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Thread: Suggestions for "mastering" (i.e. greatly improving) my ...

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    Suggestions for "mastering" (i.e. greatly improving) my ...

    grammar? (sorry, subject length limit cut me off)

    I would consider myself an atypical student. Well ok, wannabe student. I have never actually ever studied Russian but now realize it is time to start. I speak conversational Russian, that is I have no problem conversing but it is grammatically incorrect. I also cannot understand Russian TV, especially the news.

    I have 2 main problems with Russian, grammar and vocabulary. I have decided to fix my vocabulary, I finally found a great way to learn vocab fast. My vocab problems are such that I know twice as many nouns as adjectives (perhaps even 3 times), and twice as many adjectives as verbs... but anyhow this is not the big problem, since I now pick up many new words each day, now that I finally am bothering to start studying.

    My pronunciation is not a problem, Russian people say my accent is soft... and I get compliments often. Anyhow just wanted to point out there actually is an area of Russian I am passable at

    So the area I really need to figure out how to fix is my grammar. Perhaps the most urgent of these is to fix my cases. I already many of the cases correctly some of the time (but mostly only in the singular) when it "feels right" to say a phrase a certain way, or more correctly it feels wrong not to say it with endings modified that way... e.g. I sometimes speak these correctly in phrases but not always: accusative, dative I think perhaps, prepositional

    so my top grammar priory I would think is:

    - learning cases correctly in singular and plural (i.e. comprehensively). As I find this particular area limits my ability to explain things correctly in Russian.

    So I would like to know if anyone knows of a very comprehensive site where it test cases thoroughly... instant feedback thing... I type in Russian, it says right or wrong.

    The key here is comprehensive or best available on the internet... especially I want to make sure I also get tested on cases with plurals too.

    also does anyone know if there is any computer program or web site that will teach grammar covering all areas, taking you through exercise after exercise in order to build your Russian with the goal of learning all important areas of grammar? again, I am looking for instant feedback exercises... type in Russian, get right/wrong verification.

    thanks.

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    Re: Suggestions for "mastering" (i.e. greatly improving) my ...

    Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself. - Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

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    Re: Suggestions for "mastering" (i.e. greatly improving) my ...

    S azov book is quite good for developing grammar and it has lots of exercises. The book has been made available for download by its authors at http://weborg.net/sazov/
    The only disadvantage is that there is only written text for exercises which had audio in the original book. I searched online (torrents, ed2k etc) but couldnt find the audio files for this book.

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    Re: Suggestions for "mastering" (i.e. greatly improving) my ...

    Btw @ycomp, can you tell us about your method for increasing vocabulary? I'm in sort of a reverse situation - I have decent grammar and understanding of language structure but need to improve my vocab.

    Cant find a book to help me with that. I have been making index cards by going through the list of most frequently used words at http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/ssharoff...rqlist-en.html and picking the unfamiliar ones. Do you have any recommendations?

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    Re: Suggestions for "mastering" (i.e. greatly improving) my ...

    Quote Originally Posted by kukushka
    Btw @ycomp, can you tell us about your method for increasing vocabulary? I'm in sort of a reverse situation - I have decent grammar and understanding of language structure but need to improve my vocab.

    Cant find a book to help me with that. I have been making index cards by going through the list of most frequently used words at http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/ssharoff...rqlist-en.html and picking the unfamiliar ones. Do you have any recommendations?
    well I know many many thousands of words, that's for sure... from having been exposed to it a bit (but never speaking) as a kid and from spending time in Russian-speaking parts of Ukraine... not studying, just speaking. But I still do lack an understanding of some very common words (mostly verbs and adjectives). This program I will describe below is starting to help, now I am recognizing more words in Russian songs and such - that I have just learned from the program.

    I did try previously many different programs but never actually did much more than try them. Rosetta stone, which I thought is terrible... too slow. So never got anywhere with that, just basically checked it out. I did find a great program for vocab called Declan's Russian flashcards... lots of words there. The I discovered they have an iPhone app too. iPhone app is not as good as the windows version for me, since I have to spend a lot of time flagging each word so that they will quiz me on all 50 words in each file. If I don't do that then what happens is it will want me to complete all 4 exercises on 10 words, before moving on to the next 10 words and well, the only exercise that interests me is the one where they pronounce the words in Russian and then give you a choice of English words to choose from. The spelling exercise especially is just way too slow. So while this is a great program, it requires too much work from me to use it.

    What I was referring to in my post was another iPhone program for Russian by a Russian guy who wanted to learn Japanese originally. www.russianapp.com . This program is genius (just make sure you get the one that has 5000 words where they actually PRONOUNCE the words). The reason it is genius is, for me at least, that it seems to almost work the same way gambling does. I am no compulsive gambler, but I have gambled once or twice. And I did notice the parallels in winning and losing streaks between gambling and this program.

    The program will say a Russian word and you touch somewhere to see the English word and hit "right" or "wrong" if you had guessed it correctly. This is the hands-down fastest way I have ever seen to work through vocab. The real genius is how it keeps you playing. It will test you on the words you do not answer correctly of course, but also less frequently on recent words you answered correctly and also even less frequently on older words you guessed correctly.

    In practice what this does is eventually you will accumulate about 10 words you really just don't know... which is frustrating and you are almost ready to stop... but you keep working through and when you get one of those correct... often you will hit many in a row that you guess correctly. This relieves the frustration and keeps you "in the game". Therefore I will use it longer than I would have otherwise. And I seem to retain the words fairly well.

    It is similar to gambling in that you have a big losing streak, you want to give up... then you hit a winning streak and you keep on playing I find it very effective for learning vocab. Some people who review the software complain that it is not just simple words they would use when visiting Russia... but I do not actually want those words. There are many places to learn the basic words, if you do not know them already... which you probably do.

    btw. thanks for that link to that book, it looks great.

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