"I'm finding language partners" is a very common mistake of English learners, when they actually mean "I'm looking for language partners". And I'm very much interested in finding out, where this mistake comes from.
Are there languages where „finding“ and „searching“ are the same?
In Chinese "to look for" would be 找 (zhao) and "to find" 找到 (zhaodao), so there is still some kind of distinction because 到marks the completion of the searching process.
I found the Tagalog word maghanap that could mean both to search and to find (can someone confirm it?). Is there no distinction between those two actions in Tagalog (or other languages) or is this just a case of bad dictionaries?
Thanks to @Phil and @Su. Ki. for responding to the last question you asked me, Miriam, about studying v. learning Spanish. It makes sense to me that you would choose to say you're learning Spanish. In my personal idiolect, nonetheless, even though I am not studying Italian intently, I don't feel comfortable saying that I'm learning Italian; to me that suggests something is actually sinking in, that something has actually been learned (learnt?). Maybe the most accurate way for me to express that would be to say I'm trying to learn Italian. Am I learning? That would be for an Italian to judge.
Actually, it just occurred to me that this my issue with using learning to describe my interaction with Italian might be related to Antonio's comment about why you wouldn't use gerund form of encontrar in Spanish. It has something to do with the completion of an act. In my mind, at least.
Edit to add: Can someone please help me understand what was so offensive about this comment that it has motivated 3 people to downvote it in the course of half an hour? Thanks. I hope it isn't too late for me to learn anything.
Phil said: I think in British English they say “Todd is reading Basket Weaving” (but I’m not sure).
No, not really. This use of 'read' to refer to a degree subject is formal and outdated. You'll see it biographies referring back to before the mid-twentieth century, for example, 'Major Snodgrass-Tompkins read classics at Cambridge from 1921 to 1924". It would sound very odd to use 'read' in this sense nowadays.
In fact, in a British university context in modern English, the usual verb in conversation is just 'do'. "What did you do at university?" "I did geography at Manchester" "I'm going to do law at St Andrews" or "I did basket weaving at Kings then switched to macrame".
You could use 'study xx at university', but in everyday conversation this seems to be a case of stating the bloomin' obvious: just as a native speaker would most likely say "I had pasta for lunch", rather than "I ate pasta for lunch" ( what else would you do with it??). Where we can, we use the simplest verb possible.
Oh, learning just tefers to the intent? That's interesting. I'm very hesitant to say "I'm studying a language" because it's a false friend with German. In German "to study" means "to study at university level". I studied Japanese and Chinese as one was my major and the other was my minor at university. Other languages I only learnt. Well, that's at least how I would say it in German. And whenever a German learner says in German that they're "studying German", I correct them unless they're majoring in German studies.