Looking for a list of 100 topics

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leosmith
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Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby leosmith » Thu Oct 10, 2019 12:19 am

I'm going to start re-learning Swahili starting December while I'm in Thailand, which I realize doesn't sound logical, but I've been looking around for resources and can't find a reasonable amount of text with audio. I had some transcripts made for some Tagalog TV programs to solve this problem but for Swahili, other than news, I can't even find a set of videos or podcasts that I'd enjoy reading if I had them transcribed. News is generally interesting for only a short period of time, so I don't want to do that. The other thing is if I go through the trouble of having a lot of material transcribed, I want to share it with the world meaning I'd need to get permission from the owner and be subject to them changing their minds. (edit - I'm looking for native material rather than material designed for learners)

Anyway, I've decided to create my own material - 100 X 6 min conversations between native speakers, with transcripts. I'm looking for a list of conversation topics that, as a whole, would give the learner a well rounded background in the language. Although there will be language specific topics, I'm hoping you might know of some general language learning topic lists that would really help me out.
Last edited by leosmith on Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:02 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby iguanamon » Thu Oct 10, 2019 12:45 am

For conversation, there are conversation prompt lists in English online- like this one: 100 Conversation Questions at ConversationStarters.com. You might also search "writing prompts".

If you are looking for audio material in Swahili with transcripts, have a look at Deutsche Welle's Learning By Ear site which has radio plays in Swahili and English (plus French; Hausa; Portuguese and Amharic) about a wide variety of topics. The language is conversational and approachable at a low intermediate level. I used these when I was learning Portuguese years ago. I started with Shall I tell you something African fables for a culture of peace. I think it is this in Swahili Je nikueleze kitu? Hekaya za Kiafrika kuhusu Utamaduni wa Amani. The actors are native-speakers and the topics are geared towards Africa and for Africans.

When I first started with the plays, I downloaded the pdf's and made my own parallel texts. I printed these to pdf and put them on my tablet. I also loaded the mp3's to my tablet. There are dozens of hours of content available. There's a bunch of ways to use these, as you know. Bahati nzuri sana, leosmith!

Bakunin had a list of drawings made up for learning Khmer. He posted them online somewhere. I'm sure there's a link in his log, but I can't find it now. He had embedded photos, but a forum update a couple of years ago ate most embedded photos in posts. I remember he had recordings to go along with the pictures. May give you some ideas.
Last edited by iguanamon on Thu Oct 10, 2019 1:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby leosmith » Thu Oct 10, 2019 1:07 am

iguanamon wrote:There are dozens of hours of content available. There's a bunch of ways to use these, as you know. Bahati nzuri sana, leosmith!

Oh, these are great! Asante sana mzee!
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby Speakeasy » Thu Oct 10, 2019 2:57 am

leosmith wrote:I'm going to start re-learning Swahili starting December while I'm in Thailand, which I realize doesn't sound logical, but I've been looking around for resources and can't find a reasonable amount of text with audio...
[colour added] I suggest that you review the "current" and "supplementary" Swahili resources filed under the following thread:

Swahili Resources - LLORG - October 2018
https://forum.language-learners.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=9194

EDITED:
Formatting.
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Thu Oct 10, 2019 2:58 am

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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby leosmith » Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:00 am

Speakeasy wrote:I suggest that you review the "current" and "supplementary" Swahili resources filed under the following thread

Thanks. I didn't find any substantial text with audio resources on your list, although I didn't open every item. Most of it was language program related; maybe I should have said native material in my post. I will edit it.
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby rdearman » Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:14 pm

iguanamon wrote:Bakunin had a list of drawings made up for learning Khmer. He posted them online somewhere. I'm sure there's a link in his log, but I can't find it now.


Here:

https://www.aakanee.com/illustrations.html
EDIT:

And here:

https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=1473
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby tuckamore » Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:47 pm

I want to give a nod to both of iguanamon’s suggestions — DW’s Listening by Ear and the resources generously provided by Bakunin (SEAIllustrations/Thai&Khmer Recordings).

I’m also looking to restart Swahili again sometime Jan/Feb and have already started making some parallel texts from DW’s Listening by Ear using iguanamon’s approach (— thank you, iguanamon). The video programs on Learning by Ear have English transcripts, but they don’t seem to have Swahili transcripts for the Swahili versions (or maybe I’m just missing them). Creating transcripts for these videos could possibly be an easier project than creating your own from scratch, as there are English transcripts to use as a reference. But, if the content of these videos don’t hold your interest, then it wouldn’t be worth the trouble; and, as you point out, there may be legal complications if you were to share your transcripts.

If you were to create your own resources, (it would be music to my ears, and) I highly suggest that you take a look at Bakunin’s website (http://www.aakanee.com). What he had done for Thai and Khmer could be a good model, both for topics and format. There are two formats — a lower level (SEAIllustrations) and a higher level (Thai Recordings/Khmer Recordings).

The lower level uses illustrations that I think he created. The audio is generally 15-30 minutes long per topic, describes the illustrations, and has corresponding transcripts. Many of the illustrations could be used as-is for other languages (like Swahili). But, some of the illustrations are very SEA-specific, like giving alms, going out for noodles, etc. The entire set covers about 40 topics, which are designed to introduce learners to 80 different ‘communicative functions’. You can see the list of communicative functions and the corresponding illustrations in rdearman’s direct link. This audio resource was accessible to me much earlier in my studies than it would have otherwise been, thanks to the illustrations and transcripts.

The higher level is a series of recordings of unscripted narration on defined topics, with transcripts. There is usually several recordings for each topic and some topics have recordings from two different speakers. It seems to me that some of the narration recounts personal anecdotes of the speaker. (But, I haven’t properly used this resource, yet, as it’s just out of reach for my current level. So, I could be wrong.) Each recording is about 5 minutes and there are 100+ recordings covering about 40 topics. Many of these topics are general, like going to the dentist, going shopping, etc. Other topics are more region specific.

The only other resource that may or may not fit your needs is Story Books Canada (https://storybookscanada.ca/stories/sw/), which grabbed books from the African Story Book project (https://africanstorybook.org). Where the Canadian-based website shines is that is has audio in Swahili, in addition to illustrations, text in Swahili, and text in English and French. And, everything for a specific story is all located on one page.
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby leosmith » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:32 am

tuckamore wrote:The only other resource that may or may not fit your needs is Story Books Canada (https://storybookscanada.ca/stories/sw/), which grabbed books from the African Story Book project (https://africanstorybook.org). Where the Canadian-based website shines is that is has audio in Swahili, in addition to illustrations, text in Swahili, and text in English and French. And, everything for a specific story is all located on one page.

Thanks! I actually saw this the other day when I checked out dozens of websites, and dismissed it because I thought the texts were single paragraphs. Now I see they are merely split up. Text and audio download without any tricks required, which is a plus for me. I might do some of these before tackling learning by ear.

I didn't know Bakunin was the guy who created Thai Recordings. I went through most of those years ago; it was the best option available for a good quantity of intermediate reading material with audio. That's what allowed me to start reading VOA news which I find pretty interesting (I like reading about health and science innovations). Shout out to Bakunin, wherever you are!

Since I was clearly wrong about there not being sufficient Swahili text with audio for me, I'm not as motivated to create the material. I might do it just to get some experience with creation though. I like the TTMIK Iyagi model for text with audio. Those lessons are all one on one conversations, and they mix it up with a roughly even distribution of 2 men, 2 women or mixed. The speakers are young (20s and 30s), cheerful and really good at making random topics interesting.
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Re: Looking for a list of 100 topics

Postby mentecuerpo » Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:23 am

jeff_lindqvist wrote:I found this a while ago:
100 English and Chinese Conversation Topics


Great topics to get the conversation going. I like the questions based on the language proficiency level.

Q: Who came up with these conversation topics?
A: Carl Gene Fordham
From the website, Carl Gene Fordham is a doctoral candidate at Peking University, China, and recipient of the Ph.D. in China Fellowship as part of the New Sinology Program provided by the Confucius Institute.

I can picture myself using some of these topics in an open question format. It can be use in a social gather, in a classroom setting chatting with other fellow students, or at a party to encourage exchange with others in a target language.
This is a keeper.
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