Czech Grammar

Of course Memrise is designed primarily as a way of learning vocab I think it is important in the Czech language to learn grammar, actually it is essential and if you're planning on taking this language seriously it is important to understand that words have different functions and even spelling and pronunciation in different situations.

Now, I have started a course trying to teach the cases, it will take some time to make it full and comprehensive but I'm working on it slowly.

I'm looking more for a general discussion on how to improve the technical side of Czech more than anything else. It is something that every learner of the Czech languge struggles with. For Example I have immigrant friends who have lived here for 8-20 years but they still make basic case and grammar mistakes.

To the more advanced learners, how did you manage to get a solid grip on grammar and do you have any further ideas of how we can incorporate it into this community. I am going to keep trying to add ideas for learning this but I'm maybe approaching pre-intermediate level, so I'm not the best person to create these things on my own.

Any advise on learning this language in general will be appreciated as well.

Děkuji.

Posted by memrise_ 1/21/12, last update 2/5/12 (2 years ago)
  • hi Aaron,great to see you here on the forum, and thanks for all the great work you are doing creating lists.. I am like yourself really, in that my knowledge and usage of czech is far from being fluent. I'm living in Australia, with my czech partner, and to be honest we speak predominantly english together, but I am nevertheless slowly moving forward with the language, - especially the fact that the in-laws are currently staying with us until May, and don't speak a word on english is helping me!anyhow.. i am in full agreement on the importance of learning the grammar of czech, alongside vocabulary learning. from my knowledge of learning other languages, I know that the only real way you can ever master a language, is by practise, and being mindfully aware of how others (native speakers) speak. Reading books, and watching TV (as well as socializing of course) with the goal not so much of enjoying the show (although that too of course!), but more to get that language drummed into you.The immigrants you mention, probably have never taken grammar seriously, and are content with being able to make themselves understood and to understand. For sure, this is enough for many people, but for the serious language student, you will know already that language learning can really become a lifelong task.I don't really have anything too constructive to add really, although Ben has run an idea through me which I think has great potential.. the idea is we get some very short czech video, maybe a little song, or short humorous conversation perhaps, and create a memrise list around it with all the words from the video in it.. the video can be attached to the course description, so everyone can play it while doing the list, and once the list is learned, we should be able to play the video and hear and understand it's contents..Unfortunately I've not had time to get started on that yet, as lots of other things happening in my life at the moment, so memrise is taking a back-seat for a while..anyhow, on another note.. I was doing some word moderating this morning, and 2 words you had added, I merged into ones that were already in the database (velký and malý).. after I did so, I realised that you had added them with genders.. So I think I messed up your plan a little there.. If you look at the czech FAQs, for adjective adding, it says to add the adjective in the dictionary form, and then add the feminine and neuter equivalents as alternative czech.. (for adjectives that I've moderated so far, I have added the -a, -é and -ej endings as equivalents), so really for adjectives I think there is no need to make use of the gender field, and personally only do so for nouns.. - I think there is really no need to add every adjective in all it's nominative forms, as I believe any serious student will soon pick up the masculine feminine and neuter endings.. however, I do see that for beginners a few examples would be useful to get them started, so if you add those masculine big and smalls again, I will refrain from merging them.. sorry about that.. I wasn't immediately aware what your plan was.   anyhow, kind regards, and hodně štěstí with the czech learning!mango.

    Posted by mangodurian 1/21/12 (2 years ago)
  • hi Aaron,great to see you here on the forum, and thanks for all the great work you are doing creating lists.. I am like yourself really, in that my knowledge and usage of czech is far from being fluent. I'm living in Australia, with my czech partner, and to be honest we speak predominantly english together, but I am nevertheless slowly moving forward with the language, - especially the fact that the in-laws are currently staying with us until May, and don't speak a word on english is helping me!anyhow.. i am in full agreement on the importance of learning the grammar of czech, alongside vocabulary learning. from my knowledge of learning other languages, I know that the only real way you can ever master a language, is by practise, and being mindfully aware of how others (native speakers) speak. Reading books, and watching TV (as well as socializing of course) with the goal not so much of enjoying the show (although that too of course!), but more to get that language drummed into you.The immigrants you mention, probably have never taken grammar seriously, and are content with being able to make themselves understood and to understand. For sure, this is enough for many people, but for the serious language student, you will know already that language learning can really become a lifelong task.I don't really have anything too constructive to add really, although Ben has run an idea through me which I think has great potential.. the idea is we get some very short czech video, maybe a little song, or short humorous conversation perhaps, and create a memrise list around it with all the words from the video in it.. the video can be attached to the course description, so everyone can play it while doing the list, and once the list is learned, we should be able to play the video and hear and understand it's contents..Unfortunately I've not had time to get started on that yet, as lots of other things happening in my life at the moment, so memrise is taking a back-seat for a while..anyhow, on another note.. I was doing some word moderating this morning, and 2 words you had added, I merged into ones that were already in the database (velký and malý).. after I did so, I realised that you had added them with genders.. So I think I messed up your plan a little there.. If you look at the czech FAQs, for adjective adding, it says to add the adjective in the dictionary form, and then add the feminine and neuter equivalents as alternative czech.. (for adjectives that I've moderated so far, I have added the -a, -é and -ej endings as equivalents), so really for adjectives I think there is no need to make use of the gender field, and personally only do so for nouns.. - I think there is really no need to add every adjective in all it's nominative forms, as I believe any serious student will soon pick up the masculine feminine and neuter endings.. however, I do see that for beginners a few examples would be useful to get them started, so if you add those masculine big and smalls again, I will refrain from merging them.. sorry about that.. I wasn't immediately aware what your plan was.   anyhow, kind regards, and hodně štěstí with the czech learning!mango.

    Posted by mangodurian 1/21/12 (2 years ago)
  • Ahoj Mango,Thanks for the support, I found the lists were a bit schizophrenic so I wanted to add an 'every situation' list mostly with things I have had to use frequently while living in Czech and things that have confused me. I have the same problem with the language as you, eventhough I live in CZ I am an english teacher so I don't actually speak Czech unless I'm in a shop or restauraunt or with the in-laws as well. I've found it helpful asking friends how to call them in their vocative and trying to manipulate conversation so people use many cases but it's still difficult, you have to feel it and I'm not sure it's possible to truly learn it. We can try though. Well the immigrants I mention are mostly my colleagues and they have always taken the learning seriously but until they have children who can speak both languages they only really have to speak in English. My Czech colleagues husband I think has the best Czech, he is American and works in a predominantly Czech speaking company but again he still makes mistakes with cases so it's difficult to say really. I have the benifit of hearing when it is wrong, but I cannot always or even often correct myself. As for the video,  would suggest večerniček, this is a children's serial which is widely popular. Each story is about five minutes long, the narrator speaks very clearly and it covers a big range of vocabulary, the only problem is as it is for children in uses a lot of childrens versions of words. There are pretty straight forward rules on how this works though and it could be mentioned in the description and for anyone who has studied for a short while they will know it anyway or at least be able to recognise the words. Yeah, I'm sorry about the lists, I actually read the FAQ when I was about 300 words into the list, I edited the other break in styles but trying to fix that was a problem for me as I don't have time to spend all day on memrise. Sorry for creating the work for you, in the later lists though I am hoping that this idea of ý/á/é/ě will have become clear and I was going to continue with just masculine forms of Adjectictives and adverbs. Tak, měj se hezky a I hope to continue to work in cooperation with you.AJ

    Posted by AaronJamesDodd 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • Ahoj Mango,Thanks for the support, I found the lists were a bit schizophrenic so I wanted to add an 'every situation' list mostly with things I have had to use frequently while living in Czech and things that have confused me. I have the same problem with the language as you, eventhough I live in CZ I am an english teacher so I don't actually speak Czech unless I'm in a shop or restauraunt or with the in-laws as well. I've found it helpful asking friends how to call them in their vocative and trying to manipulate conversation so people use many cases but it's still difficult, you have to feel it and I'm not sure it's possible to truly learn it. We can try though. Well the immigrants I mention are mostly my colleagues and they have always taken the learning seriously but until they have children who can speak both languages they only really have to speak in English. My Czech colleagues husband I think has the best Czech, he is American and works in a predominantly Czech speaking company but again he still makes mistakes with cases so it's difficult to say really. I have the benifit of hearing when it is wrong, but I cannot always or even often correct myself. As for the video,  would suggest večerniček, this is a children's serial which is widely popular. Each story is about five minutes long, the narrator speaks very clearly and it covers a big range of vocabulary, the only problem is as it is for children in uses a lot of childrens versions of words. There are pretty straight forward rules on how this works though and it could be mentioned in the description and for anyone who has studied for a short while they will know it anyway or at least be able to recognise the words. Yeah, I'm sorry about the lists, I actually read the FAQ when I was about 300 words into the list, I edited the other break in styles but trying to fix that was a problem for me as I don't have time to spend all day on memrise. Sorry for creating the work for you, in the later lists though I am hoping that this idea of ý/á/é/ě will have become clear and I was going to continue with just masculine forms of Adjectictives and adverbs. Tak, měj se hezky a I hope to continue to work in cooperation with you.AJ

    Posted by AaronJamesDodd 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • You two are doing a great job  - thanks a lot once again. Do you think it is possible for me to correct the Czech - German lists as a whole as they are much worse than the English ones. And is it even possible that the same dictionairy is used? Kind regards to everybody!

    Posted by doralina 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • You two are doing a great job  - thanks a lot once again. Do you think it is possible for me to correct the Czech - German lists as a whole as they are much worse than the English ones. And is it even possible that the same dictionairy is used? Kind regards to everybody!

    Posted by doralina 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • hi AJ,well, I understand your idea behind creating a complete newbie list, with even the adjectives separated by gender, and I really think it's not a bad idea at all.. had i realised, while moderating, I would not have merged the 2 words I did.. If you still want to leave the rest of the adjectives in that list the way you have them, I will refrain from merging them.. please let me know.I think večerniček is an excellent choice.. I was thinking exactly the same thing actually.. maybe getting a short KRTEK video.. just at the moment, I am, as mentioned, more pushed for time, so will be likely focusing mostly on moderating the occasional words.. well.. we certainly have a task ahead of us, and I'm hoping that through working on this together, we can all help to improve our knowledge and usage of czech.don't hesitate to ask any further questions, or add further comments on possible improvements or ideas!

    Posted by mangodurian 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • hi AJ,well, I understand your idea behind creating a complete newbie list, with even the adjectives separated by gender, and I really think it's not a bad idea at all.. had i realised, while moderating, I would not have merged the 2 words I did.. If you still want to leave the rest of the adjectives in that list the way you have them, I will refrain from merging them.. please let me know.I think večerniček is an excellent choice.. I was thinking exactly the same thing actually.. maybe getting a short KRTEK video.. just at the moment, I am, as mentioned, more pushed for time, so will be likely focusing mostly on moderating the occasional words.. well.. we certainly have a task ahead of us, and I'm hoping that through working on this together, we can all help to improve our knowledge and usage of czech.don't hesitate to ask any further questions, or add further comments on possible improvements or ideas!

    Posted by mangodurian 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • hi Doralina, I'm sure memrise would welcome you as a curator for the czech-german side of things.. I don't think there currently is one.. you should contact Ben about the idea, or post a message in the main general forum saying you'ld like to become a curator.. the dictionaries for czech-english and czech-german are not linked together at all, as far as i'm aware.. and if there are some german entries within the czech-english side, this is because the 2 sections were initially intermingled some, and later separated, but I wouldn't be surprised if some stray words were still in there.regards, mango.

    Posted by mangodurian 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • hi Doralina, I'm sure memrise would welcome you as a curator for the czech-german side of things.. I don't think there currently is one.. you should contact Ben about the idea, or post a message in the main general forum saying you'ld like to become a curator.. the dictionaries for czech-english and czech-german are not linked together at all, as far as i'm aware.. and if there are some german entries within the czech-english side, this is because the 2 sections were initially intermingled some, and later separated, but I wouldn't be surprised if some stray words were still in there.regards, mango.

    Posted by mangodurian 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • ahoj,maybe leaving the adjectives as they are in the first list can help learners understand the difference. IF you don't mind of course. Večerniček is the best and there are so many to choose from so it could become a series but like you I'm pushed for time, I teach 28 hours a week which is a heavy load for a teacher but I will do what I can, and continue with the current lists when I have time. http://www.facebook.com/home.p... I don't normally make this kind of offer, but if you§re interested this is my facebook, I use to contact people all over the world. I check this everyday as it is my primary communication point for friends and family. feel free to add me.

    Posted by AaronJamesDodd 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • ahoj,maybe leaving the adjectives as they are in the first list can help learners understand the difference. IF you don't mind of course. Večerniček is the best and there are so many to choose from so it could become a series but like you I'm pushed for time, I teach 28 hours a week which is a heavy load for a teacher but I will do what I can, and continue with the current lists when I have time. http://www.facebook.com/home.p... I don't normally make this kind of offer, but if you§re interested this is my facebook, I use to contact people all over the world. I check this everyday as it is my primary communication point for friends and family. feel free to add me.

    Posted by AaronJamesDodd 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • I think I'll do that, when I have finished the basics ... Especially if there is no one else to do it. In the meantime I hope my mems using German language as well are not too annoying for the rest of us;-)

    Posted by doralina 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • I think I'll do that, when I have finished the basics ... Especially if there is no one else to do it. In the meantime I hope my mems using German language as well are not too annoying for the rest of us;-)

    Posted by doralina 1/22/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages.. I guess there's a stronger than usual chance that someone may eventually thumb them down, feeling they are incomprehensible, but if it helps you remember the word, that's what really counts.. I think I have several mems of my own for speakers of other languages too.. including one or 2 for german speakers.. (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., I think several of them got thumbed down, because, well, I guess they are not useful for most learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages.. I guess there's a stronger than usual chance that someone may eventually thumb them down, feeling they are incomprehensible, but if it helps you remember the word, that's what really counts.. I think I have several mems of my own for speakers of other languages too.. including one or 2 for german speakers.. (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., I think several of them got thumbed down, because, well, I guess they are not useful for most learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some of them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some of them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some have them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..

    Posted by mangodurian 1/23/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose  there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for  speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some of them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..It appears now that my problem posting to forum has been solved.. at least temporarily, as this has happened to me more than once already.. anyhow, hopefully I can post to forum again from now on. and thanks for all the false entry alerts!!

    Posted by mangodurian 2/5/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose  there is a stronger chance than normal that they will be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for  speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some of them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..It appears now that my problem posting to forum has been solved.. at least temporarily, as this has happened to me more than once already.. anyhow, hopefully I can post to forum again from now on. and thanks for all the false entry alerts!!

    Posted by mangodurian 2/5/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose  there is a stronger chance than normal that they might be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for  speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some of them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..by the way, thanks for all the "false entry alerts" keep them coming!

    Posted by mangodurian 2/5/12 (2 years ago)
  • I wouldn't worry too much about mems being in other languages. I suppose  there is a stronger chance than normal that they might be down voted, but if they help you, that's what really counts. I have several mems for  speakers of other languages too, including german (like http://www.memrise.com/mem/974..., some of them have been down voted, probably because they are really of not much use to the vast majority of learners..by the way, thanks for all the "false entry alerts" keep them coming!

    Posted by mangodurian 2/5/12 (2 years ago)

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