plural in there. (And my tutor was surprised how much I could express, with this being my first conversation.) Next time I'm going to talk about my day-to-day life as a teacher in China (or at least what I expect I'll be doing). I'm going to include some apartment-hunting vocabulary in there.


Wow! This is inspiring.


I'm glad! I know a big part of it is my slightly-obsessive need to write, write, write my own sentences whenever I learn a new grammar structure or a batch of vocabulary words.

Bones wrote:Good luck with you new job in China! Remember to get a VPN before you go to make sure you can still visit all the websites you want.

Phantom Kat wrote:I'm considering getting a community teacher on iTalki specifically for writing. I want to be able to write more fiction instead of just random sentences here and there in my journal.


I could correct your writing if you want (within reason of course).


Thanks! That would be incredibly helpful! Perhaps a paragraph now and again on a familiar topic in my life. I'll brainstorm some topics and maybe send you something this week?

And yep, I'm reading up on VPNs to see which one would be best. Before this, I didn't know there were so many.
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