Friday, October 4, 2013

you, too, can learn another language!

i think i have made it pretty clear that i like to learn.  (if you know what strengths finder is, i have gotten learner as one of my strengths both times i took the test.)

at work, i ask for resources to learn more about this new field (401k stuff).  at home, i read, i do logic puzzles, and i ingest random tidbits of information all over the place.

i don't have any desire to be great at one particular kind of bores me, actually.  so i try and develop skills in many different areas.  this is why i could teach myself acoustic guitar and bass guitar and be content with my medicore skills.  probably why i am a decent athlete in many sports but not super talented at any of them.  i just like to take in more and more content.

so i took 3 years of spanish and a year of sign language in high school.  passable...i can say things like 'por favor, puedo sacarle punto a lapiz?' in spanish (roughly, 'please, can i sharpen my pencil?') and sign, 'i'm sorry your cow is dead' in asl.  you know, important conversational pieces.

i met a friend in college who was from brazil, and i thought portuguese was such a cool language...kind of a smash up of spanish and french.  so i bought some cds to try and learn it, and she gave me a new testament in portuguese.  i learned a couple things but didn't really stick with it.


last week, i was killing time and looking through free apps for my phone, and i found one called duolingo. 


this thing is baller.  it's totally geared toward a mind like mine...give me the lessons in little chunks, have lots of checkpoints so i feel like i am doing well, etc.  you can learn a ton of different languages, but if you're starting from english (which...i'm going to say the majority of my readership is...), you can learn spanish, german, french, portuguese, and italian.

it teaches you in a variety of ways: they write portuguese, and you write in english and vice versa.  they have a sentence in portuguese and give you options with which to build the sentence in english and vice versa.  they say a phrase or sentence in portuguese, and you write it in portuguese.  they have pictures to help you learn vocab.  they give you multiple choice questions.

i think it's really fun.  :)

travis is learning italian, so you'll have to ask him how it is. 

but now my speech is filled with phrases like ' eu como frango' (i eat chicken) and 'voce gosta o livro?' (do you like the book?)

check it out.  let me know what you think.  i think it's pretty sweet, especially considering it was free.

yes, i am talking about a product that is awesome.  no, i am not getting paid to do so.  yes, this is all my opinion.  no, i was not forced to say this.

1 comment: