What has learning languages taught you? | General discussion | Forum

What has learning languages taught you? | General discussion | Forum

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What has learning languages taught you?
February 7, 2012
21:30
Ryan
Johannesburg, South Africa

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Other than the language hahawink

 

I'll start by saying it has taught me that if you don't put in the effort, you'll never reap the benefits

Native :  Learning (In School) : Learning (Advanced Beginner/Intermediate) :
February 7, 2012
22:19
Enigmagico
São Paulo / Brasil

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February 3, 2012
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I'd say "pretty much everything I know" – but that's too much a vague and cliché answer.

 

Learning langugages is the single best thing I've ever done in my life. Without learning English, which was my first, I'd never had become a professional on my area. Would never have gotten the college degree that allowed me to travel to many different countries and meeting a bazillion of the greatest people to ever live.

 

Everything good that happened to me is a direct, albeit fractalized, result of me one day deciding I'd devour those english books when I was about 13.

 

I' experiencing all the awe over and over again now I'm on a Deutsch Mission. It feels so good, especially because I know it'll open as many doors as learning English, Spanish and knowing a bit of French and Italian has.

"Credo Quia Absurdum Est"
http://www.Enigmagico.com.br
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Fluent: Brazillian Portuguese Spanish US English Learning: Fluent German Basic: Italian France Soon: Finnish Chinese
February 8, 2012
01:10
Randybvain
Cheltenham, UK

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I know that I can learn everything I can talent for without an effort and I have to put much effort into the things in which I am miserable, but this doesn't mean that I shouldn't try do my best and give up to the satisfaction of those who do nothing.

Native: Polski | Fluent: English Cymraeg  Français | Elementary and beginner: LATĪNVM Русский
I learned also a bit: Ελληνική γλώσσα Словѣньскъ Gaeilge I would like to learn: Català Deutsch Lietuvių 官话 Kaszëbsczi jãzëk
Polska strona języka walijskiego

The Minstrel's Glade

February 8, 2012
05:55
logie100
New Zealand

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For me, its taught me self-discipline. Earlier last year , I made myself watch one 10 minute video in German, and one in Spanish, per day. I've been consistent, and it has definitly payed off. With this determination, and seeing progress in my language skills, I decided to run a mile everyday, about 2 months ago, and I have also stuck with that and seen results :)

Native: English (New Zealand English) Advanced: Spanish (Latin American Spanish) High Beginner: German                         Indonesian
February 8, 2012
09:42
Enigmagico
São Paulo / Brasil

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February 3, 2012
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Consistency indeed does show!

 

I read my pocket German book everyday, no matter what - At least one chapter but usually 3 (2 "new" [it`s my 5t consecutive run on the book] and one revised from the previous day). I make myself no excuses at all - the "no time" thing is stupidly inexistent - I'm a busy guy, but not THAT busy, and that is a lesson to everyone: there is always time if you really want to do something.

 

Now I've started actually writing in German, aswell. I'm impressed of how freely, although limited by vocabulary I can express myself without being too repetitive or using "standards" I've learned on boks and courses. I'm actually learning how words are formed, which led me to expand my vocabulary by spontaneously learnming  terms like selbstgelehrt  (self-taught), which a word I had no idea even existed until I needed to use it and, by pure and simple logic I knew that even if said word did not exist, I wasn't absolutely wrong. I checked a dictionary and for my absolute awe I was correct.

It is starting to feel like the whole German thing is finally starting to make natural sense in my brain, in a way that, at times, I don't even need to think about it anymore, it just plain flows.

It's a wonderful feeling.

"Credo Quia Absurdum Est"
http://www.Enigmagico.com.br
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Fluent: Brazillian Portuguese Spanish US English Learning: Fluent German Basic: Italian France Soon: Finnish Chinese
February 9, 2012
02:01
logie100
New Zealand

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It is starting to feel like the whole German thing is finally starting to make natural sense in my brain, in a way that, at times, I don't even need to think about it anymore, it just plain flows.

 

This happens to me a lot, and it is an awesome feeling!

I think what is happening is that you have heard the word in context before, and when you are searching for the correct word/phrase, that just pops into your mind  

Native: English (New Zealand English) Advanced: Spanish (Latin American Spanish) High Beginner: German                         Indonesian
February 9, 2012
02:58
bri thought
Tokyo, Japan

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July 8, 2011
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I agree that it's basically taught me everything I know smile

 

Learning languages has taken me out of my bubble in an upper-middle class conservative suburb and shown me the world.

 

It has caused me to examine how many of the assumptions that I've always taken for granted are only there because of the cultural lens I was raised to view the world from. Simple and fundamental concepts like "freedom" and "right and wrong" and "what is education?"have been radically challenged by immersing myself in another culture.

 

On the other hand, it has taught me that, as Benny said in his "life lessons" post, we are all basically the same and want the same things, and that the differences between us are more superficial than we think.

 

Observing which beliefs, practices, and characteristics are specific to each culture and language, and which surpass cultural and linguistic boundaries has taught me more than anything else the answer to the question, "what does it mean to be human?"

Speaks:  English Japanese  Studying:  German Spanish Chinese Next up:  Persian
Current Mission: 3 Months to Fluent (B1) Mandarin
February 9, 2012
07:38
sipes23
Chicago, EEUU

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July 25, 2011
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jasminetea said:

Observing which beliefs, practices, and characteristics are specific to each culture and language, and which surpass cultural and linguistic boundaries has taught me more than anything else the answer to the question, "what does it mean to be human?"

You sound like a previous boss of mine saying that. Of course, it's absolutely true.

 

For me, I've learned a few things:

•Few things are really that hard

•There's more than one right way

•You never finish—and that's ok

•You do it by doing it

Native: American English            Advanced: lingua latina From Basic to Intermediate: فارسی Italiano  Español 
I dream: Frysk Sanskrit My blogs: Dead Linguist, Latin, Ancient Greek, Old English My YouTube: sipes23
February 9, 2012
17:29
garyb
Scotland

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July 5, 2011
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Being already familiar with learning difficult skills (music being the most obvious example) I already knew about the importance of commitment, consistency, good habits, time management, and practising effectively rather than just putting in the hours, but language learning has certainly highlighted all these things even more and helped me improve at them. The things that I've learned about language learning have influenced my music practice and vice versa, particularly the idea of how doing even a small bit of work every day can lead to great results in the longer term.

More importantly, learning a foreign language to a good level has forced me to recognise and overcome a lot of my problems, especially regarding my people skills. Finding people to practice French with has required becoming less shy, improving my conversational ability and ability to express myself regardless of language, and going through a lot of difficult situations that have put me out of my comfort zone. And with Italian, which I recently started learning, applying Benny's philosophy and trying to go out there and talk despite my low level and lack of confidence in the language is pushing me even further.

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