Saturday, July 20, 2013

Adjectives and the Gender-Confus-ed/-ing Nouns

I'm finding myself stuck on chapter 4 of Teach Yourself Norwegian. Stuck completely - between a ton of vocabulary for which I have no mental hooks (so I feel like I'm learning it anew every time I go over the lists) and the suddenly and inexplicably difficult forms of the adjectives. Also, gender is strangely proving quite the challenge - especially that some of my learning resources do and some don't include the feminine gender. It's nice that there's some leeway in Norwegian on whether to use it or not, as I'm reading. However, I'd rather deal with absolute rules than this supposed freedom that forces me to mentally correct between my Pimsleur audio material and the Norwegian on the Web, which use "ei", and my Teach Yourself resources, which happily announce that "en" is just as accepted for all the traditionally feminine nouns. I'm afraid that giving a beginning learner any kind of freedom may create more confusion than progress.

Another thing I'm still getting over is the definite article that gets attached to the end of the noun instead of going in front, like the indefinite one does. And I can't somehow get used to what happens to the whole article situation when the noun is modified by an adjective. I know it theoretically and I could write it out but there is no way I can think fast enough to say it.

In many ways I feel much less advanced in my studies than I felt a few days ago when I just hit my 2 weeks with Norwegian. Is it that the more one knows of the language, the more ways one has to get things wrong?

Now I'm torn between wanting to move on to chapter 5 - since technically I completed chapter 4, however inadequately in my mind - and reviewing chapters 1-4 until I completely know every single sentence in them. I think I will postpone the decision until I've listened to a few units of Speak Norwegian with Confidence. I have a feeling the early conversations dealing with introducing oneself and other simple matters may give me the confidence I need to continue in good spirits.