Discussion in 'Japan Forum: Living there or planning a visit.' started by ASSEMbler, Oct 18, 2013.
You might be right. If that helps you, why not?
all 4 videos of this channel are gold
I started learning Japanese in April this year, I've been going to 1½ hour lessons once a week at a language school with a native Japanese teacher. I'm at the point of engaging in some basic conversation, asking for directions, etc., and fluently reading/writing in kana.
The course terms at this language school are 12 classes (roughly 3 months), and it uses the book 'Japanese for Busy People' I, II, III. First few terms of the course (first year and something) are with 'Japanese for Busy People I' - the first term is dictated in romaji, but after that we switch to using the Kana version of the books.
As @Punch said, study Kana, from day one if possible, and stay as little as possible with romaji. It's not that hard and the resource shared: japanese-lesson.com is great for this. Take a go at Hiragana first, and then go for Katakana. Download the practice sheets and do it hundreds of times.
Some good resources that have worked for me:
Japanese for Busy People I (Kana Version)
Practice Sheets: http://japanese-lesson.com/
Flashcards (web): http://realkana.com/
Flashcards (mobile app): Get Kana (flashcards with suggestions in romaji/phonetics)
Flashcards + vocabulary (mobile app): Kana Town (flashcards without suggestions, keeps track of progress, and also lets you practice vocabulary with packs of words using SRS system, really good!!)
Reading (web): NHK news web EASY イーシー (news website from NHK written in 'simple' Japanese; short, concise news with furigana - small kana on top of the kanji - and also with audio guide).
Translation (web): rikaikun (Chrome/Firefox add-on - translate Japanese words by hovering; good combination with the website above)
Hope this helps!
I am playing this app called Kana Legends to learn hiragana and katakana: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kana-legends/id1042246514?mt=8
Just to throw in a couple of thoughts...
Pimsleur works, but you have to keep at it and go back and review. I found that if you start off with the Mischel Thomas method first, it clears up a lot of the things that Pimsleur forgets to tell you. Even though Rosetta Stone is not as great as the commercials make them out to be, I still plan on buying it, as 129 for any benefit is not a bad thing.
Beyond that, make sure to be taking care of your Hiragana and Katakana at the same time and once mastered, learning your Kanji.
This being said, 2 years in (I live in America, with no one to speak with...), I still have a long way to go.
One day: http://osnet.mangaindia.in/tomaya-the-old-japanese-inn-that-only-accepts-reservations-by-post/
An update to my last post, I ended up buying Rosetta Stone (not the subscription) for IOS. Knowing of and using the the other tools, I would be woefully unprepared if I only used Rosetta Stone. Still though, it has been helpful in it's own way.
I have also been using the Kanji Study app for Androind, and that thing is awesome!
I have thrown into the mix Duolingo for good measure, and (if you know where the faults are) it has been helpful as well.
I am looking forward to trying to take my N5's next summer, though I hope I can pass using only self study methods.
I've been trying lo learn japanese for almost a decade, mostly with books and Youtube and never progressed beyond very basic level. I started Pimsleur, and my skills skyrocketed within a month. Listening to lessons in traffic while traveling to work, best use of that wasted time.
Japanesepod101.com is also a great ressource, I use it very often to learn specific things.
I tried one of the Japanesepod101.com courses, but there was way too much English for my liking. Though I did pick up on some grammer points a few words, it just felt as if much stuck.
Kanji is where I always always fall down. And counting systems.
I would seriously welcome any fun suggestions as to how to learn kanji without trying too hard. It's probably one of the most intimidating things I've ever tried to learn.
Japanese Kanji Study for Android...
Oh, and give the guy some money!
Learning Kanji is most easily done if you study them alongside the lectures. Good textbooks teach you 15-30 kanji with every lesson, so you learn new verbs/nouns alongside new kanji and new kanji readings in a context that makes sense, and not just randomly. I am not sure which stage of learning you are currently in, but I would say learning kanji is a good idea to start once you are fairly familiar with basic grammar, vocabulary and all kana.
As for practicing kanji - make your own flashcards (handwritten). The process of creating them alone is going to be really helpful in memorization, so don't skip this step by printing them with a computer. I usually wrote a word in hiragana on one side with translation (in case the hiragana make it ambiguous) so I can look at the flashcard, write my attempt on a practice sheet, and then turn the card around to doublecheck with the kanji. This method has been adopted by most students in my course and those were the ones that scored high at the kanji tests! Hope it works for you too
I do not know if anyone is going to really care, but I figured I might update where I was at before with my study regiment. Mind you, I live in a place where there is almost no local ability to learn Japanese (outside of the local University and Community College, for which I can not make my schedule work).
1. 1/2 hour to an hour with Pimsleur (they have five levels of Japanese now, I am now working through it for the third time). Usually I do this driving to and from work, but on days off, i'll go for a walk when the kids are still asleep. It also helps to break up the monitory with Collins Easy Japanese and Michel Thomas. I tried Berlitz and Japanesepod101, but did not like them too much, too much misunderstanding with the Japanese, and too much English, respectively. If anyone has any other suggestions for a purely audio method, please let me know.
2. At least three sections of Rosetta Stone's Japanese. I know what you are going to say, and if this was the only thing I use, I would be screwed. If you set the speaking difficulty at super difficult, and read as much as you can in Kanji only, it can help. I have started on my third time through with this as well.
3. Duolingo on insane mode. Again, if this is your only method, you are screwed. This can help with reading, sentence construction, thinking in Japanese order, etc... I'm almost at a 400 day streak here, and I think I am up to fifty or so contributions that have been accepted as workable translations.
4. Kanji Study for Android. I used to use this only really for character recognition, and thought that writing was unneeded as long as I could recognize the character. I was very wrong... I have found that writing has allowed for quicker recognition when reading and easier construction of sentences. Write, from the beginning, write. When you think you know it, write some more. I do not know how long I have been working with this program, as I changed my phone and lost my streak.
5. Weekdays only: NHK's Easy Japanese news. Every weekday, NHK uploads four to five news articles that have been toned down for easier reading. I will read them all, everyday that they are up. With Furigana and Kanji, I can use both to understand about 80% of the articles without having to look up translations. The current program that I use to do this is TangoRisto.
Oh, and as a bonus, Japanology and Peter Barakan are awesome!
I tend to be working on this anywhere from two to two and a half hours per day. I have noticed over the last year or so, I can now understand a fair number of Namie Amuro's and Koda Kumi's songs, where I have never really understood meaning before. There are also TV shows that I can muddle through and understand most of what is going on (I did this with one of Namie Amuro's final interviews the other day, it takes a lot of concentration though, and I am looking forward to watching the 1993 version of Fireworks soon), though other times, I'm as lost as I was before I started looking into the language. I've also noticed when going out to eat at Japanese restaurants or going to any of the locally produced Japanese Festivals, (before the war Utah had a really active Japanese community, now with rare exceptions the few events there are like going to an anime convention, you know what I mean) I can also understand some of what is being said by native speakers.
Though, the first time that I will be able to make it out to Japan will be at least ten years (I'm going to miss eligibility for the JET program by two years), I am going to keep with it. I realize that fairly soon, I am going to "hit the wall", as through these methods, there will be more advanced features of the language that I will have no way of knowing. If there are any suggestions on how to remedy this, let me know!
None of this is to say I am all that awesome or anything, more just my experiences so someone else in my situation has an easier time starting.
So, we are on Assembler and literally NOBODY talks about video games?
There is Koe, a very nice Kickstarter which could be quite an help for all those struggling: Koe
Besides that, many Japanese games exist on Nintendo (3)DS, especially dictionaries, kanji flash cards, etc. I don't have my list, but you can easily find the titles.
Separate names with a comma.