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EVENTS RECOMMENDED BY KLUB DIALOGU

You probably noticed that the first week of May in Poland was a loooong weekend.

What is the May 3 Constitution Day?

The day of May 3 is ‘Constitution Day’ in Poland, commemorating the adoption of the Constitution on May 3, 1791. It was the first Constitution to be passed in Europe and the second in the world (after the US Constitution passed in 1787). This event is considered to be one of the most important in the history of Poland. It had its further consequences… The adoption of this highest legal act provoked hostility of the Russian Empire, which in 1793 and 1795, together with Austria and Prussia, completely annexed Poland. Poland lost its independence for 123 years, only to regain it after the First World War in 1918.

Why was the Constitution of May 3 created?

The constitution passed on May 3 introduced a number of changes to the Polish system, in particular:

# heredity of the throne, which was to prevent foreign interference in the affairs of the Republic of Poland,

# improved the functioning of the state administration,

# gave new rights to all citizens.

Where is the original May 3 Constitution document?

Three original copies of the Constitution of May 3 are in the Central Archives of Historical Records in Warsaw.

And what does the Constitution of May 3 mean for us today?

In today’s Poland, May 3 is a day off, and people celebrate by participating in parades, concerts, and public appearances. The Constitution of May 3, although it was only in force for a year at the time, gave Poland an impulse to adopt a modern Constitution on April 2, 1997, which is still in force today.

In KLUB DIALOGU Polish Language School we teach  not only the Polish language, but also share our culture, tradition and lifestyle with students. You too – are very welcome to our School :)!

nauka-polskiego

FROM A0 TO THE B1 CERTIFICATE EXAM IN POLISH AS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE. HOW IT’S POSSIBLE? An interview with our real Chinese student.

Zeming (he likes it when he is called Zeminek, i.e. using the Polish diminutive form) is the first student from China who started learning Polish from scratch at our KLUB DIALOGU school. After less than 5 years, in March 2022, he took the State Certificate Examination at B1 level. Students, especially from non-Slavic-speaking countries who take up this considerable challenge, know that it is a great achievement! Congratulations! 😊

That is why we asked ‘Zeminek’ for a short interview about his way through this ‘silk road’!

Hi Zeminek, thank you for agreeing to talk about your ‘passion’ for the Polish language, all the more that all your Polish as a foreign language learning from A0 to the B1 exam took place at the KLUB DIALOGU School 😊. You give hope and faith to our other students that it is possible! So tell me:

Are you a real Chinese guy? How old are you?

Ha, ha – oh yeah! I am a real Chinese guy! I was born in Shanghai, China, and am now 30 years old.

When did you come to Poland and how did your adventure with the Polish language begin?

On the very first day, when I landed in Poland, in October 2017, I thought that it would be worth starting to learn the native language. Different continent, different country, different people, and different letters! Yes, I absolutely had to study it! So I was just surfing the Internet when I found the Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU. It immediately caught my attention because it stood out among other offers. I thought it was a good choice. I didn’t hesitate for long and came straight to the school office. And here I am! ‘I grew’ with you for 5 years! 😊

It’s wonderful that you are with us! So tell me which elements of the Polish language were the most problematic to learn?

Grammar! Horror, massacre! And including: any order of words in the sentence, conjugation and declension, gender: masculine, feminine and neutral and their inflection!, personal pronouns!!, inflection of numerals!!!, oh my God, Vocative?!!!! – nooo – almost everything. And you know how Poles talk quickly …

Even so, Poles speak slower than Italians! 😊 Well, we have to try harder! How much is Chinese different from Polish?

Very! I don’t even know where to start? Of course, you can see the difference in the alphabet at first glance 😉. And then it only gets worse. The Chinese language has practically no grammar, maybe to a small extent, while the grammar of the Polish language is crucial in communication. For example, nouns in Chinese have virtually no inflection. There are no coincidences or even plural – just add a number and you will know what amount you are talking about. Verbs are also not inflected, neither by persons nor by tenses. The appropriate time is indicated in a sentence by time factors such as “yesterday” and “tomorrow”. Also, the counting system in Chinese is slightly different than in Polish. And each part of a sentence has a specific, fixed place in the pattern. Remembering the order guarantees the grammatical correctness of the statement.

Yeah. Chinese seems to be much easier than Polish, although I don’t know if I could remember Chinese characters… And what surprised you the most about Poland and Poles, when you came to our country for the first time?

Many things, but I think the most important are: strong, good beer, generally good looking people, both women and men (ha, ha), that people in Poland are really nice (so far I have not experienced any discrimination), the fact that there are so many beautiful parks here in Warsaw and around it, and of course FLACZKI, which I really like 😊

Could you list 5 cultural/lifestyle differences between Poles and the Chinese?

Hard to say. China is changing dynamically, and cultures and lifestyles even differ between regions in China. One thing is obvious – we eat more rice & pasta than bread & potatoes. But seriously, what I noticed is that the Chinese are a collective society, while the Poles are individualists. This can be seen, inter alia, in discussions during which each Pole must have his own separate opinion. In China, too, not everything needs to be said straightforwardly; people interpret the context more, while in Poland rules and principles dominate. For example: ‘No’ means refusing, and guests don’t refuse. That’s why the Chinese will always say yes. If ‘yes’ meant true ‘yes’ then it’s okay. However, if ‘yes’ means ‘no’, the Chinese will simply not answer our phone, or otherwise signal his different opinion.

The intricacies of communication… 😊 Finally, 2 more questions: Was the State Examination of Polish as a Foreign Language for the B1 Certificate difficult for you? Did something surprise you? Were you very stressed?

Well … I’m not overly happy with the ‘writing’ part. My teacher repeatedly told me to practice writing under time pressure, but I was sure that I would be fine. During the exam, however, it turned out that the time was inexorable and I finished my essay quite awkwardly at the last minute. Luckily, the ‘reading’ and ‘listening’ parts turned out to be easier than I expected. Maybe because my teacher gave me more difficult examples during the Polish language lessons during the B1 exam preparation course. I think that in the end, the Polish as a foreign language exam went better than I expected. It is thanks to my teacher Sandra and the KLUB DIALOGU School, which showed great patience with me and kept my motivation, especially when I was returning to China for a long time.

Yes, of course I was stressing out a lot!

And the last question: Are you going to stay longer in Poland now?

Of course, I intend to stay in Poland. I have no plans neither to leave Poland to another country, nor go back to China. I started my economic studies here at the University of Warsaw, but during the pandemic I had to quit. Now I work in the ‘game & nft’ industry and although it’s still working from home, I like it.

Thank you very much, Zeminek, and good luck! See you at the Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU, because you still have an exam at the B2 and C1 levels 😊
Dorota Maszkiewicz, Managing Director

CULTURE AND LIFESTYLE IN POLAND. Trivia.

This is a corner for those who like to know what is going on around them. And it is happening! Warsaw is teeming with life! You probably still remember that extraordinary night on January 31st? And red hearts distributed in the street. It was played by the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity (WOŚP). For 30 years in a row, this charitable foundation, created by an exceptional man – Jurek Owsiak, collects funds for the purchase of medical equipment. During the 30 Final, over PLN 1.6 billion was raised. The Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity bought and handed over 66,150 devices to health care facilities all over Poland. It is estimated that every fifth equipment in hospitals comes from the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity. According to public opinion polls, the foundation has been the most trusted by charity organisations for many years. There is none like it in the world!

Interestingly? It is from Jurek Owsiak that phrases that have become a permanent part of the Polish dictionary: ‘sie ma’ (hi), ‘Róbta co chceta’ (do what you wish), ‘gramy do końca świata i jeden dzień dłużej’ (‘we play until the end of the world and one day longer’).

What else?

Just in few days, the 24th February, there will be FAT THURSDAY (TŁUSTY CZWARTEK in Polish). It is a traditional Catholic Christian feast marking the last Thursday before Lent, thus the beginning of fasting before Easter. In Poland, we celebrate this day by eating… doughnuts! Doughnuts are yeast cakes traditionally filled with rose or another sweet flavoured jam.

The tradition of eating doughnuts on Fat Thursday in Poland goes back to the 17th century. This day precedes Ash Wednesday, which begins the 40 days fast.

Among bakers and confectioners, Fat Thursday is regarded as one of the busiest days of the year, with many cake shops open from the early hours of the morning after a marathon night of frying doughnuts. Bon Appetit!!

For some visitors from other countries, Poland seems to be a very cold country. They sometimes say it’s as cold in here as in Antarctica. Meanwhile, the temperature differences between the two places are huge! 😊 The average winter temperature in Antarctica is -44˚C, yet in Poland only -0.4˚C.

Warsaw is impressive during the winter season. Ice rinks, winter fairs, walks in the snow, mulled wine in a charming restaurant, or light shows, can enchant everyone. Winter in Warsaw cannot be boring! Check the details below.

1. Relax in a sauna on the Vistula River

The Floating Sauna on the Vistula River is a unique attraction! This unique facility began operating in November 2021 and is open from 6am until midnight. It’s the longest open sauna in Warsaw. What’s the best part? You can use the sauna for free, but only at certain times, and rent it exclusively! https://saunawisla.pl/

2. Fun at the ice rink

In winter, public ice rinks are open in various parts of Warsaw, where you can easily skate: alone, with your family, or with a larger group of friends. It is a great form of outdoor activity. Check which place is closest to you: an ice rink in the Bródnowski Park, an ice rink in Galeria Młociny, an ice rink in the area of ​​Centrum Praskie Koneser, or the largest ice rink, the Stegny Skating Rink. You can really develop high speeds at Stegny!

3. Relaxation in the Elektra Reading Room

A “temple of analogue culture” was established in Śródmieście. An unusual reading room where you can read a book, listen to a vinyl record, and drink coffee. An ideal place for autumn and winter evenings. https://www.facebook.com/CzytelniaElektra/

4. Madness on Górka Szczęśliwicka

Górka Szczęśliwicka is the only place in Warsaw where you can try your hand at skiing. There is even a ski lift here! Next to the ski facility, on smaller hills, the residents of Warsaw, with the right amount of snow, can slide down sledges. Arrange to go with your friends and let loose! https://gorka-szczesliwicka-cennik.com/

5. Visit a luminous land: the Royal Garden of Light

The Royal Garden of Light in Wilanów is the favourite fall-winter exhibition of Warsaw residents, which will be open only until February 27, 2022. After dark, visitors to the palace are led by a 75-metre luminous tunnel in which classical music plays overhead. After the tunnel, you discover a beautiful, colourful and full of light – King’s Winter Garden… https://www.wilanow-palac.pl/royal_garden_of_light_1.html

The new year means new opportunities, but first we would like to tell you what happened in 2021!

Did you know that despite the ongoing pandemic in 2021, the Polish Language School for Foreigners KLUB DIALOGU opened 260 new Polish language courses, of which 137 were group courses, and 123 were individual courses?! Thanks to the commitment as well as the satisfaction of our students, 573 new people enrolled in 2021, and Polish learning was continued by 455 KD students! These are impressive numbers that we are very proud of! Of course, students also left our school for various reasons (122), mainly due to the unstable pandemic situation (41%), returning to their home country (36%), or for other reasons (23%).

A great achievement of the KLUB DIALOGU School in 2021 was its full involvement in the organisation of the State Certificate Examination in Polish as a Foreign Language at B1 level. A total of 150 candidates took part in the 4 scheduled examination sessions. 121 people participated in the preparation courses for this exam. 139 people obtained a positive result after the exam!

In addition, throughout 2021, we organised 14 events, the most of which being during the summer holidays (7). The Film Friday event (5), which is a cyclical screening of Polish films with English subtitles, was a huge success.

But our success would not be possible without you, our students! Thank you for being with us!

Your activity encourages us to continue to work and make sure that our Polish lessons meet your expectations, are interesting, and even more effective.

From the beginning of the year, we have prepared a new course schedule for each level. Just take our online test or come to our school and talk to a teacher to find the right Polish course for you. We offer Polish language courses in the form of group, individual, school, hybrid and online settings. If you are interested in obtaining a student visa – we have the ‘One Year Program’ for you, and if you would like to intensify your Polish learning – ask us about the ’30 days Around Polish’ program. In 2022, there will also be 4 more sessions of the State Examination for the B1 Certificate. The new year brings new opportunities. Don’t hesitate! Join us!

Join us >>

The first Polish film dates back to 1908, but Polish cinema really started to come to life in the late 1950s. Since then, and especially in the last decade, the Polish film industry has really flourished, having been nominated for and receiving prestigious awards.

One of the most important names associated with contemporary Polish cinema is Paweł Pawlikowski. Paweł Pawlikowski began his career in the West of Europe as a documentary film maker for the BBC. He made his debut in the film “Last resort” in 2000. His later films are “Summer of Love” from 2004 and “Woman of the Fifth District”.

In 2013, he returned to Poland to make a film called “Ida” about the turbulent fate of a nun in a Catholic order. The picture has been amazingly successful around the world and has been showered with many awards – including the first Oscar for Polish cinema.

Pawlikowski’s next film, which brought him an Oscar nomination in the category ‘foreign language film’ and ‘directing’ is Cold War from 2018.  It is a romantic and sad story of impossible love – the young dancer Zula and pianist Wiktor against the background of the Cold War waged between the countries of Western Europe and the Communist Bloc.

KLUB DIALOGU Polish Language School for Foreigners organised watching the film “Cold War” as part of its original program “Meetings with Culture” to watch a film in Polish with English subtitles with its foreign language students.  After the film, there was a discussion during which everyone could share their impressions and feelings, and as a consequence better understand Polish culture and language.

Another name in Polish cinema worth mentioning is Wojciech Smarzowski. He is considered to be the most interesting Polish filmmaker at present. The movie “The Wedding” in 2004 immediately attracted the attention of critics. Another film “Bad House” (2009) meant that he began to be seen as a mature artist with a perfect workshop and his own unique style. Smarzowski’s subsequent films consistently depict a world full of pathology, corruption, cruelty and degeneration. These quite difficult to perceive images have gained huge crowds of admirers and critical acclaim. Worth recommended are: “Rose” (2011), “Drogówka” (2012), “Pod Mocnym Aniołem” (2014), “Volhynia” (2016) and “Clergy ” (2018).

Why is Polish cinema so interesting and why does it bring such international recognition? Polish films are often very picturesque, whether in colour or completely black and white, with beautiful cinematography as well as well-picked soundtracks which massively complement the film itself. These aspects, as well as the terrific actors and actresses, really pull the films together into a piece of artwork and create an endearing and emotional experience for the audience.

KLUB DIALOGU Polish Language School has its own list of the most interesting films of contemporary Polish cinema worth watching, for Poles and foreigners alike: It includes: “Day of the Freak” (M. Koterski, 2002), “Edi” (P. Trzaskalski, 2002), “Pręgi” (M. Piekorz, 2004), “Plac Zbawiciel” (K. Krauze, 2006), “Reverse” (B. Lankosz, 2009), “In Darkness” (2012) and “Pokot” (2017)  based on the novel by Nobel Prize winner Olga Tokarczuk – both directed by Agnieszka Holland, “Body / Body” (M. Szumowska, 2015), “Gods” (2014) and “Best” (2017) – both by Łukasz Palkowski, “Last Family” (J. Matuszyński, 2016), “Silent Night” (P. Domalewski, 2017), “Carte Blanche” (J. Lusiński, 2015), “Tower, a bright day” (J. Szelc, 2017) and “Corpus Christi “(2019) by Jan Komasa, nominated for an ‘Oscar’ this year.

Around a year ago, KLUB DIALOGU Polish Language School initiated the event called “Filmowy Piąteczek” (“Friday Film”) which was a monthly occurrence. We set up our own small cinema in the school and played Polish movies with English subtitles and proceeded to discuss the films afterwards together. Our students really enjoy and appreciate these events; it’s the perfect way to practise Polish as well as watch beautiful films and immerse in Polish culture and cinematography!

POLISH FILMS NOMINATED FOR AN ‘OSCAR’:

1963 „Nóż w wodzie” Roman Polański;

1967 „Faraon” Jerzy Kawalerowicz;

1975 “Potop” Jerzy Hoffman;

1976 “Ziemia Obiecana” Andrzej Wajda;

1977 “Noce i Dnie” Jerzy Antczak;

1980 “Panny z Wilka” Andrzej Wajda;

1982 “Człowiek z Żelaza” Andrzej Wajda;

2008 “Katyń” Andrzej Wajda;

2012 “W ciemności” Agnieszka Holland;

2015 “Ida” Paweł Pawlikowski;

2019 “Zimna Wojna” Paweł Pawlikowski;

2020 “Boże Ciało” Jan Komasa.

At KLUB DIALOGU Polish Language School, we specialise in comprehensive and uniquely designed courses that are aimed towards improving our students knowledge in a more targeted and specific way.

One such program we offer is a GRAMMAR PROGRAM, aimed at students at A2 level who wish to focus solely on this difficult aspect of our language. This course is also unique in the fact that some students decide to join it concurrently with their current course in our school.

During all of our lessons, the GRAMMAR COURSE included, we don’t like the idea of ‘dumbing’ down grammar explanations, making everything ‘too simplistic’ or crude, so we make an effort to teach grammar principles in a detailed yet effective and understandable way.

We recently finished a grammar course that consisted of a group of 7 people, all eager to improve their Polish understanding and speaking. In fact, our student Richard, who took part in the course, said that if one decides to take part in such classes, it shows that they are serious about learning the language. Why is that the case? Well, to join such a course is a leap of faith in yourself, as just simply attending class and forgetting about it until the next meeting just doesn’t cut it… As Richard said, “it’s necessary to go home and practise afterwards”. The course itself is a strong foundation to self-learning; he said, however, that without such a course, which is “well-structured and organised”, actually taking that step with Polish grammar is immensely difficult alone. Our classes provided a backbone to all other aspects of Polish language learning.

During the course, there was a situation with a student who just couldn’t grasp the concept of when a noun in the basic form ends with an ‘a’, it’s most likely a feminine word. However, Sandra, our teacher and certified speech therapist, is “infinitely patient”, explaining everything when and where it was necessary, and, in the end, the student understood!
We believe that learning Polish grammar shouldn’t be conducted by the book and in a colourless way. No matter how advanced someone is in the subject, sometimes our grammar is a mammoth task. That’s why there’s always fun to be had and countless laughs during our meetings!

What about from the teachers perspective? They’re interesting lessons to lead, as it’s different type of course than ‘regular’ courses. Each lesson, all were involved with a different grammar case, giving lessons a lot of structure every time. Each meeting also involved parts of theory as well as learning cases in specific situations along with practical tasks which helped students come out of their shells and enjoy the lessons a lot!

Anyone can join such a course. From any background and with any reason to learn Polish. They just have to be prepared to learn intensely, put in work and then see amazing results.

We highly recommend you to visit TEATR NARODOWY (NATIONAL THEATRE), which shows classic Polish romantic dramas with ENGLISH SUBTITLES! It`s an amazing way to practise Polish and immerse in Polish culture and literature.

FREE CONVERSATIONS

EASTER (21 / 22.04) – this is a special time and the most important religious holiday in Poland. It begins with a HOLY WEEK (18 – 20/04) – from MAUNDY THURSDAY, through GOOD FRIDAY, it ends with a HOLY SATURDAY, when Christians celebrate food ceremoniously. People bring ‘święconka’, or baskets, to the church to be blessed, in which there are: hams, sausages, cakes, bread and ‘PISANKI’, or painted eggs.

EASTER SUNDAY (21/04) – On this morning, families sit together at the Easter table. Before meals, they share an egg whilst giving best wishes.

EASTER MONDAY (22/04) – this is the second day of Easter, which is associated with fun and … water! From the early hours of the morning, boys go pouring buckets of water over girls. Do not be surprised when, on this day, you will be accidentally covered with water on the street!

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To bring you closer to our tradition, the Polish Language School for Foreigners, KLUB DIALOGU invites you to free conversation classes at the school.

 FREE CONVERSATIONS,

13th April (Saturday),

 A0 / A1, at 10 – 11.30 AM

A2 / B1, at 11.45 AM – 1.15 PM

During which we will talk about

How we celebrate Easter in Poland and in other countries.

Book your place now! ?

Sign up by sending an email to info@klubdialogu.pl

Summer has already come, and summer courses have taken off. That`s why we decided not to wait any longer and take our students to “Cold War” (“Zimna Wojna”) – Polish film with English subtitles.

“Cold War” portrays the story of the difficult love between two people who cannot live without each other, but at the same time are not able to be together. Their fate takes place in the 1950s and 1960s in communist Poland and the awakening of Europe.

The film is set in black and white, accompanied by a unique soundtrack, which is a combination of Polish folk music with jazz and Parisian songs of the past century.

The main Polish roles are played by leading Polish actors: Tomasz Kot and Joanna Kulig, Borys Szyc and Agata Kulesza.

“Cold War” was awarded for the best director to Paweł Pawlikowski at one of the most important film events in the world – Cannes Film Festival.