Author Topic: Should we prepare for when the next Avatars come out?  (Read 909 times)

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Offline Kame Ayyo’koti

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Should we prepare for when the next Avatars come out?
« on: February 20, 2014, 11:41:20 am »
I'm not sure where to put this thread, so sorry if this is the wrong place.

When Avatar came out, LOTS of people became interested in the language, and everyone came together to create this community and all the materials in it. Now it seems like people have drifted away. (It seems that way to me, anyway. I know I'm a late-comer to the party. :P) There are only a few people I see online everyday, but when I look at older posts I see all kinds of people who used to come here.

I've been thinking: When Avatar 2 and 3 (and 4?) come out, there's probably going to be more tsunamis of people who want to learn the language. We're in a better position now to explain it to them (because we've mostly figured it out by now), and we have a very good dictionary, some texts that explain the grammar, and other things.

But is there anything else we could do in preparation for these new people, or the people who come back? Maybe we could put together some lessons, make some more audio stuff like stories and dialogues, or any other material that would make it very easy for newcomers to learn to speak and write.

I've been thinking of writing little stories that only use a limited vocabulary, so readers can get used to some words before using more. I also have an idea for a guidebook that would help them begin using the language to say things they want to say, for example: "My favorite hobby is [reading/writing stories/making poems/hunting/drawing]." (They would choose the one they want, and it would explain how to say it nìNa'vi.)

What do you guys think? Should we prepare for when they show up, or do you think there's already enough materials for them to use?
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Offline Tìtstewan

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Re: Should we prepare for when the next Avatars come out?
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2014, 12:34:33 pm »
I've waited for this thread!

Ok, how I should start? Hmm... Well, first of all, I'm agree, we should prepare for the next movies, people "tsunamis" etc.. This is, why I rewrote the learning material, the FAQ and some other old threads. Also to test and obtimize it. I'm not sure if you have heared about a discussion which actually going on regarding the intermediate and beginners section which was caused by "derailments" of the beginners chat thread.... This caused a discussion, how we (the teacher and intermediate people) could prevent such "derailment discussion" in that thread. In this discussion were suggested some good ideas to make our actions better regarding teaching, but also to make some things in general better for the future. This thread is an example for a suggestion for a beginners "sand box", which was mentioned in the PM discussion between some members.
The thing is, that we actually have time, very much time. Two years are a lot and this is actually a reason, why here aren't so "big" changes. Also the current activity of this forum is not the same like two years ago, which makes changes very slowly real.
There are a lots of things, which I personally would do a bit better. For example the "Na'viteri - Frommer's blog" section, there are a lots of "broken" Na'viteri-bot's posts which I likely would fix, or in the LEP was suggested to add a short comment on the locked and moved threads, located in the archive, parallel with the big list I've wrote there. But these are just examples, but to let change something isn't so easy...

But this is just my little point of view. :)

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Offline Blue Elf

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Re: Should we prepare for when the next Avatars come out?
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2014, 03:06:19 pm »
IMHO there's BIG lack of audio examples. There are samples on Naviteri, and although they're useful, they're just single sentences. Some dialogs or longer passages could be useful, but question is if there are speakers skilled enough to make new recordings.
Some simple texts for beginners would be useful too, I think (and maybe it will be simpler to create audio for them).
As for lessons, hmm, well, here are Le'eylan's prezi lessons (very good, I think), but they need to be checked and corrected (some of them are completely missing). However creating lessons needs some learning plan and teaching experience and I don't know if such people are here. I remember Tirea Aean was thinking about new lessons, but he left, so this project is dead now.
But every attempt count...
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Offline Kame Ayyo’koti

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Re: Should we prepare for when the next Avatars come out?
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2014, 05:57:47 am »
This is an old thread, which I never replied to after starting it. Txoa livu. I want to add some more thoughts, and as I have let it die, I will reanimate it in zombie-like fashion.

Since posting this I've learned a lot more, and I have better ideas of what would have helped me, what I think would help others.

Ma Tìtstewan, you've done a LOT of work around here, and that is going to help a lot. I think the Beginner's Resource and FAQ threads were a great idea, and I've been thinking of adding links to them in my sig. (Been too lazy to so far. ;D) I've felt that while there are a lot of good materials already, finding them isn't easy. It might be best to have a "starting place" we could point learners to so they know where to begin, and I think your threads could serve that purpose.

And I absolutely agree with you ma Blue Elf that we need more audio recordings. I only recently downloaded a bunch of Pawl's recordings, and just listening to them has helped me understand the language better. The way one says a sentence helps reveal that sentence's parts, and that has helped me get a "feel" for whole sentences. I'm considering making recordings, but I worry whether my speech and pronunciation would be good enough, and also I find my own voice annoying. :-[ Even so, if I can speak well enough, and if we can improve my pronunciation, I would probably contribute some audio for the sake of helping others.

As for me, I've been thinking about what materials would help that seem to be lacking. The biggest problem I've had, and that other learners seem to have, is learning the grammar. While my ability to read has improved, my ability to speak and write has not, as it was very difficult for me to "spit out" the right phrase when I needed it. So I've researched how to learn grammar, and I've arrived at this idea:
Learn bits of grammar the way you learn words: see a certain construction many times until it's familiar. When you see a certain construction enough times, and you understand it, you will remember it and know how to use it in the future.

But the problem is that we need LOTS of input that contains those structures. For a natural language, one could just read lots of books, watch lots of movies/TV shows, etc. But Na’vi has very little "officially sanctioned" content. (I consider "official" to be anything Paul has personally approved, for safety's sake.)

So my interest has been towards solving this problem, and I have solved it, at least for me: I created Anki cards with the same phrase/sentence "structure," but with different words substituted in them. For example:
utral a lu tsawl sì lor
yayo a lu hì’i sì ean
kelku a lu tìfnugna’ sì sang
sì nì’ul’ul...
I've successfully learned forms like this by reading them so many times, and I can easily write/speak them without thinking about or "constructing" them in my mind.

This isn't a great solution, and it can be boring, but given the circumstances it's good enough for me and I've learned more because of them. My greater idea would be to create card sets of all of Na’vi's basic structures for learners to practice.

But even that doesn't solve the problem of cards being boring. :P So I've been brainstorming ideas for things that could be just as useful, but also enjoyable: Games.

I don't want to say as much about these, in the event that I might not be able to finish anything. I wouldn't want to get anyone excited only to let them down, lol. But I've been trying to come up with ideas that would basically do the same thing as the grammar cards (present the same grammatical structures again and again), but still be enjoyable to use/play. The one idea I'll mention is this: Choose-Your-Own-Adventure stories, but much more interesting and interactive. ;) I've tried out a thing or two, but right now I feel I need to speak better nìNa’vi before I can try making anything.

I want to create anything that would make learning easier and more enjoyable, whether it's text, tools, or games. I want to make it as easy as possible for newcomers to learn to speak nìNa’vi, and I'm willing to experiment and "think outside the box" about how to do it.
"Your work is to discover your world, and then with all your heart give yourself to it."


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