Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Continue or start your personal language log here, including logs for challenge participants
MattNeilsen
Orange Belt
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:32 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Languages: English (N)
Hebrew (studying - beginner)
Spanish (passive, beginner)
Mandarin (mostly forgotten)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=8869
x 183

Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby MattNeilsen » Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:53 pm

Hi friends,

I've been lurking on LLORG and HTLAL for about a month and decided it would be a good idea to start a log to chronicle my language-learning journey. Some background about me:

I'm 29 years old, male, and live in the Bay Area of California. I've had exposure to two languages while in school: Spanish and Mandarin. At this point, my Spanish is very rusty and my Mandarin is almost non-existent, though I'm definitely interested in getting back to them at some point. However, this log will focus on my journey to learn Modern Hebrew.

I decided to start learning Hebrew about 3 weeks ago (edit: see post #23 for more background), a language that I have had essentially zero exposure to. I started with Gabe Wyner's Discount Bundle #2 (Pronunciation Trainer, Word List, and language learning video). I've been using Anki to work through the Pronunciation Trainer, and I've also been using an app called Drops to learn the alphabet. Additionally, I picked up a book called A Practical Introduction to Phonetics to help understand phonemes/phonology. It's very important to me to have excellent pronunciation from the beginning.

At this point, I've worked through the Pronunciation Trainer and most of my cards are getting to the month+ range for review. I am going to start inputting vocab into Anki based on the 625 word-list I have from Gabe Wyner. I've also started incorporating Duolingo, Clozemaster, and Mondly as I'm able (thanks to Expugnator for the suggestion in his log).

Another resource I'm using is an interlinear Old Testament that I've had for years**. I used to be a very religious Christian and have a degree in Biblical Studies, so I think using the Old/New Testament is a good choice for Listening-Reading work since I already have several books of the Bible memorized (in English). I love literature and am very intrigued by incorporating the L-R Method into my study as soon as I'm able.
**I stopped using the interlinear OT due to the difference in grammar (see posts #7 & 8 - thanks to Deinonysus for the heads-up).

Other resources:

My fiance is Jewish and speaks some Hebrew. We also have a good friend who speaks English/Arabic(Egyptian)/Hebrew fluently. Lastly, I have access to Pimsleur Hebrew Level 1-3.

I also have a Hebrew grammar book called Ha-Yesod: Fundamentals of Hebrew. I've been using the lessons at TeachMeHebrew to get a basic overview until I can start using Ha-Yesod (היסוד).

####

I've noticed there aren't many Hebrew speakers on the forum, which is quite understandable. However, I'd love to hear from anyone who has learned and/or is learning the language! I'm totally open to suggestions for resources, learning strategies, corrections, etc.

ETA: 8/30/18 - I will keep a running list of updates/edits below.

-Matt

Updated List of Resources:

Miscellaneous:
LLORG Hebrew Resources - An excellent compilation of resources by zenmonkey
Pealim - This is mentioned in the "LLORG Hebrew Resources" thread, but it deserves special attention since it's so helpful (full conjugations of verbs)
GLOSS - Thanks to iguanamon and IronMike for bringing GLOSS to my attention. I just looked at it briefly, and I think it will be a good resource once I'm a late beginner (maybe ~A2ish).
Teach Me Hebrew - This website deserves separate attention as well. Lots of great resources here, including: Anki Decks for first 500 words, 100 Verbs, Phrases, etc.; Top 10,000 Word Frequency List; short stories with parallel translation + audio; dialogues; great grammar primer; song recommendations

Books
Crime and Punishment
***Note to self: Look up Miki Ben-Dor’s blog once I can read more fluently (~B1); also work by Yuval Noah Harari (author of Sapiens)

Audiobooks:
http://listen.bible.is – New Testament translation (including audio) in Hebrew (thanks to Lawyer&Mom)
iCast - Great selection of audiobooks in Hebrew
LibriVox - Audiobooks in the public domain that are read by volunteers

YouTube videos:
Easy Hebrew - This is a short 5-part series, but the videos are good quality, 3-5 minutes each, and have accurate subtitles!
Rechov SumSum - Rechov SumSum is the Hebrew version of Sesame Street (thanks to @StringerBell for the suggestion). It's quite excellent - there is a TON of basic vocab and it's spoken at non-breakneck speeds.
כאן גרים בכיף - Excellent comedy series about a family with three boys (w/ subtitles) (thanks @cjareck)
היהודים באים - These are gags from Jewish history (w/ subtitles) (thanks @cjareck)
צבצה יונתן - A film about the rescue of hostages in Entebbe. (thanks @cjareck)

TV Shows:
http://www.israelfilmcenterstream.org/ - This is a monthly subscription streaming site for Israeli TV and movies for US viewers (thanks again to Lawyer&Mom)
https://hackinghebrew.wordpress.com/201 ... tv-online/ - List of resources that you can use to watch Israeli TV
Srugim - Available for free on Amazon Prime with English subtitles; Hebrew subtitles are available at here for Seasons 1 & 2; also, a very funny website that provides recaps of each episode (Seasons 2 & 3 only) can be found at Srugim Recap
Fauda
Mossad101
When Heroes Fly (בשבילה הגיבורים עפים) - recommended by an Israeli friend
Shababnikim
Shtisel
Kipat Barzel
Hatufim - Seasons 1 & 2 here **I haven't tried watching this yet - looks like you need to sign up via that link
Arab Labor - Seasons 1-4 here **I haven't tried watching this yet - looks like you need to sign up via that link
Ramzor (Traffic Light) - Seasons 1-4 here **I haven't tried watching this yet - looks like you need to sign up via that link

Radio
https://www.kan.org.il/ - Lots of saved shows to choose from - talk shows, music, news, etc.
https://glz.co.il/%D7%92%D7%9C%D7%A6 - Called Army Radio or Galei Tzahal, also known as Galatz; news, music, traffic, music, etc.
https://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/hebrew - More news

Podcasts
Making History - Over 200 episodes with audio + transcription; topics include history, science and techonology
Streetwise Hebrew - Slang, idioms, and colloqiual expressions are discussed to help the listener understand how Hebrew is currently spoken

Articles
Sha'arLaMatchil - Several years worth of newspaper editions with audio + transcripts
Strength Training for People My Age - Strength training article in English & Hebrew
10 Winds, 50 Languages - Short articles with parallel translations in 50 languages

Writing Practice
HelloTalk - Desktop/app for chatting with natives
Lang-8 - Post in the TL and have natives correct your writing

------

Completed Materials
-Drops app - Letters
-Clozemaster 1-100 Most Common Words: 647 / 647
-Pimsleur Level 1: 30 / 30
-Srugim Season 1: 15 / 15
-Srugim Season 2: 15 / 15
Last edited by MattNeilsen on Fri Oct 26, 2018 1:22 am, edited 41 times in total.
9 x
Hebrew
Pimsleur Level 2: 21 / 30
FSI : 3 / 40
Clozemaster 101-500 Most Common Words: 1600 / 4825
Srugim Season 3: 1 / 15
1100 hours of study/input : 160 / 1100

User avatar
cjareck
Blue Belt
Posts: 525
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2017 6:11 pm
Location: Poland
Languages: Polish (N) English, German, Russian(B1?) French (B1?), Hebrew(B1?), Arabic(A2?)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=8589
x 852
Contact:

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby cjareck » Tue Aug 21, 2018 6:41 am

I learn Hebrew also. Have you checked the resources list on this forum? There are some interesting and powerful tools. I use mostly FSI Hebrew Basic Course and copy its drills into Anki.
0 x
Please feel free to correct me in any language
FSI Hebrew Basic Course
: 39 / 40

Avigdor Kahalani, עז 77 (Heigths of Courage)
: 18 / 200


DLI MSA Basic Course
: 11 / 140
Polish course Arabic for beginners
: 3 / 40

MattNeilsen
Orange Belt
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:32 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Languages: English (N)
Hebrew (studying - beginner)
Spanish (passive, beginner)
Mandarin (mostly forgotten)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=8869
x 183

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby MattNeilsen » Tue Aug 21, 2018 11:40 pm

cjareck wrote:I learn Hebrew also. Have you checked the resources list on this forum? There are some interesting and powerful tools. I use mostly FSI Hebrew Basic Course and copy its drills into Anki.


Thanks for the reminder. I saw that list when I first found LLORG, but I forgot about some of the resources. I'll take a closer look tonight to see about adding other tools to my daily cadence.

I was going to use FSI but I heard from several people that the language was outdated. However, I really liked the phonology primer in the PDF, and it's probably still worth it to go through the audio for the practice. If you don't mind me asking, do you have an overall strategy for how you're learning Hebrew? Is it similar to how you've learned other languages?

My current strategy is best captured by a post from smallwhite:
Pronunciation -> Grammar overview -> Vocabulary -> Reading -> Listening -> Grammar drills -> Output
0 x
Hebrew
Pimsleur Level 2: 21 / 30
FSI : 3 / 40
Clozemaster 101-500 Most Common Words: 1600 / 4825
Srugim Season 3: 1 / 15
1100 hours of study/input : 160 / 1100

User avatar
cjareck
Blue Belt
Posts: 525
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2017 6:11 pm
Location: Poland
Languages: Polish (N) English, German, Russian(B1?) French (B1?), Hebrew(B1?), Arabic(A2?)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=8589
x 852
Contact:

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby cjareck » Wed Aug 22, 2018 6:45 pm

MattNeilsen wrote:I was going to use FSI but I heard from several people that the language was outdated. However, I really liked the phonology primer in the PDF, and it's probably still worth it to go through the audio for the practice. If you don't mind me asking, do you have an overall strategy for how you're learning Hebrew? Is it similar to how you've learned other languages?

I do not care that much about outdated language since I want to read books and documents about Israeli Wars, mostly Suez Crisis and Yom Kippur War. So some are written in a more outdated language then the FSI Course ;)
MattNeilsen wrote:My current strategy is best captured by a post from smallwhite:
Pronunciation -> Grammar overview -> Vocabulary -> Reading -> Listening -> Grammar drills -> Output

My strategy is very simple - drills from FSI into Anki + some military vocabulary and "Learning with texts". Unfortunately, I do not have much time, so my learning is not the very best example...
0 x
Please feel free to correct me in any language
FSI Hebrew Basic Course
: 39 / 40

Avigdor Kahalani, עז 77 (Heigths of Courage)
: 18 / 200


DLI MSA Basic Course
: 11 / 140
Polish course Arabic for beginners
: 3 / 40

MattNeilsen
Orange Belt
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:32 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Languages: English (N)
Hebrew (studying - beginner)
Spanish (passive, beginner)
Mandarin (mostly forgotten)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=8869
x 183

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby MattNeilsen » Thu Aug 23, 2018 5:46 pm

If anyone is interested in using Pimsleur Hebrew - and lives in the US - then I highly recommend checking out your local library. I had no idea that many libraries purchase portions and/or the full levels of Pimsleur. My local library had Lessons 1-8 of Level 1, and I've found the full Levels 2 & 3 available for download at other libraries across the country. Might as well take advantage of our tax dollars at work :)

---------------

Progress continues to be consistent in Hebrew. I'm in a good daily rhythm: Anki reviews in the morning, Duolingo/Mondly/Clozemaster throughout the day during breaks, and create new Anki cards at night. I'm going to start listening to lessons 1-8 in Pimsleur so I can catch up with my fiance, and then we'll start listening to it together.

I'm still figuring out the best way to create Anki cards. The format I've tentatively landed on is to have the front include the audio, a picture, and I have to type in what I hear. The back includes the English translation, Hebrew spelling (with niqqud), audio (again), and notes about gender (male/female - I also include a mnemonic for each) and part of speech (noun, adverb, preposition, etc.).

I've set it up this way for a reason. For each card, I initially close my eyes so I can only hear the audio, which will hopefully help with Listening Comprehension. I try to mentally spell the word, even if I can't remember what it means. If I can't figure out the word from just the audio, then I look at the picture and type in how to spell it. I find that typing in the spelling helps a lot with memory. (I should probably mention that I do all my Anki reviews on my iPhone using the app)
1 x
Hebrew
Pimsleur Level 2: 21 / 30
FSI : 3 / 40
Clozemaster 101-500 Most Common Words: 1600 / 4825
Srugim Season 3: 1 / 15
1100 hours of study/input : 160 / 1100

MattNeilsen
Orange Belt
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:32 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Languages: English (N)
Hebrew (studying - beginner)
Spanish (passive, beginner)
Mandarin (mostly forgotten)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=8869
x 183

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby MattNeilsen » Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:59 pm

I started Pimsleur Hebrew today and did Lesson 1. I remain uncertain of how to pronounce the "r" (reish) sound. Sometimes it sounds like an alveolar trill (like the Spanish "r"), sometimes it sounds like a voiced uvular fricative (like the French "r"), and I swear sometimes it sounds like an "l" (especially at the end of words). I really need to meet up with someone in person to help make the distinction clearer.

I'm going to try to keep a rough count of the hours spent language-learning so I have some numbers to look back on later. Time today includes:

Pimsleur - 60 mins
Anki reviews - 20 minutes
Duolingo/Mondly/Clozemaster - 30 minutes

To date, I would guess I've averaged 45 minutes a day in actual Hebrew practice, so let's put the total at 22.5 hours + 1.9 hours = 24.4 hours.

ETA: Did another round of Pimsleur in the evening.
Last edited by MattNeilsen on Sat Aug 25, 2018 7:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
1 x
Hebrew
Pimsleur Level 2: 21 / 30
FSI : 3 / 40
Clozemaster 101-500 Most Common Words: 1600 / 4825
Srugim Season 3: 1 / 15
1100 hours of study/input : 160 / 1100

User avatar
Deinonysus
Blue Belt
Posts: 554
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2016 6:06 pm
Location: Boston
Languages:  
• Native: English
• Advanced: French,
   German
• Intermediate:
   Esperanto
• Beginner: Icelandic,
   Italian, Hebrew,
   Japanese, Spanish,
   Danish, Indonesian
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=7581
x 1506

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby Deinonysus » Sat Aug 25, 2018 12:40 am

MattNeilsen wrote:I started Pimsleur Hebrew today and did Lesson 1. I remain uncertain of how to pronounce the "r" (reish) sound. Sometimes it sounds like an alveolar trill (like the Spanish "r"), sometimes it sounds like a voiced uvular fricative (like the French "r"), and I swear sometimes it sounds like an "l" (especially at the end of words). I really need to meet up with someone in person to help make the distinction clearer.

I'm going to try to keep a rough count of the hours spent language-learning so I have some numbers to look back on later. Time today includes:

Pimsleur - 30 mins
Anki reviews - 20 minutes
Duolingo/Mondly/Clozemaster - 30 minutes

To date, I would guess I've averaged 45 minutes a day in actual Hebrew practice, so let's put the total at 22.5 hours + 1.2 hours = 23.7 hours.

The Hebrew 'r' is like the French 'r' but a bit lower in the throat and less phlegmy. If you hear a trill it's a uvular trill, not aveolar. You might hear an aveolar trill from an old-timey announcer but not in Pimsleur. I agree on final "r" sounding a bit like "l", although it may have just been a weird quirk of the Pimsleur recordings. I don't ever remember mistaking "r" and "l" sounds when listening to Israelis in person.

Also, you're probably aware of this but don't get confused between Modern and Biblical Hebrew grammar. There are some major differences.

Best of luck!
1 x
Diné Bizaad
: 3 / 21 Conversational Navajo Workbook
: 2 / 32 Rosetta Stone Navajo

MattNeilsen
Orange Belt
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:32 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Languages: English (N)
Hebrew (studying - beginner)
Spanish (passive, beginner)
Mandarin (mostly forgotten)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=8869
x 183

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby MattNeilsen » Sat Aug 25, 2018 8:00 pm

Deinonysus wrote:The Hebrew 'r' is like the French 'r' but a bit lower in the throat and less phlegmy. If you hear a trill it's a uvular trill, not aveolar. You might hear an aveolar trill from an old-timey announcer but not in Pimsleur. I agree on final "r" sounding a bit like "l", although it may have just been a weird quirk of the Pimsleur recordings. I don't ever remember mistaking "r" and "l" sounds when listening to Israelis in person.

Also, you're probably aware of this but don't get confused between Modern and Biblical Hebrew grammar. There are some major differences.

Best of luck!


This is helpful, thanks. Coincidentally, I met an Israeli this morning while training in the park and he was kind enough to make some of the distinctions for me. Sounds like I simply need to spend a lot more time working on my pronunciation. In particular, I need to reduce the phlegmy/breathy aspect that currently mars my speaking.

I wasn't aware of the extent of the differences in grammar (and pronunciation) between BH and MH. I spent some time reading articles last night to learn more about them and asked a couple questions of my Israeli acquaintance this morning. As a result, I'm a little more hesitant about using my interlinear Bible with audio for L-R practice. Perhaps I'll look more seriously into Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter.

-----

In other news:

I'm really enjoying Pimsleur and Duolingo and Anki, so I think I'll stick with those for now (and Mondly when the opportunity arises). I still like Clozemaster, but I'm finding it a little too advanced for me at the moment. I'll come back to it in a few weeks and reassess.
1 x
Hebrew
Pimsleur Level 2: 21 / 30
FSI : 3 / 40
Clozemaster 101-500 Most Common Words: 1600 / 4825
Srugim Season 3: 1 / 15
1100 hours of study/input : 160 / 1100

Lawyer&Mom
Green Belt
Posts: 434
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 1137

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby Lawyer&Mom » Sat Aug 25, 2018 8:25 pm

http://www.israelfilmcenterstream.org/

This is a monthly subscription streaming site for Israeli TV and movies for US viewers. They have some great content. (Everyone needs to watch Srugim!)

English subtitles can be turned on or off. I don’t remember if they have Hebrew subtitles.
0 x

MattNeilsen
Orange Belt
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:32 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Languages: English (N)
Hebrew (studying - beginner)
Spanish (passive, beginner)
Mandarin (mostly forgotten)
Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... php?t=8869
x 183

Re: Matt Neilsen's Hebrew Log

Postby MattNeilsen » Sat Aug 25, 2018 11:44 pm

Lawyer&Mom wrote:http://www.israelfilmcenterstream.org/

This is a monthly subscription streaming site for Israeli TV and movies for US viewers. They have some great content. (Everyone needs to watch Srugim!)

English subtitles can be turned on or off. I don’t remember if they have Hebrew subtitles.


Thanks for the link! I'm going to have a nice list of resources in no time :)

This might be a strange and/or dumb question, but does anyone have recommendations for material that's only available in Israel? My fiance's best friend will be visiting us from Israel in a few months for our wedding, and I'm sure he would bring something if I asked (books, local music, audiobooks, etc.).

Said another way: if you were to go to Israel, what would you want to bring back to help with language learning?
0 x
Hebrew
Pimsleur Level 2: 21 / 30
FSI : 3 / 40
Clozemaster 101-500 Most Common Words: 1600 / 4825
Srugim Season 3: 1 / 15
1100 hours of study/input : 160 / 1100


Return to “Language logs”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests