We're going to make this one as straightforward as possible because reading A list of complex Albanian pronouns is probably not how you want to spend your coffee break. Here, there'll be no complicated reciprocal or reflexive pronouns. Instead, we'll do Personal, Possessive, and Indefinite.
A taster: I- Unë...My- Im...Everywhere- Kudo
When you think personal pronoun, you should be thinking substitute. It stands in for someone or something's name. The benefits of personal pronouns are that they keep things neat and concise.
Imagine the alternative: 'Michael was born in 1989. Michael first went to the school when he was five years old, where Michael enjoyed writing. Michael went to university to study journalism when he was 18.
Albanian nouns work much the same way, except there are allowances made for masculine nouns and feminine nouns 'it' and 'they.'
Possessive pronouns are similar substitute words, except they indicate that something belongs to someone.
Again: 'Michael likes Michael's writing.'
It doesn't quite sound right and makes more sense to replace the second Michael with his.
With this one, the key is in the title. Indefinite - Uncertain. We use them when it's vague who we're talking about.
'Someone said that Newcastle United is playing tonight.'
Linking words link ideas together and are often found in the same sentences as pronouns.
'Michael likes spaghetti, but he doesn't like Bananas'.
Gender-neutral pronouns are becoming increasingly popular with young people. Two popular ones are Ze and Zir.
However, things are slower to change in Albania. Gender roles are very much baked into the societal structure.
I was recently watching a Youtube video by language expert Chris Lonsdale in which he discusses how best to learn a foreign language. Here, I'm going to present his principles and actions and give some of my own tips:
1 Focus on language content that is relevant to you.
There is no point in learning vocabulary related to Marine biology if you plan to study biodiversity in Chiang Mai.
2 Use your new language as a tool to communicate... from day 1
This is closely related to simply not being shy. Students should be encouraged to engage with native speakers when they have basic phrases mastered on the Ling App. Learning is doing.
3 When you first understand the message, you will unconsciously acquire the language
Language acquisition is not about acquiring knowledge; it's about understanding the language in context. That's why Ling's unique lessons are so useful.
4 Physiological training
Something that is often overlooked is the actual physical act of speaking. Sounds are formed differently in different languages. It can be helpful to repeatedly drill like you would with a weight at the gym.
1 Listen a lot
Input. Input. Input. Or brain soaking, as Chris calls it. Surround yourself with the language, and it will begin to become a part of you.
2 Focus on getting the meaning first
This point is similar to principle 3. Meaning in context is key. There's no point learning esoterically if you're a beginner.
3 Start mixing
When you have 10 verbs, 10 adjectives, 10 nouns, you have 1000 phrase combinations. This is how babies learn to speak, gradually building up and making their language more complex.
4 Focus on the core- i.e. high-frequency language.
Again, this seems obvious but is often overlooked. On day number 1 of learning a new language, you probably want to focus on introducing yourself rather than the second conditional. Ling's app makes sure that you learn the basics first.
5 Get a language parent
As hard as this can be to admit for teachers, a lot of the best learning takes place outside the classroom. A student at a school might only be with you for a few hours a week. That isn't enough time to become fluent. So putting in the hard work at home with a partner is critical.
N.B. Ling Live is looking to expand and cover other languages in the near future
6 Copy the face
This harks back to how babies learn. Students should watch videos of native speakers forming the actual words with their mouths. It's a form of drilling, but then drilling is key even if it has become unpopular in some circles.
7 "Direct connect" to mental images
This is where the efficacy of flashcards is so obvious. Ling's spaced repetition system makes use of this tactic.
There is a certain suspicion and snobbiness around the notion that it's possible to get good at something fast. The idea has been tarnished by 'get rich quick schemes'. But this is something different. This is linguistic science backed up by hard data. With the proper techniques and some discipline, you can go from zero to fluent in 6 months.
Your foundation should be this Albanian blog as well as the Ling app, where we have hundreds of Albanian language lessons. Our program is vital for beginner learners and is something that you can undoubtedly build upon with articles in colloquial Albanian and listening activities in your target language.
I think that's enough Albanian grammar for today. If you'd like more lessons like pronouns in Albanian, please let us know. If not, we'll return next week with less grammar-centered content.
Until the next time.