Start Learning Japanese in the next 30 Seconds with
a Free Lifetime Account

Or sign up using Facebook

More "real" Japanese

Moderators: Moderator Team, Admin Team

jbraswell
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 46
Joined: October 3rd, 2007 11:51 pm

More "real" Japanese

Postby jbraswell » May 3rd, 2009 9:46 pm

I thought about just posting to the recent thread asking for more advanced material, but I decided to make another one since I think my request is a little more specific.

This site is awesome, and I've been happily paying for premium service for a while now. However, I've sort of gotten to the point where the most advanced lessons aren't really what I'm looking for. Sure, they teach me new grammar points, phraseology, and vocabulary, but they don't really stress my ear for Japanese. What I mean is, the difference between "real" Japanese and the upper intermediate lessons is still giant. I do very well with the lessons, but if I listen to, for example, an unscripted interview or variety show off of YouTube, I get my ass kicked. Accordingly, I've started just paying companies in Japan to transcribe segments like that.

What are the chances that you could introduce a lesson series that really was all unscripted, natural Japanese? Everything about the lesson structure could be exactly the same, except instead of scripted lesson material, you guys could bring a dictaphone to the JPod01 after work drinking parties or something. Or just ask questions to random Japanese people at the train station or something.

I'd honestly double my monthly payment for something like this.

untmdsprt
Expert on Something
Posts: 774
Joined: May 14th, 2006 10:06 pm

Postby untmdsprt » May 4th, 2009 2:24 am

That sounds like a great idea to listen to everyday people talk. It would certainly help with your comprehension, and seeing if you can listen at a natural speed.

I've been watching children's shows, dramas, the news, etc. and I can pick out bits and pieces. The great thing is I get to hear at a natural speed. While I don't understand everything, my ears are getting accustomed to the way people speak.

Learn JapanesePod101.com in the Fastest, Easiest and Most Fun Way. Get Your FREE Lifetime Account in 7 Seconds!
Javizy
Expert on Something
Posts: 1165
Joined: February 10th, 2007 2:41 pm

Postby Javizy » May 4th, 2009 7:48 pm

It's an interesting idea, but I can't see it being much more than a novelty on this website. You can't expect them to transcribe anything of great length, and what else is it going to teach you? You can gain massive amounts of exposure to everyday Japanese through mediums like those untmdsprt mentioned. There are plenty of bantery podcasts aimed at natives (try switching to the Japanese iTunes store), and you can watch TV shows on websites like veoh and you Tube, or certain channels through live streaming with programs like Livestation. You can also add your own conversations on Skype, to truly test your comprehension in real time. Since you have to respond, everything they say is like a little listening comprehension test.

jbraswell
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 46
Joined: October 3rd, 2007 11:51 pm

Postby jbraswell » May 4th, 2009 8:57 pm

Javizy wrote:It's an interesting idea, but I can't see it being much more than a novelty on this website. You can't expect them to transcribe anything of great length, and what else is it going to teach you? You can gain massive amounts of exposure to everyday Japanese through mediums like those untmdsprt mentioned. There are plenty of bantery podcasts aimed at natives (try switching to the Japanese iTunes store), and you can watch TV shows on websites like veoh and you Tube, or certain channels through live streaming with programs like Livestation. You can also add your own conversations on Skype, to truly test your comprehension in real time. Since you have to respond, everything they say is like a little listening comprehension test.


Hmm, I'm not sure I agree. Why can't they transcribe anything of meaningful length? It recently cost me $100 to get a 26-minute segment transcribed, and it took 2-3 days. So, I can't imagine it would difficult to do a five- or ten-minute conversation at their current rate of one "advanced" lesson per week.

And yes, given that I'm getting such things transcribed, I'm of course taking advantage of all kind of "real" Japanese resources, but it's a huge benefit to have usage notes, transcriptions, line-by-line audio, etc. for the material as well. (After all, if these things are useful for "scripted" Japanese, why would you think them less useful for real Japanese? If anything, they're far, far more useful.)

Basically, I'm just suggesting a way for JPod to stay relevant for me. As it stands, I still pay for premium service primarily out of habit and what I suppose is some sense of appreciation for providing a nice service that I used for a while. However, honestly, I haven't actually used the site for months.

Of course, I realize that most of JPod's business comes from the beginner side of the spectrum. So, I certainly understand if they just don't think it economically feasible to cater to more advanced learners. However, since I have heard this same complaint from other people in past, I thought it might be worth voicing.

Javizy
Expert on Something
Posts: 1165
Joined: February 10th, 2007 2:41 pm

Postby Javizy » May 4th, 2009 9:45 pm

jbraswell wrote:Hmm, I'm not sure I agree. Why can't they transcribe anything of meaningful length? It recently cost me $100 to get a 26-minute segment transcribed, and it took 2-3 days. So, I can't imagine it would difficult to do a five- or ten-minute conversation at their current rate of one "advanced" lesson per week.

And yes, given that I'm getting such things transcribed, I'm of course taking advantage of all kind of "real" Japanese resources, but it's a huge benefit to have usage notes, transcriptions, line-by-line audio, etc. for the material as well. (After all, if these things are useful for "scripted" Japanese, why would you think them less useful for real Japanese? If anything, they're far, far more useful.)

How do the transcriptions help in terms of studying? After you get to the stage where you can understand spoken Japanese, you just need to carry on learning new vocabulary and grammar until there's nothing left to catch you out. Most of the time, when I have trouble with the JPod dialogue, I can understand it by the end of the lesson because they've covered everything I didn't know, and it's short enough to be digested and reviewed efficiently.

I'm guessing you're pretty much set in your study methods though, so I'd suggest something like the Death Note manga, which has an anime series that follows it almost word-for-word. There seem to be a number of manga series like this, so it might be worth looking into. I used to try to absorb it all, as well, but I found it very boring going over it again and again, and ended up remembering very little for all the effort, since it was impractical to review, which was very frustrating. Since I've been using Anki to review sentences, I find myself making comparatively rapid progress, and the exposure and speaking practice are a lot of fun and help my listening comprehension by the day.

jbraswell
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 46
Joined: October 3rd, 2007 11:51 pm

Postby jbraswell » May 5th, 2009 1:14 pm

Well, the thing is, I can't really understand most spoken Japanese. I *can* understand most JPod Japanese. :)

For me, the transcriptions do a few things. First, I can easily see when my misunderstanding stems from a vocabulary deficit, a difficult sentence structure, or a "weak" ear for Japanese. Second, when my ear is the problem, I really think it helps train it to see what was actually said. (Oh, that was a しき, not a じき.) Third, when I see weird usages or contractions, it makes it easy to ask people about it, like my Japanese tutor.

And I'm not being lazy...I'm really a studying fiend. I meet with a tutor twice a week (normally three times a week, but I'm finishing up a degree right now while working), I'm working through a Manga series simultaneously with the Anime (Maison Ikkoku), I study the aforementioned transcriptions, I'm working through a really good book that does this exact sort of thing (http://www.amazon.com/Living-Japanese-D ... 615&sr=8-1), and almost all of that material finds its way into my Anki deck.

So, yeah, I do all of that, much like you suggest...but none of it involves JPod anymore. And like I said, if I've moved out of their economic focus, I understand. I just think this site is a great idea, and I sort of wanted it to stay relevant for me.

Javizy wrote:How do the transcriptions help in terms of studying? After you get to the stage where you can understand spoken Japanese, you just need to carry on learning new vocabulary and grammar until there's nothing left to catch you out. Most of the time, when I have trouble with the JPod dialogue, I can understand it by the end of the lesson because they've covered everything I didn't know, and it's short enough to be digested and reviewed efficiently.

I'm guessing you're pretty much set in your study methods though, so I'd suggest something like the Death Note manga, which has an anime series that follows it almost word-for-word. There seem to be a number of manga series like this, so it might be worth looking into. I used to try to absorb it all, as well, but I found it very boring going over it again and again, and ended up remembering very little for all the effort, since it was impractical to review, which was very frustrating. Since I've been using Anki to review sentences, I find myself making comparatively rapid progress, and the exposure and speaking practice are a lot of fun and help my listening comprehension by the day.
:)

shimewaza
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 18
Joined: September 26th, 2009 10:05 pm

Postby shimewaza » October 8th, 2009 1:52 pm

jbraswell, I feel your pain :wink:

I posted this on the "advanced lessons" thread, but in case you have not run across it yet, you might want to check out this website:
http://www.voiceblog.jp/japaneselistening/

Sounds like it might have exactly what you are looking for.
And sounds like what you are looking for is exactly what I'm asking for on the abovementioned thread :mrgreen:

Yamanchu
Expert on Something
Posts: 108
Joined: April 17th, 2007 11:06 pm

Postby Yamanchu » October 8th, 2009 8:55 pm

Jbraswell, I agree with your post. It's a nice idea to help further our study of Japanese. I recently saw the Japanese movie 'Always' which is fairly simple to follow and uses quite straightforward Japanese, but I still find it difficult to pick up on some of the vocab which I know quite well. Some 'natural' Japanese would be a great idea.

shimewaza, thanks for the link! Some more material I can add to my arsensal!

jbraswell
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 46
Joined: October 3rd, 2007 11:51 pm

Postby jbraswell » October 9th, 2009 2:26 am

Thanks for the link. This seems like a great site. I'll check it out.

'Always' is a great movie that I recently watched as well. I picked up the Japanese version and went through all the subtitles. There was around 100 words I didn't know, and some of the Aomori-ben threw me off a bit, but overall it wasn't bad.

mieth
Expert on Something
Posts: 147
Joined: June 7th, 2007 7:55 pm

Postby mieth » October 9th, 2009 3:02 pm

Hey jbraswell, I read that you paid to have transcripts made. I also did the same thing. I think I may have about 40 minutes or so. Wanna exchange ? mostly fairly short 3-6 minute discovery channel like documentary pieces. Lemme know.

caroleking
New in Town
Posts: 7
Joined: July 10th, 2006 9:49 pm

More "real' Japanese

Postby caroleking » October 9th, 2009 7:22 pm

Yes to jbraswell. I would also like JPod to have some lessons with exerpts of Japanese TV drama or JPod drama or some Japanese TV commercials or something with regular Japanese language spoken, i.e. rapid speach with idioms and slang. I can also understand nearly all of JPod lessons, but cannot understand regular Japanese TV, radio or a lot of typical casual conversation. And, yes, lessons translating TV shows would be helpful as the phrases and slang would likely come up again and again in typical conversation. Watching TV or a movie with the English translation is not nearly as helpfu as having both languages translated.

jbraswell
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 46
Joined: October 3rd, 2007 11:51 pm

Postby jbraswell » October 20th, 2009 4:56 am

shimewaza, thanks for that link. That site's recordings are great. The material isn't arranged in the best way possible, but that's fine. If JPod101 offered something like this, I'd instantly become a paying member again.

mieth, sure, I'll send you a message when I get back home.

I'm stocking up on used DVDs with Japanese subtitles here in Japan!

jbraswell
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 46
Joined: October 3rd, 2007 11:51 pm

Postby jbraswell » October 24th, 2009 1:36 pm

After two years of studying Japanese, I just got back from my first trip to Japan. To put it briefly, it was awesome, and I can't wait to go back.

Anyway, to further the interests expressed in this thread, I thought I'd offer to send out one of the transcriptions I'd bought from this company http://www.brainwoods.com/e/

If anybody wants the full transcript to the Shin Doumoto Kyoudai episode with Utada Hikaru as guest, just put your email here. The video is pretty easy to download from various places on the web. The script is a 13-page Word doc.

Return to “Japanese Lesson Suggestions”