April 14—Today is the Day of the Georgian Language!

Today is the day of the Georgian language.

In 1978, back when Georgia was part of the Soviet Union and it was unheard of to demonstrate, Georgians bravely stood up for their language and demonstrated against its abolition. Apparently, Brezhnev decided to make the state language of Georgia Russian.

That didn’t fly so well. The people demonstrated.

And why wouldn’t they. Russian is freaking hard!

But not to be too glib about this. Demonstrating in the Soviet Union was very dangerous. Demonstrators could expect to be killed in the Soviet Union.

Fortunately, everything worked out ok.

The Georgian Alphabet

I find that I just can’t move forward with Georgian until I can write the alphabet. So that’s where I’m starting. I think I’ll spend a few weeks here, just writing by hand and typing.

Грузинский алфавит. Georgian alphabet. ქართული ანბანი

ქართული ანბანი ბავშვებისთვის – Kartuli Anbani Bavshvebistvis – Georgian Alphabet – ქართული ასოები

What about learning one language from another?

So I have this engineer friend who is just mad for languages. He mentioned to me one day that he was learning one language from another.

So stay with me. His first language is English. He later learned Japanese, then Spanish, and now he’s working on Russian. He thinks an effective way to conquer two languages at one time is to learn one from another. So get your Russian textbooks in Spanish.

I honestly don’t know what I think about that. But today as I was scrambling to find web materials on Georgian, I came across several sites in Russian that offered Georgian lessons.

Here’s one:

Грузинский алфавит за 10 дней


We are offered the whole Georgian language in just three months here: http://gruzinskij.ru/alfavit-kurs.html

Keeping it all straight

IMG_5269I’ve been in several formal language classes in my life and one thing I’ve noticed as I’ve moved from one language to another was a mixing of languages in my mind.

For example, if I was currently studying Spanish, but had studied Russian several years prior, whenever I would have trouble coming up with a particular Spanish word, my brain would find and serve up the Russian equivalent.

That left me in some strange conversations with some strange looks.

I guess my brain must have thought: Hey, she’s looking for a foreign word, and it’s not here in the Spanish department, put out an all points bulletin for foreign language! Find that word! Foreign language word! Any foreign language.

This has baffled me. How do I set up the boundaries between languages?

Do I study Russian whilst sniffing rosemary and Spanish with lavender?

Recently I completed the Oxford Seminars English as a Foreign Language Certification course. In it I learned all kinds of language acquisition methods that I’ve been dying to try.

I’m planning to start volunteer teaching in the next few months, but in the meantime, do these methods really work? Could I try them on myself with something as foreign as Georgian or Arabic?

I’m going to try everything that comes to mind. I’ll be researching other methods online and refreshing the Oxford method too as I go along. I’ll keep track of it all here as I try to bend my brain into the “right” kind of pretzel.