A couple things I need help with
There's a couple things that have got me completely lost, can someone help me please?
I may be at level 8 (yay!), but I've only completed the first three rows of the tree, so I haven't found anything about adjectives yet. But there's an adjective (tasty) in the food skill. And the endings keep changing, and I can't figure out why, or what the pattern is. Should I just memorise which ending goes with which sentence for now, and wait until I actually reach adjectives, or should I learn them now?
This is confusing me worse than adjectives. :-) E and ę at the ends of words. I can't hear any difference between them when they're at the end of a word. Is there one, and if so, what should I be looking for? Or do they sound the same? And if they sound the same, how do I know which one it is?
The most basic thing about Polish adjectives is that they match the gender of the noun they accompany. So there is a different adjective form for feminine nouns (smaczna kanapka), masculine nouns (smaczny chleb) and neuter nouns (smaczne jedzenie).
Ę is almost always pronounced as E at the end of a word, so don't worry if you can't hear any difference :)
Word final ę (as opposed to plain e) is something that typically only comes up in writing. Even some natives who don't read a lot may forget it. I know this is nothing to be proud of, but I finally learned where it should go when I was almost 19.
In fact the natives cannot forget it, because the final ę is usually used only in two cases: in feminine nouns in Accusative and in verbs in first person singular in present tense. There are also several neuter nouns in Nominative that end in ę, for example imię.
Well, I either forgot it, or never learned it until then, not sure which. When I was about 12, I had to write a short story and wasn't sure whether I should write „elektrownię atomową” or „elektrownie atomową”, so I changed it into plural „elektrownie atomowe” just to be safe. I must have still had some subconcious understanding back then.
But over time I read less and less. The last compulsory book I had read in full was „Król Edyp”. And eventually, once I was near 19, I was surprised to see the word „wiosnę”. Not long earlier the spellchecker had to correct me when I wrote „cie” or „sie”. That was the moment I've decided to derust my Polish spelling skills.
Believe me, with very little practice you can forget a lot of stuff. One of my family members even forgot how to spell „ojciec”.
:) I believe you. Of course, the final ę is used also in some adjectives and in some pronouns, but when I was writing the notice above, I had forgotten that.
If you're the grammar-learner type, you could look up the declension of "smaczny" on Wiktionary: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/smaczny
(or some other source)
and match up the endings you see in sentences to number, gender, and case, and see whether you see more pattern emerge.