Slow norsk

Oh language why are you so difficult to learn?

I feel like I am such a slow learner at this language. Some people are very good with language, some aren't. However, I have made a bet with my 15 month old daughter that I will become functionally fluent before she does. I'm in the lead... so far!

While I am still continuing norskkurs, I unfortunately only go to the kveldskurs (evening course) and that is just a measly one night a week, 2,5 hour class. It's frustratingly slow, but that's ok. My time now is spent caring for my little one still and staying home with her is what I have chosen to do. It doesn't make learning the language any less difficult though. I do listen to a lot of Norwegian voice overs on Disney junior and I've even memorized the songs to the TV shows thanks to spending my days with a toddler.

Possibly the most effective language learning technique I've been doing lately is buying a children's book. Partially because I like reading children's books, it's probably right at my Norweagian reading level, and also because I don't feel like I'm wasting money because it's something my little Pia can read and enjoy when she's a little older.  (I found a decent deal on a 4 pack of Roald Dahl books at Ark about a month ago.)

I've started with Charlie og sjokoladefabrikken or otherwise known as, "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." If I scan across a word I don't know while I'm reading, I write it down and translate it. I read one chapter a day every weekday. So far I almost have a small notebook filled with vocabulary just from one book. I feel like I'm actually learning something this way.


Anonymous said…
Hi, just wanted to say it's good to see you doing better and that you're writing again, I've enjoyed reading your blog, and I was hoping you were feeling better.
One of the girlfriends of a family relative of mine used to borrow my norwegian comic books, especially Donald Duck comics, to read for learning norwegian. I guess I could have sent you my collection from when I was a kid, but you'll probably be getting new ones for your little Pia anyway :)
I hope you'll feel better and that you have a good 2015, and the best wishes for all your family, from a random blogreader.
Evelyn Sand said…
Thank you so much! :-) I am doing better and it's such a relief to feel functional again. :-)
I am sure you are right to start with children's books, and work your way up to more interesting light novels. I did exactly that 35 years ago. One piece of advice is to try to not use a dictionary. Pick the kind of book where it doesn't matter if you miss a paragraph or three. Cheap crime novels translated from English tend to use only simple language. Only look up a word if you notice that you have seen it several times and still haven't got a sense of what it means. Personally I avoided comics because there is so much colloquial use of the language there.
Good luck with the learning process!

And by the way, you're going to lose. My children were born here some 25 years ago, and although everyone says I speak and write good Norwegian, the boys don't have the tiny mistakes that will always give me away after a while.
Anonymous said…
If she by speaking fluent means that noone is going to hear that norwegian is her second language, then yes she'll probably lose. But the most important part is to understand and make yourself understood, and that's a realistic goal for everyone I think.
I can usually hear if a person is born and raised in Norway or not, but as long as I don't have to switch to english I don't think it really matters.
Eggsushi said…
Translating childrens book sounds like a good idea! I am just a beginner i norsk, but i might give it a try! I also go to kveldkurs so i feel its just so not enough. Glad to see you folk newbie :)

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