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Absolute beginner

Learn more about the community and how they are learning Japanese and about Japan. Do a little listener-to-listener chit chat. Keep it civil, and everything else goes.

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Absolute beginner

Postby draven » September 11th, 2008 12:17 am

I have tried every self teaching Book and Software Programme i can find (including this ) and Still can't get Japanese into my head, can anybody help ?



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Postby Belton » September 11th, 2008 1:33 am

Maybe your expectations are too high.

Something must have stuck surely?

Most books and methods I've seen are generally similar and cover the same topics.
Some are better presented than others.
The one that's right for you is the one you can enjoy and therefore stick with.
I've found everyone's tastes and study methods are different. I'm sure it takes a little bit of exploration to find methods that work well for you.

However to get to "useful" levels with Japanese does take time and effort I found. Months if not years of study. It all depends on what you want or need to achieve with the language.

If self study isn't working for you perhaps you would benefit from attending a class, using a tutor, or group study.

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Re: Absolute beginner

Postby wccrawford » September 11th, 2008 3:04 am

draven wrote:I have tried every self teaching Book and Software Programme i can find (including this ) and Still can't get Japanese into my head, can anybody help ?



Pick an area of study and stick with it, no matter how useless it seems. My personal recommendation is 'reading', and to start with the meanings (not the readings, just the meanings) of the kanji. Once you've got enough raw knowledge there, learning the other stuff becomes a -lot- easier.

Basically, you just need to pick it apart and learn it a little at a time.

I recommend doing fun things in the mean time like watching japanese anime/movies, etc. Even reading english-translated mangas will help as you'll get some of the culture from it, and that's a large part of learning Japanese.

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Postby Bissen » November 7th, 2008 6:34 am

What do you want to focus on first?

All the studying I've done for the past year or so, has been Jpods. I listen to it at work, and that's it. I'm no expert, but I slowly improve.

I've also just in a few days, managed to recognize the hiragana with diphtongs and handakuten and dakuten. I can't recall them and write them myself, but I can read them.

You have to relax - give things time instead of rushing it - then it will seem like it takes much shorter time ;) (There's a saying about that, but I don't remember it in english, lol)

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Postby Taurus » November 7th, 2008 9:21 am

Here's my own recommendation:

First, take a few days/weeks to learn hiragana and katakana, just by writing them out until you can remember what they look like and what they sound like (you can find the stroke order in a lot of textbooks, or online).

Next, buy volume 1 of Minna no Nihongo (volume 1 consists of two books).
Then go through each chapter; for each chapter, learn the vocabulary off by heart, learn the conversation off by heart, read the grammar points and sample sentences, and go through the exercises. It will go in. But you have to be methodical, and you have to learn stuff off by heart, and you have to try to do it regularly, and if you listen to the japanesepod podcasts at the same time it will only help.

If that sounds too boring, you could always try this guy's technique, which is to learn lots of Japanese sentences using spaced repetition software.

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Postby jkid » November 7th, 2008 7:11 pm

I've moved this thread to the Listener's Lounge. This subforum is for Japanese writing practice so I think you'll get more replies having this thread there. :)

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