I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

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Sean H
Posts: 351
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by Sean H »

Khun Loving Jessel, context (บริบท) is very important in Thai as it is basically an analytical language. I'm guessing the native listener in your case was just having some fun at your expense.
Loving J
Posts: 109
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by Loving J »

I dont think the look of confusion was having fun at my expense. Thai seems far more exact than english
Sean H
Posts: 351
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by Sean H »

OK it seems that your listener may not be too bright (not to guess the correct meaning from the context). I still maintain that English is more precise than Thai.
เอริก บรัดลี่
Posts: 373
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by เอริก บรัดลี่ »

Language schools always put a lot of emphasis on "speaking like a native" but really I don't think it is necessary to do so except in very high level situations. For day to day conversation, it should be sufficient to just get the message across. If the listener does not accept that, then they are just rude and should be forgotten about anyway.

How many of you would honestly not understand if a Thai person said "I tink more better I wait you here becaw have today rain too much" ?? So really you have to give credit to Thai people that they will be smart enough also to figure out what you mean when you don't get it quite right but still close enough that a good guess can be made.

There's a lot of research that shows that children learn their native languages faster when adults don't correct their mistakes, and I think probably the same rule will apply to adults learning foreign languages. If you can just blunder your way through the learning phase, gradually your speech will become more refined just as a natural process.

Trying to artificially impose strict rules on yourself may slow your rate of progress because your focus is too much on trying to speak perfectly rather than on communicating effectively.
Loving J
Posts: 109
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by Loving J »

I think getting a tone wrong when context makes it clear what is trying to be said is akin to a Thai saying "I'm so Thai" when obviously s/he means to say "I'm so tired."
เอริก บรัดลี่
Posts: 373
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by เอริก บรัดลี่ »

Also: "I was really boring when I went to see the show last night, never been more boring in my life"
Loving J
Posts: 109
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by Loving J »

I'm sure someone has blundered and said ขี่หมาทุกวัน but I'd hope no Thai would think that poor foreigner was actually saying s/he rides a dog every day lol
เอริก บรัดลี่
Posts: 373
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by เอริก บรัดลี่ »

might be significantly worse if they also make a mistake on the word "ride" and put another verb in it's place with a very different meaning ;)
Sean H
Posts: 351
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:43 am

Re: I am curious how people approach learning the Thai tones.

Post by Sean H »

Could be a dwarf foreigner riding a Thai Great Dane, right? BTW Thais would say "I tink na, you wait me hia more better becaut today hap rain too mucccccct". "I so thai-ayyyyyyyyyt too, you khow jai mai?"
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