Monday, June 18, 2012

Language: Learning Turkish in 15 Minute Bursts

In my experience, language learning is often an accessory to a full and busy life.  People that are motivated to study a new language and expand their mind do not sit around the rest of the day watching reality television (or insert any other mindless, time-wasting activity), they are busy with work, school, family, travel and hobbies that enrich and enhance their life.  So how can we fit in the daily 30min or hour to study a new language?

I've been asking myself this question for the past couple weeks - without doing anything to answer it.  So now that my brainstorming has slowed to a drizzle and I have no other excuse, I am taking action.  Maybe some nights I will feel inspired to study Turkish once I get home from my job of studying science.  More often than not I will probably want to put the studying aside, cook a nice dinner and relax a bit.  So I thought of an alternative - something that will help me check the Turkish studying off my to-do list before I even step back into my apartment at night.  I found several free online resources that have lists of the top 100 and 1000 most commonly used Turkish vocabulary.  I plan to go through the top 1000 list and write down the words that I am not familiar with.  I will start by trying to study and memorize 10 words a day.  If I am super motivated, perhaps I will even put these new words into a proper sentence.  Creating context for new vocabulary is a great way for deeper learning.

Instead of sitting down and working on this all at once, I plan to use short breaks during the day - 15min during my mid-morning coffee, 30min during lunch, 15min after my afternoon "my brain is going to explode from thinking too hard" moment.  There is my hour!  Without scheduling the one hour study session, and probably with more focus than I would have if I sat down to study for one hour straight.

One week trial - ready, set, go!

Resources for Turkish Vocabulary:
Top 1000 Turkish words
100 Most Common Turkish Words

This website also has a lot of basic Turkish words and phrases:
Even more Turkish words:

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Beginning

In approximately one year (give or take 3 days) I will get married to my Turkish fiance in his hometown in Turkey.  In one year I will be legally part-Turkish.  The countdown has begun!

So why am I writing this blog?
Over the past two years I have studied Turkish in both informal and formal classes, but for this next year I will be going solo.  This blog will document the journey of language and lifestyle learning as I become a little more Turkish.  I will scavenge the internet for Turkish language and cultural resources.  I will tackle the continually growing pile of books that I've acquired on Turkish culture, history, language and travel.  I plan to write about what I learn and what I think - commentary on the differences between Turkish and American lifestyles will most likely squirm its way into the mixture.

Please feel free to comment and create a conversation.

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