Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Language study

So, today was my first day with my language teacher. Her name is Anya and she is a teacher of English at one of the public schools near our ministry center. Today was really about trying to discover where I am with my Russian and how she can help me to proceed. I think she was pleased with my level of Russian. I had told her that I spoke a little Russian, but I think she thought I would be limited to "hi, my name is Shushan." Repeatedly she told me how good my Russian is and commented on the size of my vocabulary. Then we actually got down to business. After a little while, she asked me if I know that all nouns in Russian have gender - words are either male, female, or neutral. In a sentence, all the words have to agree with the gender of the noun. I assured her that I do know that. She said, "you do not speak as though you know that." What a gentle reprimand. So we worked on that for a little while. We talked about tenses and she was please with my ability to do past and future tenses, but then she said "you don't know cases at all." NOPE! Good observation. Russian has six cases and I do horribly trying to remember any of them. Oh well. She assured me that we will work on that too. She was please that I can do simple conjugation of verbs and she said I read well - of course I think she teaches small children. I read well for a first grader - but still it was a nice compliment. I am also excited to say that she has agreed to meet with me five days per week. Originally she had said she could do 2 or 3, and I was hoping for 3. But today, she agreed to meet with me everyday at least for the beginning of the summer and then we will see how I progress. I don't know if Anya is a believer, but I am praying for a relationship with her that will draw us both closer to God. When we were talking today, she asked me why I wanted to learn Russian. I told her it is an act of service to God and part of the ministry here. Praying for God's help and strength that I will be an excellent student and glorify Him in my service!

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