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Is it possible to learn Polish while not living in Poland? If yes, how?


catsoldier 62 | 596
3 Sep 2012 #1
Is it possible to learn Polish while not living in Poland?

If yes, how?

Have you done it?

Have you have learnt another language while not living in the country where it is spoken?
If you have how did you do it? We could apply the same ideas to learning Polish.

Thanks.
Mleko 1 | 20
5 Sep 2012 #2
Just study a lot. This is a good website to start you off, I found it on reddit. You also need a lot of motivation.
legend 3 | 664
5 Sep 2012 #3
Im not sure about other nations but here in Canada there are Polish learning schools.
Cutpaper
5 Sep 2012 #4
I would say yes, it is possible. I live in Sweden and have been for all of my life, and my girlfriend is Polish and live in Poland.

Personally I actually got started using Rosetta Stone (Polish language pack, all levels) and that's what I'm using right now.
I know some people rather dislike Rosetta Stone, but all I can say is that it has helped me incredibly much. I don't expect it to make me fluent in it by any means, but it has given me a easy way to start off and now I feel that it's much easier to use other sources to improve my Polish even more. (I should point out that so far I'm almost at the end of level 2, so I have yet to see what level 3 actually offers. I would be there already, but I prefer taking my time and repeating every lesson a couple of times (with some time between them, of course.).)

Although I do feel like I have to say, it can be quite intimidating to learn Polish if you have no previous knowledge about it. But it's still very much doable.

Good luck! :)
OP catsoldier 62 | 596
5 Sep 2012 #5
Thanks for the link Mleko.

Thanks to you too Cutpaper.
amerpol - | 2
6 Sep 2012 #6
Yes, there are classes offered at universities that would allow a beginner to learn polish.
OP catsoldier 62 | 596
6 Sep 2012 #7
A lot of people would say that you cannot learn a language in a school/university that isn't in the country of the language that you are learning, that you need to be in Poland to learn Polish etc. That you need to be imersed in the language really.

What do you think?
sobieski 107 | 2,128
6 Sep 2012 #8
This has to be a question from a genuine simpleton. In every civilized country there is a network of evening classes / weekend courses to do everything from pottery to learning Chinese. Google?
a.k.
6 Sep 2012 #9
He is not asking about that! He is asking is it possible to learn language to a decent level not visiting the country of the language you are learning. Do you understand the question now or still not? Btw many people will assume that you are Polish since your nick is clearly Polish so I'd like to remind catsoldier that sobieski is Belgian in case he didn't know that and feel put off learning Polish because of this rude comment.

In my opinion it is not possible to learn speaking and probably listening too if not living in given country but you can learn to write and read quite efficiently.
pam
6 Sep 2012 #10
Is it possible to learn Polish while not living in Poland?

If yes, how?

I think it's possible, but it depends on how much time you have, how dedicated you are, whether you have an aptitude for languages, and whether you get to converse on a regular basis with Polish people.

If you get to mix with Polish people, then you have an advantage, but it's still not easy.
Use as many different forms of media as possible, and just keep persevering.
Tbh, unless you're as gifted as Lszko, it's just damn hard work for the rest of us!!
OP catsoldier 62 | 596
6 Sep 2012 #11
If you get to mix with Polish people, then you have an advantage, but it's still not easy.

Thanks Pam, mixing with Polish people would help.

In my opinion it is not possible to learn speaking and probably listening too if not living in given country but you can learn to write and read quite efficiently.

Thanks a.k. You could be right, living in a country really is the best way to do it if you have the opportunity though.
brzmibrzmi - | 18
9 Oct 2012 #12
Formally 'chrzaszcz' here. I am learning Polish, and did GCSE Polish this year (Grade D - nothing to be proud of!). Anyway, I didn't have a teacher per se but received a lot of help on this Polish Forum (thanks everyone). Luckily, I also had several Polish colleagues who gave me a lot of help). I am still slowly learning my vocabulary and the nuances of the seven cases. I have the worst memory ever, and just need to read and read and re-read lists of vocabulary so it goes in. In my case, I am going to resit next June, and attempting to obtain a Grade B. It's a personal challenge for me, ad don't want to give up!!!!
PolHol - | 1
13 Oct 2012 #13
If you get to mix with Polish people, then you have an advantage, but it's still not easy.

I guess it's next to impossible to learn "perfect Polish" when not living in Poland.
That said, I know just two Polish people in my neighbourhood, registered with NK to play a few simple games which require me to read and the two are just proud how fast I pick up on the language.

Although I have to say that my first priority is to learn Polish in a way that I can understand what's said to me or say something myself, to me that's far more important than speaking without any grammatical errors.

But then, I never managed to learn a language without using it (which drove my teachers in school to madness) so I really stay away from any courses.
Lyzko
13 Oct 2012 #14
Yes, I would say it is possible, definitely. It is however always preferable to at least visit the country of the language being learned, ideally, to also live/study there for a while.

Unless though one grows up with the second language, for example at home, it is still possible, yet enormously difficult nonetheless, to acquire a native-speaker level of the target language in all four skills - speaking, reading, writing and listening:-)
rycerz - | 5
13 Oct 2012 #16
Have you have learnt another language while not living in the country where it is spoken? If you have how did you do it? We could apply the same ideas to learning Polish.

Sure. Have you considered taking evening classes? If you don't have enough time for evening classes, a good option might be distance learning. I'm currently enrolled in a Polish course that allows me to study at my own pace and offers online assistance and feedback from a native speaker. It comes with audio CDs as well. An idea worth considering?
Lyzko
13 Oct 2012 #17
I too learned a number of languages before ever visiting the country and did surprisingly well:-)
On the other hand, my eventual visits to those countries only reinforced cultural knowledge of the respective languages and helped to reduce interference errors!

A slight problem for those living in a certain country trying to learn the language of another, is that sometimes the native speakers from that country don't want to speak their language with learners, but instead (understandably too) practice the target language of the country in which they are living.

I for instance learned Dutch long before I visited the Netherlands and had a hell of a time convincing most Dutch non-academic native speakers to speak to me in Dutch!! They'd usually prefer to speak, i.e. practice, the EnglishLOL
Tim Bucknall 7 | 98
13 Oct 2012 #18
Hi Catsoldier,
I think you're in Europe in which case i recommend PR1 on 225khz Long wave, depending on how much electrical interference there is where you live, you may be able to hear it 24hrs a day.

you can't beat radio for really submerging yourself in a language, just leave it on in the background while you're doing stuff and you'll be surprised how much you remember.

alternatively you could buy one of those cheap little fm transmitters off ebay and rebroadcast a Polish web stream round your house and garden to tune into on a normal radio.

I've done this with R Znad Wili 103.8

I'm using the "Teach yourself Polish" audio Course 2nd hand off amazon, its perfect for my needs,
best of luck
tim
Lyzko
13 Oct 2012 #19
Thank you, Tim Bucknall!

Podcasts are so accessible nowadays, not to mention Youtube ... that the traditional classroom teacher's become practically superfluous.
warszawianka - | 31
13 Oct 2012 #20
My worst problem with trying to develop Polish is the word endings. If I listen to Polish by native speakers such as news, etc., wow! They seem to speak so fast. Someone posted a video last night of a guy speaking during government council or chambers or something. I was really amazed! I didn't understand a thing he said -- it was like Polish rap on steroids (except everyone was in a suit and tie).
Ziemowit 13 | 4,038
13 Oct 2012 #21
Someone posted a video last night of a guy speaking during government council or chambers or something. I was really amazed! I didn't understand a thing he said --

They nearly always talk rubbish, so I wouldn't worry about it :-)
Lyzko
13 Oct 2012 #22
I used to watch POLSAT - Polish News on cable and found while I was studying the language that I could understand MORE the LESS I focused on trying to understand and simply allowed the language to 'sink in':-)

...sometimes I'd be seated in front of the TV with my notepad, trying desparately to jot down what the announcer was saying! Sometimes it worked, often it didn't and so the next time I'd try again. After a time, I would see if i could test my comprehension by flashing on the close captions in Polish and seeing how nearly I came to what the announcer was actually talkling about.

It gave me a rush, I must tell you))))
Tim Bucknall 7 | 98
13 Oct 2012 #23
I used to watch POLSAT - Polish News on cable and found while I was studying the language that I could understand MORE the LESS I focused on trying to understand and simply allowed the language to 'sink in':-)

agreed 100%.

it would be great if BBC4 started showing a subtitled Polish series like they do with Italian & French series, I bet Montalbano has done wonders for people learning Italian.

TVP must have some good crime dramas, c'mon BBC sort it out!
Ziemowit 13 | 4,038
14 Oct 2012 #24
...sometimes I'd be seated in front of the TV with my notepad, trying desparately to jot down what the announcer was saying! Sometimes it worked, often it didn't and so the next time I'd try again.

It doesn't seem to be a good method. I used to practice it with my French, and the more relaxed I was, the better it worked. The best results I was getting was when I tried to concentrate on something else than on understanding the meaning of what they are saying. For example, I was trying to pay attention to the gender of nouns or to noting the occurences of the preposition "à" in the phrases uttered. It directed my attention away from grasping the sense, so the sense came quicker and more easily. It's like when you try to fall asleep: the stronger you want to immerse into sleep, the less likely you are going to have it coming to you - you must simply start thinking about something else.

it would be great if BBC4 started showing a subtitled Polish series like they do with Italian & French series

I think that TVP Polonia does this sort of thing.

A good method could be following a Polish series without subtitles that present good, distinctive contexts and a lot of conversation (which serieses usually do). One of these is "Świat według Kiepskich" on TV Polsat whose all characters except Ferdynand (Ferdek) Kiepski and Arnold Boczek use proper Polish. The wife of Ferdek, Halina, speaks typical standard Polish, while their neighbour, Marian Paździoch, shows the tendency to abuse the newspapers language with expressions typical for the print rather than for the every-day language, but that makes him really funny and isn't that bad for the learner of Polish.
a.k.
14 Oct 2012 #25
I have different experience. I have to focus to understand. Also I have several other observation concerning that method: worse/smaller speakers the better understanding, better understanding in mornings than evenings.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,254
14 Oct 2012 #26
TVP must have some good crime dramas, c'mon BBC sort it out!

Hahaha, TVP has nothing but bad ripoffs of American/British shows.
a.k.
14 Oct 2012 #27
TVP?
We can discuss the quality of its programmes, but ripoffs of British/American shows? There is one series on Italian, one on German and one on French lisence. A different channel is famous of American/British lisenced programmes ;)
bbb
14 Oct 2012 #28
Of course it is possible.
I am currently in Poland and learning Russian, a much more beautiful sounding language than the vulgar Polish language.
pam
15 Oct 2012 #29
but that makes him really funny and isn't that bad for the learner of Polish.

This is exactly what i did, and this particular series was my first experience of Polish tv. I know a lot of people don't like it, but i think it's absolutely hilarious:)
a.k.
15 Oct 2012 #30
Pliisss, meestairr Marrrrek! Geef mii a paan!"

Certainly I don't talk like that, despite being far from mastering the English pronunciation. Moreover I don't know anyone below 35 who would speak like that.

For the record: a Pole clearly hears "e" in "then" and something close to "a" in "than". No possibility of mixing that two. The problem you talked about in the next to last post of yours could be applied to the pair "cup" and "cap" (both close to "a" sound).

That was the very last comment :)


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