Dos and don’ts

  1. Only few Danish beginners have acquired a functional use of Greenlandic over the last few generations: It is a fact that every year thousands of Danes attempt to learn Greenlandic but only a small handful have reached a proper control of a functional Greenlandic. You will be carpet bombed with half understood explanations and well meaning “good advice” about how to not end like one in the gloomy statistics. You will endeavor that there is far between people of substantial understanding especially when these good advice come from people without a functional Greenlandic.

  2. It is only you that can learn Greenlandic: Acquisition of a foreign language is always an individual process. Courses, study guides, dictionary, compendia and grammar are only a small help in structuralizing the language. They may only speed up the process slightly more than if you were to meet the language ahistorically.

  3. It is only the natural language you should learn and study: Your only natural “teacher” is the language that is actually spoken by the native people of the society. This should be your focus. Immerse yourself in the language and capture everything you can to get a process initiated. Reflect upon what you hear and make it make sense. It is almost guaranteed that this is the way you previously also acquired other languages.

  4. You learn from natural input, not homemade input: Linguistic production shall come from linguistic perception, så avoid translating Greenlandic or creating sentences for as long as you can. It is input, not out­put, that teaches you Greenlandic. To put it straight, it will be like running your head against a wall if you discover that you can say more than you can understand. If this happens your acquisition of the language has most probably been stumped.

  5. Greenlandic input is so complex that no one can even localize com­prehensible input to learn from: DIt is undoubtedly the most important explanation for why Danes don’t learn Greenlandic. It is this fact that the previous rendition of Greenlandic with Per Langgård above all addresses. With the development of Greenlandic language technology it is now for the first time ever possible to offer a great amount of exercises and randomized input, that at any moment in your acquisition process will match your actual knowledge about Greenlandic. It is a numerically grand knowledge that you soon will have. Actually, after only 100 hours of studying you will theoretically be able to command more than 2 million occurring words. The key is to internalize as many of these as possible so that you can recognize them amidst all that you’re yet to learn.

  6. Ensure that the processes you learn early on are proper before you initiate studying something new: Educationist speak of scaffolding which refer to the construction of certain abilities that one can “stand on” on the way up. This is extremely relevant for you right now. If your first fistful of abilities isn’t so well established that you subconsciously can recognize certain elements of language within the incomprehensible sounds of the real Greenlandic, then it may be highly unlikely for you to ever isolate the next part of the language you wish to learn. And then, your learning has been stalled!