Bayrisch: eine Sprache oder einfach ein Deutsch-Dialekt?

Es ist fast drei Wochen her, seit ich zum ersten Mal in München angekommen, und habe noch nie so glücklich gewesen, und was hab ich gelernt? Ganz viel. Erstens habe ich gelernt, das es gibt viele Sprachen, die hier in München gesprochen sind. Nicht nur Hochdeutsch, aber sondern auch Bayrisch, eine besondere Sprache, die wie Deutsch klingt, sondern hat seinen eigenen Charakter. Bayrisch und Deutsch hab viel in gemein, aber haben sie auch viele verschiedene. Zum bespiel, in Deutsch sagt man “Wie geht´s dir?” und in Bayrisch sagt man “Via ged’s eana?”. Wenn man sie schreibt und ausspricht, haben sie ein wenig in gemein, aber es gibt auch ein paar verschiedene zwischen die zwei Sprachen.

Oft wenn man durch Bayern fahren, sondern auf dem Land, kann man mehr Bayrisch hören. Hier kann man die verschiedene zwischen Deutsch und Bayrisch bemerken, sondern die verschiedene zwsichen wörter wie “Hallo” und “Servus”. Jeder weiß dass “servus” ist wie man in Ungarn “hallo” sag, aber es hat fast nicht in gemain mit die Deutsche Sprache. Andere bepsiele wie “Alles gute zum Geburtstag” und “Ois Guade” auch schlägt außerdem vor, bayerischer und Deutsch verschiedene Sprachen sind.

Seit ich in München wohne, habe ich bemerkt, dass es eine starke Betonung der bayerischen Kultur. Oft wenn Auslander über Deutchland denkt, denkt man über Biergarten, Lederhosen, Brezel und so weiter. Aber in wirklichkeit, gibt diese Traditionen sind in der Tat bayerisch.

Bekanntlich, dass nicht jemand Bayrisch sprechen können, aber ich hab es immer gehört, wann ich in die Stadt gehen, und finde ich sehr schön. Dazu hier kann man hochdeutsch und auch ein bisschen bayrisch lernen! Daran gibt es keinen Zweifel, dass die Bayrische Sprache sehr scchwierig ist, sondern wenn man nur hochdeutsch versteht. Ich hoffe, eines Tages, zum ein bisschen mehr Bayrisch lernen,

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Warum ich Deutsch lernte

Oft wann ich auf diese Blog schreibe,schreibe ich oft wie viel ich die Deutsche Sprache liebe. Und heute werde ich endlich erklären warum und wie ich Deutsch gelernt habe. Seit ich ein Kind war, habe ich viel Sprachen in das Haus meiner Eltern gehört, nicht nur Englisch. Zum Beispiel, Swahili, Afrikaans, Deutsch, und auch ein bisschen Französisch in der Schule. Aber ich habe mich in die Deutsche Sprache verliebt.

Ich wollte schon immer Deutsch lernen aber ich hatte nie die Zeit. Als ich 16 war, War ich mehr mit andere Spachen besessen: Russisch, Schwedisch, Irisch zum Beispiel. Aber Deutsch immer mein Lieblingssprache. In 2013, begann ich an der Universität zu studieren. Dort habe so viele Deutsche Leute getroffen. Sie haben mich inspiriert, Deutsch zu lernen. Die beste Freundin meiner Mutter eine Deutsche Schriftstellerin ist, darum habe ich meine ganze Leben Deutsch gehört. Sie schreibt oft Thrillers aber leider habe ich nur eines ihrer Bücher gelesen. Aber wann ich mehr Zeit habe, werd ich mehr ihrer Bücher lesen, so ich kann mein Deutsch verbessern.

Germanic_languages_in_Europe

Germanischen Sprachen Europas

Die Deutsche Sprache in die Polyglot Gemeinschaft sehr beliebt ist, und ich verstehe warum. Deutsch ist offensichtlich eine Germanische Sprache und ist eng mit anderen Germanischen Sprachen verbunden. Also für die Leute, die Germanischen Sprachen sprechen (Englisch, Niederländisch, Afrikaans, und Nordischen Sprachen) Deutsch kann oft leicht zu lernen erscheinen. Natürlich, Deutsch ist nicht wie schwer als Asiatische Sprachen, aber die Grammatik ist auf jeden Fall nicht einfach.

Also diesen Blog zu beenden, wie ihr seist, ich habe ein langer Weg mit meinem Deutsch zu gehen, aber ich bin sehr aufgeregt. Deutsch hat so viele Türen für mich geöffnet und hat auch mir so viele neue Möglichkeiten gegeben, Ich hoffe in der Zukunft, mehr fließend zu werden, denn die Deutsche Sprache ist ein sehr witchtiger Teil meines Lebens.

 

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Why Irish (Gaeilge) is far from dead.

As I am in my final term of university, my language learning has taken a much bigger dip that I anticipated. However, that doesn’t mean that I have abandoned language learning entirely. I have often been reading vast amounts of foreign literature and practising my conversational skills with my multilingual friends. After a particularly stressful term, I decided to visit a friend in Dublin for a few days and I encountered something I never thought possible.

Often when someone mentions that Ireland has it’s own language, most people assume one they’re talking about the accent. This is simply not true. Ireland in fact has two official languages; English and Irish, otherwise known Gaeilge. The Irish language is the first official language of the Republic of Ireland and is also the only Celtic language that is an official language of the European Union. It has been a part of Ireland’s history for centuries and despite some decline, it is making quite a comeback. The Irish language started to go into some decline over the century; resulting in a severe decline in the number of speakers. Most speakers ere confined to the west coast of Ireland which came to be known as the Gaeltacht due to the high number of Irish speakers. Despite this decline however, the Irish has made a surprising comeback in recent years and now more and more people in Ireland are becoming bilingual.

My trip to Dublin showed me that Irish is all around you, wherever you go. As one walks through Dublin airport, one is greeted by signs such as Railu Pasana, or passport control, which immediately give the impression that Irish is as prominent today as it ever was. Walking through the high street I heard various conversations in Irish, as well as in Coffee shops, restaurants and even Tesco! Nearly every sign I encountered was either bilingual or simply in Irish.  A particular time I shan’t forget was during a visit to an establishment called the Gaelchulter, which is an establishment in Dublin which offers lessons in the Irish language as well as a vast array of language learning resources.

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Even the bookshops were bilingual.

 

As soon as I had entered the establishment I greeted the receptionist with a simple ‘Dia dhuit’ to which she naturally responded ‘dia is muire dhuit’. This is of course the standard greeting in Irish and whilst I have some conversational skills in Irish, I was mostly at a loss as to what to say as the staff refused to speak English. Suddenly a miracle happened as I found out that the staff also spoke German which meant that we could easily converse without the need for English! This experience made me wonder as to whether Irish really is on the rise.

Though there an increasing number of Gaelscoileanna (Irish-medium schools), students in English-medium schools are also required to study Gaeilge right through to the end of their Leaving Certificate. This of course means that even if you ask someone ‘An bhfuil Gaeilge agat?’ which literally translates to ‘do you have Irish?’, it is now rather unlikely that there will be anyone who won’t be able to at least speak a little bit of Irish. I have high hopes for this beautiful and mysterious language and I truly believe that the number of speakers will continue to increase, despite the years of decline.

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Setting yourself language learning goals

So it’s been almost a year since I last updated my blog due to my university and academic commitments, However I successfully managed to achieve a 2:1 in my exams and so far this summer I have dived straight back into my language learning despite months of neglect. Though the past year was without formal language learning, that does not mean that I did not speak various languages with my international friends on a daily basis nor doe sit mean that I have given up on my language learning altogether.

Picking up where I left off

As some of you  may remember in a previous post on whether it was more beneficial to focus primarily on one language rather than several, I mentioned that the language I was going to solely focus on Was German. Well, despite neglecting my language learning, I kept true to my word and have focused solely on learning and improving my German over the last year. Since writing the previous post, my German began at a low A1-A1 level on the European Framework and is now bridging the hap between B1-B2. This means that after months of focusing on German, I am starting to be able to interact with German speakers with a much higher degree of fluency and Spontaneity than when I first started. However there is still always room for improvement20150707_173837.

Setting yourself goals

Many people learn languages for many different reasons. Some learn it for academic reasons, some for personal, and some even learn languages for fun. I myself have studied languages for many reasons, albeit primarily for fun. Over the course of my language learning journey, I have started to see the benefits of setting yourself goals. Firstly, it’s important to know why you are learning said language: academic, personal or fun? Once you know why you are learning a particular language, it becomes easier to set yourself goals based on your purposes.

If your purpose for learning a language is simply to interact with native speakers as you would with speakers of your mother language, your goal may be to obtain as much speaking practice as possible. Sometimes this is easier said than done as most people would think that the only way to do this would be to fly to a country in which the language you’re learning is spoken. However, thanks to modern technology and social-networking websites such as Italki, it has become much easier to connect with and practice your newly learned language with native speakers. If this is your purpose, then a good goal to set yourself would be to perhaps study your set language for an hour day and perhaps arrange a language exchange with your teacher. This way you’re bound to put your newly learned vocabulary to use and your teacher will help correct you if need be.

If your goal is to become comfortable with reading the language then you may not necessarily require a teacher. As Alex Rawlings discusses in his lecture on improving reading and comprehension , ‘reading is culture’. This is true as almost all culture’s across the world have a rich history of literature that they are proud of. Reading is a fantastic way to see your target language written and used as it should be, rather than written down in some obscene beginners textbook with phrases like ‘Der Mann isst den Apfel’. Reading can help you to understand complex grammar structures, learn advanced vocabulary and even help you to improve your cultural knowledge. In terms of what goals to set yourself when learning a language in order to read, it’s important to know what you want to read. Whether that be understanding and comprehending classic novels such as Die Verwandlug (Metamorphosis) by Franz Kafka or even to read a well know book series in your target language that you may have already read in English, such as Harry Potter or Der Herr der Ringe (The lord of the rings).  A good place to start when learning to read in a foreign language would be acquire yourself a dictionary in order to quickly look up vocabulary. It may also be beneficial to obtain a course book in order to give yourself a small understanding of the language. However it’s important to know that you do not need to understand every word in order to read, nor do you need to attempt to read quickly. A good method would be to perhaps set yourself a little time each day in which you will read one or two pages of a book in your target languages, writing down the vocabulary that you are unfamiliar with. that way once you learn the vocabulary and go back to reading, you’ll understand what it means and will thus begin to slowly understand what you are reading.

My own language goals

As I have already mentioned in this post, my current focus is

Setting yourself goals in language learning helps you to focus

Setting yourself goals in language learning helps you to focus

on learning and improving my German and I have set myself a goal. I am currently teaching myself German using ‘Teach Yourself German’ as well as speaking it as often as I can. I have also begun reading books and novels in German as I am particularly fond of reading, especially in a foreign language.  Once I begin to feel that I more than comfortable enough and proficient enough in German, I plan to take the C1/C2 for German at the Goethe-Institut in London. This certificate would allow me to prove to possible future employers that I am qualified in said language and that I am able to converse almost effortlessly in German without difficulty. It is also possible that there will be a future blog post written entirely in German in which I discuss my experiences learning German! In addition to this, German is not the only language I am currently learning. Recently I have taken it upon myself to study at least 100 words a day in Hungarian using the Colloquial Hungarian course on Memrise. This however is primary for fun as Hungarian is noted as being one of the most difficult languages  and it is rather enjoyable learning such a beautiful and exotic language.

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How to fit language learning into your busy schedule

Hello again! I know it has been a while since I have posted anything sadly my laptop crashed during the summer and I was too busy working to get it fixed. But it is fixed now, and I’m back in Lincoln for my 2nd year of university. As all the work I do this year counts towards my degree, I must focus on my work in order to hopefully achieve a 2:1, or a 1st if I’m lucky. As a result of this, I feel my language learning will take a huge slide as I concentrate on my degree and not on learning languages. However, I have found ways of fitting language learning into my busy life, a skill I picked up whilst studying for my A-levels. This blog post will aim to help you fit language learning into your busy schedule, and my own personal experience of balancing both work and language learning.

Finding time for language learning 53c98b12a383c.image

One of the main problems we have is that we barely find the time to do the things that we really enjoy. Whether that be reading, spending time with loved ones or making time for our favourite hobbies. Whilst I was studying for my A2 exams, I knew that they would take up my time, but I could also find time for language learning. The best way to find time for language learning is to write out a schedule of what you plan to do each day and in each day make time for language learning. Whether that be sixty, thirty or even fifteen minutes! Just as long as you’re making time each day. It doesn’t matter if you’re studying the language intensely or not, all that matters is that you’re making language learning part of your busy life.

Effective learning methods

Now I shall talk about the language learning methods that I have found the most effective when having to balance my work life and language learning, and different techniques for language learners of different levels.

  • Beginner language learners: We’ve all been there, each time we decide to learn a new language we always start out as a beginner. But how does one learn a new language and make time for it? Well, there are a few ways in which this can be done if you are a beginner. Firstly: invest in a language course book, preferably one with audio, these can be found on Amazon and most high street book shops for a reasonably cheap price. Once you have one, try reading a page or two each morning while commuting to work or on your break. If you have the audio, it would also be worth syncing them onto your Ipod or mp3 player and listening to the dialogues, so you can get more exposure to the spoken language  Secondly, it may also be worth downloading language learning apps on your smart phone. Apps such as Duolingo or Memrise are great vocabulary learning apps. Try doing this whenever you have a few moments to yourself, you’ll really notice how a little learning each day can go a long way.
  • Intermediate language learners: Now you’re at the stage where you can understand basic expressions, you can maybe talk about a few various topics and you know quite a bit of vocabulary. But just because the language you’e learning starts to become difficult, doesn’t mean that it has to get in the way of your busy life. A good way to start taking your language to a far more advanced level if you are an intermediate learner would be to start listening to songs, radio broadcasts or pod-casts in the language you are learning. This could be done while commuting to work, walking around town or even cleaning around the house. The benefits of this is that your ears become exposed to the normal rate of speech in the language as well as a more colloquial register. When it comes to using the language, obviously if you have friends or co-workers who speak the language then practice shouldn’t be an issue. But if that’s not the case, the internet is a fantastic tool for meeting fellow language learners and teachers from around the world. A good method would be to set aside time each week, maybe an hour, to simply chat with the person who is helping you to learn the language you’re learning. This way you’re getting yourself more immersed in the spoken language which is always a good thing! This will not take up a lot of your time, but it will help you to improve your knowledge of the language. Which in the long run, will me all the more beneficial.
  • Advanced language learners: Finally, you’ve made it to the stage where you can perhaps read and understand most texts in the language you’re learning, and you can even sing along to the songs and understand the lyrics. But you still want to keep learning the language and make time for it whenever possible. As I myself am an advanced language learner, I shall offer on to you my personal experience of how to learning a language at an advanced level without it taking too much of your time. A method I have found useful is to read literature in your target language. On the bus to work and on my break I would often read a few pages from ‘der Vorleser’ by Bernard Schlink. This way I am exposing myself to much more vocabulary whilst being able to read and understand enough vocabulary to be able to understand the story.

Other useful tips

Another technique I have found rather effective in my language learning is to mentally translate everything around you. Whether this be conversations you hear on the bus, street signs or even buildings. For example, you could be on the bus on your way to work or school and you see a church, so if you were learning German you’d say ‘die Kirche’ or if you were learning Swedish you’d say ‘Kyrkan’. This is a method I have found particularly useful as I am trying to make my own language learning environment without it taking up too much of my time.

In addition to this, it is also important to make use of ‘dead time’ in your schedule. Language learning doesn’t just have to be intense, you don’t just have to be in a classroom studying the language. Another method which is just as useful and far less time consuming is to learn the language in what is known as ‘dead time’. What I mean by this is the time in which you’re not really doing much such as commuting to and from work or cleaning around the house. A good way to make good use of this time would be to maybe find a radio station in your target language and just have it on in the background. Even if you don’t understand every word you’re still getting exposure to the language. The same goes for listening to music in your target language. Song lyrics are easier to remember as they’re in a rhythm. If you start to remember song lyrics in your target language, you’ll start to notice your pronunciation will improve as well as your level of vocabulary!

But will this work?

Language learning takes time and perseverance. There is no secret formula which will make you fluent in a language overnight. Obviously the dream would be to move to the country where your target language is spoken which of course is always beneficial. However, this isn’t always easy. This is why I decided to write this post as I myself have financial difficulties sometimes restraining me foreign travel. Nevertheless I don’t let it get in the way of my language learning, hence why I offer the same skills I have learned which have helped me in my language learning journey. So in the long run, even the tiniest bit of study can be hugely beneficial in your language learning journey.

 

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One language or many?

Welcome back! First of all before we begin this post I’d like to apologise for my absence and lack of posts over the past few months. Unfortunately my work load increased so my time was mostly occupied with studying and revising in the library. However, I am all finished now, and can finally get back to language learning.

During my first year at university, I met many people who also spoke several languages or enjoyed language learning. I have made friends from Brazil, Portugal, Canada, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Poland, Russia and many other countries. I have also met people who have also studied languages, either out of interest or at school. The languages I seem to speak the most often nowadays are either German or Swedish. As a result of speaking these two languages most often, I am afraid my level in my other languages has somewhat slipped. This got me thinking, is it more beneficial to become proficient or even ‘fluent’ in one language?  Or should I continue to switch between various languages?

My initial plan this summer was to learn an entirely new languages, something along the lines of Arabic or Hindi. I then decided that the best thing to do would be to focus on one language, and only one. And that language is German. Whilst Swedish was the first foreign language I managed to teach myself and learn to a pretty high level, I feel German would be the most beneficial for me. I say this because ever since I can remember, I found German history fascinating and have always wanted to learn more about German culture. I began to study German around sometime last year and now I am having regular conversations on various topics. However, I am still very far away from being able to call myself ‘fluent’.

This brings me onto the main topic of today’s post, Is one language better than multiple languages?. Of course there are those such as Timothy Doner, Alex Rawlings or Richard Simcott who have learned multiple languages to extremely high levels of proficiency. And these people are idols to me, as they prove that language learning does not have to be a chore. I started down the path of language learning wanting to learn as many languages as I possibly could. Nowadays I only want to focus on one. When I ask myself whether one language would be better than multiple languages, I ask myself “which language would be the most beneficial to me?”. I have chosen to focus on German because I believe that it is the language which will the most beneficial for me and my chosen career. As Germany is the economic heart of Europe and the UK’s largest trading partner, it is my opinion that German would be the most useful for me. This may not be the case for everyone however, many of my friends are deciding to learn languages such as Spanish or Mandarin Chinese due to the number of speakers. Whereas other people are choosing to learn Russian due to recent events. Whatever the case may be, I think that if one wishes to study a language, try and choose one that either interests you, or would be beneficial. I am not saying that people shouldn’t learn multiple languages, it is certainly possible. I can speak five languages to varying degrees of fluency. However, because I am not using all of these languages on a regular basis, I am starting to forget them. 

Finally, the ‘one language or many’ debate is one that I believe only you can answer. Personally I have come to realise that I’d prefer quality over quantity, but that might not be for everyone. If there are people out there who wish to study multiple languages and can become fluent in them, then they have all my respect and admiration. If someone wishes to focus on one language and try their hardest to become fluent in that language then they also have my respect and admiration. Language learning is not easy, but it can be done by anyone. I do plan to learn other languages when I have the time, but currently my focus is German, and I can see it being my main focus for the foreseeable future. 

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Too Much information (TMI tag)

Although this is completely unrelated to language learning, I thought I’d doe the TMI quiz as my readers probably don’t know that much about me. Hope you enjoy reading!

1: What are you wearing?

I am I wearing blue jeans and a striped rugby shirt

2: Ever been in love?

Yes

3: Ever had a terrible breakup?

Only once, but that was quite a while ago

4: How tall are you?

Just about 6ft

5: How much do you weigh?

Around 14st last time I checked

6: Any tattoos?

Nope

7: Any piercings?

Nope

8: OTP?

Ross and Rachel

9: Favourite show?

Sherlock, Doctor Who, Friends, Breaking Bad

10: Favourite bands?

Pink Floyd, Muse, Coldplay, The Smiths, Queen

11: Something you miss? .

My cat

12: Favorite song?

Comfortably Numb – Pink Floyd

13: How old are you?

I am 19 years old

14: Zodiac sign?

Aquarius

15: Quality you look for in a partner?

Someone who has a wide variety on interests

16: Favourite Quote?

’tis but a scratch – Monty Python and the Holy Grail

17: Favourite actor?

Sir Patrick Stewart

18: Favourite colour?

Blue

19: Loud music or soft?

Depends on what mood I am in

20: Where do you go when you’re sad?

Into the world of whatever book I am reading

21: How long does it take you to shower?

Less than 5 minutes I think

22: How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?

It can range from about 20 seconds to an hour, depending on how much time I have

23: Ever been in a physical fight?

Nope

24: Turn on?

Humour

25: Turn off?

Lack of intelligence

26: The reason I started blogging?

I wanted to encourage other people to learn languages whilst documenting my own language learning experiences

27: Fears?

Wasps, they are the minions of Satan

28: Last thing that made you cry?

Probably after I watched the Doctor Who episode where David Tennant regenerates into Matt Smith

29: Last time you said you loved someone?

Most likely last night, I tend to say odd things to people when I am drunk

30: Meaning behind your blogger Name?

Well I am currently a student at the University of Lincoln, and I am also a polyglot.

31: Last book you read?

The Downing Street Years – Margaret Thatcher

32: The book you’re currently reading?

The first in the Game of Thrones series

33: Last show you watched?

Breaking Bad

34: Last person you talked to?

My flatmate

35: The relationship between you and the person you last texted?

A very close friend from university, we often help each other to learn languages

36: Favorite food?

My mother’s Lasagne

37: Place you want to visit?

Germany

38: Last place you were?

In my kitchen with my flatmates

39: Do you have a crush?

That’s classified

40: Last time you kissed someone?

Probably last night, I tend to kiss people when I am drunk. I am a happy drunk.

41: Last time you were insulted?

I can’t actually remember

42: Favourite flavour of sweet?

Lemon

43: What instruments do you play??

I used to play the piano

44: Favourite piece of jewellery?

Don’t really have one to be honest

45: Last sport you played?

Does gym count?

46: Last song you sang?

Kan ek met jou dans – Straatligkinders

47: Favourite chat up line?

Hey, are you sat on F5? Cos that ass is refreshing

48: Have you ever used it?

Of course not

49: Last time you hung out with anyone?

About an hour ago

50: Who should answer these questions next? 

Anyone who enjoys reading my blog is welcome to answer these questions!

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Memory techniques in language learning

Welcome back! I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas and New Years, and have now settled back into everyday life. Upon coming back to university following the Christmas break, I found myself visiting the library on a daily basis in order to complete the three assignments I had due in. Nonetheless, they are now all complete and I can finally get back to writing my blog! 

I thought as this is the first post of the new year, I would write about something quite unique. Not just in language learning, but in everyday life. This is of course, memories, and the use of memory when it comes to learning new things. As a self-taught polyglot capable of conversing in roughly six languages, I am often asked by people how I do it. Do I have an eidetic memory? Or am I just supremely intelligent? The answer, I am neither. The reason why I cam able to learn languages quickly and retain vast quantities of foreign vocabulary is through the use of various memory techniques, which I will now explain. 

Many people will tell you that the best way to remember something is through repetition.Whilst this is of course very useful, there are other techniques which have been proved to be more effective. Firstly, let’s talk about the use of associative memory. .This is a particularly useful memory technique when it comes to language learning, and more especially when it comes to learning foreign scripts. As some of you may recall, last year i wrote a blog post and my experiences with learning Hebrew in which I mention that I used the associative technique in order to memorise the script. The way this technique works is by using the ability of human memory to associate certain things with a different concept in order to help them remember them. For example, I associated the Hebrew letter ‘lamed’ ל, with a bolt of lightning as it sort of looks like bolt of lightning. As a result, I have memorized each Hebrew letter simply my associating each one with a different concept. The best thing about this technique is that you can associate foreign vocabulary or scripts with absolutely anything you want, in fact, the more imaginative the association the better! We can use our imaginations to conjure up so many things, so why not use to help you to learn a language? 

The second memory technique I’d like to talk about is the visual technique. As many of you may know, there are three types of learners. That is auditory, visual, and kinaesthetic. Auditory learning refers to when someone learns best by listening, visual learning is when one learns best by visualizing the information, and kinaesthetic learning is when one learns best by engaging in practical activity. Today we are going to focus on the visual technique. This technique is very similar to the associative technique, as in one remembers a concept by visualising something associated with it. I feel this technique is best used to help one learn and retain foreign vocabulary which may at first see difficult, or even impossible to learn as it doesn’t look or sound like anything we’ve heard before. For example, the German word for ‘speed limit’ is geschwindigkeitsbegrenzung, now, at first this word looks rather daunting and almost impossible to try and remember. However, a good way to help visually memorise a word like this would be place it perhaps with a picture of speed limit sing, that way you’ll remember that it translates into ‘speed limit’ because you’ll see the picture.

The final technique I am going to talk about is one that I use in order to learn languages, and it combines the above two techniques as well as the use of spacial memory. How many times in your life have you forgotten someone’s address, yet you know where their house is. Or the times in which you have forgotten the name of the street where the shop you want to go is called you you know how to get there. This is called ‘Spacial memory’, as we often remember locations better than we do names or numbers. Now to business, for those of you who watch Sherlock, you’ll most likely be familiar with the term ‘mind palace’ This is a technique used by Sherlock in which he stores information by storing it in an imaginary location. I decided to research this technique, and found that it was in fact used by the Ancient Roman and Greek scholars as a method of memorising vast quantities of information. The way this method works is simple: Firstly, imagine a location that is familiar to you, such as your house (I use my university library). Secondly, design a route through your mind palace, try to picture each room as it is, then proceed to the next room. It’s always better to follow the same route through your mind palace as it will be easier to remember things. Finally, this is when we bring in the use of the first two techniques. For each word, concept or anything you want to remember, it’s best to associate it with something memorable, once that is done, place it in a room in your mind palace. As I mentioned earlier, I associated the Hebrew letter ‘Lamedל with a lightning bolt. Now let;s imagine we’re walking though the door of our mind palace and we see a strip of lightning across the door which then takes the shape of the Hebrew letter. We can now remember it simply by using our mind palace. Much like the previous techniques, this technique works best with the use of imagination as the more creative we can be when designing our mind palace and how we store the information we need, the more we will remember in the future. 

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Slutet av min första termin

Så, är detta blogginlägg kommer att vara helt på svenska. Men varför? Man kan fraga. Tja, har min tid på universitetet lärde mig så mycket på så lite tid! Jag har gjort så många bra vänner, och jag ska saknar dem över jul. Även om jag inte har haft tid att lära sig nya språk, har jag haft gott om förutsättningarna för att öva mina nuvarande språken med mina nya internationella vänner, därav varför denna blogg är på svenska!

Bara för att det är dags juletid, betyder inte att det inte finns något arbete att göra! Jag har fortfarande att skriva tre 2000 ord uppdragen som är beror i början av januari, så jag måste verkligen få mitt huvud ner om jag vill ha kul över jul. Jag är inte riktigt säker på vad mer att skriva om nu! Förutom att jag är redo att ta itu med mina uppdragen.

Så det här är mitt sista inlägg på året! Jag har haft ett underbart år, och en underbar första termin på universitetet. Jag har gjort underbara vänner och jag hoppas att de har en god jul och ett gott nytt år! Så detta är det från mig för nu, hoppas jag att du har alla haft mina blogginlägg. Många fler kommer nästa år! Hej då!

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Current language plans and university commitments

As I am now at university, I barely have time to breathe with the level of reading I am required to do as part of my course. The past weeks have been spent in the library until the early hours of the morning, complimented by an almost infinite amount of redbull, making sure all my assignments are up to date. Unfortunately, this has affected my language learning commitments quite severely. However, I have not stopped using my languages. I have made many international friends, I have had the chance to speak Swedish, German, Dutch and even improve some Portuguese. Meeting people from all around the world has also inspired me to learn their languages, such as Farsi or Russian.

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The add1challenge

I would first like to apologize to those who also follow my YouTube account for my lack of videos regarding the +1challenge. The truth is, my book to learn Hungarian never arrived, and I have not had the time to commit myself to learning an entirely new language, hence why I have had to pull out. I am deeply saddened by this, but I do want to wish all of those still doing the +1challenge the best of luck, and I hope you all succeed in your language studies! My good friend Brian kwong has inspired many people to be a part of this challenge, and I also wish him the best of luck in his language studies.

Is this the end?

No, this is my no means the end of my language learning. I don’t spend hours in the library working on the same thing as this is not recommended. I normally study for an hour or so, then I decide to go back and improve my current languages, and then I go back to university study. After seeing how well I communicate with people in my languages, I have deduced that I am able to communicate at a high conversational level in both Swedish and Afrikaans. So I still try to speak these languages on a daily basis, but improving them is not a priority at the moment.

German

Ever since I can remember, Germany has always fascinated me. The culture, the history, the language, and now the German economy. My grandparents have always encouraged me to learn German, and i took it upon myself to do so. I managed to get my level for to between and A1 – A2 level on the European Framework, but unfortunately I never took German at school, ad I rarely got a chance to practice it. This however has changed, I have decided to dedicate sometime to learning GCSE then A-level German, and i am hoping to reach a much higher level by this time next year. What are my reasons for this? Well I have made a very good friends who is from Germany, and so far we have spoken mostly in German (despite my appalling level) but this has inspired me to learn more and become more comfortable in German.

Hebrew 

Some of you may remember that before the summer, I had begun to learn Hebrew. I successfully managed to study for an hour day for three months, and i managed to reach past the beginners level of a language. I have recently taken up Hebrew again, because I have actually never enjoyed learning a language more than I enjoy learning Hebrew.  Many people are put off by Hebrew mainly due to the fact that it’s script is written backwards, and that the alphabet does not include vowels. I overcame this obstacle, and discovered that Hebrew is a surprisingly straightforward language to learn. I am hoping to reach a highly conversational level in Hebrew by the summer next year. I will try to achieve this my going back to my routine of studying for a maximum of an hour a day, whilst also studying for my assignments.

Conclusion

I am currently studying for a degree in International Relations and politics, and I believe that languages truly compliment my course. My tutor has also recommended that we all learn a new language. I want to go into politics when I am older, particularly in the foreign office or in foreign relations.  I want to make sure my languages become much more than just a hobby, and they are. I read somewhere that one language sets you in a corridor for life, but two languages open every door along the way.

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