Social Language Learning Part 4 – Communication

As I mentioned before, I decided to study English on Lang-8 and LingQ. Still, I keep the other accounts active to help Japanese language learners by correcting their sentences and pronunciations, answering questions and so on. Besides, I started to study Chinese on LingQ and LiveMocha.

As for Chinese, I exchange messages with a little Chinese girl these days. She lives in East China, not Beijing or Shanghai. She is very good at English.   She is busy with school on weekdays, so she sends me messages on weekends. The other day we talked on Skype too. She spoke briskly and smartly.   Don’t you think she is amazing?  The face that a girl who is just 13 year-old can communicate overseas with people makes me realize how different times are now.   I’m wondering if there are such junior high students in Japan?

Incidentally, my first text chat was with a Kurdish woman living in Turkey. It was very impressive that I was able to talk with Kurdish, who I’m not familiar with.  I heard of Kurdish on the news, but I don’t know much about them.  Turkey is the home of the belly dance which I am learning.  So, I asked her about it, but she didn’t know. She said, “What is it?”   While I was thinking how I should explain it for only about 7,8 seconds,  she complained my answer was too late.  What an impatient Kurdish!  She said Japanese has beautiful sounds, especially the word “arigatou” which means “thank you”.   I don’t understand the feeling, but it’s interesting.

Furthermore, my first voice chat was with a Bosnian man.   I felt his sincerity from his voice. Since he asked me where I live, I answered “Kyushu, south Japan”. Then “Saga?”he asked.   Saga is a name of small prefecture in Kyushu.   How does he know such a small area???  He said “I know Saga by watchig Oshin”.  “Oshin” is a famous Japanese TV drama which was broadcast in the 1980’s.  I am surprised that people overseas still watch it even today.   He liked Saga dialects. lol It was a shame that my voice was so echoed with time lag that I couldn’t speak a lot. I want to talk with him again, but I can’t find him.

My story will be continued. Here is LiveMocha video. Interaction on LiveMocha is very active.

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Social Language Learning Part 3 – Multilingual

As you read  on the previous post, the founder of LingQ is Steve Kaufmann.  He is a Canadian who speaks more than 10 languages.  LingQ reflects his learning method that is focused on reading and listening.  He shares his experiences and tips for learning languages on his YouTube channel.  I recommend language learners watch his videos.  They must be beneficial because he, a multilingual himself, proves the effectiveness of the method.
Here is one of his videos.  (I uploaded his Japanese video in my Japanese blog.  He speaks Japanese fluently)

Social Language Learning Part 2 – LingQ

I wrote about Lang-8 in the previous post.  I really like LingQ as much as I like Lang-8.   LingQ is a language learning site which deals with 11 Languages.  The site has abundant contents that are very useful for listening and reading.  It is no wonder because materials can be imported from any other page on the internet.  After setting the LingQ button on a bookmark bar, you can easily import any text of interest by pressing it.  It is very convenient that the meaning of your unknown word shows up by clicking the word.  You can also create your own word list.  Since the sound can be downloaded into mp3 player, you can listen to it anytime and anywhere.  It is also possible for you to create original material by recording voices and typing texts. I want to try to create a Japanese one in the future.   For example, “A conversation of married couple’s fight” would be nice because such a situation isn’t common on most teaching websites .  lol If you pay some, you can talk with a native speakers on Skype or have your writing corrected. While I don’t need my writing correction thanks to Lang-8, I have speaking lessons with Americans.  By chance, I found two female Americans on the LingQ news feed who live in the suburbs of Chicago where I lived.  It is a lot of fun to talk with them.   It is also interesting that their teaching methods are different.   I wrote things about LingQ, but I still have lots of unknown matters on the site. Here is the promotion video.