2020 Language Log - Sedge

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Sedge
Yellow Belt
Posts: 64
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2019 1:34 am
Languages: English (native language)
Languages I have or currently am studying in order of proficiency:
German (B2)
Spanish (A1)
ASL (beginner)
Russian, Japanese, Icelandic (studied briefly or for specific purposes, may revisit later)
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Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby Sedge » Mon Feb 10, 2020 5:30 am

golyplot wrote:I'm kind of curious what your study methods are like for ASL.


I don't mean to be discouraging, but ASL is to date the only language I've given up on, and that's despite being unusually motivated to learn it! I eventually concluded that it is impossible to get more than a surface level understanding of ASL through the internet no matter how hard you try. And before you ask, yes, I went to every Deaf event in the area I could find for almost a year, but I wasn't getting anything out of it. I'm introverted and didn't know anyone, and an hour or two per month of signing like a caveman isn't going to do anything under the best of circumstances anyway. I also took several in-person ASL classes but sadly wasn't able to continue them. If I ever am in a position where I can practice regularly with a skilled signer, I might try to pick it back up, but until now, I consider it a lost cause.


I would agree that I'm unlikely to get a deep knowledge of ASL from online only sources. But, I think that's largely true of spoken language as well. I find it ASL to be a very expressive language and as far as picking up initial vocabulary, for me personally it has been way easier than any other language I've studied. And for the early stages of learning, online resources are great. The way the ASL University courses are structured, the videos show a question-and-answer session between the professor and a student. I sign the answers before the student if I can, along with the student if I can't. If I miss something, I can replay it slower. Typically I'll go through each video at least twice. Then during the day, I translate things to myself; for instance whatever is being said or sung on the radio, things I need to remember to tell my mom when I call her later, or sometimes stories that I know really well. There's also a lot of dual-language ASL storytelling on YouTube that I've started watching sometimes. I miss a lot of signs, but I can fill in from context and it helps with grammatical context. The word order is a bit challenging to get used to, but I don't find it impossible.

And, once I've gone through at least a couple of levels online, I plan to reach out to a local sign language interpreter I know and ask her for more in-person resources; for instance if someone would be willing to tutor or if there are opportunities to volunteer with students, etc.

I do also have an activity that I participate in off-and-on where one of the other participants was learning ASL due to losing her hearing in one ear and having some hearing loss in the other, so she's another opportunity for me to use the language. She's just really intense and scares me a little bit (she's really nice, I'm just introverted and therefore intimidated).
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golyplot
Green Belt
Posts: 428
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2017 9:41 pm
Languages: English (N), German, French, ASL (abandoned), Spanish, Dutch, Italian, Japanese
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=12230
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Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby golyplot » Mon Feb 10, 2020 3:15 pm

Sedge wrote:I would agree that I'm unlikely to get a deep knowledge of ASL from online only sources. But, I think that's largely true of spoken language as well.


There's two main differences compared to spoken languages (or at least popular spoken languages) that make it much harder. First is that there is no writing system, which makes it very difficult to write about and read about online. There's nothing like Duolingo for signed languages. The whole SRS app concept just doesn't work. (Yes I know some people have tried to make stuff like this, but they're all ineffective for obvious reasons). You can't even look up signs online.

The second difference is that there is little in the way of TV available. With spoken languages you can simulate immersion to some extent by just watching TV in the TL. That's the main way I studied most of the spoken languages I've learned, and it seems to be pretty effective. On the other hand, there is very little TV available in ASL and most of it is hard to find. So you have to scrape the bottom of the barrel with stuff like Dr. Wonder's Workshop, and even that is just one show.
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Lianne
Green Belt
Posts: 395
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 3:29 pm
Location: Canada
Languages: Speaks: English (N)
Actively studying: French (low int), Italian (beginner)
Dabbling in: ASL (beginner)
Wish list: Swedish, Esperanto, Klingon, Brazilian Portuguese
Has also dabbled in: German, Spanish, toki pona, Swahili
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... p?p=127744
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Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby Lianne » Tue Feb 11, 2020 3:21 pm

golyplot wrote:The second difference is that there is little in the way of TV available. With spoken languages you can simulate immersion to some extent by just watching TV in the TL. That's the main way I studied most of the spoken languages I've learned, and it seems to be pretty effective. On the other hand, there is very little TV available in ASL and most of it is hard to find. So you have to scrape the bottom of the barrel with stuff like Dr. Wonder's Workshop, and even that is just one show.

Did you look much on YouTube? There are several ASL news channels there, such as deafnewspaper and The Daily Moth.

This is one language I definitely want to return to, though I too worry my introversion will cause difficulties. Even if I never reach real fluency, having some ASL is super useful in the autistic community.
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lavengro
Green Belt
Posts: 462
Joined: Wed May 24, 2017 1:39 am
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Languages: ENGLISH (N); FRENCH (A2 - conservatively self-estimated); SPANISH (A1 - recklessly self-asserted); ITALIAN (non parlo italiano - yet - but getting closer); ITHKUIL (only in my nightmares); GERMAN (bestimmt - currently A0); JAPANESE (against my better judgment - currently barely A0); INDONESIAN? (I couldn't possibly...)
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Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby lavengro » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:52 pm

I have deleted my previous comment, which was typed out by one of my cats and did not make complete sense.

In its place, I note that there are some Memrise Decks ASL courses involving SRS, including one based on the lifeprint.com materials: https://decks.memrise.com/course/2228616/lifeprint-asl-1-10/ and there is now an online ASL dictionary: https://www.handspeak.com/word/
Last edited by lavengro on Wed Feb 12, 2020 2:07 am, edited 3 times in total.
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"I talk a lot. So I've learned to just tune myself out."
- Kelly Kapoor

Italian : 191 / 330
German : 96 / 605
French : 80 / 780
Turkish : 31 / 335
Japanese : 19 / 460
Heisig : 345 / 2200

golyplot
Green Belt
Posts: 428
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2017 9:41 pm
Languages: English (N), German, French, ASL (abandoned), Spanish, Dutch, Italian, Japanese
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... 15&t=12230
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Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby golyplot » Tue Feb 11, 2020 9:35 pm

Lianne wrote:Did you look much on YouTube? There are several ASL news channels there, such as deafnewspaper and The Daily Moth.

This is one language I definitely want to return to, though I too worry my introversion will cause difficulties. Even if I never reach real fluency, having some ASL is super useful in the autistic community.


Yes, I was watching the Daily Moth every day. I did search pretty hard for resources.
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Sedge
Yellow Belt
Posts: 64
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2019 1:34 am
Languages: English (native language)
Languages I have or currently am studying in order of proficiency:
German (B2)
Spanish (A1)
ASL (beginner)
Russian, Japanese, Icelandic (studied briefly or for specific purposes, may revisit later)
x 88

Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby Sedge » Wed Feb 12, 2020 2:07 am

I do find the lack of written language challenging, mostly because without an unlimited data plan, I don't really have any portable ASL resources. But I am extremely visually oriented and somewhat sensitive to noises, and while I don't want to make it seem like I struggle with listening or speaking, it does take a lot more energy to engage with spoken language vs. written language, and the movement component of ASL is really great for me. ASL isn't easy by any means, but the lack of auditory component is something that appeals to me.

YouTube does have a ton of resources. Varying quality. Varying topics. There's a lot that I'm not interested in or that is just poorly made and makes me cringe. But I haven't struggled to find video content that works for me.
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Sedge
Yellow Belt
Posts: 64
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2019 1:34 am
Languages: English (native language)
Languages I have or currently am studying in order of proficiency:
German (B2)
Spanish (A1)
ASL (beginner)
Russian, Japanese, Icelandic (studied briefly or for specific purposes, may revisit later)
x 88

Re: 2020 Language Log - Sedge

Postby Sedge » Tue Feb 25, 2020 4:37 am

Well, my goal of studying Inuktitut all 366 days this year went flying out the window the last couple of weeks. I did just fine maintaining my studying while doing a bit of traveling around my birthday... but kids are nasty little petri dishes of plague and pestilence. So I came home and immediately started getting sick. Still, I kept studying, until Friday the 14th, when I got home from work with a killer migraine and no voice. I struggled through a half hour of Inuktitut and twenty more minutes of German and Spanish (I generally read a German language novel during my 10-minute work break)... but starting the next day, there just wasn't any way I could focus enough to study Inuktitut.

German and Spanish I actually still kept up on better (and one day ASL), because it's less effort to study languages where I have reached a certain level of comprehension, versus trying to build initial vocabulary and grammar in a new language. Even those got abandoned a few days, though. I'm finally back to being mostly functional (with intermittent bouts of uncontrollable coughing) so getting back into daily study again. Last night I did a full review on the vocabulary in my "complete" flashcard pile - complete is a bad term for it but I can't think of a better descriptor. Words, sentences, prefixes, and suffixes that I am able to recognize, read, and translate both from Inuktitut to English and from English to Inuktitut. The "complete" pile isn't in my daily rotation of cards, but I review them every so often and pull any forgotten terms back into my daily rotation until they are "complete" again.

Anyways, did a full review and only had a couple of terms that had to be pulled back into rotation, so at least there's that.
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