Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

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Deinonysus
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Sun Nov 15, 2020 7:07 pm

Thanks for the suggestions everyone!

CALST is a terrific resource. I think I'll eventually do the whole course, at least for the Oslo dialect. I checked out the tone drills for a couple of other dialects and unfortunately they don't seem to work, so I think I'm out of luck for them. But I think the "Nordavinden og sola" recordings will be very helpful! I'm already familiar with the "North Wind and the Sun" myth so it should be a good text for me to practice listening and reading comprehension.

As for the CALST Oslo dialect course, I did the first vocabulary section (the alphabet) and then tried to do the second section (numbers) but I failed it because it doesn't allow for any spelling mistakes. I think I'll start out by going through all of the simple vowel drills, then do the rest of the phonology drills, and then finally the vocabulary lessons. I'm starting with the sound contrast drills for the long ø sound. There are 15 and I've completed 5 of them, including the contrast with the short ø which I think is the most important.

I can't guarantee that all of the Norwegian that I hear will be Oslo dialect and I don't want to be lost when I hear other dialects. For example, Assimil says they use narrators with a variety of dialects, and the main male narrator uses a uvular r. Maybe he's from Bergen? There's a sample recording on this page of anyone's interested:
https://www.assimil.com/en/with-ease/14 ... 81195.html

I changed my title again! The CALST course brings my total up to 6. And the 4 months was not a hard limit, it was just my estimate for how long it would take me to finish all my materials if I did them all at once and didn't get distracted and switch to another language, but of course the quarantine added a monkey wrench. Bønder and Bønner are a well known minimal pair where only the tone is different. I believe "bønder og bønner" would mean "farmers and beans".
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Mista » Sun Nov 15, 2020 7:30 pm

Deinonysus wrote:I believe "bønder og bønner" would mean "farmers and beans".

It would, but it could also mean "farmers and prayers". The plurals of "en bønn" and "ei bønne" are identical.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Sun Nov 15, 2020 10:03 pm

Deinonysus wrote:For example, Assimil says they use narrators with a variety of dialects, and the main male narrator uses a uvular r. Maybe he's from Bergen?


That's what I'd call Stavanger prosody. The Nordavinden samples should be enough to learn how to distinguish the main dialects. The story is the same, the vocabulary is nearly identical (except for the occasional local word), pitch#2 appears in the same places. What varies the most is the prosody and the R-quality.
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Deinonysus
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Mon Nov 16, 2020 9:39 pm

I'm continuing to make progress with Assimil and CALST, not so much with my other resources, but my daughter goes back too daycare tomorrow so I should be able to get more done soon when we're not watching her all day.

I'm not exactly sure how to track my CALST progress in bar form since I'm going through the course completely out of order. I'm skipping all of the vocabulary lessons and also the initial consonant drills (they deal with voiced vs voiceless and dental vs retroflex and I don't have any problem with those). So I think for now I'll just say which set of drills I'm working on and how far along I am in it.

I think my biggest areas to work on are matching long vs short vowel pairs, i vs y (because the rounding seems much lighter than in German or French), and the tones. There are a bunch of consonant cluster drills in between the vowel and tone drills that i don't think I really need as a native English speaker.

I considered abandoning Anki for Nils and Langenscheidt because I'm concerned that by reading the words without hearing them, I may internalize the wrong tone. But in practice I don't know how much of an issue that really is. I don't think I have Norwegian prosody internalized to the point where I pronounce words with unknown tone with one tone it another; I think I just think of it in a tone-neutral way. So when I later learn the tone of a word I already knew, I don't get interference from a wrong tone.

I forgot to mention in my last post but I'm on the board with The House of Seven Gables! I took a few days to finish chapter 1, and then I read all of chapter 2 last night.

Progress-o-Meter™

Norsk

: 2 / 60 Pimsleur Norwegian
: 50 / 860 Duolingo Norwegian
: 4 / 26 The Mystery of Nils (Part 1)
: 0 / 15 Langenscheidt Norwegisch mit System
: 7 / 100 Assimil Le norvégien
: 9 / 15 CALST long ø drills

English

: 2 / 21 Nathaniel Hawthorne - The House of Seven Gables
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Mista
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Mista » Mon Nov 16, 2020 11:17 pm

The essential thing to understand about the norwegian /y/ is that it has a completely different type of rounding than the /u/ and the German and French equivalents, a so-called "outward rounding". I found a video illustrating this. Watch the woman's lips as she says the sounds, and you will understand what I mean.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GyZbMoDO4d8

Hearing the difference is probably more of a challenge, but pronouncing the sound correctly is a good start
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Tue Nov 17, 2020 2:00 am

Mista wrote:The essential thing to understand about the norwegian /y/ is that it has a completely different type of rounding than the /u/ and the German and French equivalents, a so-called "outward rounding". I found a video illustrating this. Watch the woman's lips as she says the sounds, and you will understand what I mean.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GyZbMoDO4d8

Hearing the difference is probably more of a challenge, but pronouncing the sound correctly is a good start

Wow, that is an amazing video and it helped a lot! I watched the rest of her videos in English too, they're all very helpful! It's too bad she didn't make more.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Ogrim » Tue Nov 17, 2020 9:51 pm

Deinonysus wrote:I considered abandoning Anki for Nils and Langenscheidt because I'm concerned that by reading the words without hearing them, I may internalize the wrong tone. But in practice I don't know how much of an issue that really is. I don't think I have Norwegian prosody internalized to the point where I pronounce words with unknown tone with one tone it another; I think I just think of it in a tone-neutral way. So when I later learn the tone of a word I already knew, I don't get interference from a wrong tone.


I often see beginners in Norwegian fret about the tones, and I always say: don't bother. There are actually very few words for which just the tone makes the semantic distinction, and unless you speak like a native, probably no-one will notice if you get the tone wrong. It may sound a bit "off", but the context will almost always make it clear what you mean anyway. It is much more important to get the gender of nouns right, or to know if a verb is "weak" (regular) or "strong" (irregular) in the past tense, or to remember that you inverse the SV order if the sentence begins with adverbs etc. So don't get obsessed about the tones, focus on vocabulary and grammar like you would do for any other European language.
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Deinonysus
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Tue Nov 17, 2020 10:40 pm

Ogrim wrote:I often see beginners in Norwegian fret about the tones, and I always say: don't bother. There are actually very few words for which just the tone makes the semantic distinction, and unless you speak like a native, probably no-one will notice if you get the tone wrong. It may sound a bit "off", but the context will almost always make it clear what you mean anyway. It is much more important to get the gender of nouns right, or to know if a verb is "weak" (regular) or "strong" (irregular) in the past tense, or to remember that you inverse the SV order if the sentence begins with adverbs etc. So don't get obsessed about the tones, focus on vocabulary and grammar like you would do for any other European language.

I think that's fair advice in general but for me, obsessing over pronunciation is half the fun. I know I'm probably doubling or tripling the amount of work I would need to do if I only focused on grammar and vocabulary, but that's just how I do things.

Good pronunciation even as a beginner is mostly a just fun trick, but the tangible benefit is that I generally don't need to repeat myself, and people don't switch to English when I try to talk to them in their language. But it does get me into trouble because people will start talking to me full speed and I can't necessarily understand what they say back to me.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby PeterMollenburg » Wed Nov 18, 2020 4:07 am

Deinonysus wrote:
Ogrim wrote:I often see beginners in Norwegian fret about the tones, and I always say: don't bother. There are actually very few words for which just the tone makes the semantic distinction, and unless you speak like a native, probably no-one will notice if you get the tone wrong. It may sound a bit "off", but the context will almost always make it clear what you mean anyway. It is much more important to get the gender of nouns right, or to know if a verb is "weak" (regular) or "strong" (irregular) in the past tense, or to remember that you inverse the SV order if the sentence begins with adverbs etc. So don't get obsessed about the tones, focus on vocabulary and grammar like you would do for any other European language.

I think that's fair advice in general but for me, obsessing over pronunciation is half the fun. I know I'm probably doubling or tripling the amount of work I would need to do if I only focused on grammar and vocabulary, but that's just how I do things.

Good pronunciation even as a beginner is mostly a just fun trick, but the tangible benefit is that I generally don't need to repeat myself, and people don't switch to English when I try to talk to them in their language. But it does get me into trouble because people will start talking to me full speed and I can't necessarily understand what they say back to me.


Deinonysus, this is exactly how I feel about pronunciation too. I can't not try to perfect it, it's simply in my nature to learn a language this way.

I've been told that the tones don't matter and that I'll be understood, and that's sound advice for some types of learners, but not for me. Every attempt at fine tuning my pronunciation along the way must be made while learning the language.

I think it's closely linked to some kind of pride for me or it's simply part of the learning that I enjoy (or at least the results), despite the sometimes tedious analysis and slower pace that comes with the approach. Once decent pronunciation becomes automatic, I feel more the part, I feel more Norwegian (or French or... etc.), and that is for me, a big component of the fun results in putting the effort into learning another language and why for Norwegian resources that utilise IPA and tone markings are like gold. Also, with my appreciation for the details, this is why I prefer the resources to acknowledge the feminine gender in Norwegian too.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Ogrim » Wed Nov 18, 2020 12:32 pm

Deinonysus and PM, you make fair points, and I am not saying you should not care about pronunciation or even tones, my point is just that Norwegian is not a tonal language in the way that Mandarin or Cantonese are. But by all means, try to get your pronunciation as perfect as possible, that is only a plus (as long as you don't neglect the other parts of the language). :)
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