Monday, April 29, 2013

How To Speak With Mägi and Help Her Learn Your Language

I need to translate this into Russian.

1. I want to learn your language. I am ok with not always understanding everything. Unless it's really important for my safety that I understand, go ahead and just say it in Russian.

2. If you can gesture to it or point to it instead of saying the English word, please do that while saying the word in your language. Give me a chance to repeat after you. The less English I hear, the better. In the right context, chances are I can guess the English word and don't need to have it clarified.

3. It's likely I won't be able to say a word right after hearing it just once - it's hard to hear the distinction between oh and ah, sometimes. When you repeat it, feel free to say it suuupppper slow. Extra slow. Crazy slow so I can catch the vowels.

4.  Simple sentences work best. If you know I've learned a word or two and can find a way to use them in the conversation, that's great!

5. Feel free to point out things all the time and tell me the name in Russian. The more times I hear the word, the better. But I'll never learn the word unless I hear it. Over time, my brain will make the connection.

6. Just to warn you, as I learn to make sentences, I will frequently play with my words just to practice different forms of the sentence. It might not always make sense. "I am a centipede."

7. I love being corrected. Sometimes, though, I might not be at the grammar level to understand. My first goal is to just be able to communicate the idea - perfect grammar comes later.

8. I know it may be easier for you to speak English with me, but this is the only way I'll ever learn to communicate in Russian which is important for me to do. If you want to work on your English for your sake, feel free to let me know and we can set aside time where we just speak English. Going back and forth between the two languages in daily conversation is harder for me as I try to transition into thinking in Russian.

8. Know that I'm really grateful! Thank you for taking the time to help me learn your language. 

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