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Basic Tagalog for Foreigners and Non-Tagalogs (Tuttle Language Library) [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Yolanda C. Herdandez

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28. Februar 2007 Tuttle Language Library
Basic Tagalog takes a friendly and innovative approach, emphasizing the structure of the Tagalog language rather than just vocabulary.

This user–friendly beginner Tagalog book teaches more than 2,000 Tagalog words and expressions with over 500 being added for this new edition. These are spread throughout 44 lessons, the Appendices and the exercises as well as in the Tagalog–English and English–Tagalog vocabulary lists at back of the book. The added Tagalog vocabulary is meant to keep learners abreast of changes that have occurred in the language since the first edition of Basic Tagalog which was published. This edition has retained all the grammar lessons and the tried–and–tested teaching methodology developed b the author, Paraluman S. Aspillera, for the original version. Her method has proven to be extremely effective for tens of thousands of foreigners and non–Tagalogs who have used this book to lean to learn Tagalog, including many who have successfully learned to speak Tagalog, read Tagalog and write Tagalog through self–study on their own without a teacher. An audio CD has also been added to facilitate the correct pronunciation of Tagalog words and phrases. A succinct introduction to the language and a description of the character of Filipinos will hopefully provide learners with a better understanding of the language they are learning.

The lessons in Basic Tagalog are intended for a three–month period of intensive study followed by another three months of applied oral communication. In six months (or about 250 hours), it is expected that an average learner should be able to speak, write and understand simple, everyday, conversational Tagalog as spoken by most Filipinos. Highlights of this book include:
  • Over 2,000 Tagalog words and expressions.
  • 44 lessons organized by organized for efficient language absorption.
  • Extensive exercises and activities to reinforce the lessons.
  • Vocabulary lists serve as comprehensive English–Tagalog and Tagalog–English dictionaries.
  • Completely updated and expanded with new materials.
  • Includes accompanying MP3 Audio CD.
Using Basic Tagalog to study the Tagalog language will further encourage both non–Tagalogs and non–Filipinos to speak Tagalog better. Only then will they appreciate the individuality of the language that reflects the resilience and flexibility of Filipinos all around the world. In the end, such learning will improve daily interactions and communications between non–Filipinos and Filipinos—whether in business, education, tourism, social or civic endeavors.

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"I hope that the new and expanded edition of this book will further encourage both non-Tagalogs and non-Filipinos to speak the Tagalog language better. Only then shall they appreciate the individuality of the language that reflects the resilience and flexibility of Filipinos all around the world."—Yolanda Canseco Hernandez


This is the 2007 edition of "Basic Tagalog for Foreigners and Non-Tagalogs". It contains lessons that are intended for a three-month period of intensive self study of at least two hours per day and another three months of applied oral communication. In six months, it is expected that an average learner should be able to speak, write and understand simple, everyday conversational Tagalog as spoken by most Philippinos.

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3.0 von 5 Sternen From the Few Comes Adequacy 21. Mai 2009
Von S Warner - Veröffentlicht auf
There aren't many sources from which you can learn Tagalog, which is strange, since it's the second most widely spoken Asian language here in the US. In fact, the study of Japanese is the big fad right now although it doesn't even make the top ten list of most widely spoken languages (besides English) in the US, according to the 2000 census. Anyway, I'm currently in high school and studying ang wikang Tagalog recreationally, and I was fascinated when I polled my friends and familiy about languages spoken in the US...asked whether or not they were aware of the Vietnamese, Mandarin (Chinese), Korean, and occasionally even the Hmong languages, most responded affirmatively.

However, when I questioned my friends and family members about their awareness of Tagalog language...only 1 of friends knew this language even existed (he's half Filipino). In fact, most of my friends and family didn't know where the Philippines even are, and a few didn't even know there was such a country.

Not to mention the intimidation factor of the Tagalog language; yes, Chinese and Japanese have radically different scripts and grammar than English, but there are tremendous resources for both! Japanese has anime and manga as an enticing resource, and Mandarin Chinese has that whole top language in the world thing (1.3 billion speakers), but Tagalog is entirely scary when potential learners see sweet, innocent little words, like tiwala, meaning 'trust', heinously mutilated by prefixes, infixes, and suffixes to become: pinakapinagkakatiwalaan; which means, I think, 'the most trusted'. Who, among the Americans of my generation, so accustomed to instant gratification, would really care to learn the grammar of a language that would even attempt something like that, unless to get in touch with their roots?

Not to mention the reassurance of "oh, the Philippines had been under Spanish rule for hundreds of years, and the Tagalog language has been tremendously influenced by teh spansh language!3@!!#432!!" Well, not really. There are actually several languages in the Philippines that are much more Spanish-influenced, but grammar-wise, Tagalog just didn't conform besides adopting stuff like numbers (veintedos as opposed to dalawampu't dalawa), some nouns, and words like mas (more) or o (or). Yes, learning Spanish would help...with about 400 words. Good luck from there.

This book is a decent resource out of the very few affordable resources for Tagalog out there. It's updated, and contains reading material to practice on (or just freak yourself out with), and I hate to break it to you...but it's only a book. Basic Tagalog will not teach you words at an amazing rate, learn "like a child would", "pass as a native", or any other commonly guaranteed results if you don't do the excercises, and if you don't make an effort to make flashcards, or if you put no extra effort in learning whatsoever. Unfortunately, learning from a book-any book on language-will feel like work at one time or another, even if you're simply learning out of interest like I am. This is not the book's fault; it utilizes, most of the time, the drill-and-rote method of learning, which means if you only "go by the book" and not take the effort to say, watch any Tagalog-language movies or speak to Tagalog-speaking people, it might take years to master.

In short, I was very surprised by the good quality of the book. I agree with other reviewers that it should contain answers, and it is INCREDIBLY annoying that there are typos within the book itself (!), but we're getting reading material from essayists and poets as opposed to trite little tourist phrases, and perhaps the lack of an answer key was to influence the reader to become more of an active study the writing provided, to study it's structure and affirm for oneself whether one is correct or not, or even influence the reader to (in the age of the internet) ask a fluent speaker, who would be incredibly happy to know someone else is attempting to master a language they love.

Perhaps I'm overthinking it ;)

Either way, Basic Tagalog is inexspensive enough where you can purchase it, take what you need from it, and leave it if you so prefer...or become interested in adopting a ruggedly lyrical, resilient language and connecting with the equally resilient people who've bothered learning it.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent Book for Learners 27. März 2011
Von Patrice Gaillard - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
This is by far the best overall book I've seen for learning Tagalog. This is probably the best thing for learning Tagalog next to Rosetta Stone. The 40 plus lessons covers the basics of learning Tagalog including grammar, not just memorizing expressions. After the lessons, there are appendices full of exercises and other references to further enhance your skills with Tagalog. Included in such appendices are Tagalog idioms and samples of everyday conversations a person may have. There's also a glossary of words in both languages for quick reference. But what really makes this book stand out for me is the included audio CD. All of the chapters are narrated on the audio CD, unlike some other books which may only have the foreign language word pronounced. I have found this feature especially useful for listening while traveling or doing whatever. It's easy to follow along as the narrator speaks to actually understand the lesson and then hear a native Tagalog speaker pronounce the Tagalog words. Great buy for anyone who is just starting to learn Tagalog or wants a thorough overview of the language. I would recommend this book to be followed up by "Modern Tagalog Grammar" by Teresa Ramos. This book is not for beginners but gets much deeper into Tagalog grammar and should help you to become truly fluent in this difficult language to learn.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Much help!! 29. November 2008
Von P. Weber - Veröffentlicht auf
FAR better than rosetta (ugh) stone and MUCH better for pronunciation of words. And far better than the $200 plus dollars for the FIRST rosetta (ugh) stone course (of three courses costing around $500 plus for all 3 courses). I sent rosetta (ugh) stone's first course back after 3 weeks. Your choice of course.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Great book for self-studying 25. Juli 2012
Von ranapnea - Veröffentlicht auf
I have been studying last 3 weeks Tagalog with only this book in my aid (and the audio CDs). I am in middle of the book and can now create sentences, pronounce them correctly, understand sentences rapidly. I still need more practice and more words but this is really going fast thanks to the book. To make a comparison, I feel I am much more advanced now with Tagalog than after 1 year of Arabic studies.

This is the best book so far I have encountered to learn a language. Still, I do not think that this book is the best for every person. I hope my review can help you to understand where you stand.

The book has very logical proceeding in introducing various concepts and the rules of language are given in very clear manner with appropriate number of examples. The focus of the book is to give reader "tools" (that is, the grammar) to use the language for understanding and creating their own sentences. Many other language books I have used are instead focused on day-to-day language, starting from simple conversations and moving to more complex structures.

The suitability of this book to you really depends on various factors. In my mind, to really appreaciate and benefit from this book you are ideally 1) logically thinking person 2) have studied other languages 3) have patience and diligency to study. On the other hand, if you are more "intuitive" person, with "learning by doing", maybe some other book with more focus on everyday discourses is more suitable. Still, I think that if one have the patience to go through THIS book he/she will get a very nice "toolset" for speaking Tagalog.

Personally I have to be able to "trust" the book before memorizing the information. So if some book gives me some "partial truth" or does not adeguately explain what are the exceptions to the rules I find hard to study. Here I do not have this problem. Grammar rules are clear, examples help to confirm my understanding of the rules. So I can move fast.

Really enjoying this book - good work!
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5.0 von 5 Sternen The best description of the language, with exercises 31. Oktober 2013
Von Birck - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Most books with titles like the title of this one turn out to be Tagalog phrase books, i.e., not completely useless, but no way to learn a language as different from English as Tagalog is. This is not a phrase book. It actually starts with sample sentences, then breaks them down and describes different sentence structures, even going so far as to indicate the significance of each word or particle in the sentences. Hallelujah. Within the first 40 pages the student will be shown how to construct a sentence two different ways, what particles, i.e., pronouns, prepositions and markers, to place where, and why to place them there. I haven't got through the whole thing yet, but I've already found out why and how adjectives change spelling in mid-word under certain circumstances, and I look forward to finding out how verbs conjugate the same non-Indo-European way. If you've found Rosetta Stone frustrating (infuriating?) because of its lack of any grammar or translation support, this book should help solve the problem. The Rosetta Stone "immersion" model has its place, I suppose, in that someone who doesn't speak Tagalog but who found themselves plunked down in Manila for 20 years and forced to as it were Root Hog or Die linguistically without any backup materials...would, eventually, learn the language. Right. I don't have 20 years. I have maybe an hour or so per day, in the United States, to learn this language. I've paid for RS, so I'll use it for familiarization and drill, but this book, "Basic Tagalog", is, I think, what's going to enable me to speak, read, write, and understand Tagalog.
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