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Lesson Transcript

Gina: Hello everyone and welcome back to PolishPod101.com. This is Absolute Beginner, season 1, lesson 4, Talking Nationality in Polish. I’m Gina.
Joanna: And I’m Joanna.
Gina: In this lesson you'll learn all about the verb “to be”.
Joanna: This conversation takes place in a cafe.
Gina: It’s between Gosia and Alex.
Joanna: The speakers are around the same age, so they’ll be using informal Polish.
Gina: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Gosia: Hej Alex!
Alex: Cześć!
Gosia: Skąd jesteś?
Alex: Jestem z Australii. A ty?
Gosia: Jestem z Polski.
Alex: Super!
Gina: Let’s hear the conversation one time slowly.
Gosia: Hej Alex!
Alex: Cześć!
Gosia: Skąd jesteś?
Alex: Jestem z Australii. A ty?
Gosia: Jestem z Polski.
Alex: Super!
Gina: Now let’s hear it with the English translation.
Gosia: Hej Alex!
Gosia: Hey Alex!
Alex: Cześć!
Alex: Hi!
Gosia: Skąd jesteś?
Gosia: Where are you from?
Alex: Jestem z Australii. A ty?
Alex: I'm from Australia. And you?
Gosia: Jestem z Polski.
Gosia: I'm from Poland
Alex: Super!
Alex: Great!
Gina: Are there many ethnic minorities living in Poland?
Joanna: Not many. Poland has one of the smallest number of foreign inhabitants in the whole of Europe.
Gina: Why is that?
Joanna: Things changed after the Second World War. Before that war, around one third of the population was composed of minorities.
Gina: Which one was the biggest?
Joanna: Definitely the Jewish community, but unfortunately their population was almost wiped out in the war.
Gina: How about now? What are the largest ethnic minorities in Poland, and which regions do they live in?
Joanna: I would say - German, Lithuanian, Belarusian, Roman, Russian and Vietnamese. And usually they live in areas such as... ‘Śląsk’
Gina: known in English as “Silesia”
Joanna: ‘Pomorze’
Gina: “Pomerania”
Joanna: ‘Mazowsze’
Gina: “Mazovia”
Joanna: or ‘Podlasie’
Gina: “Podlachia”. Okay, now let’s move on to the vocab.
Gina: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is...
Joanna: hej [natural native speed]
Gina: hey
Joanna: hej [slowly - broken down by syllable] hej [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Joanna: cześć [natural native speed]
Gina: Hello, Hi.
Joanna: cześć [slowly - broken down by syllable] cześć [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Joanna: skąd [natural native speed]
Gina: where...from
Joanna: skąd [slowly - broken down by syllable] skąd [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Joanna: z [natural native speed]
Gina: from
Joanna: z [slowly - broken down by syllable] z [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Joanna: super [natural native speed]
Gina: super
Joanna: super [slowly - broken down by syllable] super [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Joanna: być [natural native speed]
Gina: to be
Joanna: być [slowly - broken down by syllable] być [natural native speed]
Gina: Next
Joanna: Australia [natural native speed]
Gina: Australia
Joanna: Australia [slowly - broken down by syllable] Australia [natural native speed]
Gina: And last,
Joanna: Polska [natural native speed]
Gina: Poland
Joanna: Polska [slowly - broken down by syllable] Polska [natural native speed]
Gina: Let’s take a closer look at the usage of some of the words and phrases from this lesson. Joanna, what’s the first word?
Joanna: ‘super’
Gina: Just like English.
Joanna: Exactly. It’s a very common word among young people. Nowadays anything you like or enjoy can be ‘super’.
Gina: Can we hear a few examples?
Joanna: Sure! ‘super pogoda’
Gina: literally “super weather”
Joanna: Say it when you think that weather is great. Another example would be - ‘super ciuchy’
Gina: “super clothes”
Joanna: You can use this phrase when you think someone is dressed really cool, or you simply like the clothes
Gina: There are more examples in the lesson notes, so be sure to check them out.
Joanna: There’s one more usage of ‘super’
Gina: What is it?
Joanna: Whenever you feel like being sarcastic, when you don’t like something, or you aren’t happy about something
Gina: I bet intonation is very important here.
Joanna: Yes! So when you’re being sarcastic, it should sound like - ‘super’
Gina: Okay, what’s the next word?
Joanna: ‘hej’
Gina: Just like the English “hey”?
Joanna: When it comes to pronunciation - yes. If we talk about spelling - no.
Gina: What is different?
Joanna: If in Polish we use some foreign words, some of these sounds are usually written phonetically. So since the letter “j” is the sound matching the English pronunciation, we replace it with a “y” sound. Just like my name! Joanna becomes Joanna in Polish!
Gina: That’s some useful information. When we can use the Polish “hey”?
Joanna: Just as a way of saying “hi”, but of course only to your friends. And we usually don’t hear adults using that word.
Gina: Good to know. Ok, now onto the grammar.
Gina: In this lesson you’ll learn about the most basic verb - “to be”
Joanna: Yes, we have already mentioned the Polish verb ‘być’...
Gina: ...meaning “to be”...
Joanna: when we learned how to introduce ourselves.
Gina: Now we’ll broaden our knowledge about that verb.
Joanna: In Polish, all verbs are conjugated to one of 8 persons
Gina: You can find the table with conjugation of the Polish verb “to be” in the lesson notes.
Joanna: Make sure that you master the conjugation, because without it, you won’t be able to continue to study Polish
Gina: Let’s tell our listeners how to pronounce every single conjugated form.
Joanna: That’s a very good idea. Listeners, please repeat after me...
Joanna: ‘ja jestem’
Gina: “I am”
Joanna: ‘ty jesteś’
Gina: (pause) “you are”
Joanna: ‘on jest’
Gina: (pause) “he is”
Joanna: ‘ona jest’
Gina: (pause) “she is”
Joanna: ‘ono jest’
Gina: (pause) “it is”
Joanna: ‘my jesteśmy’
Gina: (pause) “we are”
Joanna: ‘wy jesteście’
Gina: (pause) “you are” (plural)
Joanna ‘oni są’
Gina: (pause) “they are”
Gina: (pause) Great job everybody!
Joanna: Do you remember how to introduce yourself?
Gina: Oh no! I forgot!
Joanna: Well, I hope our listeners are better students than you, Gina!
Gina: (laughs) So, for all those people who forgot, Joanna will say it now...
Joanna: ‘Jestem Joanna’
Gina: So the first word is the verb “to be”, followed by your name
Joanna: Exactly. In Polish, we usually skip the personal pronoun, so instead of saying ‘ja jestem Joanna’, we just say ‘jestem Joanna’
Gina: In the dialogue, Gosia and Alex talked about where they’re from. How do we ask that question in Polish?
Joanna: ‘skąd jesteś?’
Gina: “where are you from?”
Joanna: ‘skąd’ means “where.. from”, and then we have the 2nd person singular form of the verb “to be” - ‘jesteś’
Gina: To answer, we just start off with the verb “to be” in the first person singular, and then give the name of the country?
Joanna: Almost right! Before the name of the country, we need to use the preposition ‘z’, which means “from”
Gina: Let’s hear an example.
Joanna: Ok. ‘Jestem z Polski’
Gina: meaning “I’m from Poland”
Joanna: In the dialogue Alex said - ‘Jestem z Australii’
Gina: “I’m from Australia”
Joanna: Listeners, be sure to check the lesson notes, because you will find a lot more information about how to ask and answer the question about your country of origin.


Gina: And that’s all for this lesson! We hope you enjoyed it. Thanks for listening, and we’ll see you next time!
Joanna: Papa.
Gina: Bye!