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How to learn a language

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31. Posted by Cupcake (Travel Guru 8468 posts) 11y

I envy that man....I find it to be very difficult. :(
I also never realized what a terrible accent I have..more of the local slang I guess...but I slip into all the time..

32. Posted by mtlgal (Full Member 1179 posts) 11y

Quoting CupCake

I envy that man....I find it to be very difficult. :(
I also never realized what a terrible accent I have..more of the local slang I guess...but I slip into all the time..

CC, if you want to modify your accent, consult a speech pathologist who specializes in accent reduction. For several hundred to several thousand dollars, we can garantee at least 50% reduction of your accent.

33. Posted by Cupcake (Travel Guru 8468 posts) 11y

LOL! Actually that is what my husband first went to school for...and true story..One of the girls in his class(from South Africa)..when she had her first clinic's at a local grade school was freaking out! She thought ALL the children had a speech impediment! ;)
(We talk funny up here)

34. Posted by noemagosa (Full Member 355 posts) 11y

Helloooo!! HEy, I haven't been in here for a while and those threads are sooo interesting!! I'm a total language freak, and I have a question for you Mtlgal:

If, let say, someone learned many languages as a child... Does it make it easier to learn OTHER languages without a strong accent?

35. Posted by noemagosa (Full Member 355 posts) 11y

... and I forgot to say... I am learning portuguese (not big deal, being very similar to Spanish and Italian...) and I enjoy listening to the radio online, I strongly encourage you to do this to anyone who wants to have a different language in the ears!!

36. Posted by mtlgal (Full Member 1179 posts) 11y

Quoting noemagosa

Helloooo!! HEy, I haven't been in here for a while and those threads are sooo interesting!! I'm a total language freak, and I have a question for you Mtlgal:

If, let say, someone learned many languages as a child... Does it make it easier to learn OTHER languages without a strong accent?

It may, depending on how closely related these languages are phonetically. For instance, if you speak English and Spanish since childhood and you want to learn French as an adult, chances are you'll find it much easier to learn to speak French than if you only spoke English or only spoke Spanish, because French resembles English in some aspects and Spanish in others. However, knowing English and/or Spanish won't help you learn Chinese, because the Chinese phonetic system is too different. So in this case it doesn't really matter whether you speak only English, only Spanish, or both. However, this is true only if you compare WITHIN the person. If you compare ACROSS persons, then having an accent or not depends more on a) how old you are when you learn the language, and b) how talented you are at learning accents, than on how many languages you already speak. Like I said before, typically (but not always) if you start learning a language after early adolescence, chances are you will have an accent, no matter how subtle it is. I hope I'm explaining this clearly.

37. Posted by cikusang (Respected Member 1361 posts) 11y

If, let say, someone learned many languages as a child... Does it make it easier to learn OTHER languages without a strong accent?

It depends on individual's capability as in the view of early-childhood education. But my experience told me that it's better for toddlers to start learning 2-3 languages first and be at least very good in one of the languages as this is important for his/her self-confidence in his/her future's growing circle. Don't come up with too many languages as some of these languages may not be that frequently use which may lead to their inner-confusion. Mtgal has touched a good point regarding phonetic system such as Chinese and English.

Chinese is totally categorized in the group of 'Chinese' and English is categorized in Germanic Branch while French is in Romance Branch, originally from Latin. So, decoding different lingua in different groups is never been an easy task for everyone especially learning second language and foreign languages. There's a fact where mother-tougue language and second or foreign language are stored in different parts of our brain. Meaning the process and methodology of decoding these little codes would be slightly different.

In short, stick to your mother-tongue first and let toddlers and elder kids being comfortable with it while, as it necessary would be, learning another language according to each ability - building their self-esteem and share with them the enthusiasm and aesthetism of learning a language : communication comes first!

38. Posted by Phoebeus (First Time Poster 1 posts) 11y

I would like to learn some italian, and have ordered a $70 "pack" which includes like 8-60min. cd's and a 500 page book. I live in nebraska, so there is no one else around here that speaks it, however I have a girl that was here for awhile, that I fell in love with, and she lives in italy and next summer I am wanting to go and visit. Do you think my path or learning is ok, based on my surroundings?

39. Posted by noemagosa (Full Member 355 posts) 11y

Hey Phoebus,

I'm sure your package will help you get started.

When I learned Italian, the teacher was far from being great, but I was so motivated (I wanted to visit Italy) and I was doing so much extra homework (reading magazines about Italy -Bell'Italia-, writting to my Italian pen-friend, listening to the radio online etc...) that I could tell everyone I learned the language by myself!

Actually, the best teacher to learn any language is your motivation, whichever are the tools!!

Have fun. Language freak to-be!!

40. Posted by galka_mak (Full Member 169 posts) 11y


The European Commission has just announced an agreement whereby English will be the official language of the European Union rather than German, which was the other possibility. As part of the negotiations, the British Government conceded that English spelling had some room for improvement and has accepted a 5-year phase-in plan that would become known as "Euro-English". In the first year, "s" will replace the soft "c". Sertainly, this will make the sivil servants jump with joy. The hard "c" will be dropped in favour of "k". This should klear up konfusion, and keyboards kan have one less letter.There will be growing publik enthusiasm in the sekond year when the troublesome "ph" will be replaced with "f". This will make words like fotograf 20% shorter.In the 3rd year, publik akseptanse of the new spelling kan be expekted to reach the stage where more komplikated changes are possible. Governments will enkourage the removal of double letters which have always ben a deterent to akurate speling. Also, al wil agre that the horibl mes of the silent "e" in the languag is disgrasful and it should go away. By the 4th yer, people wil be reseptiv to steps such as replasing "th" with "z" and "w" with "v". During ze fifz yer, ze unesesary "o" kan be dropd from vords kontaining "ou" and after ziz fifz yer, ve vil hav a reil sensibl riten styl. Zer vil be no mor trubl or difikultis and evrivun vil find it ezi tu understand ech oza. Ze drem of a united urop vil finali kum tru. Und efter ze fifz yer, ve vil al be speking German like zey vunted in ze forst plas.If zis mad you smil, pleas pas on to oza pepl