2. The best way to study
These advice is product of my experience, as much due to as how I learned Esperanto, or all the times I was present at courses, or by listening from other Esperantists telling how they learned our language.
Throughout many years, I was present at classes where the instructor spoke mainly in Spanish, or mainly in English, and a few classes where the only language was Esperanto.
Don't believe that speaking only in Esperanto is counter-productive: When I arrived at New York City, I was able to read and understand anything in English, but I still needed to learn to listen and to talk in English. The first impression... seemed a little amazing that the professor only spoke in English, and nothing of Spanish... But it was enough a glance to my companions, to understand that the professor could not teach in the language of his students, because we were from many different countries and for that reason we spoke diverse languages.
In international Esperanto conventions, also happens that in the courses for beginners the students speak diverse languages and it is necessary to give the courses in Esperanto. But the intermediate or advanced courses are always in Esperanto.
Many times I have seen comments, mainly in Internet, from newcomers to Esperanto eager to talk about Esperanto and its greatness. I have not seen everybody trying to learn Esperanto .
My advice to all beginners: First learn Esperanto. Then, using Esperanto, you can learn about Esperanto history, and all the things that you can attain using Esperanto, and can communicate with other Esperanto speakers in other parts of the world. You can also read Esperanto literature.
Studying Esperanto during 30 - 50 hours, should be enough to understand the Esperanto structure and read almost anything with some help from the dictionary. It is better to start with readings or books written specially for beginners.
How to study
1. Study a basic course.
One of the best interactive course available in more than 20 language is
"Kurso de Esperanto" de Karlo Pereira.
In this page you will find some courses.
Due to its easiness and the direct relationship between the spoken and the written language, it is possible to learn Esperanto just by reading it. That is the way I learned it several decades ago. Today you also have the advantage of being able to listen to the sound of Esperanto.
Do not loose time taking care of too many details. If you thing that something you don't understand, don't worry, just keep going ahead. Later, reading or listening to Esperanto you will get used to it, and will understand things which seem difficult in the beginning.
The answers to most of the student questions, will be found in the following lessons. It is better not to ask "How do you say (English sentence) in Esperanto." You will better profit you time following the lessons structure. After finishing the advanced course you will know how to say most of the common sentences from other languages.
Not all the expressions from one language have direct translation into other languages. Every language has expressions impossible to translate ... but you will always find other sentences that you can use in similar circumstances.
Many times, direct translations from one language to another, result in expressions that offend the listening party.
2. While learning a basic course, you should listen to Esperanto as much as possible. In the beginning you will not understand anything. Don't worry. Just keep listening and keep studying. It is better to listen many times to the same segment. If possible, you should also repeat what you are hearing, even if you don't understand what you say.
Listening to the language gets the ear used to its sound and the brain used to its structure. (This is valid for any language) You may listen many times the first chapters from the book "Gerda Malaperis" that you will find on the page already mentioned.
Even if you aren't ready to do the following step, please read it now, because it has explanations about this book.
3. Study an intermediate course.
For an intermediate course, I recommend "La Gerda Kurso". You will find it on the mentioned page. This course is all in Esperanto, with the help of a vocabulary Esperanto - English. The book first chapter assume that the student already knows about 500 - 700 roots, generally learned in any basic course. In each of the 25 chapters appear 30 - 50 new words. Only these new words are in the vocabulary for each lesson. There you will find not only the words, but some grammar and some translations.
I recommend to all beginners first finish a basic course. Later study "La Gerda Kurso" and listen many times to the whole text. You will need 91 minute to listen to the whole book. After that, do all the research you want in Esperanto.
The basic course shouldn't take more than 20 - 25 hours. The intermediate course should take about the same.
4. Advanced courses.
There are many courses in different countries. Some of those courses are based on the book "Vojaĝo en Esperanto-lando", Perfektiga kurso de Esperanto kaj Gvidlibro pri la Esperanta kulturo,
written by Boris Kolker.
Read chapters 1, 2, 3, and 7. After reading this page, click the word "Lecionoj" on the upper right, and choose one of them.
Links to other web pages:1. To learn Esperanto
2. The best way to study
3. What is Esperanto
4. Esperanto isn't that easy
Updated by Enrique, February 11 2007
2. The best way