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Correct form of BYĆ. Please help!


z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #31
because old grammar will be useless

It seems that according to NieMota, the lesson on Polish "być" should start with a few in depth words on the Centum-Satem division :)
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #32
It's like asking for directions in a strange city. You ask how to get to a certain streeet and they tell you that you need to meander through a few dozens of others streets, the names of which are as strange to you as the destination.

It is tottaly inacurate comparision as old forms we talking now describing
correct relations pronoun - ending.
Both are at one place and that way it is very easy to learn these relations.
Student dont must split the verb for the core and ending at that stage.
When will become familiar with these old forms than will be familiar with our contemporary endings as well. Then he/she can start to learn correct form which will not be as strange as could be at the begining - that is my idea.

Is it really obscure ???
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #33
Is it really obscure ???

No. It's plainly silly.
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
21 Apr 2008 /  #34
Student dont must split the verb for the core and ending at that stage.

But that's how it works in most languages (for example, of course, in English: I am, you are, he/she is) the concept of merging the verb form with the pronoun itself would give a learner another headache (added to problems with some Polish sounds, spelling etc. - remember that anything can be difficult when you're a beginner, so you wanted to help, but my guess is you would confuse the poor guy to the power of three).

Just a personal question - have you ever thaught anybody a foreign language? I did, I thaught German (when I was young), English and French (when I was poor and needed some cash badly) and Italian (no excuses)
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #35
No. It's plainly silly.

If i should be honest: what is REALLY silly for me - my English friend - is a way to learn adresses as a entity without recognition of the street name and the house number.

It is much easier to know some basic rules that adress contain two kind of info, then learn all different adresses without that knowledge.
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #36
It is much easier to know some basic rules that adress contain two kind of info, then learn all different adresses without that knowledge.

But that knowledge, unless you live in places like Manhattan, still won't help you get to the destination.

Polish is difficult without the help of your teaching techniques You are trying to make the learning of languages more difficult than it needs to be.

Oh, and btw. I am not English.
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #37
the concept of merging the verb form with the pronoun itself would give a learner another headache (added to problems with some Polish sounds, spelling etc. - remember that anything can be difficult when you're a beginner, so you wanted to help, but my guess is you would confuse the poor guy to the power of three).

Why it would confuse ?
There are only 4 new words which in very clear way showing what pronount fit to what ending.

'ja' fit only to 'm' ending = 'jam'
'ty' fit only to 'ś' = 'tyś'
'my' fit only to 'śmy' = 'myśmy'
'wy' fit only to 'ście' = 'wyście'

When he become familiar with these 4 basic rules than other forms could become much easier to recognition and to learn.

These basic rules are valid not only for verb "być" but for many more verbs.

Where is that extra confusion ?
I really don't understand where is it.

Why should student must be keep out far from association than "my" fit to "śmy" only etc ?
Is that association the source of so painful headache ?
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
21 Apr 2008 /  #38
'ja' fit only to 'm' ending = 'jam'
'ty' fit only to 'ś' = 'tyś'
'my' fit only to 'śmy' = 'myśmy'
'wy' fit only to 'ście' = 'wyście'

You're a stubborn one, aren't you?

We're discussing here the Polish language for beginners, they have to learn the Present tense first (technically they don't have to, but it's recommened), these archaic forms you're trying to launch into everyday language are completely useless for the present tense (with the exception of the verb "być"), they could be used in the past tense, but it's impossible (or rather incorrect) to say:

jam czyta / myje się
tyś czyta / myje się
myśmy czytają / myją się
wyście czatają / myją się
so there's no way you can spare them the hard work of learning the correct conjugation of a verb in all the six forms (3 sing. + 3 plural) of the present tense.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
21 Apr 2008 /  #39
ty jesteś - thou art
wy jestescie - you are

Old stuff? My book for learning Polish relies on the you/thou distinction to clarify things for the English speaker of the 1950s.
Yes. It is old stuff, and I wouldn't recommend anyone but a keen linguist on learning that kind of English, so just don't do it!

I actually find a little knowledge of other European languages can actually help a little bit, even ones not closely related to Polish, such as French.

ty jesteś - tu est
wy jestescie - vous sons (probably)

wasze - plural yours, sounds like French vous
nasze - ours, sounds like French nous

Sorry. What was the original question?

But again, it's probably better to stick to learning one language properly from the start without deliberately muddling yourself with other languages.
miranda  
21 Apr 2008 /  #40
Is that association the source of so painful headache ?

well, reading your post has given me a headache and I speak Polish, so imagine the foreigner.

Aspirin please.

Osiol, you have read my mind:)
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #41
But that knowledge, unless you live in places like Manhattan, still won't help you get to the destination.

But Polish grammar is here like the Manhattan - very regular .
We have 4 pronouns and 4 endings whos fit each other and as a result we have still 4 valid combinations only.

Why we should avoid to underline that fact ?

Hidding such very simple and useful rules are very silly IMHO.
It is a straight way to mechanical learning without any rules recognition.

Oh, and btw. I am not English.

I'm sorry you are Canadian as i see.
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
21 Apr 2008 /  #42
wy jestescie - vous sons (probably)

vous êtes :)

Old stuff? My book for learning Polish relies on the you/thou distinction to clarify things for the English speaker of the 1950s.

It can be usuful, for a native speaker of English (you guys do reading of Shakespeare's plays in school, so "thou art" isn't really a problem for anyone, I'd guess), but NieMota is suggesting the opposite, to bombard a non Polish speaker with some useless old Polish knowledge, before he can even conjugate the very basic verbs in the present tense.
osiol 55 | 3,922  
21 Apr 2008 /  #43
vous êtes

Etre was a być to learn. Thanks for your correction.

I was just saying that I wouldn't bother teaching it to Polish people learning English until they had a good grasp of communicating in English. I actually reckon there are plenty of English speakers who don't know their thees, thous and so on.

Anyway, on with the... whatever it was.
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #44
these archaic forms you're trying to launch into everyday language are completely useless for the present tense (with the exception of the verb "być"), they could be used in the past tense, but it's impossible to say:jam czyta / myje siętyś czyta / myje sięmyśmy czytają / myją sięwyście czatają / myją się

No , i'm not trying to launch that into everyday use !
For learning purposes only !

If the student knows 'wyście' then he/she get in easy way the right form which need.

czytają => wyście =>(wy+ście)=> wy czyta+cie =wy czytacie
/ myją się (wy+ście)=> wy myj+(ą=>e)+cie się =wy myjecie się

That way beginner could start to understand some basic rules.

If beginner forget the right form and is unable create them than he/she still could speak in "emergency mode" 'wyście się myją' or 'wyście się myć' or 'wy się myć' and still it is well understandable.

Such "emergency mode" don't create bad habits as long as student knows that is unable to recover (from memory) the right form right now.

That way is able to comunicate at lower stress and as a result more efficiently.
The right endings will coming along with learning process.

Still don't you see what i'm talking about ?
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #45
But Polish grammar is here like the Manhattan - very regular .

Parts of it. Apparently you haven't been to Manhattan. Some areas can be a pain in the butt to find :)

We have 4 pronouns and 4 endings whos fit each other and as a result we have still 4 valid combinations only.

We have 10 pronouns in Polish. Some of them use the same verbal forms in some tenses.

Hidding such very simple and useful rules are very silly IMHO.
It is a straight way to mechanical learning without any rules recognition.

Nobody wants to hide rules, but knowing all the possible forms of the word "to be" in Polish is still useless to the beginner.

After all, if you're so insist then just for 1st person, plural we should mention:

my jestesmy
my są
my som
my (no verb)

One might also expand the rules and "help" the learner by digging deeper into the historic forms of Polish, learning Russian and Old Church Slavonic. These are all helpful, aren't they?

Heck, why stop there. Proto Indo European might be useful too. And then, after 16 months of study we will be ready to learn 6 forms of the word "być" in one tense and fully understand where they come from. Except that why would a foreigner care if he is not a student of linguistics.

I'm sorry you are Canadian as i see.

Polish-Canadian :)

Still don't you see what i'm talking about ?

I do. You're talking about teaching languages without any experience to back it :)
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #46
but NieMota is suggesting the opposite, to bombard a non Polish speaker with some useless old Polish knowledge, before he can even conjugate the very basic verbs in the present tense.

4 simple rules don't able to bombard anyone or i'm wrong ?

Those rules are very helpful in conjugation process,
so why not start from them ?

Why do you state it is useless knowledge ?

Is really 'my' fit to something else then "śmy" ?

After all, if you're so insist then just for 1st person, plural we should mention:my jestesmymy sąmy sommy (no verb)

No, no, anyway

for 1st person, plural we should mention:

1 my jesteśmy or just 'jesteśmy' because ending 'śmy' implicate pronoun 'my'
as 'my' fitting to 'śmy' only.

2 myśmy są

'my som' coming from cripled 'myśmy są'

my (no verb)

The my idea is: if you know form 'myśmy' and basic form 'jest' then you are able to construct the right form 'jest+e+śmy'.

You don't need remember form 'jesteśmy' at beginner stage.
Student's ability to create right forms will be growing along learning process.

Heck, why stop there. Proto Indo European might be useful too. And then, after 16 months of study we will be ready to learn 6 forms of the word "być" in one tense and fully understand where they come from. Except that why would a foreigner care if he is not a student of linguistics.

Some forms are more useful than other.
If you know form 'my' and 'myśmy' and you know 'myśmy'='my+śmy'
and know than ending 'śmy' you can fit to many verbs then you will easy recognize what mean verb with ending 'śmy' if you find one.
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #47
You don't need remember form 'jesteśmy' at beginner stage.
Student's ability to create right forms will be growing along learning process.

All I can say it good luck with your teaching career. You'll need it.
JustysiaS 13 | 2,240  
21 Apr 2008 /  #48
'ja' fit only to 'm' ending = 'jam'
'ty' fit only to 'ś' = 'tyś'
'my' fit only to 'śmy' = 'myśmy'
'wy' fit only to 'ście' = 'wyście'

if you ask me, using these archaic forms to make Polish beginners remember the endings of verbs is totally confusing. what about on/ona/ono and oni/one? your examples only fit into the Past Tense as well and isn't it a bit wrong to start learning a new language beggining with the Past Tense? the "ś" disappears or turns into "sz" in Present and Future Tense of "ty", "my" or "wy", for example ty robisz/ty zrobisz, my robimy/my zrobimy, wy robicie/zrobicie. and as for "ja", the "m" ending only fits into Past and Present tense, your "students" wouldnt've guessed the person in "zrobię" if they were told that verbs used by "ja" only end with "m". these were only the simplest examples to prove your method of teaching the verb endings is wrong, i will not go into tryb or more complicated tenses. your pattern of how the above endings fit all the forms and persons of verbs is incorrect, so i'm wishing you luck with your teaching career as well as z_darius does. I'm not a qualified educator, but even i can see serious flaws in your method.
OP ArcticPaul 38 | 233  
21 Apr 2008 /  #49
Quote from Krzysztof:
"Reading some of your comments I have a feeling you need to brush up some of the basic concepts of grammar, such as personal pronouns. They are structurally nearly the same in Polish as they are in English. The personal pronoun you use dictates the grammatical form of the verb, but only in some tenses.

I also have a feeling you are have a problem with understanding that Michal is in fact exactly the same "he" (on) for grammatical purposes. Again, these are rudimentary basics that are present in English and Polish, and you need to, perhaps, start with understanding them in English, before you are ready to proceed with Polish. It is not uncommon for people to learn the grammar of their native language due to the fact that they need it to understand the structure and rules of a foreign language.

Regardless, don't despair or doubt your abilities. The fact is that Polish is very difficult, and often escapes what might seem logical in other languages.[/quote]

You have a valid point.
It is not a case of 'brushing up' on my English grammar but actually learning it.
I cannot remember ever having verbs, adjectives, pronouns (etc) explained to me, despite taking both English language and English literatute at GCSE level.
For my entire life from 10 years old to nearly 35, my age now, I have read voraciously and consider my vocabulary and general knowledge to be quite good BUT my understanding of the basic rules of English are sadly lacking.

I'll start a crash course immediately.

"A knowledge of other languages is helpful"
Absolutely!
The 99 feminine/1 masculine = masculine 'rule' was easier to accept due to a vague memory of high school french.
The use of a negation, rather than a different word, is the same in Thai.......
Having experienced a few of these concepts before made the idea's less alien to me.
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
21 Apr 2008 /  #50
Quote from Krzysztof:"Reading some of your comments

hey, I never said that, the whole paragraph was written by z_darius :)
NieMota - | 30  
21 Apr 2008 /  #51
All I can say it good luck with your teaching career. You'll need it.

I don't care about my teaching career.
I wan't just discuss some ideas.

IMO form 'jesteśmy' is redundant/too specialized at beginner stage.
If someone has very strong ability to learn all specialized forms than he hasn't any problems at learning.

If someone is unable to correct use all of them, than should reduce them to absolute minimum IMHO.
So some old forms and rules are very useful for that goal.

How beginner will know 'my jesteście' or "wy jesteśmy" are prohibited combinations ?

If he knows entities "myśmy" and "wyście" and knows there no more valid plural entities, than in natural way he will know than ending "ście" implicating pronoun "wy" and vice-versa.

That way will able to create right forms sooner or later, without excessive stress.

If some entities exist than student need some additional rules to rule out prohibited combinations.

If you don't need to combine two kind of entities because they can be substituted by one kind entities than you cannot combine and don't need additional rules.

The entity existence is the main and only rule.
What exist is allowed and what don't exist is disallowed.

When studen become familiar with these simple rules than become ready to learn more new entities and more rules needed for fluent communication skills.

That is the reason why entities as 'tyś', 'myśmy' etc are more important than other IMHO.
They are very usefull for describing some very basic rules.

Stop put in my mouth that i want to teach many extra useless forms and ruless at once.
I suggest quite opposite action - reduce entities (forms) and rules to absolute minimum even if some rules and forms must be obsoleted.

Along the learning process they could be succesfully replaced by modern forms and rules.
The entities or rules total quantity is not the main obstacle. The main obstacle is how many new entities and rules student must deal with at once IMHO.

if you ask me, using these archaic forms to make Polish beginners remember the endings of verbs is totally confusing.

No i don't ask you.
And i'm not going to do that in the future.

You know why.
JustysiaS 13 | 2,240  
21 Apr 2008 /  #52
I don't care about my teaching career.

both your Polish and English language abilities certainly prove that! lol
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
21 Apr 2008 /  #53
NieMota, have you ever read E.Ionosco's Lekcja? If not I recommend it to you wholeheartedly, you and the Professor from that play think alike :)
Davey 13 | 388  
21 Apr 2008 /  #54
first of all, it's Michał :)
unless it's on purpose (Michel = a French name)

I have this book, the name is Michel, he is a French university student studying Polish in Krakow haha
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
21 Apr 2008 /  #55
the name is Michel, he is a French

so you have common friends with ArcticPaul :)
osiol 55 | 3,922  
21 Apr 2008 /  #56
When I first did French at school, we were all assigned French names, none of which had anything to do with our real names. They also had a tendency to choose names that sounded as though the gender was wrong. Michel doesn't sound very male to English ears. Neither does Valerie. I was Claude, so I was alright. I'm not sure what my assumed Polish name should be. Something ending in -ek, I'd imagine.
miranda  
21 Apr 2008 /  #57
Something ending in -ek, I'd imagine.

Darek, Marek, Jarek etc:)
Michal - | 1,865  
22 Apr 2008 /  #58
?Because Agnieszka is female and singular we use 'jest'??

Yes, and if Agnieszka was masculine or neuter then it would still be jest. It is the same in English. He is, she is and it is. In this respect, Polish operates on very similar lines.
OP ArcticPaul 38 | 233  
24 Apr 2008 /  #59
The gender may be surplus to requirements when determining the correct form of byc but I'm still trying to familiarise myself with the appropriate pronouns so working out the specific on/oni/one/wy (etc) required is still usefull.
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
24 Apr 2008 /  #60
The gender may be surplus to requirements when determining the correct form of byc

Luckilly, for the present tense this requirement doesn't exist for the word być. Just in case you're still struggling a little, let's start with some basics. I will make some statements that might seem to those in the know as not really rules, but for now I may be rounding some things up.

The simplest sentence in Polish requires two parts:

Subject + Predicate i.e. (the person or object who/which performs an action or activity) + (the activity)

Actions can be performed by an individual subject, or by a collection of subjects. For instance "Iam" or "weare". The bolded words are subjects, the ones in italics are the activities. Here the bolded words happen to be also so called personal pronouns, i.e. words generically denoting a person. When I speak about actions I perform, I will use the personal pronoun "I", isntead of my fist name.

When I say "John is whatever" then I am not using a personal pronoun, but if I continue talking about Jonh, I don't need to continue using his name. Instead I will use the personal pronoun "he". I hope this is logical to you. In short, personal pronouns specify (in Polish and in English, among others) the number of persons performing an action (one or more i.e. singular or plural), and sometimes the gender. What is also important, the persona pronoun describes the relation of the speaker to the person who performs some action.

Example:

Speaking about myself I will say "I am doing something". I am one person so the personal pronoun is called 1st person singular. Yup, grammar acknowledges the egotistic tendencies in humans. The enumeration of personal pronouns always starts with I. It's a rule.

When I speak to one person directly I will address them by "you" (second person, singular), but when I talk to anybody about actions of a person not being addressed, I will use she, she or it - this will be 3rd person singular.

The good news is: this is the end of personal pronouns, but , the bad news is: thus far we dealt only with singular form of personal pronouns. Let's recap before hitting on the plurals

English - Polish
1st person singular: I - ja
2nd person singular: you - ty
3rd person singular: he/she/it - on, ona, ono

The above is to be remembered for ever and ever. Amen.

Plural forms are pretty much direct derivatives of of singular forms, and the order in which we enumerate them starts from within and goes outward too, i.e. again in the egocentric fashion. The plural form for "I" is "we", you doesn't change in English but it changes in Polish. Let's look at the table below:

English - Polish
1st person plural: we - my
2nd person plural: you - wy
3rd person plural: they - oni, one

Another table to remember till your last breath, or at least as long as you speak a foreign language

In the above you will notice some differences in the number of pronouns for both languages for 3rd person. "They" is a collection of persons or object. In English "they" will be used regardless of the gender of individual components of that collection, but not so in Polish. The rule is simple: if at least one member of the collection (3rd person, plural) is male then "oni" is used. Otherwise "one" is correct.

Just a side note, and to be sure you understand; in the plural forms table, when we call a pronoun 1st or 2nd or 3rd person, the word person is a grammatical concept, so it the word itself does not assume plural form.

Let's put the personal pronouns and "być" together in another table:

English - Polish
Singular

1st person singular: I am - ja jestem
2nd person singular: you are - ty jesteś
3rd person singular: he/she/it is - on/ona/ono jest

Plural

1st person plural: we are- my jesteśmy
2nd person plural: you are - wy jesteście
3rd person plural: they are - oni, one są

Notice that within the same person of the same plurality the form of the word "być" does not change. So "ona jest" and "on jest". This is exactly the same as in English.

In your original post you appear to be unsure what forms of "być" to use when the subject of the sentence is a name. This requires a quick mental substitution and things become clear.

Using some of your examples:

There is one Michel. Nobody accompanies him in the sentence, so we know it's singular. Half of the job is done.

Now,

You are not Michel, so the form of "byc" for 1st person singular (I) does NOT apply.
You are talking to Michel so form for 2nd person singular (you) does NOT apply.
The only one left is 3rd person singular, i.e Michel = he. If that was Michelle then the personal pronoun to use as a substitute would be "she".

Thus we arrive at the final answer Michel is 3rd person singular, so the form "jest" will apply.

Similar process will be used to take care of the other examples.

Agnieszka i Robert - more than one person, so they are plural
They are not you, and they are not who you are addressing. Instead they are who you are talking about, so they are 3rd person plural.

OK< I hope I didn't make it harder than I thought it was for you before this post.

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