I am currently 16 pages into Ana Yurt and am able to read it without much effort. Am understanding enough to follow the story line and am really, really enjoying it. I circle the words I want to look up with pencil and then later in the day find their definitions and put them in anki. It is going well thus far – I just wished I had more time.
Mongolian is a different matter. I find it hard to find the right level and after not doing it for a month or so I find I lost a lot of ground. I have decided to work with folk tales for now as that level is a lot lower than the novel I was trying. I showed that to my daughter who knows Mongolian and she said it was very literary and flowery language and that it would be hard even in English. So that encouraged me. My plan is to work with songs and folk tales for now, as well as inputting sentences from the Rita Kullman grammar book. Then, once I have a good handle on the way Mongolians organize their sentences, I can get back to the novel.
For Turkish I found a bunch of 10-20 minutes segments where a well known English book is summarized. The level is just right, so I will listen to a few of those each day and also continue to work with Ince Memed in Learning With Texts. Hopefully this week we will find out what level I am supposed to reach before I pass the test.
Almost two months later and little language study done since the wedding. But this week is better and I have enjoyed working with Ana Yurt (for the first time in years actually understanding some) and some Turkish as well. And today am restarting Mongolian. It is going to be hard to keep doing all three as well as doing school with the boys and doing daily Dutch with them, but I do need to try. There is a possibility we will apply for Turkish citizenship so we can take care of my mother-in-law in Turkey and if we do that there seems to be a language requirement for the “married-in”. So today I looked up and listened to bits and pieces of different movies, chose six or so to watch sometime and added Turkish as a language in my Learning with Texts. I will be putting Ince Memed in there and work through that book again. An advantage of that is that my son found the book translated in Uygur, so if I read it now in Turkish it will be easier in Uyghur 🙂
There is one other language that has been pulling on me lately and though I will probably not learn it, I would like to have some bits and pieces so I can recognize things as I watch the movies and dramas we watch on tv. I have really gotten into the Japanese dramas and weekly watch a couple different ones as well as a very interesting historical movie. So I have gotten some books on the language and might just see if I can learn a few endings or nouns a week.It will be very low key but should be fun.
Well school started but it has not affected my language study too much. However, some changes here at home have made quite a difference, adding some major stresses. But I have been able to keep going with my Mongolian and feel really encouraged by what I have been able to do.
A couple weeks ago Bilguun, our future son-in-law, gave me a Mongolian novel. It is supposed to be historical fiction and very popular and the level is much more manageable than the novella I was trying to use (which had sentences that were a full paragraph long). So I have been copying out paragraph by paragraph and putting them in the Learning with Texts program. I also added an interview from the Mongolian Oral History site and some some dialog from the comic book I was using earlier. At this point I have 22 texts and with differing amounts of unknown words. It is fun and low stress to spend a few minutes in between other work to look up words and figure out what they mean. And as an extra bonus I am hoping to have Bilguun record these paragraphs so I can add the audio as well.
I also have continued with copying example sentences from the Kullmann grammar book and this has helped me to be more aware of the different suffixes and their meaning. Since Mongolian is aglutanative this is very important (and since the Learning with Texts is not yet able to take the suffix into account it is even more important that I learn to strip the suffix of the root word).
So these have been my main ways of working with Mongolian, although I once watched a tv program for an hour or so, I do anki every other day, and today have been extracting lists of conjunctions from a grammar book. It is fun and I notice I am more in a Mongolian mindset.
This brings me to my dilemma. Lloyd has been listening to Chinesepod and I really enjoy the podcasts. I would like to get back to audio Mandarin as well as get back to my Uyghur studies. I would love to put my Uyghur files into the Learning with Texts program, but I know if I do it will take over very quickly and Mongolian will go by the wayside. So for now I will discipline myself to just stick with Mongolian and hopefully I’ll get to a point where it will have enough momentum to keep on going even if I add my other languages back in.
Lloyd installed Learning with Texts and I have had a blast. Currently I have ten texts in it, some worship songs, some folk songs, a part of the comic book, part of the novel, etc. I switch back and forth between these and it keeps track of which words I know – currently I have between 96 % known words in one document (the largest section and the literary novel) all the way down to 13 % with one of the folk songs. I have really enjoyed working with it.
Most of language study this day was taken up by the Learning with Texts, but I also did my Anki and started typing in sentences from the Kullman grammar book for anki as well. That too was fun. And for listening practice I’ve been singing with the songs and learning to hear the words and sing with the audio.
Tomorrow I have to finalize school as we should start school Tuesday, but hopefully there still will be time for language study. I don’t know how efficient I am or how much I am learning, but I am having fun 🙂
P.S. For a quick overview of Learning with Texts I enjoyed the following video from Anthony Lauder:
School has been taking more time than I planned and I have also been more tired. But did some Mongolian today: anki and listening to misc songs, perusing youtube, watched part of Khadak, and then listened to Ganbat reading a loud part of Цахилж Яваа Гөрөөс. Also looked at online course stuff. Yesterday John and I got our Mongolian books out of storage – not a lot but probably more stories than I will get around to. Have been discouraged about how things are going, but I guess I should be thankful to get anything with the amount of stress in the house these days.
I did download all the books that are used in the first five grades of elementary school in Mongolia and am looking forward to perusing them. But first things first.
In a week it is Labor Day and we here at Altay Academy usually start our school right after Labor Day. So I have decided to take Saturday afternoon and Sunday off to take care of school prep. I only have two teenagers left so that should not be too much work and then come Monday I can focus completely on Mongolian.
So, till Monday 🙂
Well I did my anki and worked some with a couple different youtubes yesterday, either song videos or short cartoons. It was fun.
Today as I was trying to find lyrics for one of the song videos, I came across a Mongolian primer for 2nd grade. It turns out that the Ministry of Education in Mongolia has pdf’s for primers and Math books and such on their web site, at least for the first 4 years (I haven’t checked out everything as the server is extremely slow). And as a bonus it also has them for Kazakh. Right now I will keep to Mongolian, but I was quite excited 🙂