Compelling Input + Beginner + LCTL = Frustration!!

Ask specific questions about your target languages. Beginner questions welcome!
User avatar
RyanSmallwood
Orange Belt
Posts: 106
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 12:15 pm
Languages: Native: English
x 324

Re: Compelling Input + Beginner + LCTL = Frustration!!

Postby RyanSmallwood » Mon Oct 18, 2021 12:17 pm

Not sure about "compelling" but if you're looking for comprehensible input, one of my favorite resources is to Use FSI courses, but use a program like audacity with the truncate silence feature to remove the pauses and turn the drills into input, you get tons of variation on very simple sentences and it really helps grammatical features "click" on a more intuitive level for me.
2 x

mjb1971
White Belt
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Apr 26, 2020 9:28 am
Languages: English (N), French (B1 Reading), Spanish (B1 Reading), German (B1 Reading), Korean (B2 Reading), Chinese (A1 Reading), Japanese (A1 Reading)
x 4

Re: Compelling Input + Beginner + LCTL = Frustration!!

Postby mjb1971 » Mon Oct 18, 2021 1:17 pm

Deinonysus wrote:I guess this is kind of a combination of a material suggestion and a methodology suggestion, so I hope it's okay.

Your personal definition of "compelling" might be different from mine, but there are generally three types of native material that I consume at the beginner level:
  • Children's books (preferably original books in the language)
  • News headlines
  • Songs



Interesting note that you found just the news headlines useful. Any details on how you used this practice? I can see it gives a much better pace than trying to fight with entire articles.
0 x

User avatar
Deinonysus
Brown Belt
Posts: 1064
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2016 6:06 pm
Location: MA, USA
Languages:  
• Native: English
• Advanced: French
• Intermediate: German,
   Spanish
• Beginner: Italian,
   Hebrew, Arabic
x 3813

Re: Compelling Input + Beginner + LCTL = Frustration!!

Postby Deinonysus » Mon Oct 18, 2021 1:34 pm

mjb1971 wrote:
Deinonysus wrote:I guess this is kind of a combination of a material suggestion and a methodology suggestion, so I hope it's okay.

Your personal definition of "compelling" might be different from mine, but there are generally three types of native material that I consume at the beginner level:
  • Children's books (preferably original books in the language)
  • News headlines
  • Songs

Interesting note that you found just the news headlines useful. Any details on how you used this practice? I can see it gives a much better pace than trying to fight with entire articles.

Yes, trying to read a full news article at the beginner level would be frustrating. I don't bother actually clicking on the articles until the intermediate level.

News headlines will usually have the names of familiar people or places, so combined with your known basic vocabulary you can generally figure out roughly what an article is about. If the article also has a picture, that will give you more clues. Identifying familiar proper nouns is great practice for languages with a different script. I also find that it's very satisfying to be able to even partially decode headlines aimed at native speakers about events that are relevant to them.
6 x
Corrections welcomed!

Die Liebe liebt das Wandern, Gott hat sie so gemacht.

User avatar
iguanamon
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2071
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2015 11:14 am
Location: Virgin Islands
Languages: Speaks: English (Native); Spanish (C2); Portuguese (C2); Haitian Creole (C1); Ladino/Djudeo-espanyol (C1); Lesser Antilles French Creole (B2)
Studies: Catalan
Language Log: viewtopic.php?t=797
x 11628

Re: Compelling Input + Beginner + LCTL = Frustration!!

Postby iguanamon » Mon Oct 18, 2021 5:43 pm

Here are some headlines from GlobalVoices.org Amharic and the same in English:
GlobalVoices.org Amharic wrote:የአርቲስት ሀጫሉ ሁንዴሳ ግድያ እንዴት ነውጥ ቀሰቀሰ (ክፍል አንድ)
ግምቶች በረዥም ጊዜ የብሔር ውጥረቶች ላይ ተመሥርተው ይራገቡ ጀመር | How the murder of musician Hachalu Hundessa incited violence in Ethiopia: Part I Speculation began to fly amid long-standing ethnic and political tensions | የቭየትናም አዲሱ የመረጃ መረብ ደህንነት ህግ የንግግር ነፃነትን የሚደፈጥጥና የንግድ እንቅስቃሴን የሚያውክ ነው | Vietnam’s new Cybersecurity Law could further undermine free speech and disrupt businesses | በማዳጋስካር ፕሬዝዳንታዊ ምርጫ ውስጥ የሚወዳደሩት ዋነኞቹ እጩዎች እነማን ናቸው? | Who are the main candidates in Madagascar's presidential election?

When I was a beginner in Haitian Creole, in addition to my course material, I would try to make out tweets in the language. They were short, topical and relevant. Their length was short enough that it wouldn't kill my soul. There were words I knew from my course and others I didn't know which I could look up in my dictionary and then parse the meaning of the tweet.

I also used the Bible, a modern version printed in 1990, for short verses in Genesis- with which I am very familiar. Of course, Christianity in Ethiopia is ancient and I don't know how modern the wording is in Amharic, so it may not be such a good choice for you. You can see for yourself. Short verses from modern songs and modern poetry can be useful as well. Even subtitle files (.srt) can be downloaded and easily viewed in ms notepad. Although, obviously, I don't know if this is possible for Amharic. Government pamphlets designed for Amharic speaking immigrants in the West can also be quite useful at this stage.

Gradually, you will start to build vocabulary and, over time, grammar too. When you move into intermediate territory, you can try to read the articles. In this stage, a human-made translation or original can be used in a parallel text to confirm guesses or as a quick glance to even find the rough meaning of a word in context (which may be different from it's meaning outside of the context).
3 x

Lawyer&Mom
Blue Belt
Posts: 669
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2018 6:08 am
Languages: English (N), German (B2), French (B1)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=7786
x 2028

Re: Compelling Input + Beginner + LCTL = Frustration!!

Postby Lawyer&Mom » Mon Oct 18, 2021 7:20 pm

Faith Comes By Hearing has several Amharic New Testaments in modern translation, including audio, text and video. Simple language and very easy to make parallel texts.
2 x
Le Francais Par La Methode Nature
18/50
: 18 / 50

Clozemaster French Fluency Fast Track Sentences Mastered 883/19,949
: 883 / 19949


Return to “Practical Questions and Advice”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest