Effects of Livemocha

English: suggest for 50000th Wiki Farsi page
Image via Wikipedia

I had an interesting effect of Livemocha.  It has made me care more about grammar.  To paraphrase the Irish Polyglot , grammar just tells the story of why people talk the way they do.  It helps solve problems.

Farsi has — from my present, beginner’s point of view — an incomprehensible plural system.  I thought I had it down, until I submitted it in Livemocha.  Everyone came down hard on me, eliminating my carefully-placed “ها” plural particles.  What’s up with that?  So I figured out how to say, “When do I write it?” in order to question my new friends.  One responded, saying, “I’ve never thought about it.  I don’t know.”

In another place, I finally learned numerals.  However, Farsi has a (presently, by me) incomprehensible system of quantifiers.  Between the number and noun (always singular–argh!), often (not always) comes some word.  Often it’s the Arabic word عدد meaning “amount.”  So after submitting my exercises, I got slammed again.

First of all, I’m grateful for the Livemocha system and community.  If I were speaking, people would probably prefer to ignore these mistakes of mine.  The way the system is, the community is rewarded for giving me feedback.

Now I’m on a quest!  What in Farsi determines where and when the plural marker and quantifier go?  So to succeed in Livemocha, I will have to find and consult a grammar book.  Pimsleur will not help with this, so I will turn to my “How to Read, Write, and Speak Persian” book. I hope it’s there.  This experience reinforced to me that Livemocha is a great resource, but not enough on its own.

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One thought on “Effects of Livemocha

  1. Pingback: Exotic Connection « Loving Language

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