어렵다 ‎(eoryeopda) | [Word of the Day] + Foreign Language Tip #3 “Be Realistic”

 

안녕하세요!

Today’s WOTD is get you geared up and ready to go for Sunday’s Grammar of the Week. Consider this your “first look” at what we’ll be covering. Though today’s word is only an adjective, there is a way to ask questions like “Was it easy?” or “Was the test hard to do?” and it involves suffixes and conjugations.

어렵다 ‎(eoryeopda) [adj] | “difficult”

i.e.,

  • 운전은 어려워. (unjeon-eun eolyeowo.) | “Driving is difficult.”

Foreign Language Tip #3

Be Realistic!

Immediately, this sounds harsh right? It sounds like you’re being told, “learning a foreign language is a bad idea”. But no, that’s not what this is about at all. Learning a foreign language is an excellent idea. It’ll set you ahead of the curve! But when learning a foreign language, you need to be realistic.

Set Realistic Goals

I’ve said this before during this foreign language tip serious and I’ll say it again for emphasis. Set Realistic Goals! You’re not going to be fluently speaking any language other than your native learning after Day 2 of trying unless you have some type of rare ability. But if you’re a month in and wondering why you haven’t progressed, it’s probably because you’re expecting too much of yourself too soon.

Here are some good goals to set:

Start with the Basics

  • Don’t start off trying to learning grammar principles. When we were babies and first learning how to speak, our parents didn’t pull out a grammar book and start telling us how to use words before we learned them. They taught us words first and then taught us how to use them. So start there. Learn words first and then learn how to use them. So focus on the alphabet, numbers, colors, family members, etc.

Try Reading Samples

  • You’ll be really surprised how quickly you can start to understand things once you start recognizing words. Once you’ve begun learning these new words, try reading small passages or just sentences in the language you’re learning. If you’re here, chances are you’re learning Korean, so try reading children’s books in Korean. One of my favorite books that seems to be a starter book in just about every language is, “제가 작나요?” (Am I Small?) It has simple sentences in Hangul that’ll get you thinking in the language. The key is not to translate as you read. (But in case you’re apprehensive, it does have the English translation underneath.) And for words you don’t know, write them down and look them up later and then add them to your vocabulary.

These are just two examples of setting small goals. Remember, set small goals and then as you progress, make your goals bigger. A bigger goal would be something like visiting a Korea town or even visiting South Korea if you can, and challenging yourself to only speak in Korean while you’re there.

Remember, don’t get discouraged and keep setting goals. And every so often reflect on how far you’ve come, it’ll give you the motivation to keep going in your journey!

 

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