It took me a bit of reflecting to figure out why this challenge–posting a message in a foreign language–was more challenging for me than most and why I ended up modifying the challenge.
Many of the people in my family of origin speak Finnish as a first language (my mother, aunt, uncles and many cousins), so when I was learning foreign languages in school, I always wanted to make sure that when I spoke or wrote the language, it was perfect.
Even with using Google Translator, which would assist in reading a foreign language blog post as well as translating comments into the proper language, I still felt extremely uncomfortable about posting in a foreign language. When I played with the Google Translator and ended up with responses written in languages using different characters, I was even less sure about posting the characters.
I then decided that if I am going to be commenting on a blog post (which I haven’t be doing a lot of), it would be better to post on a blog from someone in the challenge, so I morphed the activity to being one where I would post a comment on a blog from one of the 31 Day Challenge Participants that was being written in a foreign country.
Chosen Blogs & Comments
- Brian Lockwood, How? What? Questions for Lifelong Learning, blogging from Yokohama, Japan. A comment was left on the April 21st post Are Web 2.0 sites Electronic Portfolios friendly?
- Leigh Newton, Leigh in Azerbaijan Looking at the Country and Education, blogging from Baku, Azerbaijan. A comment was left on his May 14th post on Artistic Shoes
- Adrienne Michetti, create. connect. question, blogging from Hanoi, Vietnam. A comment was left on her May 11th post on I believe in global education, BUT…
- Sarah Stewart, Sarah’s Musings blogging from Dunedin, New Zealand. A comment was left on her May 24th post on Comment Challenge Day 17: Commenting on Five blogs in Five minutes. (O.K. this last one wasn’t strictly a foreign language, but Sarah had visited my blog a few days ago and I decide to stop by hers.
The simple sentence that I decide to have translated was: “Greetings from the 31 Day Comment Challenge.”
- In Japanese 日からのご挨拶コメントの挑戦です。
- In Azerbaijani wasn’t an option. Had to go with Russian, Поздравления с Днем 31 Комментировать обстоятельства.
- In Vietnamese. (I used http://vdict.com to translate the Vietnamese into English) Những lời chào từ 31 Thách thức Bình luận Ngày
- In New Zealand. (I picked Maori from the page “Hello in Many Languages“) Tena koe from the 31 Day Challenge.
After seeing the translations in foreign alphabets, I decided to keep the translations just for this post, since I didn’t know if posting text in a foreign alphabet would just end up a garbled HTML mess. So I posted a simple “Hi” in the language of the blog and the fact that I was posting from the 31 Day Challenge.