Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Elementary Russian: Сегодня в лингафонном кабинете... Language Lab for December 6, 2017 (Урок 4, неделя 3)

Студенты! It's so EASY hanging out!

tl;dr Plan for today: Take quiz, do listening, work at tables.

Сначала... First things first. 

+ Here is a link to your Oral Performance sign-up.

+ Here is a link to the guidelines for your Final Oral Project

1) Напишите тест! Take your quiz, контрольная по грамматике... Have me check it! Я проверю ее.

2) Давайте послушаем! Let's listen... Наденьте наушники! Put on your headphones and get ready! (You'll write this on the obverse of your quiz...)

You're about to listen to an address by the декан (dean) at Казанский государственный университет (Kazan State University). (Kazan is an ancient city, the capital of Tatarstan in SW Russia, on the Volga...) The assistant dean’s remarks can be broken up into a number of topic areas. Before you listen to the talk, look through the topics below (1-7).

What order do you think these seven topics will occur?

 1.  composition of the student body
 2.  foreign students
 3.  foreign students from North America
 4.  good-luck wishes
 5.  opening welcome
 6.  structure of the university
 7.  things that make this school different from others

Listen to the talk. It's about 5 minutes. On the back of your quiz, jot down the order in which the seven topics were actually discussed. (Just write down the numbers of the topics from above in the order they appeared.)

Listen to the talk again with these questions in mind. You might not know the word for thousand, тысяча or тысяч. Also, Tatar, татарский язык, is an Altaic (Turkic) language.

1.  How many departments does the university have?
2.  How big is the library?
3.  Name five things that students can major in.
4.  Name at least one language department that was mentioned.
5.  How many students are there?
6.  What department hosts most of the students from the United States and Canada?

Listen to the talk. Jot down the answers to the questions above on the back of your quiz.

Finally... The lecturer mentions the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a loose political entity made up of many of the republics of the former Soviet Union.

How many of these states can you list from the talk? You can check your answers here.

3) At tables, we'll talk about the three verbs that all mean "to study" in Russian. Take a second and review the forms of заниматься, учиться, изучать...

The verbs заниматься and изучать are both "-ай-" class, 1st conjugations verbs, like знать and понимать. Remember the rules about reflexives for заниматься:

  • + -ся after consonants (ignore ь soft signs!)
  • -сь after vowels
Thus занимаюсь but занимаешься.  

Учиться is a perfectly regular second conjugation very like говорить. Notice the -и- in the ending... that's the mark of all second-conjugation verbs. 

It, too, has a reflexive particle: 

  • -ся after consonants (учился
  • -сь after vowels (училась).

Note which verbs MUST have a direct object and which CANNOT: 

  • Изучать must have a direct object (something in the accusative case). You need to study SOMETHING: Я изучаю химию. (Subject-verb-object)
  • But заниматься and учиться cannot have a direct object (no accusative object). You can do them in places ("I study in the library! I'm a student at Stetson! Я занимаюсь в библиотеке! Я учусь в Стетсонском университете!")... but you cannot (for now at least) do them to things.

That's COOL!
Remember the magic words: Так интересно!

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