Hello. This is Jing with a concept that I would like to test here on my Weebly account since as they say, some of the concepts that get done online or offline are concepts that are born out of frustration. Frustration with what, you ask? Well to those who didn't know it yet, I write language tutorial reviews for DuLaBoo.com. Even if Tagalog is not included among the languages that I write about, sometimes I can't help but check the Tagalog sections of the websites that I review.
Well,, what happened? Some of these websites teach Tagalog vocabulary which is fine since I personally belief that learning a new language starts with learning new words first and learning how to assemble these words into complete sentences later. Some teach words and sentences that are either too long or not often as used as they thought. Some even teach expressions that are almost obsolete. And yes FilipinoClass101, you're one of the programs that I am referring to. I guess that's the reason why I almost never wrote about you
Do we have to jump immediately into teaching sentences and expressions that might otherwise be too long or too complicated only to discover later how some of these are not used as often as they are expected anymore? Of course not. We have to put into consideration the conversational aspects of learning a new language. The more contemporary the lessons used, the better. Why am I saying this? I guess that's part of the frustration that I felt upon realizing that while some Tagalog language tutorial videos are available on YouTube for everyone to view, not all of them are as updated as I expected. I already mentioned about how some expressions are either too outdated or complicated when it can be simplified.
I am not a teacher by profession but I admit being motivated enough to think about teaching my native tongue in the point of view of a contemporary speaker and the ability to be understood as I speak my language. And I admit that Filipino grammar is one of my fave subjects when I was a student myself apart from English and the sciences. That might explain best why I ended up with a degree with Bachelor of Arts major in Political Science. Still since I enjoy reading blogs that are either in English or Filipino, sometimes the uncontrollable urge to go grammar police on some of them is unavoidable.
In an era and society where the ability to speak English is the worst cover-up for the fact that not much matter can be found between the ears, some folks have forgotten the art of speaking in Tagalog. Worse, some of them refuse to speak in Tagalog. And for me the only acceptable alibi when speaking in broken English is that you are practicing your English language proficiency. Otherwise, I would view you as a shallow vermin this side of the Earth with nothing but the illusion of grandeur and pomp brought about by the capability to speak English.
This is why when faced with the challenge as a Filipino to teach non-native speakers the art of speaking Tagalog (or your native language or dialect in the Philippines), some of us either fail or end up pulling pranks on the poor half-breeds and foreigners by teaching them sick, perverted Tagalog alongside the profanity. Unless your default student is game about it (very rare), do it.
What pushed me to teach Tagalog as a second language online? Apart from having nationalist tendencies (never a bad thing), I realized how Google Translate failed most folks when it comes to some languages that have a certain demand to be learned. If some of these foreigners and half-breeds realized how they got duped into speaking the not-so-wholesome side of Tagalog, they would not be spared from further embarrassment by using Google Translate. I recommend Google Translate for learning vocabulary words, not complete sentences. As to the rest of the basics of learning Tagalog, to set your expectations as early as now, I will not immediately jump into sentences for the meantime since I would like to point out some of the nuances that constantly plague speaking Tagalog like the suffixes "ng" and "g" as well as the preposition "na" plus conflicts that arise when you can't decide between "may" and "mayroon". As a kid, I remember having classmates constantly struggle with these words and more perhaps because here in Capas, Tarlac, the real mother tongue is Kapampangan. But that didn't deter me from learning Tagalog even more.
While my mom is Kapampangan, my dad is Tagalog from Paete, Laguna. Living in a multilingual household exposed me to how languages work and how some words occasionally mixed up because of how we talk to one another. It took years for my Tagalog accent to be removed every time I speak Kapampangan and it helped that I didn't give up that much. I think it also helped that I am talkative whether in Tagalog or English (and eventually in Kapampangan too) in order to totally harness all languages.
While I haven't tested much the demand for learning Tagalog online yet, I see this as my way of helping Tagalog thrive online as well as helping other cultures discover how speaking Tagalog can help in communicating better here in the Philippines. No one is ever too rich or too "elite" to learn the language. We just need to get some things done accordingly: I see myself teaching Tagalog with English as my medium of instruction.. This is my way of exposing Tagalog to everyone interested to learn by talking in the language that they understand best. English may not be your mother tongue but sure enough, some folks understand English enough to understand the medium that I have chosen to use in speaking Tagalog.
Are you ready? Brace yourselves for an interesting insight into learning Tagalog. In the next blog entry, you will discover the appropriate usage of "na" and its sister suffixes "ng" and "g".
I've been blogging for as long as I could remember. But I made it a career as of late as a home-based writer. It is something I find comfort in doing.