Kannada is a Dravidian language spoken predominantly by the people of Karnataka in the southwestern region of India. The language is also spoken by linguistic minorities in the states of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Kerala, and Goa; and also by Kannadigas abroad. The language had roughly 43 million native speakers by 2011. Kannada is also spoken as a second and third language by over 12.9 million non-native speakers in Karnataka, which adds up to 56.9 million speakers. It is one of the scheduled languages of India and the official and administrative language of the state of Karnataka. Kannada was the court language of some of the most powerful empires of South and Central India, such as the Chalukya dynasty, the Rashtrakuta dynasty, the Vijayanagara Empire, and the Hoysala Empire.
- The Kannada language is written using the Kannada script, which evolved from the 5th-century Kadamba script.
- Kannada is attested epigraphically for about one and a half millennia and literary Old Kannada flourished in the 6th-century Ganga dynasty and during the 9th-century Rashtrakuta Dynasty.
- Kannada has an unbroken literary history of over a thousand years.
- Kannada literature has been presented with 8 Jnanpith awards, the most for any Dravidian language and the second highest for any Indian language.
One can start learning Kannada in two way:
- By conversation
- By reading and writing
I think one who starts conversing in Kannada learns it faster and enjoys it because she will start applying it more.
Another method, i.e., learning by reading and writing Kannada, and takes its own time and will be a little lengthier compare to learning by conversation.
Before you start learning this language, I would like you to make a list of a few questions that you need to ask yourself and how much time you can devote on a daily basis to learn this language. What is your purpose in learning this language?. How much you are looking to invest in learning this course?. These questions may vary from person to person. For some, the reason for learning this language is to learn Kannada as it is in their curriculum, for some the reason will be that they are shifting to Bengaluru, etc and there are so many reasons for learning this langauge.
Tips and tricks to know
Watch movies in Kannada
Watching a series on Netflix might not exactly improve your debating skills or formal register, but it helps you to understand the language better, get used to colloquial, conversational forms of Kannada, and implicitly get a feeling for the language. Also, you could try to pick out words that sound highly informal and look up their more scholarly counterparts. Being exposed to a language for the length of a movie might help you to actually start thinking in Kannada.
Immerse yourself in Kannada language news
Try to sample a broad range of Kannada language newspapers, including broadsheets as well as magazines and tabloids. As well as helping you keep up to date with current affairs, this range of news sources will also expand your vocabulary. Another advantage is that you will also become more comfortable with how words are spelt and the contexts in which they are used.
Start a vocabulary book of useful words
Either in a notebook or on your computer, start making a list of useful words and phrases. Every time you hear or see a word you’re not familiar with, note it down. Don’t only focus on the word itself, but search for synonyms and phrases in which it’s used.
Have conversations in Kannada
As helpful as listening and reading tasks may be, you also need to use Kannada interactively and practice your own speaking skills. If you’re lucky, you’ll be friends with a few native speakers who can help you out, but if not then try to meet up with someone else studying Kannada. Another option is to talk to yourself in the mirror or record yourself. Listening to the sound of your own voice might be a little bit awkward at first, but you will be able to hear mistakes of which you weren’t previously aware.
Practice, practice, practice
Let’s face it, academic phrases won’t just fall from heaven and straight into your brain. Even if your Kannada is already quite good, don’t be complacent and underestimate stressful factors such as the time pressure in an exam. You still have to practice, no matter how much time you have left before your big day. Try coming up with a word of the day, and then try to employ it as often as possible. If you do this, don’t waste time on extremely specific words you will never actually use. Instead, focus on conversational Kannada which is likely to be relevant in the exam.
Don’t forget to have fun while you learn
If studying the Kannada language only feels like a burden, it will seem tedious and you won’t perform as well. This is why it’s important to stay motivated and enjoy the experience of learning a new language. Find ways to add entertainment to your studies, such as playing word games with friends that will boost your critical thinking skills.
Make some Native Kannadiga Friends
Having some language partners who can converse with you in Kannada is really important. Living in Karnataka for a few months or years is the best way to improve Kannada speaking but it’s not possible for everyone. But in this age of the internet, it’s not very difficult to find some Kannada friends online who would like to help you with your Kannada. You can find language exchange partners in Facebook groups, sites, or apps like Hellochat. If you are not able to find native Kannada friends, Kannada-speaking people from any country should do as well.
Read at least 15-30 Kannada sentences every day. They can be from your textbook, an online newspaper, a blog or comic book, or anything else. Always read them aloud and try to focus on your pronunciation and intonation. Reading Kannada aloud not only makes your vocal cords adjust with Kannada sounds but it also makes you feel comfortable speaking Kannada words and sentences. You get more in sync with Kannada sounds.
Do not be afraid to make mistakes.
That fear may keep you from writing well. Language takes extraordinary amounts of practice to master, and mistakes are part of the learning process.
In order to improve your Kannada language skills, you’ll need to put a lot of continuous effort into learning a language. Also no one can beat hard work, dedication and commitment towards learning any language. So don’t worry and keep learning.