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learning two languages(chaos)

Posted: July 14th, 2008 6:47 am
by Raul826
well I am from america but my father is from mexico,he along with the rest of my family speak spanish,(except for my mother who understands spanish but speaks only english) and even though I knew some spanish I wanted to learn more, so I have been taking spanish classes at my highschool.

Anyway, all was going well untill I had the desire to learn japanese, now and again when I try to practice one of the languages on my own and I come to a word I dont know how to say(a word in spanish), I ended up using the word in japanese instead, or vice versa.

its not a complaint or problem, I actually get a really good laugh out of it, because the sentences still make a bit of sense.

now I have learned to keep them WAY seperate from eachother, and now its starting to stop.

SO my question to you is, have you tried learning two languages at once and sometimes got them mixed?

kinda random, a bit stupid, but whatever, just wondering....

Posted: July 14th, 2008 9:07 am
by Psy
I've done several languages at once before, and most assuredly this happens. The more concentrated the effort the more difficult it gets to keep them apart. Personally I'd advise against doing more than one at a time, but if you must, divide your study plan as much as possible... say, one week (or month) Spanish, then one Japanese. If you do both in a single day you'll feel little progress in either.

Posted: July 14th, 2008 9:09 am
by retropunk
I have never tried to learn two languages at once, but I have mixed up English and Spanish a few times. However, since I've stopped studying Spanish many years ago, I can't really speak much of it at all nowadays.

Posted: July 14th, 2008 2:19 pm
by untmdsprt
I'm personally sticking to Japanese until I become fluent in it before I start another language. I've actually picked up words here and there in Spanish, French, and German just by listening to them. Guess it's also because of Japanese incorporating foreign words into its language. :D

Posted: July 15th, 2008 3:24 am
by bogart96
At commercial foreign language school we had 3 hours of French class followed by 2 hours of English every day, 5 days/week, for the period of 2 years. Mixing up languages happened to all of us at first. But only during the first trimester, and this is why: Our English and French teachers were fantastical, but they acted like they heartily despised each other's nationality (and personality, and language). Coming up with a word in the other teacher's language was treated like a personal insult: „May I remind you that right now you're in MY class, NOT in Mr X's/Monsieur Y's“ :-) When we complained about having to write tests in both languages on the same day we'd get a cold shrug: „I will not have Mr X/Monsieur Y keep me from scheduling my tests as I like. If you feel you must study for Mr X's test rather than for mine, well ...“. End of discussion. The (brutal) trick worked, we all made this phenomenal discovery: doing homework for English after homework for French (and viceversa) was actually mind-refreshing (I am talking about 2-4 hours homework per day). Keeping the two languages side by side but well apart was not only possible, but a welcome diversion, real fun!
Nowadays, I don't need my foreign language skills at work so often. When I do, out of the blue, and vocabulary is not instantly available, automatically I tend to „help myself out“ in the wrong (foreign) language. But instantly, I hear and see my old teachers (ouch!). Then, I relax for a second, let the mind click into the „right language mode“, and the words come out right.
At the same time, though, with my parents, brother and sister, we speak a mixture of German, Spanish and SpanGerman. Our parents were never strict about making us speak correct German at home during the long years in Spain. Well, they tried to, but gave up after some years :-)

Posted: July 19th, 2008 12:50 pm
by Raul826
bogart96 wrote:At the same time, though, with my parents, brother and sister, we speak a mixture of German, Spanish and SpanGerman. Our parents were never strict about making us speak correct German at home during the long years in Spain. Well, they tried to, but gave up after some years :-)


WOW! SpanGerman! Never heard that before. That must be really interesting to hear.

Posted: July 20th, 2008 3:43 pm
by nyappyrebecca
I'd love to learn and become fluent in more than one language; Russian, Spanish, German, Italian, & French.

..

Posted: July 29th, 2008 2:12 am
by Hamiltoons
I am learning Japananese and Russian currently. I have no problems keeping the two separate. I'm learning Russian to converse with some co-workers and for fun. I'm learning Japanese because I love Japan and want to be fluent and able to read and write this beautiful language.

Posted: July 31st, 2008 9:08 am
by korinsan
yeah ive done this. i go to a college prep high school, and they make you get to the third level of a language, but they only had spanish and french when i started. so now im in my 3rd year of Spanish, but i decided to learn japanese maybe halfway through my second year...now i mix them up all the time, even in class. its pretty funny, as my neighbor knows Japanese and is the only one who can understand me

Posted: August 5th, 2008 1:26 pm
by annalee
I often get my German and Russian confused, my French and Italian confused, and since I'm learning Chinese on the side as well, I get the Chinese pronunciation often mixed up with the Japanese kanji pronunciation T_T And with Russian I just can't memorize the second half of the alphabet because it's overload with having to learn Chinese characters too...:[

Korean is pretty easy since my parents and I speak it around the house...but since the language I'm studying the hardest with is Japanese, I often accidentally mix that in...luckily my brothers and my mom understand me because they used to live there, but they doesn't really bother to help me, they just laugh XD

Posted: August 6th, 2008 9:13 pm
by touko
It's really funny when this happens!
Like I'd speak Chinese by accident to my Japanese host parents (I wonder what they thought? >_>).
I took Russian for a month and most of the students came in with a few second languages under their belts, so when we were supposed to answer a question with "da" some people answered with "si", "oui", and even "hai".

Re: learning two languages(chaos)

Posted: August 9th, 2008 4:38 am
by Ulver_684
Raul826 wrote:well I am from america but my father is from mexico,he along with the rest of my family speak spanish,(except for my mother who understands spanish but speaks only english) and even though I knew some spanish I wanted to learn more, so I have been taking spanish classes at my highschool.

Anyway, all was going well untill I had the desire to learn japanese, now and again when I try to practice one of the languages on my own and I come to a word I dont know how to say(a word in spanish), I ended up using the word in japanese instead, or vice versa.

its not a complaint or problem, I actually get a really good laugh out of it, because the sentences still make a bit of sense.

now I have learned to keep them WAY seperate from eachother, and now its starting to stop.

SO my question to you is, have you tried learning two languages at once and sometimes got them mixed?

kinda random, a bit stupid, but whatever, just wondering....


Raul826-san! :wink:

I also often get confused and combine English with Spanish or backwards! :P

Re: learning two languages(chaos)

Posted: August 10th, 2008 5:17 am
by Raul826
Ulver_684 wrote:
Raul826 wrote:well I am from america but my father is from mexico,he along with the rest of my family speak spanish,(except for my mother who understands spanish but speaks only english) and even though I knew some spanish I wanted to learn more, so I have been taking spanish classes at my highschool.

Anyway, all was going well untill I had the desire to learn japanese, now and again when I try to practice one of the languages on my own and I come to a word I dont know how to say(a word in spanish), I ended up using the word in japanese instead, or vice versa.

its not a complaint or problem, I actually get a really good laugh out of it, because the sentences still make a bit of sense.

now I have learned to keep them WAY seperate from eachother, and now its starting to stop.

SO my question to you is, have you tried learning two languages at once and sometimes got them mixed?

kinda random, a bit stupid, but whatever, just wondering....


Raul826-san! :wink:

I also often get confused and combine English with Spanish or backwards! :P

thankfully my english is the one thing im able to keep to itself, however I do find my self using japanese adjectives to describe things now and then

Posted: September 21st, 2008 5:12 am
by kc8ufv
I had this problem in HS. I was taking Tae Kwon Do, so I had to learn some Korean, and was taking French in school. I occasionally grabbed phrases from the wrong language. If I had more time, I'd try adding Korean to the list of what I'm studying again, but I barely have time right now for Japanese, C, Java, and the other various projects I have going.

Posted: January 25th, 2009 8:47 am
by thething912
I'm actually learning three languages right now. Spanish, French, and, Japanese. Although, I'm mainly working on French and Japanese.