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Which to learn first, Tagalog or Cebuano?


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rollocom

if english is not your natural language and generally learning a language is difficult for you. What would be you first choice to learn cebuano or tagalog ?

 

Im sorry if this is little off topic

 

rollocom

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KeithAngel

 

 

I agree that to learn the language only a good teacher can show you how to build the foundation required to learn from.

 

Thats not what a visayan 3 year old would say lol

 

The problem is to be prepared to be immersed its perfectly possible to learn I reckon on previous experience in about a couple of years if your exposure is full time

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Thats not what a visayan 3 year old would say lol

 

The problem is to be prepared to be immersed its perfectly possible to learn I reckon on previous experience in about a couple of years if your exposure is full time

 

Not many of us here are 3 years old nor will have full time exposure to the language for years.

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if english is not your natural language and generally learning a language is difficult for you. What would be you first choice to learn cebuano or tagalog ?

 

Im sorry if this is little off topic

 

rollocom

 

I'm told Tagalog is easier to learn, but in most of the Visayas and Mindanao, Cebuano is the mainly spoken.

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Jess Bartone

if english is not your natural language and generally learning a language is difficult for you. What would be you first choice to learn cebuano or tagalog ?

 

Of course I am biased, but to my ears Tagalog sounds like guttural gibberish, whereas Visayan (Cebuano, Binisaya) sounds sweetly hypnotic and almost musical... it is sung rather than spoken... and far easier for me to decipher individual words. Tagalog sounds to me like a machine gun set on full auto peppered with 3-shot bursts.

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Paul

I'm told Tagalog is easier to learn, but in most of the Visayas and Mindanao, Cebuano is the mainly spoken.

 

I would think that Tagalog is more difficult to learn.

 

I attempted to learn it when I first arrived in the Philippines. But, it seemed as though there were too many words that sounded the same, were spelled the same, yet had completely different meanings. So, I stuck to Cebuano, since I lived in the part of the country where it was spoken.

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RogerDuMond

I would think that it would depend on where you are going to live. What is the conversational language that is spoken the most in that area?

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sperry

I faced the same dilemma, and have spent a lot of time thinking about it. It's difficult to take a decision when almost by definition you dont know enough to make an informed one.

 

I'm going for tagalog for the following reasons:

 

1: not 100% sure if I would stay in the visayas

2: there is vastly more free/cheap teaching material available on the internet for tagalog than cebuano. Although I am bilingual, I have made a number of false starts on the third language, and don't want to start investing money in another fiasco.

 

I agree with admin however on tagalog. Many words seem to be spelt very similarly, what seem like a random selection of consonants interspersed with letter "a", and of course if you get the consonants mixed up, you say something completely different. Although the grammar seems rather simple, I find this makes it all rather difficult. I have no idea at all if cebuano is the same.

 

I suspect if you learn tagalog first, then cebuano might be picked up faster if you decided to swap, though I freely admit this is a complete guess on my part.

 

Finally, I am not sure that being a native English speaker really helps in tagalog. Why do you think it might make a difference?

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JasonEcos

Keep in mind that Tagalog and Cebuano share many of the same words...but with drastically different meanings. In one language a word might mean "little boy" and in the other it will mean "breasts"....which could bring up some awkward moments if you assume the meaning is the same since the spelling is.

 

If I'm not mistaken isn't Cebuano spoken by a larger percentage of the population than Tagalog? (even though Tagalog is the official language)

 

..... Visayan (Cebuano, Binisaya) sounds sweetly hypnotic and almost musical... it is sung rather than spoken... ....

 

 

I agree. Sometimes I think they make words to throw in sentences just so it has a better flow. Then I hear people throw in extra syllables sometimes for the same reason...instead of saying pali-hug, they will say pali-a-hug in slightly different tones and it gives it a more musical sound.(hard to explain but easy to hear in conversation when they do it)

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Headshot

I would think that the language you attempt to learn (there are no guarantees you will actually learn it) should be based on which language you will actually use the most...not on which is easiest to learn. Even though Tagalog is the national language of the Philippines, few people actually speak it in normal conversation outside the central Luzon area where it originates. It is the language used on TV (sprinkled heavily with words from English and the other Philippine languages). In fact, if you are able to learn any of the Philippine languages, you will have automatically learned some of the others as well, since many words are common between languages and dialects here. I would say that Bisayan (of which Cebuano is a dialect) is most useful anywhere in the Visayas...if you want to know what is being said around (and about) you. If you just want to understand the soap operas on TV, then you should learn Tagalog...but it won't do you any good at all in normal conversation outside of the Manila area (most Filipinos are no more comfortable speaking in Tagalog than they are in speaking English). Once you figure out what is important to you, the choice is easy. Learning the language may not be nearly as easy though. Don't expect to find a Rosetta Stone package for Bisayan (it doesn't exist and there are no plans for one), but there is one for Tagalog.

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rollocom

I faced the same dilemma, and have spent a lot of time thinking about it. It's difficult to take a decision when almost by definition you dont know enough to make an informed one.

 

I'm going for tagalog for the following reasons:

 

1: not 100% sure if I would stay in the visayas

2: there is vastly more free/cheap teaching material available on the internet for tagalog than cebuano. Although I am bilingual, I have made a number of false starts on the third language, and don't want to start investing money in another fiasco.

 

I agree with admin however on tagalog. Many words seem to be spelt very similarly, what seem like a random selection of consonants interspersed with letter "a", and of course if you get the consonants mixed up, you say something completely different. Although the grammar seems rather simple, I find this makes it all rather difficult. I have no idea at all if cebuano is the same.

 

I suspect if you learn tagalog first, then cebuano might be picked up faster if you decided to swap, though I freely admit this is a complete guess on my part.

 

Finally, I am not sure that being a native English speaker really helps in tagalog. Why do you think it might make a difference?

 

 

the reason I mention english is not my normal language, is because I think most education in cebuano or tagalog wil be in english, so for me it wil be in two foreign languages.

My normal language is danish

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Dragon

According to the 2000 census 28.1% of Filipinos are Tagalog, 13.1% Cebuano, 9% Ilocano, 7.6% Bisaya/Binisaya, 7.5% Hiligaynon, 6% Bikol, 3.4% Waray, and 25.3% are classified as other.

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alexccms

Trouble with the census is you self identify. Some say they're Cebuano and some say they're Visaya? Do any of those respondents claim that those are different languages?

 

I started learning Tagalog when I moved to the Phils. I was in Mindanao so I dropped it pretty quickly, people look at you funny and you sound completely out of place speaking it. I read somewhere that everywhere you go in the Phils there will be a person who understands Visaya. Not so with Tagalog.

 

For me, being a Spanish speaker, Visaya has been easier. Yes, there are Spanish words in Tagalog also, but not nearly as many as in Visaya.

 

I was gonna say it depends where you live what you learn. But I've gone and convinced myself again... learn Visaya. You'll still understand Filipino Television, all they do is flash a bunch of lights, sing "Happy Happy Wednesday" for 30 minutes straight... then start to cry and give someone some money. On second thought, get cable.

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Stranded Shipscook

Hard to say in General. i am German, so the first language similarity makes it easier for us to pronounce correctly.

 

Having this advantage, when i came and lived in Manila the first five years i spoke a very fluent Taglish (as the locals did also widely then) it was very easy to learn and came naturally. Also there were good and CORRECT dictionaries and other learning material available for Tagalog then. But Taglish does not help me in Cebu, so its all forgotten now, just as my Spanish/Italian/French. Revival when necessary...

 

Since 1998 i live in Cebu and never really bothered to learn a lot.My bad. First of all the books available were real crap and only got me laughter when i used the phrases in there. (Thats was very demotivating !) And then my ex wife sabotaged all attempts also.

I currently understand almost all, but can not speak really. Just enough to pass along for haggling and other necessities in life.

But it gets more every day.

 

Now, IMHO i would suggest to learn the language where you reside. Any language. if you speak any other than the local one, you might as well simply speak English. Not that they would not understand Filipino (or Tagalog), but if u speak tagalog in a non tagalog region, it could be only a disadavantage, because people here are kind of prejudiced towards each other, just as anywhere in the world.

And the very simple educated would not even understand that either.

In all official transactions English is the official language anyway.

 

Since i assume you move to Cebu, i would advise to learn Visayan. maybe you can join the very good learning club of Dragon and MOG ? I have the impression the teacher is fantastic !

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Jess Bartone

I suspect if you learn tagalog first, then cebuano might be picked up faster if you decided to swap, though I freely admit this is a complete guess on my part.

My newest bro-in-law is a Tagalog (from Cavite) who has migrated to Northern Mindanao, and he struggles with Bisaya. Conversely, everyone around him speaks Tagalog to accommodate him and make him feel welcome. In my experience most Bisaya speakers are fairly proficient in Tagalog.

 

 

I agree. Sometimes I think they make words to throw in sentences just so it has a better flow. Then I hear people throw in extra syllables sometimes for the same reason...instead of saying pali-hug, they will say pali-a-hug in slightly different tones and it gives it a more musical sound.(hard to explain but easy to hear in conversation when they do it)

I love how they do that, but it also makes it harder to comprehend, especially when someone is excited they tend to talk a lot faster. I have a cousin who is always excited about something... I love her to bits, but I wish she would stop laughing and being so conspiratorial as she speaks. When everyone is sitting around talking normally, I listen intently, and usually pick up - broadly - what they are talking about, but not dear cousin. When I've had a few beers, I give up trying to understand and just enjoy listening to the verbal sing-song.

 

 

(most Filipinos are no more comfortable speaking in Tagalog than they are in speaking English)

Speaking only for my wife's locale, I would disagree with this.

 

 

According to the 2000 census 28.1% of Filipinos are Tagalog, 13.1% Cebuano, 9% Ilocano, 7.6% Bisaya/Binisaya, 7.5% Hiligaynon, 6% Bikol, 3.4% Waray, and 25.3% are classified as other.

 

Many of the "other" are apparently Visayan dialects.

Cebuano is just a (almost identical) dialect of the mother Visayan tongue. I found a very interesting web page called simply "Visayans". There is some history then further down the page there is a list of Visayan languages such as Cebuano, gives a brief history then has further links on how to speak it. Most of the links for the lesser languages are empty, but the major dialects are covered including Waray-waray and Hiligaynon. Haven't explored the pages fully yet.

 

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