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12. Top 5 Tips for Avoiding Common Mistakes in Norwegian
Jasmine: Hi everyone. Jasmine here.
Filip: "Hei!" And I´m Filip.
Jasmine: All About series lesson 12: top 5 tips for avoiding common mistakes in Norwegian.
Jasmine: You're in for a very useful lesson today.
Filip: That's right. We're here to give you some tips on how to avoid common mistakes made by learners of Norwegian.
Jasmine: Now remember, nothing's wrong with making mistakes.
Filip: It's how you learn!
Jasmine: Today we'll just give you a heads up so that you can be aware and it will make your Norwegian language learning experience a lot easier!
Filip: Let's get started!
Jasmine: Tip number one – Don't talk fast!
Filip: It's so hard to understand someone when they speak too fast.
Jasmine: When you hear native Norwegians speaking, it will seem like they are talking a thousand words per minute, but don't feel like you need to keep up.
Filip: Many foreigners try to speak as fast as Norwegians do and even though their grammar is perfect, they smash the words together in ways that we can't decipher. It usually takes years of fine tuning pronunciation to be able to speak as fast as a Norwegian.
Jasmine: I met a guy who had been living in Norway for almost a year and people still had a hard time understanding even simple phrases because he spoke so fast that he would jumble up the words. He started speaking slower and people started understanding him more.
Filip: I've seen that happen many times. What's the next tip?
Jasmine: Tip number two – Don't just add "-k" or "-en" at the end of English words!
Filip: Norwegian and English have many cognates but it isn't that simple.
Jasmine: That's true. You could very easily say something very offensive if you use cognates like that.
Filip: Should we go through some simple patterns?
Jasmine: That sounds like a great idea. The easiest one to remember is that English words that end with "-ty" will probably end in "-itet" in Norwegian.
Filip: Like "publisitet," which means "publicity," and "popularitet," which means "popularity." Don't take that as in every English word ending in "-ty" can be easily translated by changing it to "-itet."
Jasmine: The next one is that English words that end in "-ent" or "-ant" often end in "-ent" and "-ant," respectively, in Norwegian. Just like English.
Filip: Like the word "blatant," which is "blatant," and "potent," which is "potent" in Norwegian. These are usually words Norwegian has imported from English.
Jasmine: There are a few more patterns that are useful to know but we will go over those in future lessons.
Jasmine: Tip number three – Learn basic conjugations!
Filip: In Norwegian, verbal conjugation is very much like English.
Jasmine: Yeah, it's really not as hard as you'd fear. Norwegian is actually easy to learn for English speakers
Filip: So don't worry! In Norwegian we have weak verbs (following patterns) and strong verbs (irregulars). The strong verbs alter the whole verb when conjugating, the weak verbs adds a pattern to the root of the verb.
Jasmine: And to start with, English verbs have "to" in front of them when passive. Norwegian words have "å."
Filip: Take the verb "å leve," which in English is "to live." It's a weak verb and so follows a defined pattern.
Jasmine: In the present form "å leve" becomes "lever," getting rid of "å" and adding "-er" to the root of the verb. All verbs add either "-r" or "-er" to the root in present form.
Filip: In the past form "å leve" becomes "levde," adding "-de" to the root. In the same fashion, all weak verbs end in either "-te," "-tte," "-de," or "-dde" in the past form.
Jasmine: Let's look at one more verb, "å spise," or "to eat" in English. It becomes "spiser" in the present form and "spiste" in the past form. Easy, right?!
Filip: Learning the correct conjugations isn't hard but can be time consuming especially when it comes to remembering irregulars. It is easy to hear that you are not conjugating a verb correctly since the flow of the whole sentence gets abruptly broken by a bad conjugation.
Jasmine: That's right. Just remember the different strong verbs and how to conjugate them and the rest should be easy.
Filip: We'll try to guide you as best as possible through these lessons on how to conjugate properly.
Jasmine: That way you learn faster and communicate better.
Filip: What's our next tip?
Jasmine: Tip number four – Learn the pronunciation now!
Filip: That's right, don't delay! We've dedicated an entire lesson series to pronunciation because it's that important in Norwegian.
Jasmine: A mentor of mine always said, "It doesn't matter how well you know the
grammar. If you don't pronounce it right, they won't understand you."
Filip: So true! What's our next tip?
Jasmine: Tip number five – Watch out for silent letters and sounds!
Filip: This is very important.
Jasmine: Norwegian has a lot of silent letters when pronouncing. That is, the written and spoken language are sometimes very different from each other.
Filip: Also, native Norwegians when speaking might speak fast and omit words or contract a whole sentence into one long word.
Jasmine: The good news is that with a bit of practice, knowing some of these silent sounds and omissions can help you a long way in understanding.
Filip: There are specific words that are important to be aware of like "Land," or "land" in English. It Lacks the "-d" when pronounced. Also like English, Norwegian has a silent "-h." "Hvem," or "who" in English is not pronounced with the "-h" sound like "H vem" but rather, stress is put on the "-V," like "Hvem."
Jasmine: Can you hear the difference? Try to pronounce both again.
Filip: Sure. "Land" without "-d" and "Hvem" without "-h."
Jasmine: Norwegian is full of omitted sounds. Take for example how they contract two sounds into one long sound when saying words like "the ranch"...
Filip: In Norwegian, it´s spelled "-g, -å, -r, -d, -e, -n," but pronounced "gårn." The "de" is omitted or replaced by a longer stress on "å." "Gårn."
Jasmine: Sounds great.
Filip: So a final one. This has some similarity to English pronunciation.
Jasmine: Right, so like how in English we make a weird sound of the "-rt" at the end of a word like "short."
Filip: In Norwegian this pronunciation exists too and is used very often. "Black," which in Norwegian is translated and spelled "-s, -v, -a, -r, -t," is pronounced "svart" with the same "-rt" sound. "svart."
Jasmine: Awesome!
Filip: So make sure to listen to and practice these examples so that when the time comes, you'll have the right word with the right pronunciation!
Jasmine: All right! Well, there are our top five tips for avoiding common mistakes in Norwegian.
Filip: Keep these in mind and your Norwegian learning experience will be made a lot easier!
Jasmine: You'll be right on track!
Filip: See you next time! "Hade hade!"
Jasmine: Bye everyone!