PM's Target Europe - FR, NL and on again off again NO

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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's Target Belgium - Dutch B2 May 2021, French C1 someday

Postby PeterMollenburg » Fri Apr 17, 2020 12:58 pm

Tristano wrote:
PeterMollenburg wrote:Hoi Tristano,
Wat leuk om van jou te horen...

Volgens mij, tegenwoordig is niks heel moeilijk. Maar ik denk dat de reden is omdat ik veel nederlands nog in mijn geheugen heb. Hoewel, misschien kan jij veel fouten hier met mijn Nederlands zien?

In 2011 toen we in Nederland waren, vond ik het vaak moeilijk om iets eenvoudigs te zeggen omdat ik altijd over de volgorde van de woorden moest denken. Maar met de tijd wordt het bijna automatisch.

Nu dat ik dat gezegd heb, er zijn nu twee problemen - tijd en woordeschat. Niet genoeg tijd om meer te leren en een beperkte woordenschat, die ook een probleem van niet genoeg tijd is.

Hoe gaat het met jou in NL?


Nou, veel fouten zie ik niet, een paar foutjes hier en daar maar niks ernstig. Het ziet goed uit! Jouw taalgebruik verraadt je een beetje, maar het is normaal, helemaal verwacht en absoluut niet erg.
Het gaat goed hier in Nederland en gelukkig zijn de effecten van de Coronacrisis niet als groot als in andere landen. Verder moet ik vanuit huis werken en moet ik dus gedeeltelijk werken en gedeeltelijk voor de kinderen zorgen, wat niet ideaal is. Maar we genieten van de mooi weer en we spelen lekker buiten en wandelen in de natuur.
Mijn oudste dochter (3 jaar) spreek bijna alleen Nederlands trouwens, dus ik ben gedwongen om mijn Nederlands te verbeteren, en op werk moet ik volledig in Nederlands communiceren. Ondanks deze omstandigheden maak ik nog fouten en klink ik nog steeds buitenlander.
Dus maak je geen zorgen :D Het is veel tijd nodig en perfect worden is heel erg lastig - vooral als je, weet je, een leven hebt :D
Hoe gaat het bij jou?


Ja, met mij gaat het bezig. Met drie kinderen heb ik nu het leven dat in het verleden kon ik me nooit voorbeelden dat ik nu zo'n level ooit zou hebben. Dat was heel moeilijk om te schrijven. Als je me begrepen hebt, kun je me alsjeblieft zeggen of ik één of een paar fouten daar gemaakt heb. Ben je ooit naar Australië geweest? Ik ben nooit naar Italië geweest. Mag ik je vragen waar in Nederland je woont? Of je hebt het nooit hier gezegd dan kun je alleen maar in het noorden/zuiden/oosten etc zeggen... of helemaal niks als je wilt. Vind je Nederland mooi tegenwoordig of alleen maar een ander land met een taal dat een beetje anders is?
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Tristano
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Re: PM's Target Belgium - Dutch B2 May 2021, French C1 someday

Postby Tristano » Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:21 am

Ik ga je antwoorden als ik wat tijd heb. Overigens, is dit iets voor jou? https://www.rug.nl/language-centre/e-le ... ine-dutch/
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's Target Belgium - Dutch B2 May 2021, French C1 someday

Postby PeterMollenburg » Fri Apr 24, 2020 1:14 pm

Tristano wrote:Ik ga je antwoorden als ik wat tijd heb. Overigens, is dit iets voor jou? https://www.rug.nl/language-centre/e-le ... ine-dutch/


This looks suprisingly more useful than I anticipated. However I will not commit to such a course for a couple of reasons. I have been able to achieve success in French with my methods and I don't therefore see much point in signing up to an online course. I have plenty of courses that I'm highly motivated to use... when I find the time, and doing something else altogether would seem like biting off more than I can chew or spreading myself too thin as well as basically ignoring money spent on other investments. I still, nevertheless appreciate your suggestion. Thank you, Tristano.
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's Target Belgium - Dutch B2 May 2021, French C1 someday

Postby PeterMollenburg » Fri Apr 24, 2020 1:28 pm

I think this time, like Cavesa, it really is time for me to take a prolonged break. Thus, I'm joining you, Cavesa.

I've not much to add to my log, it's rather uninteresting it seems to others and I don't want to create controversy with political speak (to perhaps make it interesting), mainly because it wastes my time, not because I don't care or want to follow the rules (although I do currently, as that also just leads to more hastles than it's worth). Only minimal language learning activity is happening of late as someone close to me has had a recent serious diagnosis (I don't want to say anymore). The world is really fucking nuts lately and I just feel that the way this Covid thing is being handled is speaking volumes for who is really in control on a global scale. I've no idea why I just went political.

On a side note, while visiting my family member in hospital today I overheard someone in the next room chatting away in German and it made me think of Speakeasy and his passion for German as well as my previous love affair with the language which began some 3 decades or so ago. It sounded great and in the midst of a problem, although now well controlled, I was yet again reminded that languages (not just French) are such a passion of mine - I love quite a few of them to bits! (many of which I can barely string a sentence together in). Around the covid thing again, the world 'climate' is changing and worryingly for my profession and even potentially for the general public. I'm considering reskilling and quickly. Thing is I never do anything quickly, so beats me how that will happen, but I'm tired of whole industries being held for ransom, biased science pushing agenda's and public policies as well as government decisions. We are little people, and I must tread carefully into the future.

As I leave this forum for a good while, French and Dutch and my equal focuses. French as I've decided I need to stop hovering at a high-intermediate to low advanced level and raise my level gradually, Dutch as it's my other love and I still hold hopes of it being useful for employment but that is fading, but at least my kids are learning it with me. I'm itching to get back to Norwegian and Spanish some day and maybe even German. Again as I leave, I've little time for dedicated course study these days but if I can iron out my flaws and I might get into a better routine that sees that change somewhat. Let's see where I'm at when I get back.... bye for now and good luck peoples with your languages and your ability to see through the bullshit! (be careful of promised saviours!)
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Re: PM's Target Belgium - Dutch B2 May 2021, French C1 someday

Postby cmia11 » Sun Apr 26, 2020 11:17 am

Bonne chance pour la suite et j'espère que ça ira mieux assez vite !
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's Target Europe - French, Dutch, Norwegian

Postby PeterMollenburg » Fri Jun 05, 2020 10:15 am

My All Time Record Breaking Month of Language Learning.

So, early in the month of May my daughter was rejecting Dutch, complaining about the sound of the language, while my son, being younger thought nothing of it - it's just another way to communicate to him, albeit a bit trickier than French for the moment. Anyway, I thought, dammit, I need to listen to my daughter. I said alright, I'm going to learn Norwegian and stick to it, since she is so keen on the language (that's my excuse ;) ) and then perhaps in a year I can begin reading to her and beginning simple verbal communication.

Re-starting Norwegian gave me some kind of sense of dillusional confidence and I slipped into a 'what the hell' kind of mood and before I knew it, I had not only added Norwegian back into the mix (alongside my French and Dutch studies)...

...but I then added Spanish back in as well....

...and then I added German.

I didn't quite get to Arabic, but it certainly crossed my mind.

After one session of Spanish and German study, which I both definitely enjoyed, I came back down to Earth and reneged on my own what the hell attitude. I stopped German and I stopped Spanish after a whole 45 minutes of learning of each and decided Norwegian was going to be the focus, at least at my desk with my course books and that's despite Dutch seemingly being extra important given our Beligan objective. French and Dutch would definitely remain in the mix, but Norwegian was here to stay and now part of the new Peter Mollenburg.... And so I got serious...

The end result? A record breaking month. Not since my first month of getting serious back in January 2014 in which I recorded 133 hours (and one minute) of study have I studied so much. Nearing the end of May I saw my personal record in sight and realised I was going to pass it. However, in Jan 2014 I never recorded my TV watching time, thus 133 hours could've been closer to 140. I doubt it was beyond that as I didn't do that much watching in the earlier stages of my French journey. So, my thinking was, I needed to go beyond 133 by a handful of hours to be certain I've really surpassed my Jan 2014 effort. In the final days of May I stole moments that weren't even there and finally reached 140 hours and 30 minutes of language learning for May.

But how? I've said it before that I seem to not really get down to business unless I'm put under pressure. Well, home life has been busier than ever with the family having expanded, so what does that mean? I work harder all round. For the first time I got up at 6 am and kept getting up at 6am every day. My wife was dealing with a difficult situation with a new born on a daily basis and I was completing my studies in my man cave at an okay time of the mid morning, but I could feel I was still being a little too zealous about it all given her challenges, so... I offered a solution. As opposed to missing my study (I just couldn't bare the thought), I offered to get up even earlier. From then on, it's been 5am starts.

So I got better with my morning 3 hours of desk study, completing it every morning, and finding even more stolen moments. However, since I've been working afternoons to accommodate my prefferred morning study, I'm burning the candle at both ends. I simply could not do this had I not gone back to a keto way of eating. On a keto diet I can manage this, most days looking tired, albeit. If I eat carbs, I'm finished. My head will turn to brain fog and I will want sleep immediately. So, I'm being extremely strict on myself and it seems it's the only way I can 'do it all'. A few mornings I even woke at 4.30am and just got on with my studies. My showers are long listening to audio, commuting is a chance to listen to more, driving to the supermarket down the road and back, exercise (although infrequent), any television, lots of reading with the kids... Here's a bit of a breakdown of the top activities (some lesser activities not included):

Audio (courses, podcasts)
FR 01,52
NL 06,11
NO 12,41

Desk study
DE 00,45
ES 00,45
FR 13,01
NL 18,18
NO 44,10

Reading to the kids
FR 17,55
NL 09,44

Watching TV with the kids
FR 02,30
NL 01,54


Watching TV (self)
FR 06,47
NL 02,45
NO 00,55


TOTALS
DE 00,45
ES 00,45
FR 42,56
NL 38,43
NO 57,21

= 140,30
(average/day 4hrs 31min)

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Edited to add a title to the post.
Last edited by PeterMollenburg on Sat Jun 06, 2020 3:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PM's Target Europe - French, Dutch, Norwegian

Postby rdearman » Fri Jun 05, 2020 11:12 am

You're a machine!
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's Target Europe - French, Dutch, Norwegian

Postby PeterMollenburg » Sat Jun 06, 2020 5:27 am

A Brief Review of My Norwegian Courses and My Problem with (most?) Norwegian Courses

So.... I've been using four course books.
Learn Norwegian by Sverre Klouman
Hugo Norwegian in Three Months by Oivind Blom
Beginner's Norwegian by Laura Ziukaite-Hansen
The Mystery of Nils by Werner Skalla

(I've also been using Pimsleur Norwegian Level I)

In order of most favourite to least (note, I'm only a bit over a month into most of them)
1 Learn Norwegian
2 The Mystery of Nils
3 Beginner's Norwegian
4 Hugo Norwegian in Three Months

A Brief Review of Each Course

Learn Norwegian
Positives
*Thorough descriptive sections with accompanying audio tracks on Norwegian pronunciation. From individual letters, dipthongs, letter combinations, stress and intonation. And there's a bit more than that. Very pleased with this.

* I love the phonetic transcripts in IPA that accompany the first 9 lessons. You have phonetic transcripts of the main phrases for the lesson for which there is also audio. I have been using these to train my ear by listening to a sentence, writing out what I think I've heard (even if unknown previously unseen words) and comparing to the print, then with the same sentence writing out the IPA and comparing my IPA to that of the books and repeat until I write them correctly.

*Drills

*Thorough course - 27 lessons from memory. And they're not short lessons.

*Clear layout.

Negatives
*Some outdated language

*More audio for some of the drills and translation exercises would be a nice added bonus.
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The Mystery of Nils
Positives
*Hand-holding style course - great if you feel Norwegian is practically an alien language, and great for monolingual English speakers with little to no language learning background.

*An engaging story

*Nicely presented - larger book with nice images, clear print, clear explanations.

*Free online audio (must pay for CD separately if want to own)

*Clear grammar explanations

*Separate advanced course for those wanting to continue.

*Author/publishers appear to be very open to improving the course

*Modern course (terms you'd expect to find in use in today's society)

Negatives
*Insufficient audio, particularly for a beginners course. New vocabulary frequently introduced with no audio (you need to listen to the conversations to hear a lot of it, but not all).

*No tone markers for pronunciation/ No IPA with new vocabularly either (but some guidance on words with irregular pronunciation)
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Beginner's Norwegian
Positives
*All new vocabulary in word lists accompanied by audio (at least so far).

*Clearly presented well set out, easy to read text.

*Audio free to download (with track names already completed - bonus for those who like to have correct track names!)

*Audio conversations presented in two formats. One at normal conversational speed, the other with pauses for shadowing/repetition/imitation.

*Modern course (terms you'd expect to find in use in today's society)

Negatives
*No tone markers for pronunciation/ No IPA with new vocabularly either (but some guidance on words with irregular pronunciation)

*Chapters/lessons seem to flow in the wrong order with the conversation first, then grammar explanations then the relevant vocabulary. Perhaps this is a minor detail or depends on personal preference, but for me having the vocabulary and the relevant grammar explained before the conversation is learned/listened to makes more sense. I'm sure they have their reasoning and it's a minor negative on my part.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hugo Norwegian in Three Months
Positives
*All new vocabulary accompanied by audio (at least so far).

*Conversations with audio contain two speeds, one slower for learners and another faster to get the learner used to regular sounding Norwegian at normal to fast pace.

Negatives
*Word lists with mixture of indefinite and definite forms (depending on upcoming audio conversation, which form is used), and those with definite forms having no indication as to the basic indefinite form (see below). This is a big negative imo, you have to seek a dictionary to find the basic form of words presented in this manner.

*No tone markers for pronunciation/ No IPA with new vocabularly either (but some guidance on words with irregular pronunciation)

*Print is a little hard on the eyes at time.

*The flow feels a little messy and the grammar explanations appear to have holes or an unclear at times.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

My Problem
So, my problem, it seems is that most Norwegian courses do not include markers for tone. Maybe this would be okay at a more accomplished level, but for beginner's, it just seems that this should be there, perhaps like training wheels.

In one of the courses it says that foreign learners can attain a good working level of Norwegian will fairly straightforward application. However, reaching a level where you could be mistaken for a local is rare. Well, I guess we all know that this is the case with any language, even the bigger more popular ones. Still, if you don't include tonal markers, then it's either not going to happen too easily that you'll end up sounding like someone from Oslo, or you'll have to (like me) resort to a dictionary with tone markers every time you come across new words in which tone is unknown. I might relax on this later if I feel I've found a pattern or several, but for now this is really hampering efficient progress, but I just cannot proceed without being sure I'm saying things correctly (according to Oslo pronunciation). I do know in some areas of Norway, however, that tone is not a part of the dialect(s). Perhaps this is why they do not include it. However, if it were marked, you could at least choose to pay attention to it or not.

This is by far the main reason why I prefer Learn Norewgian by Sverre Klouman. The IPA and markers of tone in the beginning stages are invaluable for my learning style. Whereas, I think many other learners would go for one of the other courses on my list (perhaps The Mystery of Nils as it's story-approach seems to be a big hit as you can see from the reviews on amazon and elsewhere).

I find the presentation of the vocabularly in Hugo Norwegian in Three Months irritating to say the least. To those who don't know how Norwegian articles work 'en hake' is 'a chin', while 'haken' is 'the chin'. You can add either -en or just -n if the word already contained an -e at the end and you add these to the the end of common gender words to mark the singular definite form. In this case if you just see 'haken' = 'the chin' and it's the first time you've come across the word, therefore you don't know whether 'en hake' or 'en hak' is the indefinite form (you don't know if it ended with or without -e in the singular indefinite form. They don't tell you! Irritating and poorly thought out!

Thank you iguanamon, if you're reading this, for the dictionaries you provided me access to. They have been invaluable and admittedly give my perfectionist side the permission to seek correct pronunciation for the majority of unknown words of late.

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Edited to tidy up layout
Last edited by PeterMollenburg on Sat Jun 06, 2020 7:06 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Gustav Aschenbach
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Re: PM's Target Europe - French, Dutch, Norwegian

Postby Gustav Aschenbach » Sat Jun 06, 2020 5:39 am

Hello Peter,

Wow, what a workload. I'm surprised that you focus on Norwegian now. I thought you wanted to become proficient in Dutch in order to go to Belgium? I've also been fascinated by Norwegian for a while. I completed 50% of Assimil Norwegian and I can actually read it quite okay. But I then I didn't really know why I was studying it (I used to have the intention to maybe go to Norway with my ex, but that's histoire ancienne) and stopped again.
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's Target Europe - French, Dutch, Norwegian

Postby PeterMollenburg » Sat Jun 06, 2020 5:44 am

Gustav Aschenbach wrote:Hello Peter,

Wow, what a workload. I'm surprised that you focus on Norwegian now. I thought you wanted to become proficient in Dutch in order to go to Belgium? I've also been fascinated by Norwegian for a while. I completed 50% of Assimil Norwegian and I can actually read it quite okay. But I then I didn't really know why I was studying it (I used to have the intention to maybe go to Norway with my ex, but that's histoire ancienne) and stopped again.


Hi Gustav,

Well, I agree, but things change I guess. I just 'felt' that it was right to give Norwegian more time. Still, as you would've noticed, I'm still putting a fair amount of time into Dutch, and since I've a good deal of it before, I'll progress okay, albeit a bit slower.
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