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The Knight & Rabbit

Maltese

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Maltese

Postby wowzerman » Wed 30 Nov 2011 23:06 GMT

I'm curious to know how many subscribers have a functional knowledge of Maltese.

Equally interesting is:

Why, or not?
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Postby sarahc » Thu 1 Dec 2011 06:42 GMT

Only been here a few months so not had much chance. My kids know more than me, they are loving learning it at school so I am trying to pick up bits from them, was sat waiting at the hospital yesterdy for my daughters eye appt and I had to keep asking her to tell me what was going on as she can pick up the gist of what is being said in Maltese.
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The Maltese language

Postby SandT » Thu 1 Dec 2011 07:22 GMT

I couldn't in all honesty say my knowledge of the Maltese language is functional yet but I started the local council's course to learn it at the start of this winter and so am hoping to be relatively functional by the end of these lessons, in May. We moved here just a month too late in 2010 to be able to join the classes then.

I know it isn't necessary to be able to speak Maltese ( as virtually everyone speaks English) but I wanted to be able to chat to my neighbours in at least "pidgin" Maltese. They and local shopkeepers have been very helpful at my efforts and think it is rather amusing and good that I am learning. All my neighbours know as the word spread like wildfire. I receive lots of smiles and greetings in Maltese now. - So I've GOT to continue and do relatively well !!

Another reason was to meet new people and make new friends - which has happened, much to my own enjoyment. And, as we're retired, it keeps my brain active. I learnt French when we lived in France for seven years, though I did have GCE background as a basis and this is starting from scratch, but even so, it's interesting as we learn more than just the language - the local customs etc.

Sheelagh
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Postby wowzerman » Thu 1 Dec 2011 22:22 GMT

Aww, c'mon, Sarah ! You can do it!

Sheelagh; You're obviously a gem.

Wouldn't it be nice if we didn't just expect people to speak "our" language ?
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Postby sarahc » Fri 2 Dec 2011 08:15 GMT

I know I should make more effort, I'll get my daughter to teach me, she has been so enthusiastic about learning Maltese, she came home from school yesterday and has just been moved up to year 2 Maltese lessons, not bad considering she has only been at school for 2 months. She is in year 4 at school so hopefully by the end of the school year she will be where she should be.
Kids find it so much easier than adults!
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Postby pumabob » Sat 3 Dec 2011 10:15 GMT

Kids are like sponges and soak in all the info/languages a lot easier.

Apart from the previous family connections, we moved to Malta because they speak English. I'm too old to learn new languages :lol:
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Postby gozomark » Sat 3 Dec 2011 10:17 GMT

pumabob wrote: I'm too old to learn new languages :lol:


I'm too old and too thick
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Postby dave dee » Sat 3 Dec 2011 10:39 GMT

The ability to shout everything out is the hardest part for the Engish speaking student to overcome.
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Postby gozomark » Sat 3 Dec 2011 10:42 GMT

As is the switch in swear words from bodily functions (English) to religion - is "Il Madonna" the number 1 swear expression in Malta ?
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Postby SandT » Sat 3 Dec 2011 13:39 GMT

I still use French swearwords. When we lived there our postman went to great lengths to teach us rude words (so we repaid his courtesy and he giggled a lot when saying what Terry had taught him) so it'd be a rude waste not to use them now.
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Postby Rachy » Thu 15 Dec 2011 20:52 GMT

Hi Sheelagh,

Just got here and want to learn - can you tell me a bit more about the lessons, obviously the start at a certain time of year from what you said.

Thanks
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Postby SandT » Fri 16 Dec 2011 07:23 GMT

Hi Rachy and welcome to Malta.

Yes, the lessons start in October so you have missed the start and to be frank, unless you already have a sort of basic knowledge of the language, there is no point in joining in now, even if there was a space for you. We arrived here in October 2010 and put my name down at the local council's office as soon as I realised that they did lessons. There was a delay this year and the lessons didn't start 'til the very end of October so they are now rushing them a bit to catch up on the lost lessons which have to be up to a certain standard set by the EU apparently. They end in May and have the same hols as the schools. You have the choice of whether you want to take the exam or not at the end. The certificate is based not only on your capability in the language but also on attendance; your participation in the classes (so make sure you pipe up with answers when you know them rather than wait 'til you get "picked" on !!) and your homework (you have to hand your written book in at the end of the year so I make rough notes in the class then write everything up in my neat book at home).

I honestly thought I would get on fairly well as I have not found languages difficult before but Maltese is 75% Arabic and the rest is a mix of Italian, French and English and it is not easy as one's mouth has to form sounds that don't come naturally !!!

Be prepared to feel like a total dummy in the first few weeks (as I still do!!) and hopefully it will eventually click into place. I have met some very nice people in my class and made some good friends.

The lessons have to be paid for unless one is a pensioner and has not applied for any other council courses anywhere on the island
but they are not expensive.

Very best of luck! Sheelagh
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Postby SandT » Fri 16 Dec 2011 07:26 GMT

PS: Our lessons are twice a week, one class attends mornings (9am - 1030am) and the others late afternoons (5pm to 6.30pm).
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Postby Rachy » Fri 16 Dec 2011 08:06 GMT

Many thanks Sheelagh - I did buy a teach yourself CD, so do know some of the basics about how the language works. I know what you mean though it's one on its own. I shall be listening to Maltese radio etc to try and get used to it - I find reading written easier to understand - I guess because you have time to pick out words and ranslate them, spoken is so fast, by the time I have (rarely) got the gist everyone has moved on to a new topic!

As a child we lived in Spain, and Spanish was more or less my first language- I can't remember aything about it now though. People tell me it would come back to me if I went back.

Rachel X
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Postby dave dee » Sat 17 Dec 2011 14:26 GMT

One for the Maltese language students....

http://youtu.be/5arZSzgTtms

....second year should do it.
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