So is there anyone here studying Japan.

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Unread postby zeldaevolution » January 21st, 2008, 7:46 pm

*Topic Resurrection*

I study Japanese too, I think people who posted at that time learned much in this time now, right?...
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Unread postby AddleBoy » January 22nd, 2008, 2:10 am

Well, currently I'm taking an elementary Japanese class at the University I'm going to. We meet for fifty minutes, three times a week, and I also study some outside of class. I know all of the katakana and a handful of hiragana and zero kanji. I'm learning japanese because I'm planning on going there the summer after the next to study abroad. The other reason is so I can play games that are in Japanese (Like Fate/ Stay Night but the biggest problem for me there is learning enough kanji to understand it).
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Unread postby -[J1N]- » January 22nd, 2008, 4:30 am

From my current situation, it's impossible for me to attend any classes to learn Japanese. The only way I think would be to try and learn it as a course in Uni, or probably one of these educational institutes, which I can't attend at the moment.
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Unread postby Henduluin » January 22nd, 2008, 7:47 am

I started a self-study several weeks ago. So far it's going pretty well, but it's seriously time consuming.

As for my method, I'm following a slightly less hardcore version of "AJATT" since "traditional" methods of learning languages are not my thing. To this day, I still don't know the basic grammar rules for either dutch or english, yet I'd say I'm doing pretty well in both languages, so meh.
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Unread postby Blue Gunner » January 22nd, 2008, 11:39 am

After studying Japanese in high school for five years, I spent last year as an exchange student in western Tokyo and now I'm going to begin my university course, majoring in Japanese. I've no idea how many kanji I can read or how many words I know. I've found it really enjoyable and fun to learn, although I get annoyed with the repetition words, such as ゴロゴロ, I have no memory for what some of them mean and some sound really similar... Good luck to everyone starting, I've found it really rewarding, finding where I want to go through learning Japanese and I've made so many happy memories from my time as an exchange student. Of course, that's not limited only to Japanese, but that's my experience.
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Unread postby Raven » February 7th, 2008, 12:05 am

It has been an on and off process. During Winter Break I got a gigantic amount of Japanese (by my standard) into my head, it was pretty much a 5 weeks of none stop studying. I didn't believe I can remember so many Kanji in a short amount of time. (It moved from 40 to around 100 by now).

School starts 3 weeks ago though, and I barely touched any of it. I don't even have enough to sleep (6 classes, 20 hours part time job per week, and doing house chores). Right now the best I can do is to make sure I won't forgetting stuff. I can get some more in during Spring Break but the next big push probably has to wait until summer.
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Unread postby deathknight » March 21st, 2008, 1:45 am

Hi I got a question on memorizing the Kanji part. One of my the people in my Japanese class told me it may not be all that necessary to get all the kunyomi/onyomi readings of each kanji but considering how JLPT 1 throws it all out at you its almost impossible to not memorize each individual kun/on' reading of the kanji word. I just want to know is this really a case by case, trial and error method of learning each individual kanji compound/combination. I mean even when I did memorize all the on' and kun' readings of a kanji when that kanji is combined or substitued into another kanji the pronunciation and meaning changes dramatically at times. Is there a better way to learn each reading and stick with it because I worry that if I drill all the readings into my head but don't really discern the most common kun/on' reading then when reading Japanese I may have to run my head through each on'/kun' intonation of a kanji especially since I can't really rely on the frequency of the hiragana/katakana grammar rules for on' and kun'yomi.
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Unread postby Undream » March 25th, 2008, 4:48 am

Japanese learning is damned hard.. I have tried two times but cant seem to get past the kanas (i think my memorization method is pretty bad..)

Alsof or those that use Mozilla Firefox (which should be everyone ;)) theres a very good add-on called Rikaichan, useful when you are lost in a page full of japanese characters....and no, im not one of the developrs XD
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Unread postby Henduluin » April 3rd, 2008, 1:05 pm

The kana are a simple matter of simply writing them all out several times a day for a week. Of course it'll take a little while longer to get comfortable reading them, but that's easily solvable by reading a lot.

Anyway, quick question:
I've recently started practicing reading and I was wondering if there was an easy way to tell kanji words apart from kanji names or whether that's simply something you get used to over time.

@Deathknight

AJATT (see my previous post) suggests learning the readings through sentences rather than individual kanji. This way you will develop a feeling for what reading to use in a certain sentence. That's the theory at any rate.
I've only just recently got to that point, but it sounds logical enough. It's also less tedious, at least for me.

*edit*

Oh also, does anyone know of a good off-line pc dictionary similar to this?
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Unread postby SPerson » April 3rd, 2008, 3:36 pm

an easy way to tell kanji words apart from kanji names


Context, honorifics, experience. Actually it's a bit difficult to imagine when that'd be a real problem, seems rather far-fetched to me. And I don't see why you chose to learn to read names so early, it's not easy, it's not that necessary and many kanji used in names aren't in the 常用漢字 list, which means that it's crazy to learn them before you are proficient enough, actually even after you learn 常用漢字 which takes some time itself, you'd better learn some other pretty common kanji like 髭、 龍 and many others (about 1k from what I know). So my advice is not to bother with name kanji too much yet, knowing how to read basic names like 山田、小林 will be enough.
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Unread postby Henduluin » April 3rd, 2008, 4:10 pm

It's not like I'm specifically learning names, it's just that the sentences I use occasionally have them. So I was just curious.
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Unread postby Blue Gunner » April 3rd, 2008, 10:58 pm

@deathknight

Personally, when I learn a character I prefer to know all readings of it. Even though there may be a single kunyomi and five onyomis, I still don't consider myself as having learnt a character until I know all of the readings. Knowing both readings can cause confusion sometimes, but from what I've found nine times out of ten the kunyomi is only used when the character is a singular, and the onyomi is used when it's in a compound. Having said that, my current teacher introduces kanji with only one of the readings, the method that Henduluin said. I'm not overly fond of that, but if it works for most people, then go with that. Learn the more common readings first and then go for the esoteric.

@Henduluin

Names tend to be pretty obvious if you can read most everything else in the sentence. And unless you're reading a transcript of some really terrible plain speech, then there would be a marker in the form of particles or even just a simple ~san at the end of it. Omission of titles is used only between good friends or from superior talking to inferior. As far as I know, there are also characters only used in names, such as the 崎 character, so if you see something like that, you can be pretty sure it's part of a name.
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Unread postby Henduluin » April 4th, 2008, 2:27 pm

Figured as much. Thanks.

Another question: How in the world can anyone read kanji at small sizes? Is it merely a matter of having seen them often, or does everyone have to increase the font size? <.<
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Unread postby Raven » May 6th, 2008, 5:03 pm

With Summer over the horizon, say goodbye to school and helllo to the Japanese books :idea:

Anyway, does anyone know a good link with good practice reading? I have several books but most of the things is in dialogue forms or short exerscise unit. They're good for study vocab and grammar but I want to practice "real" reading now. Frankly writting a word 100 times doesn't seem to be very effect since even know although I can read kana, I read them very slow because I don't have much practice.

So I think I need some kind of "pure" reading practice, like short stories, articles ...etc... They don't have to be straight Kana, but I prefer to keep the Kanji at minimum for now. So anyone know some good online resources (I can buy book too if they're really good and strongly recommend).

Thanks. :D
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Unread postby SPerson » May 6th, 2008, 5:14 pm

Raven wrote:With Summer over the horizon, say goodbye to school and helllo to the Japanese books :idea:

Anyway, does anyone know a good link with good practice reading? I have several books but most of the things is in dialogue forms or short exerscise unit. They're good for study vocab and grammar but I want to practice "real" reading now. Frankly writting a word 100 times doesn't seem to be very effect since even know although I can read kana, I read them very slow because I don't have much practice.

So I think I need some kind of "pure" reading practice, like short stories, articles ...etc... They don't have to be straight Kana, but I prefer to keep the Kanji at minimum for now. So anyone know some good online resources (I can buy book too if they're really good and strongly recommend).

Thanks. :D


You'd better not avoid kanji from the very beginning, try to get used to reading them, it'll pay off later, mark my words :) . Regarding your question, I can't really say what people usually practice their skills on, I'm a self-taught, but when I was just starting out (honestly, it wasn't long ago) I was reading Japanese fairy tales and whatnot, they were very useful and a lot of fun to read (I kind of reminisced about my childhood when I read similar stories)。So far I read かさじぞう、つるのおんがえし、 かちかちやま and some other, I can't recall them all now.

p.s. At your level it's hard to recommend anything from the must-buy category, so build you vocabulary, hone your skills and soon you'll get there, although I've yet to get to that level myself. Good luck with your studies, don't give up
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Unread postby Raven » May 6th, 2008, 5:30 pm

Haha, if you notice you'll see that I started this topic about a year ago. I'm not *that* bad. I have around 100 kanji with me (and 2 books to study it with).

The thing is like I said, I want to practice my reading, the purpose is try to get a flow of the writting and improve my sentence interpreting ability, not really learning Kanji or new vocab. The reason I prefer to keep Kanji to a minimum because I don't want to tackle professional writing yet.

I'm especially bad at Katakana and I think the reason is I have never practice them beyond individual vocabulary, samething (also not as bad) with Hiragana, so in context reading is what I'm looking for.
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Unread postby SPerson » May 6th, 2008, 7:21 pm

Raven wrote:Haha, if you notice you'll see that I started this topic about a year ago. I'm not *that* bad. I have around 100 kanji with me (and 2 books to study it with).

The thing is like I said, I want to practice my reading, the purpose is try to get a flow of the writting and improve my sentence interpreting ability, not really learning Kanji or new vocab. The reason I prefer to keep Kanji to a minimum because I don't want to tackle professional writing yet.

I'm especially bad at Katakana and I think the reason is I have never practice them beyond individual vocabulary, samething (also not as bad) with Hiragana, so in context reading is what I'm looking for.


Well I mentioned a few stories you can read for starters, once you read them ? let me know and I'll tell you more. And knowing 100 kanji isn't enough to read most of stuff, and also don't forget that the most important skill is to read the actual words, not just kanji, actually I know a lot more than 100 kanji (and I even know some that aren't in the jōyō list), yet I still have a LOT difficulties reading Japanese texts.
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Unread postby Raven » May 7th, 2008, 3:08 am

SPerson wrote:Well I mentioned a few stories you can read for starters, once you read them ? let me know and I'll tell you more. And knowing 100 kanji isn't enough to read most of stuff, and also don't forget that the most important skill is to read the actual words, not just kanji, actually I know a lot more than 100 kanji (and I even know some that aren't in the jōyō list), yet I still have a LOT difficulties reading Japanese texts.


That's why I'm asking what I'm asking, like I said I have two books dedicating to study Kanji, but I start feeling that studying as vocab memorization doesn't seem very effective. Well, you know where I can find those story online? I didn't meant 100 kanji was good (comparing to the norm 2000-3000 common Kanji), I was just trying to say that I have been studying for a while (and actually I'm studying the Kanji in parallel, I'm not avoiding them), but as of now I feel the need of contextual reading is more important.


I went to the library today and found an old story book (and I mean ... OLD, the paper looks like they're printed 30 years ago at least). Pure Kana baby, the only problem they use the now obsoleted character, and it's in vertical line. :wink:
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Unread postby SPerson » May 7th, 2008, 6:43 am

I went to the library today and found an old story book (and I mean ... OLD, the paper looks like they're printed 30 years ago at least). Pure Kana baby, the only problem they use the now obsoleted character, and it's in vertical line.


Haha, that's a bit extreme man ;) Well I'm lucky, I've got a great library not far from my home, so I usually get all my books and whatnot there (I don't really like reading stuff on my computer). But finding those stories on the internet wouldn't be difficult, they're common. (Though most, if not all, books published in Japanese are made this way)

Like I found かさじぞう here http://www33.ocn.ne.jp/~maty/tales/t-in ... asa01.html (even with pictures ;)

つるのおんがえし here http://homepage2.nifty.com/hanaitirin/t ... ext121.htm

Actually there are a few other stories on this site ? http://homepage2.nifty.com/hanaitirin/oldtale.htm

p.s. There's a bunch of kanji in those stories I mentioned too, but don't mind them, they're mostly basic, so you'll probably know the majority of them, and it'd be useful to look up every reading you don't know in the dictionary, so basically every time you feel uncertain about whatever just look in the dictionary
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Unread postby Raven » May 8th, 2008, 1:35 am

Thanks man, this is exactly what I'm looking for :D
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