Author Topic: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language  (Read 1608 times)

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Offline Salvenger

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To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« on: July 17, 2010, 09:26:23 am »
If I may ask, Where did you begin learning Na'vi, and what did you repeat until you could get it fluently?

Thanks in advance,
Kyle
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Offline 'Oma Tirea

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2010, 09:33:59 am »
If I may ask, Where did you begin learning Na'vi...

I am curious, too.  I am especially interested to hear from:

  • Prrton
  • Kemeoauniaea
  • Omängum Fra'uti
  • Txur 'Itan
  • Taronyu
  • Tirea Aean
  • Kemaweyan
  • wm.annis
  • Someone else who (user)name I may have forgotten...

Irayo ngaru in advance
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Offline Salvenger

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2010, 09:35:05 am »
Haha, yeah. :)
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Offline kewnya txamew'itan

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2010, 01:03:37 pm »
Prrton is definitely the person I aspire to in fluency.

Honestly, I'm not as fluent as I was. In March I went on a break before my Spanish oral exam (in practices I was slipping into na'vi) and it's never quite recovered. Nowadays I wrote most of my stuff with the dictionary open (although I'm building up the courage to go back into na'vi nì'aw).

On topic:

Back when I started (in December) it was easier to get going because there was a lot less to learn.

I started with the pocket guide V.2 (which has been removed due it being horrendously out of date) whose spiritual successor is na'vi in a nutshell. This taught me all the grammar that was known at the time (which was very little, just basic sentence structure, lenition and modal verbs I think). The important thing about it was that I tried to make sure I learnt the pronunciation first, if you don't do this, you'll almost certainly fall into bad habits which you won't be able to get rid of (even learning it first I've picked up a retroflex ejective instead of the alveolar ejective). Particularly helpful was an audio clip of wm.annis explaining glottal stops and ejectives which was hosted on talknavi, but that site doesn't really work any more. If wm.annis still has the clip, I think it would be a good idea for him to post it in the pronunciation board (hint hint).

Then I just wrote practice sentences (completely random things, now I'm (very slowly) working on translating Hamlet although I haven't done any for a few months now) which got torn to shreds by omängum and others until eventually I learned and they stopped correcting me. I think it was important that, even when I was new I was questioning other people's usage. Don't be afraid to call any of us up on anything you think might be wrong, if you're right you're helping us learn, and if you're wrong, we'll probably explain why and so you can learn.

Lastly, I tried na'vi nì'aw when it was first started, this was a great help and increased my fluency dramatically. Then I went on a break and I haven't caught up yet (fluency-wise, I think my grammar's a little better). If you feel the need for a break, by all means do, but don't do so for any longer than you have to, it will have an adverse effect on your fluency.

So yeah, tips for you and anyone else, learn pronunciation first, use na'vi in a nutshell, post, don't be afraid to ask questions or point out things you think are mistakes and lastly, take a peak at na'vi nì'aw when you feel you're ready.



Edit: I forgot to say that back then we didn't have project ngaynume which I'd say would certainly be a good thing to join. That said, I wouldn't use it as your sole means of learning. The way I see it, learning na'vi has few actual benefits. The only ones I can see are the potential for new thinking if the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis is correct and an increased linguistic knowledge which helps with learning other languages. With project ngaynume, the linguistic knowledge isn't as needed so it won't increase so much although you'll probably build your fluency (and therefore the benefit via the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis) much faster. So I'd join project ngaynume, just make sure you learn the old way as well.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2010, 01:07:26 pm by kemeoauniaea »
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Offline wm.annis

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2010, 01:24:29 pm »
  • wm.annis

I'm not sure I'm a good model.  Have you heard a line something like "the more you know, the more you can learn?"  I'm 41, and have been studying languages since I was in my teens.  I've got a lot of trussing already in place in my brain to accommodate things like, "ah, it has six cases and is aspect-heavy."  That stuff just goes in without effort, since I've seen it before.

When we get to things I've not had a lot of experience with (dual and trial pronouns, the affect infixes), then I fall over nearly as often as beginners.  In some email with Frommer a few weeks ago, I messed up and used an exclusive plural pronoun.  He then corrected me with an inclusive plural.  But then he corrected himself — it should have been dual.  :)

There is only one way to learn a language, and Jake had the right of it in the film: repetition, repetition, repetition.  A little practice every day is far more effective than giant study sessions once a week.

I know everyone hates this, but memorization is excellent, too.  Memorize Frommer's letter, or his Earth Day address.  Be able to recite it from memory (with understanding, not just saying noises), then start to alter it, change a noun here, a verb there.  This burns syntax into the brain very effectively.  When we have some more vocabulary I'd like to start writing graded dialogs, starting very simple and getting more complex over time, where people can memorize these things and then start putting in different nouns or whatnot into different slots (preferably with the guidance of a teacher over Skype or TS).   Learning from a grammar and a dictionary is very difficult, no matter the language.

Learning vocabulary is a wretched exercise no matter what you do.  That's just life.  It's certainly my biggest weakness right now.  Learning vocabulary in a context (i.e., those dialogs I mentioned above) is far more effective than memorizing lists.
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Offline Nìwotxkrr Tìyawn

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2010, 02:36:40 pm »
I suppose I might be a better model than wm though he is still better than me at Na'vi to be sure. I'm 17 and was never exposed to linguistic terminology before Na'vi so it was somewhat difficult. I definitely back wm when he says repetition is key.

Something that helped me a lot when beginning way back was taking handwritten notes on terminology and such, I even went as far as handwriting the first dictionary when Taronyu came out with it. Notes are a very effective learning tool when you really get involved and are thinking about the things you're writing down.
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Offline Nyx

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2010, 03:58:02 pm »
I wouldn't call myself an expert but I might have some helpful input here. My problem nowadays is mostly vocabulary and that I start questioning myself until I have a gazillion versions of the same sentence and can't decide on which one is the best. But reading Na'vi isn't a problem any more.

I learn languages by surrounding myself with them, and somehow they just nestle in my head. Na'vi makes this hard because there isn't enough of it going on for me to just magically get a feel for it. If you're like me I would suggest reading stuff in Na'vi ni'aw, listening in on chats and maybe contributing to them (yes, I need to get better at the last part). You'll notice what you keep forgetting and you can make flashcards out of that. I also made cheat sheets that I posted around my room and I updated them when new things appeared which just wouldn't go into my head (then one day I lost some of them... it was a catastrophe). Way back at the start I had the compendium as a wallpaper on my computer. After a while those things sunk in and nowadays I just need the dictionary.

Writing is a good idea too. I started translating things. That never fails at showing me what I still have to work on and even though it can be discouraging, I just keep going with it, leaving gaps where I can't solve a problem and returning to it later. And when I can't figure something out myself, I ask others, but I always try to have some kind of suggestion of my own, no matter how crappy. And it's always equally fun to go over an old translation after there has been an update that makes things easier :P

Offline Taronyu

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2010, 05:33:03 pm »
  • Taronyu

I'm a very weird case. I've been studying languages for years and years, now (although not nearly so long as annis), and because of that I had no problem with the cases, ergatives, or ejectives. The fluency thing - well, for me, I just did two things. I first decided to spend hours upon hours looking at the word lists while making a dictionary and continually editing it, and I spent ages looking for derivations, which is a really good vocab builder, I find. Secondly, I spent ages on the beginners forum, early on, correcting people and helping out. Often I was wrong, but someone always came along and corrected me, if so. Recently I haven't been doing this because I feel that this isn't the best way for me to learn anymore, although it was incredibly helpful at first. Now I mostly just try and use Na'vi in my daily life, like Omangi Fra'uti, and I still edit the dictionary. And I sit on Ngaynume, trying to chat to people in Na'vi. I wouldn't suggest that anyone try what I did with the dictionary - I'd suggest helping others out, not being afraid to spend time in Na'vi nì'aw, and just using it in their daily life. It's fun, right? Otherwise, why bother?

Offline Salvenger

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2010, 07:36:08 pm »
Thanks to ALL of you!
You guys/gals are a really friendly and helpful bunch.
Thanks very very much!

<3 Kyle
<3,
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Offline omängum fra'uti

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2010, 09:16:47 pm »
Having never succeeded learning any language in the past, the key for me with Na'vi...

Using it as much as possible.  Right or wrong, I did what I could.  I took feedback, learned from my mistakes (And believe me, I've made many), and helped others with theirs.  In doing that I picked up a very good grasp of the grammar, and all of the ASG level vocabulary and then some, without needing to actually memorize things directly.  I still have a long way to go, but it has helped a lot.

Also, do not be fooled into thinking anyone is terribly fluent.  Some of us are fairly good, but most of the practice has been written, where you can sit and think about what you are writing or reading.  Sitting and actually talking with someone - well, not even Frommer can do that at the moment.
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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2010, 09:37:48 pm »
Well Frommer probably could, just it'd be slow and unnatural probably. (technically he could start blathering gibberish and call it correct if he wanted)

But as Omängum says, we seem more fluent than we probably are, after all Na'vi has only been public for what, 7 months. Total study time for us "na'vi experts" would probably amount to around 2 semesters of a high school language course.
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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2010, 09:51:28 am »
Well Frommer probably could, just it'd be slow and unnatural probably. (technically he could start blathering gibberish and call it correct if he wanted)

But as Omängum says, we seem more fluent than we probably are, after all Na'vi has only been public for what, 7 months. Total study time for us "na'vi experts" would probably amount to around 2 semesters of a high school language course.
Haha, have you ever gotten this much out of a high school course? Here you learn while having fun ^^

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2010, 10:19:20 am »
Well Frommer probably could, just it'd be slow and unnatural probably. (technically he could start blathering gibberish and call it correct if he wanted)

But as Omängum says, we seem more fluent than we probably are, after all Na'vi has only been public for what, 7 months. Total study time for us "na'vi experts" would probably amount to around 2 semesters of a high school language course.
Haha, have you ever gotten this much out of a high school course? Here you learn while having fun ^^

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Offline wm.annis

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2010, 10:35:55 am »
Sran, ulte nga nume hu fa ronsem sì txe'lan.  Nga nivume nìltsan.

;)
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Tsamsiyu92

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2010, 03:19:15 pm »
I can't say I am an expert either, but I can participate in Na'vi nì'aw discussion, allthough I have aykeyey (errors). I can share my story anyways.

I hopefully stumbled across this language on march 21st, I was looking on youtube and was sold when all the vowels were pronounced like in Norwegian (my mother tongue). The rr's came quite fast to me and most other consonants were the same, I am used to strange sounds in my dialect, ng-- words came easy too.

In the beginning I overworked myself, read too much grammar in too little time, not good, one need to digest new information properly. The worksheets made me learn the cases and their markers. I was stunned over how easy the case system is (in comparasion to german)

After one month I could write simple sentences and use futa and a

After two months I could write more complicated sentences

Now after 3,5 months I am in Na'vi nì'aw. Most of the conversational vocab I have learned recently, because I had put vocabulary on a lower priority.

The path was long and I am far from expert, but it is worth it. Be patient. ...allthough I have seen some being in Na'vi nì'aw by far faster than me.

Offline kewnya txamew'itan

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #15 on: July 19, 2010, 02:07:25 am »
I hopefully stumbled across this language on march 21st, I was looking on youtube and was sold when all the vowels were pronounced like in Norwegian (my mother tongue).

Don't mean to be a downer, but, according to wikipedia, standard Norwegian (I can't speak for your local accent of course) lacks a na'vi "a"  and the lax pronunciation of "u" (although I'm not sure we knew about that when you joined).
Internet Acronyms Nìna'vi

hamletä tìralpuseng lena'vi sngolä'eiyi. tìkangkem si awngahu ro
http://bit.ly/53GnAB
The translation of Hamlet into Na'vi has started! Join with us at http://bit.ly/53GnAB

txo nga new oehu pivlltxe nìna'vi, nga oer 'eylan si mì fayspuk (http://bit.ly/bp9fwf)
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Offline omängum fra'uti

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2010, 02:27:28 pm »
The lax /u/ is never a required sound...  Wherever the lax /u/ is correct, the other is also correct.
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Tsamsiyu92

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2010, 02:54:36 pm »
I hopefully stumbled across this language on march 21st, I was looking on youtube and was sold when all the vowels were pronounced like in Norwegian (my mother tongue).

Don't mean to be a downer, but, according to wikipedia, standard Norwegian (I can't speak for your local accent of course) lacks a na'vi "a"  and the lax pronunciation of "u" (although I'm not sure we knew about that when you joined).
If I am not mistaken, the bokmål pronounciation of norwegian uses the some u (the oo in food), but my dialect has the other one, that is allowed only in closed syliables here. The A is the "a" in father.

Offline kewnya txamew'itan

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2010, 03:54:55 pm »
The lax /u/ is never a required sound...  Wherever the lax /u/ is correct, the other is also correct.

I know, but if I remember Frommer's pronunciation correctly (which I quite probably don't), it is a relatively common variation.

I hopefully stumbled across this language on march 21st, I was looking on youtube and was sold when all the vowels were pronounced like in Norwegian (my mother tongue).

Don't mean to be a downer, but, according to wikipedia, standard Norwegian (I can't speak for your local accent of course) lacks a na'vi "a"  and the lax pronunciation of "u" (although I'm not sure we knew about that when you joined).
If I am not mistaken, the bokmål pronounciation of norwegian uses the some u (the oo in food), but my dialect has the other one, that is allowed only in closed syliables here. The A is the "a" in father.

The oo in food is the tense na'vi u, the lax would be the oo in foot. Also, the a in father (despite misleading things on wikipedia) isn't the na'vi "a" in almost all accents of English. In almost all accents that a is {ɑ} or the rhotic version or {ɑ} followed by some rhotic consonant whereas the na'vi a is {a}.
Internet Acronyms Nìna'vi

hamletä tìralpuseng lena'vi sngolä'eiyi. tìkangkem si awngahu ro
http://bit.ly/53GnAB
The translation of Hamlet into Na'vi has started! Join with us at http://bit.ly/53GnAB

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Tsamsiyu92

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Re: To advance-experts of the Na'vi language
« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2010, 04:04:33 pm »
Is there any clear difference between the two?

 

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