20 Endangered Languages in 2020: Progress Report #06

20 langs in 2020 progress 06

Well, I’m late with another update—but I’m here! How were my first six days with Nahuatl and what am I hoping to achieve in the next twelve?

Nahuatl’s pretty fun, you know!

So I started off having a little difficulty finding varying resources, but I’m settled with some I like now—though my main concern was pronunciation. There are a lot of guides out there for Classical Nahuatl, but I’m not trying to learn that; I’d like to learn a little of something I could maybe use one day.

In an absence, then, of a pronunciation video I was sure I could rely on, I made sure to carefully read and work through the pronunciation lesson of the University of Texas’ online Nahuatl course—which is a first for me! It’s terrible, I know, but I always want to rush the pronunciation part of a new language and dive into learning new words and phrases.

But I also know that doesn’t really work.

So, instead, I took the time on my first day and actually went through that first lesson, listened to as much of the audio as I could (some of it didn’t work for me, but that might’ve been because I was accessing it through my phone) and I feel like I’ve actually got a pretty good grasp of Nahuatl pronunciation now! Including that ‘tl’ sound, which is a fun (and new) one!

I’ve also, as usual, spent a lot of time on Memrise (feels like this blog is turning into a one-woman Memrise promo, sometimes), found a Transparent Language course that I’ve been able to access for free (via this blog post from The Craft of Language), and downloaded the app Vamos a aprender náhuatl, which has a cute layout and some basic words and phrases.

Some stats for you:

In the first six days, I spent 196 minutes (or 3.27 hours) learning Nahuatl. That averages out to 33 minutes (0.55 hours) per day, so I’m where I was with Guernésiais at this same stage. I definitely can get a lot more done; I’m really enjoying working through the Transparent Language course, so I’d like to spend more time there.

I’d learnt 41 words on Memrise and about 16 on Transparent Languages, so 57 words total. Again, there’s no audio for the Memrise course, but since the orthography used for Nahuatl is quite straightforward, it isn’t really a problem.

Here’s my breakdown:

Nahuatl progress report #06

I’ve spent most of my time working through the Nahuatlahtolli course so far, along with using Memrise to supplement that. Transparent Languages is hopefully going to catch up; I’d like that and Nahuatlahtolli to be about even by the end of my time with this language.

I did watch most of one YouTube video that was a little about Nahuatl pronunciation but also about how words are formed. It was interesting, especially since it was mostly in Spanish, but I haven’t really been back to YouTube since.

My next update on Nahuatl is supposed to be tomorrow—Friday 6th March—but I’m away this weekend (as I was last weekend, hence the slow update) so instead, I will have it up Monday 9th March.

Still, I hope to have over 125 words learnt by the end of tomorrow and I’m planning to write a few sentences for you all to look at!

Oh, and is there anyone out there who can explain to me exactly what an absolute substantive noun is?!

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