May 28, 2009
Possible Tandem Partner

I have been in contact over the past week with a potential tandem partner with whom I might undertake a language exchange: One hour/week of English, one hour of Slovak. Of course his English is already at a pretty high level, but I am up to the challenge of finding him good materials and practice exercises in return for help with the basics of Slovak.

I have also posted a few flyers around my Uni, asking if anyone is interested in a weekly exchange. I wrote on the flyer that I'd also be willing to learn some Czech, as it is fairly close to Slovak and would likely benefit my understanding of Slovak despite differences between the languages.

I am also working on writing my first (VERY) small text in Slovak., which I'll post soon at so the native speakers can shred it.
posted by B.D. at 9:31 PM | Permalink |
May 20, 2009
Slovak banknote honors linguist
Did you know that a Slovak banknote gives props pays respect to linguist, of all people? Me neither, but they do, or rather, they did.

Although Slovakia is, if I'm not mistaken, in the process of converting to the Euro, it's still worth noting that it chose to put the linguist Anton Bernolák (Wikipedia entry) on its Koruna banknote.

An image of the 200 Koruna note and others can be found here.
posted by B.D. at 11:05 PM | Permalink |
May 19, 2009
The purpose of this blog is to document my progress (or complete and total failure) in learning Slovak, a language brought to North America by my mother's kin but later discontinued by her parents, who decided not to pass it on to their children but rather use it as a "secret language" instead, for purposes of communication between each other when discussing topics not intended for the young'uns.

Within the last few years, contact to distant relatives on the European side of my family's migration story was established, and one of my mother's siblings got to know some of the "folks back home" in their village in eastern Slovakia.

I am eager to learn as much of the language as possible as quickly as possible, say two semesters worth of material by the end of 2009 (probably overly ambitious, considering I already have many ongoing projects as it is with school), and I'm inviting anyone out there with similar interests in learning Slovak to come along for the ride. Someday, with hope within a year or two, I can make use of whatever basic competency I achieve and visit our "Old World folks" myself.
posted by B.D. at 11:47 PM | Permalink |