The Language Thread!

I’m the same way, and this was especially a problem for me in elementary, middle, and high school. I prefer to be presented with new information in a very concrete matter, whether visually or verbally, and study and memorize it that way. I hated all of the games and activities we did in class. I’m too introverted to learn while interacting with others.

That its such an interesting thread!!

I took france classes on school for six years & while I love the language, I dont remember a thing except from how I introduced myself.

I’am not really that into on foreign languages personaly but we need them very much.

[name_f]My[/name_f] mother language is Greek so of course i’am fluent on Greek since I live there. I have a degree on English language (lower) but i’am still terrible on conversation in English (and i’am sure on writing too :stuck_out_tongue: ) .

I also study latin the last two yrs on high school & I hate them with passion. That language was just not for me.

I never really consider teaching myself because well, I never thought that as an option. Here in Greece we pay teachers to learn us. But that didnt work for me on many cases & it was a waste of time.

I would love to learn Spanish in the near future & I want to finally masterpiece my English. I want to work on a consulate so I really need them.

Everybody is different, I have some kids in my class when we are nearing exams who like me to interact with them and then I have some students who plug themselves into their phone or IPod and listen to music whilst reading a textbook. It works for some people and for others it doesn’t. I normally teach a certain class for four periods a week and I normally split it 50/50 into more interactive learning like playing educational games and then more textbook based and more study based, most of my students seem to really enjoy it and thrive under that system. Although, sometimes it’s necessary to do more textbook based work.

That was exactly how I felt! I think there has been a lot more focus in recent times on engaging kids who don’t learn in the ‘traditional’ ways, extroverted kids and those who love learning socially and with lots of songs and games, especially in language lessons. We didn’t get this so much in, say, maths or geography. Which is great for those kids, but then you’ve got a new problem where all of the children who would have preferred the ‘dry, old-fashioned’ approach just feel a bit anxious and not at all engaged. It would be great if they could separate classes into different learning styles rather than trying to make all the children learn in the same way.

I remember once in [name_m]French[/name_m] when I was 11 we were singing a song about farm animals, we had to sing different verses in groups when the teacher pointed to us and so on, we could only see pictures so it was about learning the names of the animals. I wasn’t singing, because I just couldn’t see the point, I already knew the words and singing them was not fun or helpful for me. The teacher assumed I had not bothered to learn the vocabulary. She made me sing the whole song by myself, of course I knew every single word and did sing it, but I went bright red and it was excruciating. It’s funny how these things stick with you. I know the teacher didn’t mean to upset me and I guess I wasn’t doing the set task, but punishment via humiliation was probably not the best way to go.

Yes, our lessons were not dissimilar to that. It’s the fairest approach, for sure, so that every student has the opportunity to learn for at least half the lesson. It would be better in my opinion if groups of different learning styles could be taught separately, where a student like me could have had maybe 25% group work and 75% independent work (after all we do all need to learn how to work with others, I don’t deny that). But obviously the logistics of that would be insane. So I know that teachers generally do the best they can to help all their students. [name_m]French[/name_m] lessons were often the worst for me, though, after drama, because there was so much fun, fun, fun.

[name_f]Edit[/name_f]: You probably also won’t actually be aware of it when your introverted students are feeling uncomfortable or anxious (or simply bored), not at all to the same degree you would be aware of your extroverted students getting bored. We are quite good at hiding this, and in my experience tend to be the quiet, compliant children who do as they are told and don’t make a fuss about it (well, usually).

@jackal: I wish there was a way that I could offer all my students the type of teaching that best fits them but sadly we have to kind of go with the majority and the majority of students work well with more active learning. I do try it give my students the opportunity to work on their own if they want to and will gladly let some of my older students go into an empty classroom across the hall or nearby and on occasion the library.

I find it quite interesting how students who maybe thrive better with class involvement really get the subject that was taught that day but when it’s what I call “single study” or “textbook learning” that they normally don’t understand it quite as well and the more introverted students are the opposite. Not always the case but it does become a bit of a pattern.

@[name_f]Molly[/name_f] - That makes sense. Generally speaking, extroverts are action-oriented and learn and process new information through interaction with others. Silent learning bores them, whereas an introvert will thrive off of it. Throughout school, my classes had a tendency to get rowdy when there was a lot of interaction. I found it impossible to concentrate in that kind of setting because socializing is so physically draining for me.

ETA: I’m starting to feel like we need a learning styles thread.

[name_f]My[/name_f] mother tongue is Spanish. I started learning English when I was in elementary school. It was very had for me (as I was back and forth between two countries) and I was put in the [name_f]ELL[/name_f] program (and I didn’t get out until grade 9). [name_f]My[/name_f] father is American so he knew his english, but he fell in love the Dominican Republic country and adopted the language. [name_f]My[/name_f] mother is Dominican and [name_m]French[/name_m]. She speaks both languages fluently but Spanish is spoken more often. Plus we haven’t been in contact with our family from [name_f]France[/name_f] in a long time, so that has cost me to lose it. I can barely understand it now. If I have the time to learn a language it would be [name_m]French[/name_m]. But it would be great to learn Cambodian (my best friend is Cambodian), Korean (because we have an obsession with K-pop), Italian, Portuguese (I feel like I can quickly pick this up, once I was listening in on a conversation between two boys who were speaking Portuguese, and I could easily understand what they where saying, even words that I wasn’t unsure, I could make an educated guess, and it came out right, thanks google translate!), and Arabic.

[name_f]My[/name_f] first language is English, but I’ve really been trying to learn [name_m]French[/name_m], [name_m]German[/name_m] and Italian through Duolingo. I made it fairly far in [name_m]French[/name_m] and [name_m]German[/name_m], but I found that the words weren’t sticking. I think the issue was that I rushed through lessons, and instead of letting the language really stick in my head, I would use Google Translate when I got stuck. So I reset the languages on the app, and am starting over again in all three. While I recognize words from before, I’m taking the time to take notes and write down the grammatical rules (I didn’t understand the difference in der, die, and das until very recently).

I took about a years worth of Spanish in high school, but once I completed the class, I lost most (if not all) of my language skills. I think the issue was that I wasn’t terribly interested in Spanish. [name_f]My[/name_f] school offered [name_m]German[/name_m] and Chinese as well, but I was unable to get into the [name_m]German[/name_m] classes when I needed them. The Spanish base has helped a bit when learning [name_m]French[/name_m] and Italian, but there are still a lot of obstacles.

Good luck everybody with their studies!

[name_f]My[/name_f] main language is English and I have been trying to teach myself Spanish a for a while. I took it for two years while I was in high school and I know a little bit, also in school I took some Japanese and I remember a tiny bit of that. I can also speak some Maori as pretty much every kid in [name_m]New[/name_m] Zealand learns that when they first start school. I would really love to be able to speak Maori fluently as it is one of our official languages and it’s pretty ingrained in our day to day life so one day I make just start to learn it again.

Have any of you other [name_m]French[/name_m] learners heard of (or used?) the program Frantastique? I discovered it when I was looking for a free [name_m]French[/name_m] app, and a little while ago they gave me a free 30-day trial, in hopes that it’d get me to buy their program, and I really loved it, but I wasn’t sure I wanted to spend money on it. It’s nice because it has videos in [name_m]French[/name_m] (I was so proud of the first one I understood, just listening to the whole thing!), so it helps me with improving my audio understanding, but I’m trying to decide if it’s worth investing in. I feel like I need something to keep me engaged, now that I’ve gone through the whole [name_m]French[/name_m] portion of duolingo…

Maybe someone has answered this, I haven’t read all of the posts (really wish the multi-quote worked!).

Locally, there are some schools with Spanish immersion. Definitely not many but some.


I took three years of Spanish and still remember some of it. I tend to remember more if I’m having a short conversation with one of my high school aged cousins, who are currently in Spanish. I also remember some of it when I hear the simpler words being spoken. I also know a little bit of Russian, which was taught to me by a Russian friend of mine way back in middle school.

I will be starting a Pimsleur program soon. I can’t say what it is because it’s the language of where I’m adopting my daughter from but from what I can tell, no one has mentioned it here. It’s an Eastern European language.

I used to be conversational in [name_m]German[/name_m], but unfortunately I’ve lost a lot of it since I stopped learning :frowning: I can still get by (when I was in Germany recently it was a great chance to brush up a bit) but I’m definitely nowhere near as good as I was!
I also learned [name_m]French[/name_m] for five years and was good at it too (languages were my favourite subjects and my best subjects in high school) but I have lost SO much of it! :frowning: Keep up with constant speaking/learning/reading is my advice - it slips away fast!
I learned Australian Sign Language at primary school because my school took in some deaf children while I was there. I loved it, and I can still remember quite a lot of it.

I know a little [name_m]French[/name_m], a little Spanish, a tiny bit of Italian, and I’m vaguely trying to teach myself Esperanto using Google Translate. Mi ne komprenas= I don’t understand.

@raevynstar Have you tried lernu.net for Esperanto? Their courses are fab and it’s a really useful resource.

No, I might check it out though. Thank you. :slight_smile:

What a nice thread!

I love languages. [name_f]My[/name_f] family is very mixed and I went to International School so I’ve always been exposed to many different ones. [name_f]My[/name_f] mother tongue is Norwegian; I’m also fluent in English and Spanish. I understand Swedish and Danish as they are very similar to Norwegian.

I’d love to learn Russian or maybe even Arabic someday :slight_smile:

[name_f]My[/name_f] first language is English, but I’m pretty reading/writing proficient in Spanish after taking all the Spanish classes in my high school- I’m actually looking to major or minor in Spanish and college :slight_smile: i tried to learn [name_m]French[/name_m], but I couldn’t find the time to commit to it!

I know the basics of both Japanese and Italian. I’d love to learn more Italian and Russian - but unfortunately, it seems I’m just not one for languages other than English sigh

Good luck to everyone else though!

I’ve just spent a wonderful week in [name_u]Paris[/name_u] taking a pretty intensive language course. [name_f]My[/name_f] advice for learning a language at this very moment: if you want to become fluent - fling money at it. A girl I met had spent an additional week in [name_u]Paris[/name_u] to take an extra course and just in that week alone she went from high school graduate level to near fluent and I thought she’d spent years in [name_f]France[/name_f]…