Results 1 to 20 of 20

Thread: Grammatical Terms....again

  1. #1
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11

    Grammatical Terms....again

    I already posted this on another section but maybe it should have gone here.....ah well.

    Since i started learning Russian in January this year, i've kind of struggled to get used to the grammatical terminology. Sure Dictionaries give examples, but honestly, is it just me or do they word it in a way that's not that easy to understand. I have many Oxford Dictionaries and teaching aids, one even uses says on it's cover "Clear and simple explanations", but i don't find them that clear or simple.

    It's feels a bit scary not knowing what all of the terms mean, this stuff was forgotten by me years ago at School. I feel embarrassed not knowing really.

    When i am at class my tutor says things like, today we will be doing, animate accusative rules or give me some examples of submeaning of the aspects. I have to say, i struggle until she gives me some examples i can understand. You know things like "I see the car" or "to have a nap" etc etc..

    Does anyone know if there is book or website that makes grammatical terms easy to understand, maybe a "for the dumb" guide??

    Thanks in advance!
    пол

  2. #2
    mike
    Guest
    I would like to answer it, but I can't think of any places or books like that. The only one I could possibly think of is http://www.du.edu/langlit/russian/grammar.htm

  3. #3
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    Mike, Thanks, it's a start, that's all i wanted. I am not here to spam the place, and i wouldn't post if i didn't need help.


    If i wanted negatives thown my way i can get them at Pravda Forum, didn't expect it here.

    Again, thank you!
    пол

  4. #4
    mike
    Guest
    If he is not doing a good job explaining these things, maybe it's time to think of getting a new tutor. Personally I don't think I could ever offend someone like this unless they were really bad and really expensive, but maybe it should be a last resort if he/she won't answer your questions.

  5. #5
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    mike,
    its not my tutor, she is very good, it's my difficulty in understanding/remembering all the different terms. There is so much to learn, trying to keep track of it all is taking up much of my time. As i said, i feel a bit stupid having to ask this sort of question. But i suppose when you have only known one language all your life, going back to basics with another is like going back to junior school.
    Believe me, i have asked a few few friends and colleagues about this, it is surprising how many couldn't even give me an example of a pro-noun or a translative verb. Again, when your native language come natural to you, it's not the sort of thing you need to know or worry about.
    пол

  6. #6
    mike
    Guest
    That is why sometimes I think it is better to be able to speak a language before you learn all of the grammatical rules and such. It's kind of pointless to learn all of this structure and syntax and theory if you can't even engage in a simple conversation and be understood. As such, I really don't know a lot of the grammatical concepts or every declension for every word because I've never had the occasion to use them. I'm reminded of that Word of the Day post I made awhile ago. So what's the dative form of poison? Who cares? When will I ever need to use it? I don't even use the dative form of poison in English. I probably use the word poison once a year, and I can't foresee needing to know it in Russian let alone how to fully decline it. I'd feel more confident being able to converse in smalltalk with a native and then learning all of these rules than to fully understand them and have absolutely nothing to say. That's possibly the only reason I enjoyed Pimsleur. It teaches you how the endings of words differ, but only on a need-to-know basis. Granted, I already understood declension before listening to it, but I thought it was refreshing that it didn't spend 20 minutes forcing me to memorize the changes to each word.

  7. #7
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    Good points mike,
    I think i will speak to my Tutor about this kind of approach, see what she says about it.

    Many thanks!

    BTW, if anyone else has anything positive to say on the above subject, i would appreciate there comments.
    пол

  8. #8
    Почтенный гражданин
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    the land of cheese and murder
    Posts
    663
    Rep Power
    11
    My teachers had a twofold approach, which I believe worked very well. In written Russian, they expected grammatical precision. We had written workbook exercises that drilled specific concepts and required us to decline nouns and conjugate verbs. In essays we were expected to be perfect or near perfect, as when writing one could take their time and look words up in the dictionary or conjugations up in the textbook. However, when speaking the only requirement was that you be understandable. We'd have debates and discussions in class, and there was not emphasis on grammar but on expressing ideas. Basically, the only rule was "no English," and I think this did a lot to help teach me to talk around words I couldn't remember on the spot because I seldom use them - "that thing that you press with your foot to speed up the car," and so on.

    I don't know. It worked for me. I learned grammar and I can talk on my feet, also.

  9. #9
    Увлечённый спикер
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Brazil
    Posts
    45
    Rep Power
    12
    First, I think an "average" person might really not need to know a lot of grammar. But someone that is teaching a language must understand how his own language works, and also how the language that is being taught works. This requires grammar.

    Concerning the teaching, it is possible to learn to speak the language fluently without learning grammar, or learning very little of it. But this requires a lot of time and immersion, so that you see the language a lot and your brain can develop a "feeling" for what is right and what is not.

    But because of the time it takes, and because it needs some kind of immersion (preferably living in a country where the language is spoken, but language classes done right can be enough), it is a difficult method to put in practice.

  10. #10
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    Ok, thanks for replies so far. Useful advice, this is what i need.
    пол

  11. #11
    Подающий надежды оратор
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    London, England
    Posts
    24
    Rep Power
    12
    I worked through

    "Teach Yourself Russian"

    and also

    "Teach Yourself Beginner's Russian Grammar"

    Both were very good for teaching the basic grammar rules, but nothing beats writing your own sentences and getting a native to check them and underline the mistakes - then you need to go back and understand why they were wrong.

    But, I had already done German, so I knew what "accusative" meant, and I had the fortune of having parents who taught me what adjectives, adverbs and the subjunctive were in English (since British schools were going through their "don't teach grammar or times tables" phase). If you're not sure about all that, there's a book called "English Grammar for students of Russian", I've not read it but I have seen it in many bookshops. Or go to the BBC webpage and look at the English Grammar descriptions!

  12. #12
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    woolliamser,
    Yes this is exactly what i am struggling with. I will try the BBC's website, see if i can find that book you mentioned.

    спасибо.
    пол

  13. #13
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Бристоль
    Posts
    112
    Rep Power
    12
    in most of my russian books it gives a list of what all the tearms mean, also if it's of benifit i knew not one grammar term when i started learning Russian
    "Нельзя запретить человеку сделать себе большую куклу из воска и целовать её."

  14. #14
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    raskolnik,
    Yes, in most of mine too.

    But when its written something like, Accusative, the case used to express the direct object of a transitive verb and the case used after certain prepositions.

    It doesn't really help me at this stage. All dictonaries, teaching books etc are pretty much the same, some examples for sure, but the glossaries are not the best at describing terms in my opinion.
    пол

  15. #15
    Завсегдатай
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Северо-Восточный Администритивный Округ.
    Posts
    3,471
    Rep Power
    15
    mike, this kinda reflects on what you said, but it is more of a question... like learning words first, then learn the rules. well, i just think if i was a russian kid and had only heard кто and somone said to me кого ты ищиш. i would be like ... ... what about things like он to ним? i was quite baffled the other day when i was talking to a FOUR year old, and he actually knew the diffrence between идти and ехать and even understood, дай бабушке. maybe it is not really a big deal, i seem to have learned the difrence between she and her pretty well... but still do russian kids screw up alot? or are they ... just that good !
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

  16. #16
    Почтенный гражданин
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    the land of cheese and murder
    Posts
    663
    Rep Power
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by Dogboy182
    mike, this kinda reflects on what you said, but it is more of a question... like learning words first, then learn the rules. well, i just think if i was a russian kid and had only heard кто and somone said to me кого ты ищиш. i would be like ... ... what about things like он to ним? i was quite baffled the other day when i was talking to a FOUR year old, and he actually knew the diffrence between идти and ехать and even understood, дай бабушке. maybe it is not really a big deal, i seem to have learned the difrence between she and her pretty well... but still do russian kids screw up alot? or are they ... just that good !
    Dude, they learn it just like English-speaking kids. I mean, as a four year old, if someone told you to give something to grandma, you would have understood, right? And I think идти and ехать are mostly just confusing to English-speakers because we don't have anything like that grammatical distinction. I'm sure it seems natural if you grow up with it, like how you don't hear English-speaking kids messing up the words "a" and "the" but you hear many adult Russians who leared English leaving out definite articles.

  17. #17
    Завсегдатай
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Северо-Восточный Администритивный Округ.
    Posts
    3,471
    Rep Power
    15
    Alright, dude.
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

  18. #18
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    woolliamser,
    I ordered that book you recommended to me the other day. I read some reviews on it, it looks to be just what i need.

    Thanks again for the info!
    пол

  19. #19
    Почтенный гражданин
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    the land of cheese and murder
    Posts
    663
    Rep Power
    11
    Schaum's Outlines: Russian Grammar is pretty good. It explains grammatical concepts clearly and fully, and includes drills on each topic. It's a little dull, but it's a freakin' grammar handbook, so what do you expect?

  20. #20
    Почётный участник
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    93
    Rep Power
    11
    Линдзи,
    Thanks, i'll take a look at that too! Still awaiting the other book.
    пол

Similar Threads

  1. Grammatical gender
    By Misha Tal in forum Grammar and Vocabulary
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: June 19th, 2010, 07:05 AM
  2. Russian Grammatical Dictionary
    By gariche in forum Grammar and Vocabulary
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: February 2nd, 2010, 08:27 PM
  3. Grammar Terms
    By paulb in forum Grammar and Vocabulary
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: November 19th, 2009, 11:17 PM
  4. Grammatical words and a few phrases
    By JackBoni in forum Grammar and Vocabulary
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: July 7th, 2008, 11:51 AM
  5. Do Russians know all the grammatical terms?
    By kwatts59 in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 60
    Last Post: July 1st, 2005, 05:26 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


Russian Lessons                           

Russian Tests and Quizzes            

Russian Vocabulary