Learning a Language: Real World Pop Quiz

I worked myself up to commit that I AM learning the Korean language about 6 weeks ago. I knew it would be self-study.  So far, I haven’t actually come up with much of a plan.  I’m brain-storming, gathering research, trying out a few things.  (Thanks, Evita, for your suggestions on some steps I should take.)  You wouldn’t be wrong to say I am completely disorganized and in spite of best intentions have yet to stick to one set of audio / video / books to knuckle down to serious studying.

Today, I was given a real life pop quiz.  I totally flunked.  LOL

It started out innocently enough.  I was trying to connect up with my language exchange partner on Google+ Hangouts.  His voice sounded like a series of electronic beeps, R2D2.  After a few retries, opted for plan B – Skype call.  The phone rang and eventually, a recorded message came on.  Only it was in KOREAN.  Egads!  So fast!  I caught juseyo and imnida.  The message repeated, I still only caught 주세요 (give me please).  LOL

OK, so this nice Korean voice is politely asking me something.  I have no clue what.  Pop quiz: failed!

I assume it was something along the lines of “The person you are trying to reach is unavailable at this time.  Please leave a message.  Standard messaging rates will apply.”

Now that I am calling Korea and visiting Korean websites, I have moments where I am thrust into real world Korean, and I am totally unprepared.  If I need motivation to study harder, it is so I don’t get caught flat footed the next time the real world gives me a Pop Quiz.

A modal dialog is a window that forces the user to interact with it before they can go back to using the parent application.

For example, I visit the Naver Dictionary frequently.  Yesterday, it started giving me a pop up.  Suddenly faced with a page of Hangul, I try not to panic.  What does it want?  What does all this mean?  I sound out 네이버 Naver 영어 English. The rest is a mystery.  In a modal dialog box, you can’t just go look it up.  Another pop quiz: fail!  I have no idea what it wants.

Off I go to Facebook chat to ask a Korean.  (For a moment, I glory in the realization that asking a Korean seems so reasonable, whnaverchat1en I only just acquired Korean pen pals 6 weeks ago.)

I might be failing my pop quizes, but I want some extra credit for the fact that I am still trying to get the hang of typing in HKoreanKeyboardangul.  Typing this post, I used the soft keyboard on the language toolbar to swap back and forth between English (A) and Hangul (가).

Of course, that means that I often forget I am still in Korean until I type an English word and it comes out looking like this:

I was trying to type English ... whoops, still in Korean mode

I was trying to type English … whoops, still in Korean mode

I laugh at myself every day.  Haha.  Silly Julia.  Another mistake 실수.  But it is all part of the learning process.

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2 Responses to Learning a Language: Real World Pop Quiz

  1. Evita says:

    That thing with trying to type English words while the keyboard is in the Korean mode happens to me as well every day. It’s a bit annoying but I’ve learned to live with it. I’ve had times when I’ve written a whole sentence, like 10 words, and then look up at the screen and it’s just gibberish. LOL.


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