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Vlog: Vacation in Mexico (Polish)

4 Mar 2014

In January we were on a short vacation in Mexico! Here are the videos we recorded there. :-) We were at a market, sitting on the beach, Carrie (my wife) learned how to surf and we walked on Isla Mujeres. Check it out!

Sorry, this time I didn't have time to write a transcript. :-/ But at least I finally uploaded the video. ;-)

If someone is willing to write a transcript or add subtitles for Polish learners - let me know in the comments!

5 blogs by Americans living in Poland

31 Dec 2013
Turkey in the road
Yesterday, in front of our apartment :-)

When we met new people in Kraków, Poland, they'd frequently say things like, "You're the first American I've ever met," or even, "You're the first native speaker I've ever met!"

I wouldn't necessarily say this, but I'd be thinking: "Seriously? There are a TON of Americans living in Poland!"

In fact, when we first arrived in Poland we had trouble meeting Poles! We normally expand our social circle by meeting the friends of our friends. But when you don't know anyone, it's hard to get started.

However, we had no trouble meeting other Americans! I could recognize them from across the street or hear their accents when we were at a restaurant or cafe. And all we had to say was, "Hey, what are you doing in Poland?" And then we'd have a new American friend. ;-)

If I had to guess, there are at least hundreds if not thousands of Americans living in Kraków alone. When I'd tell this to Poles and they wouldn't beleive me! Well, today I have some proof. :-)

Read more to learn about 5 blogs written by Americans living in Poland!

What are you thankful for? Happy Thanksgiving Day!

28 Nov 2013

Thanksgiving is an American holiday when we get together with friends or family and remember all the things we have to be thankful for.

Personally, I'm most thankful for:

  • My wife, Carrie
  • My health
  • The wonderful readers of my blog and their patience when I don't publish an article for a while :-)

Sorry I haven't published anything in over a month! In October, I was traveling for work almost every week and I'm still trying to catch up on everything.

However, I'd like to share a couple Thanksgiving related things with you that you may not have seen!

I hope you have a great day and thank you!

What are you thankful for? Write a comment below!

Review: Memrise.com (I started learning a little ... Chinese?!)

15 Oct 2013
Memrise.com Logo

For a while now I've been trying to decide what language to learn next.

Of course, I'll keep learning Polish! I've been reading the Song of Ice and Fire books (ie. Game of Thrones) in Polish and practicing speaking at the end of our weekly voice chat meetings on Bibliobird.com.

It's just that I'm already at a pretty advanced level and it's no longer as challenging as it used to be.

But which language to learn? They ALL seem interesting! But learning a language is a big commitment and no languages excite me as much as Polish did. :-/

A few weeks ago, I was talking to a friend and he told me he was learning how to read Chinese menus on Memrise.com. This sounded really awesome, because:

  1. I'd be able to use it right away! While I have no connection to China or the Chinese people, I do eat Chinese food often and the menus at Chinese restaurants are always written in both English and Chinese.
  2. It doesn't require much commitment. Learning a whole new language will take lots of time and effort - but just learning to read a menu is a simple way to get started.

So, I decided to review Memrise.com by learning to read a little Chinese!

Today's article also includes a video where I show you how Memrise works and we go to a Chinese restaurant to try out what I've learned!

Of course, you can learn many more languages on Memrise.com than Chinese, including: English, Polish and dozens of others. Maybe it'll help you learn your next language?

Read more to find out!

I'm returning to my blog! (and I gave an interview)

24 Sep 2013
Behind our new apartment
Behind our new apartment!

Hi Everyone!

I hope you had an excellent summer. :-) My wife and I certainly did! Since my last article, we've moved to a new apartment and went on vacation in California.

I just wanted to let you know that I'm slowly returning to my blog! I've already recorded material for two new videos about the USA and I've got an idea for an article and video about language learning. Hopefully, I'll finish them soon!

Also, last week Thursday (2013-09-19) I gave an interview on EnglishWithKatie.com! Katie is an American, living in Japan, who blogs about learning English. We talked about many things:

  • Language learning
  • Traveling the world
  • Discrimination in the USA
  • How Americans feel connected to their roots
  • Personal development

Listen to the full interview! (search for "David Snopek" on that page)

I hope you like it!

Best regards,
David Snopek.

PS: I recorded a video in Polish about this too!

I'm going on a short "vacation" from blogging (personal note)

9 Apr 2013

Hello Everyone!

It's me!

Normally I write articles with advice about language learning or information about Polish and American culture. Today's article is going to be a much more personal!

As of right now there are 224 articles and almost 4000 comments on this blog.

I'm extremely proud of my blog and I love the community that exists around it. I've met TONS of interesting people here and developed a few close friendships.

You guys have helped me with many things over the years: corrected my Polish, sent me encouraging emails, translated my ebook into Polish, recorded an audio version of my ebook and much more.

Thank you so much for reading, commenting and helping! I'm extremely grateful. :-)

(BTW, Tobiasz Karoń, who recorded my audiobook is releasing a new audiobook soon! Check out this video to learn more about it.)

However, it's also a lot of work!

Of course, there is the time to actually write the articles, record videos and respond to comments. But I also receive about 50 emails a day connected with this blog, mostly from people asking for advice specific to their situation.

Due to some changes in my life recently, I've had trouble finding time. So, I've decided to go on a short "vacation" from blogging.

Read more to find out why and what this means!

"I translated all the words, but I still don't understand!"

2 Apr 2013

I learned Polish primary by reading and listening to Harry Potter. When I encountered a word I didn't know, I looked it up in the dictionary and made a flashcard.

There's more to it, but that's the short version I usually put in my blog articles and videos. You can find the whole story in my free ebook.

Many other people have tried similar methods with other language and have also been successful!

However, occasionally I get emails from people saying:

I started reading Harry Potter in language X but your method doesn't work! I translated all the individual words but the sentence doesn't make logical sense and isn't understandable.

(BTW, I've been trying to turn all the advice I regularly give over e-mail into articles on my blog, so I can just send links and write fewer e-mails.)

Read more for my response!

Vlog: Post office in the USA!

26 Feb 2013

(If you're a subscriber and you didn't get an e-mail about this video, it's because you didn't selected "I'm interested in ... Life in the USA and American culture" or "I'm learning ... English" in your subscriber options.)

Today we're going to take you on a short trip to the post office! You also get to to see the bus in Milwaukee and a little bit of our neighborhood.

(Click here to help work on the subtitles or translate them into another language!)

Read more for a full transcript!

How to find motivation that is POWERFUL enough to succeed!

19 Feb 2013

I've written many times (because it's sooo important):

The only way to fail to learn a language is to give up!

Learning a language takes a lot of time and effort. Along the way there will be days when you want to give up!

In order to prevent that, you'll need strong motivation.

Not a weak, external motivation like getting a good grade or finding a new job (although, those can help you get started). You need truly POWERFUL, internal motivation.

But what if you don't have such a motivation (yet)?

I get lots of e-mails from people who really want to learn a language, but don't think they have the type of motivation necessary to succeed.

Luckily, it's possible to find motivation powerful enough to succeed... on purpose!

Today, I'm FINALLY going to explain one of the techniques that I've been recommending over e-mail for years.

Read more to find out what it is!

How to get started learning Polish (from zero!)

12 Feb 2013

When you're first starting a new language, everything is unfamiliar. There is sooo much that you don't know, it's hard to know where to get started.

The truth is: there's a million ways to get started... and most of them will probably work. However, some may go smoother than others. :-)

Today I'm going to give you my personal recommendation - based on my experience learning Polish!

Of course, I've already written lots of articles about learning Polish that would be useful.

Unfortunately, as a blog, these articles aren't organized in any particular way. When someone asks me for advice on getting started, I have usually have to send them at least a half dozen links. :-)

Today I'm going to organize this information into a short, step-by-step guide!

Read more for 5 simple steps to getting started with Polish!

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