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Italki Language Challenge - Russian (Part 1)

en:Russian minimarket / uk:Російський магазинч...

The time has come finally. Another month, another challenge. I have finally come to realize that everyone regardless of their personal and professional backgrounds always has an interest in language learning. People of any age learn languages. I have to admit that language is one of many important aspects of our life. Without language, how could we communicate?

Have you read about the story of Babel? If not, you might want to read about it since it is one of the famous stories in the world of languages. I use the word “world” because people that learn languages or those who have obtained sufficient levels to communicate in several languages somehow share the same characteristics, thus, living in their own “world”, a community of multilingual people, or sometimes called “polyglots”.

I don’t call myself a polyglot, I rather call myself a language enthusiast, considering "polyglot” might exaggerate the reality. I believe that no one is perfect, even in their own native languages. Language evolves, it changes over time, and it receives lots of new words as our technology advances and our lifestyle changes.

To make a long story short, I will participate in another Italki Language Challenge for 6 hours within 2 weeks.

Another month, another challenge

I have learned several languages with Italki, namely Portuguese, Tagalog, French. I have also known many inspiring tutors and students from Italki. The language that I will be learning for the following 6 hours is…..Russian!

Russian is no doubt a BIG language, what I mean by BIG is as the following:
  1. Russian is the most widely spoken language from the Slavic language family.
  2. Russian is originated from a BIG country that covers parts of Asia and Europe.
  3. Russian is still used in several former Soviet countries, means that you will still find Russian speakers outside of Russia.
  4. Russia is a member of BRICS countries, a group of newly industrialized countries with fast-growing economies and has a significant influence on regional and global affairs.
  5. Russian is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.
  6. And the list goes on…

I have known several Russian people here, they are cool people although many Russian might be cold in the beginning, once you know them, they will welcome you with a warm heart. There are also Russian learners whom I can practice my Russian in the weekly language meeting. For overall, Russian is a good choice as my target language.

Create milestones

I know 6 hours are too short for anyone to be perfect in any languages, especially Russian, which is considered one of the most challenging languages for many people. Therefore, I don’t aim high, anyway, I have learned Russian before and I can read Cyrillic. I also still remember some basic phrases.

For this challenge, I want to learn as many phrases as possible, especially those frequently-used ones. So, I can introduce myself confidently whenever I approach a Russian speaker. Moreover, I also want to learn grammar from these phrases. So, phrases first, grammar second.

I don’t like to focus on grammar since it comprises rules of dos and don'ts and I find them boring. In fact, we can use gesture when we are talking to express ourselves clearly. However, keep in mind that some gestures might not be appropriate in another culture, such as the OK sign in Asia means something totally different in the Middle East or thumb-up gesture.

Let’s see how much I can learn within these 6 hours. Are you also participating Italki Language Challenge? Share your stories.

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