Are you interested in learning the second largest Slavic language?

Discussion in 'Polski (Polish)' started by Jana337, Aug 21, 2006.

  1. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    If so, join us. :)

    Some members of the WR forums are starting to learn Polish. This textbook (available online for free) will be used. Drill exercises and a grammar reference are available on the same website.


    Q: Why should I learn Polish?
    A: Click. Let me add that Polish is one of the most important languages of the European Union and one of its fastest-growing markets, and that the entrepreneurial spirit of the Polish people is hard to beat. Moreover, the turbulent history of Poland is a key to an understanding of Central and Eastern European societies.

    Q: If I learn some Polish, will I be able to communicate in other Slavic languages as well?
    A: Well... Czech, Slovak and possibly Ukrainian speakers will probably understand you but you will not understand them unless they start speaking in words instead of in sentences. However, the grammars of Slavic languages are similar and the languages have a large common base of useful words, which you will be able to recognize not only in countries neighboring Poland. Check out our threads on similarities and mutual intelligibility between Slavic languages.

    Q: Will I have to register or commit myself to any schedule?
    A: No. No online classes will be organized. You will self-study at your own pace, and if you don’t like it, you can simply stop.

    Q: What are the benefits of learning Polish this way?
    A: Beginners using the same book will probably have similar doubts, problems, and questions. The Slavic forum will be a platform where you can consolidate what you have learned. Our helpful natives will assist you, and other learners will ask questions that may not have occurred to you. Group pressure will contribute more effectively to solid progress than will independent learning. And what a group! Our members tend to be language enthusiasts. ;)

    Q: What if I already speak some Polish and do not want to wait until the others catch up with me?
    A: The project will be a useful refresher for you. As a WR member, you know how much you can learn by helping others.

    Q: I am a native speaker of another Slavic language. Should I embark on learning a language I already understand a bit?
    A: Absolutely! You can learn a lot effortlessly, just by skimming the book, reading the threads, and paying attention to false friends.

    Q: I have got many other commitments, and I am not sure I would be able to keep up with the others. Would it make sense to start anyway?
    A: Definitely. Threads opened by participating members will not disappear. They will ideally serve to help our future members, too.

    Q: Are there any particular forum rules I should respect?
    A: No, just the "normal" rules that you are familiar with. But I would appreciate it if you could re-read the copyright rule (number 16). Do not quote more than you may, and always acknowledge the source. If you refer to the book, give the page number so that our forer@s can identify your problem easily.

    Q: OK, I am convinced. What should I do next?
    A: Download the first chapter of the book, look up the audio files in our resources sticky, bookmark a dictionary of your choice and this webpage. There is no official start date for the "project". I expect first threads to start coming by the end of this week.

    Q: What else do I need?
    A: Patience and persistence. The beginnings will be hard because you will struggle with pronunciation, and the grammar is pretty complex as well.


    Q: Almost all exercises are accompanied by audio files. How can I use the interactive features of the book?

    A: Click. The first time you click on the audio link (the first icon in the area I marked red), a prompt will ask you to authorize the file type either just for the current session or forever. I recommend the latter option. Then you will be able to listen to an audio file (the usual control panel appears, see the area in blue). To do this, you have to have the QuickTime player on your computer. It is available here for free. I tested all of the above in IE and Firefox. However, the exact sequence of the steps may be different for your particular settings. Unfortunately, I was not able to reach any remarkable result by clicking on the other two icons, video and drill exercises. If you are experiencing any difficulties with audio or if you know how to use the video and drills part, please post in this thread.

    Enjoy! :)
  2. papillon Senior Member

    Barcelona, Spain
    Russian (Ukraine)
    great idea!! I was actually thinking of trying to learn at least some basic Polish, and not a day later here you are with this project... Whew, I hope my rusty Ukrainian helps...:)
  3. papillon Senior Member

    Barcelona, Spain
    Russian (Ukraine)
    is there a way to keep this thread always at the top, like a sticky, but, obviously, without "the padlock"? Then it would have the status of a Resource Thread.
  4. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    Yes, but I sometimes think that people ignore stickies. Or is it just stickies with rules? :D

    Anyway, glad to have you on the board! :)

  5. Little_Me Senior Member

    Poland, Polish
    Wow, great idea indeed, I would even say: brilliant!!:D If someone will need any help from native, I'm eager to help!
    Warm greetings!
  6. MonsieurAquilone Senior Member

    NZ - English
    I am interested. I will be useful as I travel around Poland when I am older.
  7. jester.

    jester. Senior Member

    Aachen, Germany
    Germany -> German
    Will you also join the club?

    I would love to do so, but I think I shouldn't because I'm still struggling with the very basics in Russian... I don't want to mix (and mess) everything up.
  8. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    Time permitting, I will.

    We can organize something similar for Russian. But we would need a good online reference. Suggestions welcome (not here, send me a PM :)).

  9. cirrus

    cirrus Senior Member

    UK English
    What a brilliant idea! These days London is jumping with a whole generation of Poles so I hear it every day and it kills me not being able to decode anything apart from references to work and beer.

    Are there any more sound resources other than those you have already flagged up? I really struggle with some of the consonant clusters

    Dziekuje bardzo!

    Argh! Yet another keyboard to mess up with!
  10. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    Excellent, welcome on board! :)

    The Polish part of our sticky is packed with online resources (selected by natives, not by me, i.e. don't worry :D). I picked the book because it is excellent and because I think that it is good to create some common ground, but everyone may draw on any resources (both online and in print); this is not a rigid learning project!

    If you share your specific doubts (preferably in a new thread), we will gladly try to point you to some good reference.



    P.S. Keyboard? If you bookmark the page I recommended, you will not have to memorize the Polish layout. :)
  11. Montgomery New Member


    I think the whole idea is great!
    Thanks for appreciating our beautiful language. :)
    If anyone needs any help, I'm here.
  12. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    The University of Pittsburgh webpage contains a short introduction that explains the interactive part of the book (audio and video files, links to drills). Please read it.

    I will edit the first post and add a brief technical remark.

  13. Id123 New Member

    What a great idea. To big a divide at work between Polish and English! I think this may help with work and be fun at the same time
  14. Toscana27 Member

    NYC, USA
    poland, polish
    Jana, I see you are very involved with these forums!
    I wondered on to this website when I started learning Italian, and I love it. I am fluent in Polish so if you guys need any help, PM me. I will be happy to assist anyone who is brave enough to struggle with Polish... It is not the easiest language! :D
  15. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    Hi Toscana, :)

    I would actually prefer if people asked for help publicly so that all of us can benefit from the conversations. ;)

  16. Etcetera

    Etcetera Senior Member

    St Petersburg, Russia
    Russian, Russia (St Petersburg)
    It's a great idea indeed!:)
    What a nice opportunity to make myself return to my Polish studies! And the site seems to be really, really good.
    Thank you, Jana! :)
  17. ccc98616 New Member

    Herlev (Copenhagen)
    Hi Jana,

    As a newcomer to the WR Forums and self-taught speaker of Polish, I was pleased to read about your initiative! Although I've just embarked on Italian, I could always use some brushing up...

    Greetings, Allanek
  18. MrsJojo New Member


    Great idea! I have been wanting to learn some Polish. There are some things I want to pass on to my children so they can learn quickly instead of waiting until they are old.
  19. mikesz14 Member

    Hallo ;)

    I can help you a little ;) I can borrow in library a book for english lerners ;) I can also help in translation from polish to german. :) Wenn I find my microphone I can also speak with anybody in Polish of course :p i can`t unfortunately english ;( i know i should shame me :( but i can promise that i will start again in several days ;) mayby next day?

    greeting for all ;)
  20. SteJo New Member

    English US
    Great Idea. At the moment myself I am starting learning Polish, well it doesn't seems to be too difficult, but even a possibility to have a Polish forunm is great.
  21. MrsJojo New Member

    Any help would be appreciated! I am trying to learn Polish on my own time and to hear a native tongue would help a lot.
  22. OCCASVS Member

    I'm using GNU/Linux and I can't click the "audio" link.

    Can anyone write the direct links to the audio files, please?
  23. thejudge New Member

    England, English

    Great idea. I am travelling to Krakov in january and wouold welcome any help getting to know the basics before then.
  24. SirAdam New Member

    Hi, I would like to join the Polish-learners group. I'm Italian, with some knowledge of Polish. Czesc you guys!
  25. Insider Senior Member

    Ukraine (Ukrainian)
    Jana, did you come across this resource: ?

    I think it's quite helpful and very good. There one can find a bilingual dictionary, grammar systems, even some short stories in Polish.

    Probably, it can be quite a helpful hint for someone, interested in studying Polish. :)


  26. luryfc New Member

    Spain, Spanish
    yes, i do. although only to get some basic knowledge!!
  27. Tsudo New Member

    Szczecin, Poland
    Poland, Polish
    Yey, how cool, people wanna learn my beautiful, unique and absolutely wonderful language! I must say that I'm really eager to help. If You need help... just let me know ;>

  28. Child_of_darkness Member

    Wow. The polish language is quite hard. Good luck people. I am sure, that learning polish won't be easy and soft. Once again good luck.
  29. PMRPR New Member

    Portugal, Portuguese
    Woeh, to jest wspaniale! Dziekuje bardzo!

    Czesc, jestem Pedro z Portugalii :)

    This is definitely useful, it's the best resource of polish language contents I've found within the Internet so far.

    A little about myself:
    I've began learning polish in Poznan this year (I was there for 4 months) but I only had one class per week, which is not that great. But I'm struggling to do it and one day I'll speak it loud and clear (especially clear!)

    Na razie,
  30. ayupshiplad Senior Member

    Scotland, English
    Fantastic idea! :D (Especially as about 1/4 of people in my city are now Polish!)

    Quick question though: As I only just embarked on Russian 5 weeks ago (at 1 lesson a week- slow progress!) would it be completely inadvisable to pick up Polish as well? I do 5 languages at school and 1 at home which I balance quite well so I'm not really worried about that, more about how easily I will confuse Russian and Polish?

    This really is a fantastic idea. Resources for more 'exotic' languages (i.e not French, English, German, Spanish or Italian!) are so scarce, but the sites look fantastic!
  31. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    This is off-topic here: Please read this and some of our most popular threads about similarities etc., and add your question there.

    For everyone: Notice that this thread was opened more than 1 year ago, and the idea did not really catch on - but why not revive it? :)

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