Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log (Now Levantine Arabic, MSA and French)

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Doitsujin
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby Doitsujin » Sat Sep 17, 2016 2:10 pm

LadyGrey1986 wrote:My frequency dictionary will have to wait..

BTW, a Reddit user has typed up the complete Buckwalter/Parkinson dictionary and converted it to Quizlets cards. For more information see his Reddit post.

LadyGrey1986 wrote:Moreover, knowing Persian will give my a headstart in understanding Iraqi and Gulf dialects.
Even though these dialects are known to contain Persian words, IMHO, knowing Persian won't help you that much. However, knowing Arabic will give you a headstart in Persian.

LadyGrey1986 wrote:Does anyone have some free resources to recommend me? Is FSI Persian any good? Unfortunately, I don't have the financial means to take Italki lessons for Farsi.
I have no experience with FSI Persian, but I like the free Welcome to Persian of Iran Today textbooks offered by the University of Texas at Austin.
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LadyGrey1986
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:29 pm

Nothing much to report. Everything is going steady. I am still working my way through my courses. I am going through the first chapter of Part II of All of the Arabic, which deals with form I sound verbs. From the site Arabic Learning Resources

Most Arabic words are derived from a three-letter (trilateral) root. And each trilateral Arabic root can theoretically be transformed into one of fifteen possible verb forms (الأوزان, al-awzaan). (Forms 11 through 15 are very rare, so people usually just focus on forms 1 through 10, although 9 is also pretty rare). Each form has a basic meaning associated with the general meaning of the root being used.


Form I expresses the general verbal meaning of the root in question

I am really doing it at a snail's pace, since this chapter lays the foundation for the rest of part II. I have given my self until the first of October to finish the chapter and all the associated exercises.

For Syrian colloquial, I am still working with my tutor. This week I have two, to compensate for the one I had to skip last week due to technical issues. I still meet my language exchange partner once a week and although we mostly talk in Dutch, I make a point of at least speaking Arabic for 10 minutes. Since my Arabic is still pretty limited, I like to point at things in the room and saying their name in Arabic. Sometimes, we repeat the homework given to me by tutor. Last week, he received a phone call by a friend and I was pleased I was able to follow part of the conversation. The phone was on the speaker and my friend said: "My language coach is with me. Hiyye tekhi Arabi (she speaks Arabic)."

Felt pleased with myself!
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LadyGrey1986
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:55 pm

Doitsujin wrote:
LadyGrey1986 wrote:My frequency dictionary will have to wait..

BTW, a Reddit user has typed up the complete Buckwalter/Parkinson dictionary and converted it to Quizlets cards. /quote]

I wish I had known this before spending 45 euros on the Dictionary

Doitsujin, thanks for the tips concerning Persian!
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LadyGrey1986
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:38 pm

Time for my weekly update! I am advancing nicely with Chapter 2 of Syrian Arabic a functional course. This Chapter is actually over 40 pages long, hence why it takes me so long! i am learning a lot of useful high-frequency vocab, mainlly adjectives this lesson!

For MSA, I am sorry to say I haven't advanced much. Syrian colloquial is too much fun! Moreover, i directly see the fruit of my labour when talking with my language -exchange partner. For MSA, the benefits seem more remote. However, I don't want to abandon my MSA because I fear that I will hit a brick wall without a solid foundation in it. After all, what does fluency mean if cannot read or write in a target language?

Part of my problem with MSA is also a lack of good resources. I quite like All the Arabic, but the problem is that many of the vocabulary mr Price uses in his exercises is unknown to me. The sentences are translated in the answer key, but the Arabic words are not vocalised. This makes it quite difficult to do the exercises. I have already critized Al-Kitaab before, so I will not go into it again. Suffice it to say that if anyone wants a translation of "My mother works as an admissions officer at New York University", I am your woman. Sigh. But sometimes you have to take what you can get.

However, I have found this site. It is basically a free companion site to Al-Kitaab.

http://arabicwithoutwalls.ucdavis.edu/aww/coursecontent.html

I have assigned myself the following tasks:
-Finish Chapter 1 of All the Arabic
-Finish Chapter 4 of Al-Kitaab

Actually, both Chapters deal with verbs in the present tense.

Have a nice and productive week!
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Sat Oct 08, 2016 4:41 pm

Here another update, even though I have nothing special to report. I have just continued acoording to my routine.
I have finished Chapter 2 of Syrian Arabic a Functional Course, even though I still need to revisit some vocabulary. I have revised Chapter 4 and 5 of Al Kitaab.

My plans for the upcoming week are:

Syrian Colloquial:
-Continue practicing conjugating verbs in Levantine Arabic, in several tenses. My tutor has created a file of high-frequency verbs especially for this purpose.
-We have started with chapter 3 of Syrian Arabic a Functional Course, which deals with a Australian lady checking in to a hotel. A sad reminder of better days in Damascus.. A lot of the vocabulary concerns furniture items and other things often found in a hotel rooms (fans, curtains, bed linnen)
-Preparing a short oral presentation about my new internship, which will start next week. I am training to become a teacher of Dutch as a second language.

Modern Standard Arabic:
-The grammar, listening and vocabulary exercises of Al-Kitaab Chapter 6
- The listening exercises of Arabic without Walls corresponding to Al Kitaab Chapter 6. Arabic without Walls has nice, short level-approriate videos in MSA.

Persian
Taking it easy here. I am planning to work with Chai and Conversation Lesson 1. I will take a look at the Persian alphabet, which has some letters unknown to Arabic.
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby Luso » Sat Oct 15, 2016 4:17 am

LadyGrey1986 wrote:I quite like All the Arabic, but the problem is that many of the vocabulary mr Price uses in his exercises is unknown to me. The sentences are translated in the answer key, but the Arabic words are not vocalised. This makes it quite difficult to do the exercises.

All the Arabic... is aimed at intermediate (usually former) learners of the language. It's remarkable that you are able to use it at all, but lack of vocabulary is the price you have to pay. If nothing else, your remark concerning vocalisation gives you away ;) : many words of common usage aren't vocalised but a significant portion of the text is.

Sorry about the delayed comment (2+ weeks), but I'm not very active in the forum at the moment. However, I may be dropping by from time to time. Keep up the good work.
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:16 pm

No problem whatever Luso, I really appreciate it that people take the time to read my log and comment on it! Thanks for your kind words.

This week hasn't been as productive as I hoped it would be. I was away during the weekend, when I usually get most of my studying done. But not all was lost on the language learning front, as was in Germany. This gave me the chance to speak German again, which I hadn't done in quite a while.
Syrian Colloquial

I am past the point I can rely on what have picked up in Damascus. This means my sessions with my tutor take longer to prepare than before. The number of unknown words is increasing. Still love Syrian colloquial. The upcoming week, I will continue making my way through Chapter 3 of Syrian Arabic A Functional Course.

MSA

Chapter six of Al-Kitaab is done. So far, I haven't encountered any grammar in Al Kitaab that I haven't already seen in part 1 of All the Arabic. In the upcoming week, I will continue with Chapter 7, with the corresponding material to be found on Arabic without Walls.

French
I have decided to join Les Voyageurs. To quote myself from the Les Voyageurs Thread

Est-ce que je pourrais vous joindre? I have followed a minor in French, which took me to a b2 level. However, that was in 2011 and it has been French Inaction ever since. I lived in Brussels for six months, but that did little for


It is great that I can use native materials to improve my French, in contrast to Arabic where this is till very much in the distant future. I am planning to listen to some L'Avis de Marie podcast as a warming-up, as welll starting with La Grammaire Progressive du Français Niveau Intermédiare

Persian
I have accomplished my goals. I am still thinking about my study plan here.

Edited: typos
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LadyGrey1986
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Thu Oct 20, 2016 2:33 pm

Oh noes! Woe is me! A colleague today mentioned today that she wanted to start learning Spanish. Her boyfriend is half-Dutch half-Mexican.He is bilingual. Before I knew it, I said: "let me know when you start. I will join you!" I feel really terrible now. :( :(
I really had to restrain myself to design a complere study programme for us.
Right now, I am torn.
IMy husband thinks one language is more than enough. I love my Syrian Colloquial lessons with my tutor and I plan to continue with those for the foreseeable future. I really want to continue with MSA, but I find good resources hard to come by. I will try again with a recommendation by Mezzofanti Guild: A new Arabic Grammar of the Written Grammar by Haywood and Nahmad.
Then there is French. I have worked hard to get B2 in the past and I feel it is a waste "let it rot" to quote Cavesa. Perhaps I could even reach the elusive C-levels., except for speaking (too little native speakers around here).
Then there is Persian. It is tempting, because I find Iran an fascinating country because of its history and current affairs in the Middle East. It would also be the first language I willl have to learn entirely outside school/university. It would be an interesting experiment. However, I am worried about stretching myself too thin. There is also the potential danger of getting Persian and Arabic mixed up, even though they belong to different language families. Here too, my opportunities to speak it would be few and far between, even though I have Iranian and Afghan colleagues.
And now there is Spanish. Although there is a question mark here, since my colleague is also doing her masters and that is hectic enough.
I am also not sure whether I have the mental energy for a whole new culture.


Starting both Spanish and Persian from scratch is out of the question. My poor brain would be fried.

Esteemed fellow language learners: Hilfe! Au secours! Waar is de nooduitgang!
.
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LadyGrey1986
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Thu Oct 27, 2016 5:39 pm

After a little bit of soulsearching and housekeeping, I am back! I have been thinking about what I am going to do in 2017 and i have decided not to pick up Spanish for now. I have enough on my plate with MSA, Syrian Colloquial, Farsi and French.

French
I have started working through Vocabulaire progressif du Français-niveau avancé. I am already sure I will learn a lot doing so! I will also hit the French section of my local library. As for listening, I am watching L'aigle harpie. plus grand et le plus puissant des rapaces right now.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJZaVp5KX9M

Syrian Colloquqial
Just doing the homework my teacher gives me and continue to practice with my language partner.

MSA
One lesson each week from the Haywood and Nahmad book

Farsi
One lesson of Chai and Conversation and one lesson of Persian Dee each week.

Does this sound like a sustainable plan for the long term? Does anyone have some experience with studying Arabic and Farsi at the same time?
Last edited by LadyGrey1986 on Tue Nov 01, 2016 9:22 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Ahlan wa Sahlan on Lady Grey's Language Log

Postby LadyGrey1986 » Mon Oct 31, 2016 9:41 pm

A nasty virus has stolen all my energy for language learning and anything else basically.

I have managed to keep up with my homework for Syrian Colloquial.

For French, I have watched Le Journal en Français Facile which wasn't as facile as I expected it to be. I want to make it a habit to listen to it daily. The transcripts are extremely useful to learn new vocabulary.
Here are the words I jotted down:
reculer
l'écart
ternir
avouer
scrutin
le tassement
secouer
entamer
des propos tenus
malmener
flou
virage
balayer

I have also bought two ebooks in French.
-No et moi by Delphine de Vigane
-La petite fille de Monsieur Linh by Philippe Claudel.
Looks like a crash course in the passé simple is needed. oddly enough, we never discussed it in my French class, not even at university.
We were only told""You won't need it, it is a literary tense."
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