Back to the Beginning

Some time ago, I decided to learn Polish.  There were a couple of reasons for this.  I always liked Slavic languages, have some Polish connections, and it seemed like the most logical choice (Latin alphabet, pretty good resources for English speakers, and a fairly good amount of English cognates as far as Slavic languages are concerned).  Well, I forgot how hard it was to be at a beginner level!  From having reached a decent level in German, and not really “studying” the language anymore, it feels like a step back having to re-learn basic vocabulary.

Right now, part of the struggle is trying to make sure I don’t get too frustrated that I stop.  Of course, nothing worth doing ever comes easily.  But wow do I wish there were some quick fix solution.  As much as I hate doing it, actual vocab lists are critical for me at this point.  I can’t really access native material yet, because I’m such a new beginner, so it would be difficult for me to really learn through context.  One good point though:  it makes me realize just how far along I’ve come in my German.

In theory, I should become comfortable with Polish much sooner than I did with German.  In German, it took months before I could listen and not have to translate immediately in my head.  I never actually understood the concept of a case until years later, when I finally decided I was tired of speaking incorrectly.  I had to actually sit down and write out translations literally before it finally “clicked.”  I’m sure in the future I will write a post about my experience learning German.  Hopefully, now that I have some language learning experience, it won’t require that much time with Polish. At least as far as cases are concerned, I’m one step further than I was.  Just about every multilingual person I know, especially those who learned their languages as adults, all say that it is much easier the more you learn.  So far that’s certainly true, although I still really don’t have a “method” to learning Polish.  I’m still doing the same thing in following a textbook and listening to recordings.  For me, this is familiar (and I actually do think it’s helpful), but I wonder if there is something more I should be thinking of to learn more quickly.

 

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1 Comment

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One response to “Back to the Beginning

  1. Tom

    Hi,

    If you want any help from Polish native to your Polish study, let me know 🙂 We can help each other with our native language :-). Ideally as a language helper as is described here http://www.everydaylanguagelearner.com/2010/12/26/a-language-helper/

    I’m still looking for a serious help for my English journey, so if you are interested in, send me a email.

    All the best
    Tom

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