Turkish, I underestimated you. (First thoughts on Turkish)
When Turkish was still in the incubator I assumed that when it came out, it would fairly easy to get accustomed to and fairly easy to pick up. Sure I don't really have much experience with S-O-V or aggulinating languages (still haven't gotten to that part yet) but I figured it would be no biggie.
Boy was I wrong.
I had to struggle much longer than I normally do to get to level 2. Every sentence I did was marked wrong and to top it off I couldn't understand hardly a thing the TTS said and I was acutally starting to get frustrated with it. But I'm persevering and coming to find it not so difficult to grasp after all, in fact...I'm kinda enjoying it since my mind isn't fighting with it and instead soaking it in. Now mind you I haven't passed the first checkpoint yet but I can see myself more actively pursuing it pairing it alongside Polish.
The biggest problem for me is the vocabulary. There are so few words that I can make a connection to in other languages. But, that being said, I love it!!! It's a challenge, and I think Turkish is beautiful and it is a gateway, for me, into a culture I would love to experience. I'm hoping to visit Konya in the next few years and really want to have a grasp of the language before that happens.
Just hang in there! The grammar is very different because it is a whole different language family. So the slope is steep at first. The good news about Turkish is that it is extremely consistent, grammar-wise and also spelling-wise - which you may have noticed already, it reads like it spells and it spells like you say it.
There are studies showing that Turkish is one of the easiest languages to learn 'from scratch': so as a kid, disregarding how far a language is to you and learning by pure immersion. Kids learn it to a given level of proficiency significantly faster than English, German, French or whatever. Of course kids are kids and learning new stuff is easier for them, but that does mean that less effort is wasted at some point in the learning, and it seems to be exactly these endless lists of exceptions, special phrases derived from medieval speech, funky spelling due to loan words, that most languages have and Turkish - well, doesn't lack completely, but has a lot less of. That means the learning goes a lot faster after you manage the most common grammar, at the point when in other languages things start getting really confusing...
So there you go, my secret reason to keep going at it :)
Happy learning everyone!
That's the impression I have of Irish. I find Danish and Swedish (and Norwegian Bokmal - which is soon to be delivered by owl) to be much closer to English and easier to learn. I have only had a few Turkish lessons so far, but I admire your attitude and persistence, and hope to follow in your steps soon. Have fun, and thanks for the preview!
Same here. Of the languages I m doing on duo, there are 3 I have not touched before: Portuguese, Irish and Turkish. So far, Portuguese is pretty easy (getting both help and interference from Spanish), whereas Irish and Turkish take real effort and need a lot of repetition to stick in my brain.
I found Irish so impenetrable that I decided to set it aside. I'm going to soldier on with Turkish, even though I'm sure it will be a challenge, because I have some Turkish-speaking friends and family. I feel like I'll get use Turkish in the real world whereas I might never have the opportunity to use Irish. I'm glad that more than just commonly taught languages (for English-speakers) are rolling out on Duolingo. Keep 'em coming!
Turkish is a lot easier for me than I thought it would be, and I think it's easier than Irish! But in all fairness, I think that the reason Turkish is easier is because of the Arabic and Persian vocab which I've known for awhile. The woman's voice is also easy to imitate. The agglutinative nature of the language lends to a lot of frustration.
If you're having trouble understanding the recorded phrases, try listening to more Turkish. You can find podcasts (like Turkish Tea Time and Turkish Language Institute) or even listen to TV shows on YouTube. Even if you don't understand everything, listening more will help your mind pick up the rhythm, pauses and natural sound groupings of the language.
I find the Turkish grammar a challenge too, but I feel I'm having a harder time learning the almost completely alien vocabulary. There are very few connections you can make with familiar concepts in related languages (like in the Indo-European language family).
Just to give you a clue on how I am grasping at straws in order to learn the Turkish vocabulary: I remember the verbs 'yer' and 'içer' ('to eat' and 'to drink') from my limited knowledge of Russian (!). By sheer coincidence only, the Russian verbs for 'to eat' and 'to drink' sound somewhat similar: есть (yest') and пить (pit').