Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Cantonese I ALESN Monday, January 8, 2018 Class Summary, Insights, Homework -- sorry for the delay!

Hi Everyone and sorry for my delay in typing your blog entry. Busy with work and some other things over the past 2 weeks. I will try to keep it brief and to the point in the interest of time.


After answering one or two brief questions regarding the "Say It In Cantonese" section at the end of Lesson 2, we jumped right into the vocabulary for Lesson 3, and then the Build Up of Lesson 3's Dialogue, aided by our assistant teacher Allison -- thanks, Allison!

Vocabulary concerns / insights (pages 80-81):
  • bin1 go3 WHO. This can also mean WHICH ONE of a noun that has GO3 as its measure word. We discussed this briefly and I mentioned some examples -- which clock, for example. BIN1 by itself means WHICH, and we expect a measure word to follow. The polite way to ask WHO? is BIN1 WAI2, which polite measure word for a person?
  • chi3 TIME OR OCCURRENCE, as in "this time" or "next time" or "three times" -- not as in "what time is it" or "I don't have time, I'm in a hurry." This chi3 means how many times something occurs.
  • ching2 cho2, CLEAR as in how well you hear or understand something, not as in how clear it is outside on a sunny day and not as in the glass window is clear.
  • daahn6 hai6 BUT. Memorize this one -- it is important and you will use it all the time!
  • di1 is THE UNIVERSAL PLURAL MEASURE WORD in Cantonese, meaning "SOME." It is used for nouns that cannot be counted without a container or unit of measure, like water, and is also used to mean "some" of any countable noun when the exact number of that noun is not specified.
  • dim2 HOW, short for dim2 Yeunhng5, in which manner or fashion? Memorize!
  • dou1 in Cantonese can mean BOTH OR ALL, and it can also mean ALSO. This is different from Mandarin, which has this character with basically the same pronunciation. Mandarin tends to use this to only mean both or all, and uses another word (ye3) to mean also. If you are studying both Cantonese and Mandarin remember that dou1 in Cantonese has more uses and is used more often than in Mandarin, where it is mainly/only used to mean both/also.
  • ga3 or ge3 as a SENTENCE FINAL PARTICLE SUGGESTING A MATTER OF FACT ASSERTION. I gave some examples in class. We can discuss this more if anyone is confused, though the example in the dialogue should provide some clarity.
  • hohk6 TO STUDY OR LEARN SOMETHING. Memorize this verb.
  • je1, A SENTENCE FINAL PARTICLE MEANING "THAT'S ALL, OR THAT'S IT -- JUST THAT MANY, NOT MORE." For example, you think I have 27 (of whatever thing we are talking about), but I only have 5 JE1.
  • ji1 dou3 TO KNOW A FACT. I explained the different between this and SIK1, to know someone or something or to know how to do something, as in a skill that you have learned or acquired. (see later on in this lesson's vocabulary for sik1).
  • joi3 AGAIN, as in joi3 gin3 -- see you again, or goodbye. It goes in a specific place in the sentence and the word order will be different from where it would appear in an English sentence.
  • joi3 gong2 yat1 chi3: AGAIN SAY ONE TIME, in other words, please repeat what you just said.. Notice where the joi3 goes in this sentence. To make it more clear for yourself, put a NEIH5 at the beginning of the sentence: "You again say one time." Now you get it.
  • me1 SENTENCE FINAL PARTICLE SUGGESTING SURPRISE. I gave an example from the Cantonese dubbed version of the cartoon movie Megamind, when Megamind sarcastically says, "Oh really?!" "Oh, haih6 me1?!"
  • mh4 goi1 neih5: PLEASE WILL YOU [DO WHAT I AM ABOUT TO ASK YOU TO DO]. Memorize this and start using it all the time to ask people to do things for you!
  • se1 siu2 (or siu2 siu2) A LITTLE BIT -- Pimsleur likes to use yat1 di1 (same plural measure word from earlier in this lesson's vocab).
  • seung2 TO WANT TO DO ANOTHER VERB: super important auxiliary verb or "helping verb" as we called them when I was in middle school. By itself, seung2 in Cantonese means to think of someone or something, often nostalgically. We are concerned here with using it to mean that someone wants to do another verb -- wants to go, wants to eat, wants to whatever.
  • sik1 TO KNOW SOMEONE OR TO KNOW HOW TO DO SOMETHING [a skill or acquired ability), as in sik1 gong2 such and such language -- NOT ji1 dou3.
  •  tuhng4 AND (also means WITH, but we have not seen that meaning or usage yet). For nouns -- noun A tuhng4 noun B. This TUHNG4 that.
  • yauh6 "ALSO" or "IS/DOES BOTH THIS AND THAT" FOR VERBS OR VERB PHRASES OR ADJECTIVES, WHICH BASICALLY FUNCTION AS VERBS IN CANTONESE [more on this later] (NOT to be confused with yauh5 with a 5th tone, to have): yauh6 verb/adjective A, yauh6 verb/adjective B. I will explain this more in class.
I am running out of time that I have to type this entry, so let's leave it here, because we will review the vocabulary, the dialogue and then break up into groups to run the dialogue with each other at the beginning of next Monday's class. I don't think we broke up into groups last week -- if we did, someone remind me and we will start next class with questions and then grammar points.


Your homework for next Monday's class is to review lesson 3 vocabulary and dialogue and come to class prepared with any questions or clarifications you may need on any of the terms discussed above.

Please review the dialogue to the best of your ability, so we can jump right in on Monday. See everyone next week.

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