grammar

Lawless French


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    In spite of the rather awe-striking name, Lawless French is just Laura K. Lawless’ brainchild, as well as an amazing resource for French learners of all levels. Being that French is my eternal épine dans le pied (look that one up!), I’m always up for finding well organized learning resources. Alors voilà! Lawless French is built with such care and intent that I actually spent quite a while there the first time I visited, taking notes, nodding like a dummy and saying ‘Ouah, je n’en savais pas!’ (Wow, I didn’t know that!). I sincerely hope it’s as useful to you as it was to me!

    Go to site

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Japanese Pod 101


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    Innovative Language’s “Language Pod 101” series exist for over 30 languages, and it’s a good thing they are, because they’re tremendously helpful! Innovative Language does indeed offer paid courses, but what I wish to bring to your attention is the following three free resources for Japanese:

    Japanese Word of the Day: A must for beginners. This little applet in Japanese Pod 101’s site is deceivingly complete. Not only do you get a new word every word, but that word also brings with itself just about everything you’d want from it: its pronunciation, definition and even part of the word. But it doesn’t stop there! You also get several examples from each word, providing you with much needed context and new situational grammar. And as though this wasn’t enough, you can go back to any date you’d like (to see every word that’s been added to date), and use the quiz mode to hide all translations and definitions, if you’re feeling brave!

    Vocab Lists: wait, wait, no rolling of the eyes yet. These are not your regular vocabulary list: new lists are being constantly updated with real, relevant vocabulary in the form of sentences (with audio, of course, and kana spelling for beginners). Not only they’re an amazing source of new vocabulary, but they’ll also offer you a sneak peek into Japanese culture. These are so good, I wish these had existed when I was studying Japanese!

    100 Core Words: if you’re just starting out, go here. These 100 words will literally become the foundation of your Japanese learning, and get you asking all the right questions to start understanding Japanese!

     

    Go to site

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Lernu.net


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    Lernu (Esperanto for “Learn!”) was one of the first websites to offer an organized method to learn Esperanto. At 15 years of age, it exists in 41 languages, and it has several courses for all levels (of course, also for absolute beginners), as well as downloads, a forum, a news section, exams, a dictionary. It is the whole enchilada if you’re looking for a site to learn Esperanto from!

    Go to site

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Tae Kim’s Guide to Japanese


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    There’s a reason why Tae Kim is one of the few resources in the library with a full rating. Tae Kim’s Complete Guide to Japanese holds a God-like status among Japanese self-learners all over the Internet. Tae Kim wrote it for students like himself, so it is easy to understand but at the same time doesn’t expect you to learn Japanese in English. It spans many more grammar subjects than any textbook you could buy, all for the ridiculous price tag of $0.00 (although if you’re interested in giving back once you’ve used it, you can either donate to him or buy the printed version of the guide).  It’s been divided so that you can easily find what you need, so you don’t have to use it as a textbook but rather as support, too.

    Recently, it was converted into an iOS and Android app, making this essential piece of reading for Japanese learners a lot more portable.

    Go to site

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Nihongo e-na


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    Nihongo e-na is the largest online collection of links to sites dedicated to learning Japanese. “E-na” actually means “nice!” (as in “niiiice, dude”) in Kansai dialect, which tells you a thing or two about where they want to take things with this website.

    You can find these sites by the following categories: Reading, Writing, Hearing Comprehension, Speaking, Grammar, Vocabulary, Kana, Kanji, Tools, Dictionaries, Culture, Society, and Others. They recently also launched iOS and Android optimized websites, too!

    Go to site

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Mexica Ohui


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    One of the most complete courses around. Mexica Ohui is pretty much a (free!) textbook in website form, and as such, it features exercises after each lesson, which is a pretty nice change if you’d like to test your knowledge.

    Go to site

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Jordan’s Notes on Nahuatl


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    David K. Jordan’s compilation of Classical Nahuatl notes. If you’re only starting out or merely interested in Nahuatl as a language and the Mexica as a former empire, this website is must, as it includes pretty much all the basics you need to know of Nahuatl grammar, phonology and vocabulary. It even features some downloadables (do keep in mind that they are essentially another man’s study notes, so they may be really helpful or not at all, depending on what kind of student you are).

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En sintonía con el español


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    The Centro Virtual Cervantes website is an amazingly useful resource in itself, with materials for every level, online courses, literature articles, and more, but it’s so big it’s easy to get lost in, which is why I’d rather focus on “En sintonía con el español”. This site (obviously belonging to the Centro Cervantes network) is home to a podcast and blog which are both updated frequently, with interesting articles and videos on general interest, cultural and grammar-related topics.

    Its contents are more beneficial to students entering intermediate Spanish, but in any case it’s a good study resource.

    Go to site

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