My initial expectation about the new language was that it was going to be a ‘difficult language’, with a different alphabet and different sounds. I think Polish is exactly that, so I can say it met my expectations. As an experienced language learner, if I may dare say, I wasn’t in any way intimidated or put off by the new language. It might have been different from English in regards to sounds and phonetics, but the structure is pretty much the same, so as soon as you have a grasp on the pronunciation, the conversation would flow. For me it was indeed a positive experience; it always excites me, having to learn something new. I cannot say it is going to be extremely useful, as Polish is not an international language. The purpose of learning Polish has more to do with the fact that it makes you think about how your future students feel when learning English. English is not a particularly easy language to learn; it has phonetics and tenses that could be a challenge for many of those interested in learning this language. All in all, I think this was a positive experience and I hope in 2 years from now, when I am an experienced teacher I will remember to put myself into my student’s shoes, and be supportive, patient and inspiring.
Polish is an Indo-European language, a member of the (West) Slavonic branch, along with Czech and Slovak, Russian, Byelorussian, Ukrainian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Serbo-Croat and Slovene.
In the Polish language we can find fully regular letter-to-sound correspondence; for this reason, first of all, Poles tend to pronounce English words as in rhotic dialects, where the grapheme <r> is pronounced whenever it is spelt. As such, when Polish people speak English, they tend to pronounce words as they are spelt.
Polish, unlike English, is a highly inflected language, and therefore has a much freer word order. Nouns, for example, have grammatical number, gender (m, f, n) and seven cases, shown by changes in form, as we’ve seen when learning the vegetable singular and plural forms. Adjectives conform to the gender, number and case of the noun to which they refer. Each verb governs a particular case. The grammatical function of a word is indicated by these means, rather than by its position in the sentence as in English.
There are only three tenses in Polish ( present, past and future); the imperfectives form three tenses (present, past and future), the perfectives two (past and future).
COMPARISONS AND CONTRASTS WITH ENGLISH
Structure when stating the nationality “ Jestem z Rumuni.”, English “ I am Romanian”
Many sounds are different or non-existent in English, like “sie” “trz”, “sci” “dw”.
Structure when stating the age “ Mam trzydziesci jeden lat”, English “ I am thirty one years old”
A difference from English would be that in Polish some numbers change the plural forms of the nouns. In English most nouns form the plural by adding -s. A noun ending in s, x, z, ch, sh makes the plural by adding-es. A noun ending in a consonant and then y makes the plural by dropping the y and adding-ies. There are some irregular formations for noun plurals, examples: woman/women, man/men, tooth/teeth, foot/feet.
Greeting structure “ Good day!”, “Dzien Dobry!”
Polish has grammatical gender, examples include ‘groszy’ (pence) and ‘groszy’ which are uncountable in English but often used in the plural in Polish.
Similar word “ kalafior” in Polish, “cauliflower”, even though spelt differently, the pronunciation is similar.
Polish does not have elements corresponding to English indefinite and definite articles a, an, the. One interprets a noun as definite or indefinite on the basis of context. Hence dom may be interpreted as “a house” or “the house.”
The basic word order for both languages is SVO (Subject-Verb-Object), examples include ‘Tu jest dziesięć czosnkόw’,