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Thoughts of Prof. Jan Ciopinski on methods of learning and teaching Turkish
1.       tunci
7149 posts
 24 Jun 2013 Mon 11:59 am

 

Methods of Learning and Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language Assoc.

 

Prof.JAN CIOPIŃSKI

 

 

 As well as having an undeniable value of its own, Turkish is also a beautiful rose in the bouquet of European languages. I would like to bring to your kind attention some of the experiences I have gained as a result of years of close relation to this language “whose inner self resembles a bee hive made of glass”, as the renowned Jean Deny puts it.

Depending on your kind tolerance, I do apologize for any errors I may make in my language or my style. Taking into consideration the limited time, I will try to present my ideas briefly, under six points.

 

Point 1

I have an unshakable belief that loving Turkish when learning it and making it loved by learners when teaching it are the basic prerequisites that cannot be disregarded for achieving the desired success. The elders used to call such prerequisites as “şartı lâzım ve gayrı müfârık”. We call it “condition sinequa non”. The learner must also regard Turkish as a language full of beauties and easy to learn, from the very beginning of the learning process.

 

Point 2

As in the education of any foreign language, recitals and continuous and loud repetitions are extremely important instruments in learning Turkish.

 

Think of the Latin saying “Repetitio est mater studiorum”, which means “repetition is the mother of science”... Didn’t the Ottoman Turks, your intellectual forefathers, acknowledging the importance of repetition, express the matter with a slight sarcasm mixed with humour and probably with smiling eyes with the words “Et-tekrârü ahsen, velev kâne yüz seksen”, which means “Repetition is the best way if you make it hundred and eighty times”?. They used to call regular repetition “temrîn”. Today we call it “exercise”. Yet, repetition is exactly the same as exercise...

 

Point 3

 

 University of Yagellon, Kraków, Poland  The learners must be forced to memorize all affixes of Turkish, in addition to the root forms. The roots and affixes must gush out of the mouth of every student automatically, without further thought and like scattering sparks. Because they will not have time for long thinking sessions when they speak... Furthermore, do not all grammatical rules of Turkish, including participles such as –dık-, - acak- , equipped with possessive suffixes, and all those magnificent structures that are specific to only the syntax of Turkish which are sometimes constructed from verbs to make a noun with the suffix –ma-, or which are sometimes enriched and extended in accordance with specific patterns as in “bülbül öten yer”, or “kapısı açık oda”, -together with the most sophisticated ones- always rely on these tiny affixes?

 

Point 4

 

The study at home must be around two or three hours a day, avoiding any major fatigue. In the meanwhile, the text studied in the course must be read loud with a gradually increasing tempo, at least four or five times, after analysing with great care all the grammatical aspects and the dictionary definitions of each word. After thoroughly comprehended, the Turkish text must be translated into the native language of the learner, and then, covering up the Turkish original text, the translated text must be translated back to Turkish, and then the original text must be revealed again to allow the learner to correct his/her Turkish translation. The same exercise can be performed orally in the class by two students, taking turns; because in the class, the instructor can intervene and make the necessary corrections immediately where required. One of the students reads the text while the other simultaneously translates the read Turkish text into the native language or from the native language into Turkish.

 

Point 5

 

Outside the class environment, the students must attribute great importance to create opportunities for long chats in Turkish with their Turkish friends, if any, who posses a certain level of speech culture, as practiced occasionally by their local instructors, and must dedicate utmost care to learn Turkish from Turks or at least, they should exchange letters with young people in Turkey. They can also spend their holidays in Turkey. The learners can acquire that very significant “kulak dolgunluğu” (ear familiarity) by listening and watching Turkish programs on radios and televisions, and most particularly, by spending time in Turkish environments.

 

Point 6

In the past, there were manuals for learning any foreign language in Europe, which were called “methode”. Today, there are also many audial – visual methods involving tapes and disks. Both old and new, all of them are doubtlessly used as satisfactory and complementary procedures and materials. However, even as a whole, these cannot provide a substitute for the efforts and endeavours of instructors and learners. Moreover, in order to develop proficiency in any foreign language at university level, in this case in Turkish, it is absolutely essential to read lots and lots of texts both old and new, varying from the small classified ads and articles in newspapers to the greatest works of  the Turkish literature...And top it with long conversations with pure Turks... In fact isn’t it -this last method- the best way to friendship, cooperation and brotherly relations between nations? Thank you for your kind attention.

 

 

REFERENCES  M. Ergin, J. Deny, A. N. Kononov, R. Underhill, G. L. Lewis, Ş. S. Aylarov, H. Jansky, H. Jählitschka, M. Hengirmen / TÖMER and its publications.



Edited (6/24/2013) by tunci

Umut_Umut, si++ and elenagabriela liked this message
2.       si++
3785 posts
 23 Jul 2013 Tue 09:55 am

 

Quoting tunci

 

Methods of Learning and Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language Assoc.

 

Prof.JAN CIOPIŃSKI

 

 

Point 3

 

... Furthermore, do not all grammatical rules of Turkish, including participles such as –dık-, - acak- , equipped with possessive suffixes, and all those magnificent structures that are specific to only the syntax of Turkish which are sometimes constructed from verbs to make a noun with the suffix –ma-, or which are sometimes enriched and extended in accordance with specific patterns as in “bülbül öten yer”, or “kapısı açık oda”, -together with the most sophisticated ones- always rely on these tiny affixes?

 

Interesting English sentence. Main verb very close to the end. A natural thing in a long Turkish sentence but rare one in English.

 

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