July 12, 2011

Language Learning Notes

Ever since I could write I have kept a journal. I remember sitting on the carpet in our church library during Vacation Bible School and Mrs. Woods telling us during story time that one author had kept a diary of every day of her entire life, and that every writer does that. Could we imagine that?

That got me to thinking.

I didn't know what it meant to be a writer, but I didn't want to be left out. Thus began my quest for writing down and keeping random records.

Even with language study this is true.

I love being able to look back and see a story and specific memories.

I had thought I had misplaced my actual language notebook from Karamoja and I was very sad by this.

Then this weekend when I re-organized my closet I found my language book! I was always sad that I sold my favorite Czech language book, Czech Step by Step by Lida Hola (my ALL TIME Favorite language book regardless of language) that I kept close by for almost five years. I also never kept any of my Spanish language materials...

So finding this language material was a jackpot for me!

I also found papers I had hanging in my language study area:

The Ten Commandments in Karamajong. One of my favorite village worship songs was the Ten Commandment song. I love that song!

Then there's 1 Corinthian 13

And hours and hours of language tapes (before I figured out how to go straight digital). These are fun memories too, with shepherds singing in the background, cattle passing, and the occasional thundering rain storm or chicken passing through.

It's been beaten to pieces and lost its cover early on (though I still have the pieces).

The funniest thing for me is flipping through and reading this "journal" and "log". Depending on what I was trying to learn or focus on the phrases can be comical.

One section seems angry and has phrases like,
"Isn't this enough soap for two men?" 
"What happened to the soap I just gave you?"
"Why did you not give the baby the medicine?" etc.

(The soap one cracks me up the most!)

Then it ranges to the VERY practical:
"Did the baby urinate or defecate on the blanket?" "How much has he defecated?"

Then there was the phase where I started taking on all of the kindergarteners by myself- a room of 60 cramped and eager little children, mostly sitting on dirt and excitedly ready to learn. Where most of them could only say, "Hi how aw you?!" But we had fun and I did songs and movements and games... So during that phase, my language lessons took on a different turn with phrases like:

"Don't hit one another!" 
"Be nice!"
"Don't throw rocks!"
"Everyone look at me!"
"Why did you hit her in the head?!"

And then entries that make me sad, with phrases like:

"Did you hear the guns last night?"
"From which way did the enemy come?"
"When was the last time the baby ate?" etc.

And then there are my classic "lap" lessons from the PILAT program which look comical to the "untrained" eye.  The lesson below is on the verb "to hear". As in,
"I heard the dog barking."
"I hear the birds chirping."
"Do you hear the story?"
and my all time favorite on the bottom right, "I heard the knocking/banging on the gate." (and did I ever!)

And lastly, a little painting tucked away in all of it of my favorite flower in Kaabong that I would sit on the window sills to make the air smell just right.
Here's to keeping and making many more memories,


Brandon and April said...

Enjoyed this post!
I keep checking and checking your blog making sure there aren't new updates that my google reader is missing! :) Ready to hear about Baby Girl Reed being born!

The Reeds said...

I'll update as soon as I can! Hopefully sooner than later, but one never can tell!

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