Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Took a break!

Had a little family vacation... had no time for language whatsoever. I might not have even spoken much ENGLISH - it was all a blur.

Some updates:
My "friends" at Learn French By Podcast are suspiciously silent again. Lesson 64 was back on 5/30... Perhaps this is some holiday interval I'm not aware of... But I miss their teachin' ways.

I'm back in the saddle with Pimsleur: Just finished Level 1 Lesson 29 in Mandarin, and Level 3 lesson 4 in Japanese: I'm doing them simultaneously - my few weeks of alternating asian languages by week was sort of a bust - I need to keep all of them in active rotation or there's just too much "where was I?" catching up.

It is very interesting to see where we get to in each language by this "Level 1" point in Pimsleur: In the Spanish and German, there was lots of talk about directions, family members, and dining/social events. The same basic template is used for different languages - the same core subjects - but there are different FOCUSES. I think we were half-way through Level II before any other language addressed a tense other than present, but in Mandarin, we're deep into past, present, and future tenses: Perhaps it's because the verbs require no conjugation, and tenses are constructed like lego blocks with particles... it's easier, so they give it right up front.

In Japanese, as we go we get more formal: While we may be using "kimasu" for "to come" in level 1, by level 2, it was always "irashaimasu", the superpolite form. I love going to JapanesePod because they give you the polite and superpolite forms, but also the informal ones (which I will probably never be able to use without offending someone).

And that's the story of the day.

No comments: