Using Games to Practice

So I started playing Mystic Messenger. It took me a moment to realize that the audio was in Korean but when I did notice I decided to use it for listening practice. Though I do find myself reading the English more often than not. It’s my first play through so I don’t want to miss anything after all. But I can go back and listen to the audio again as many times as I want. So I can try to catch more each time I listen.

I also play roms on my phone so I downloaded the old Pokemon Gold and Silver Gameboy Color games in Korean to play(none of the GBA Pokemon games are available in Korean :<). I should probably gt Heart Gold/Soul Silver instead but.. It’s so difficult! >_< But I’m struggling through. I’m trying to read as much as I can. Learning moves and the items all over again(and remembering them) is the hardest. I’ve also been playing Cooking Mama in Korean. So I’m slowly learning food names because I probably wouldn’t learn them otherwise. I’m more forced to read here so I know what I’m supposed to be doing.

I’m probably gonna cry when I feel comfortable enough to be at this point with Japanese. Though I can play in hiragana then if I want for some games. I actually want to play Final Fantasy VI but I know that will be extremely difficult. Sigh. Such a long time away..

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Update: Korean and Japanese Study

So what have I been up to? Well for this month I’ve been doing NaNoWriMo.. But for studying…

Currently I’m working through the beginner Korean Grammar In Use book for review before I go on to the intermediate one. I’m also slowly starting to get into reading some webtoons with Naver’s webtoon app. I also have their web novel app as well, but I’m not confident enough to start reading those yet. I still struggle through news articles. I still haven’t finished Intermediate College Korean..

I’ve also been watching video’s on V-App and V-live from my favorite idols. It’s always so surprising when I can understand a lot of what I’m hearing especially when sometimes there aren’t any subtitles yet. It’s nice realizing how much I’ve progressed. My speaking is still pretty bad though.

I’ve also finally gotten started on Japanese study. So far, I’m finding it much more difficult than Korean but it’s okay. I can do this. I’m using Japanesepod101 since I have a subscription and my library has Pimsleur Japanese so I’m going through that as well. I was using my Japanese for Everyone textbook but even though I like it, I get confused in quite a few places so I’m going back to Minna no Nihongo and I’ll try to pace myself better as I work through it this time around. As far as Kanji, I’ve learned around 100 of them so far. I’m using Kanji Look and Learn for now, but I don’t know if I’ll change to the kanji book Minna no Nihongo has or not…

So I’m doing pretty well on my language studies. I actually need to stop reading language forums and blogs because it’s been making me really want to learn French again right now. I don’t have time to learn 3 languages at once.

A Free Korean Learning Resource

오렌만이에요!  Honestly speaking, I haven’t done a lot of studying in the last month apart from just conversing in Korean on HelloTalk or just trying to get some listening practice and train my ears. Which brings me to this resource I found. It’s actually a set of free textbooks, Korean Through Active Listening.

Now these are old, written in 1994, but they’re now out of print and have been releasde under creative commons license. Even though they’re old, I think they’re still pretty useful. These textbooks are pretty much listening exercises. There are about 60 tasks in each book.

Each task is set up like this:

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There is audio for each section. It seems pretty straight forward and simple. Like, I know this grammar already and those vocabulary words. But once I got to the actual listening exercise part of the tasks, I realized that listening was actually very difficult. The audio is not spoken slowly. It’s spoken at natural speed, which for beginners will seem really fast. I had to listen to the audio multiple times before I was able to answer the exercises.

There are audios transcripts and answer keys at the end of the pdfs to check your answers and if you find the listening too difficult so this could benefit self-studiers who need listening help. It could probably also be used to shadow also.

Also available on the site are the My Korean textbooks.

Study Log: KoreanClass101 Beginner Season 5 Complete

I finished the last Beginner Season at KoreanClass101 on Friday. And with finishing it, my first notebook for this time around is completely filled up. So I’ve broken out a new notebook. Two new notebooks actually. This time I’m going to have a separate notebook for vocabulary and another for everything else(writing out dialogues, grammar, and practice exercises).

I actually enjoyed many of the lessons at KoreanClass101. The dialogues especially. There are a few that stick out in my mind and I’m going to use Audacity and separate the dialogues from the rest of the lessons to I can get more listening practice. I have to do it this way since I don’t have a premium account but I don’t mind. I’m looking forward to the Lower Intermediate Lessons(there are 2 seasons). I’m wondering if I should start listening to some of the Advanced Audio Blogs since of sure not all of them are that advanced or maybe I’ll listen to some of TalkToMeInKorean’s 이야기 lessons now.

I’ve already done 2 chapters from Intermediate College Korean. A couple of the grammar points have been review from College Korean. Where I thought some of the dialogues were kind of dry in College Korean, I like the ones I’ve read and actually listened to(College Korean didn’t have very good audio) in Intermediate College Korean. Intermediate College Korean also has a lot more Extra Reading passages. Maybe I’ll do a Book Review for College Korean. Then one for Intermediate College Korean when I get further through it.

Honestly back in April I wouldn’t have thought I could stay motivated for this long without a really long stop in between ad me forgetting and starting all over again. But I guess I’m super inspired this year ad dedicated. Now that I’m this far I won’t stop. I’ll keep study. I’m really excited and happy with my studies. Don’t Stop Can’t Stop(hehe I’m still a big 2PM fan).

Also I want to post more here, but I’m not sure what I should post. Maybe diary type post in Korean? I think my textbook has writing type conversation topics that I can do and post maybe? I like to write stories so little stories? Though they’d probably be bad since I definitely don’t know all the grammar that goes into story writing in Korean. At least I don’t think I do. I know there’s a web fiction category or something similar on Naver so maybe I’ll check it out and see. I also want to start learning the lyrics to some of my favorite songs. Starting with BTS’s Tomorrow. Honestly, this is the song that got me back studying and not giving up on my dreams and things that I want to do. It’s a very encouraging and inspiring song so if there’s a song I want to recommend it’s definitely that one. It’s a song I listen to when I’m feeling down and need a boost.

Okay I’ve rambled long enough. I should get back to studying now.

Study Log: Starting to Read Native Korean Materials

So after finishing College Korean, I’ve yet to start Intermediate College Korean. So far all I’ve been doing is reviewing the grammar I’ve already learned and rereading dialogues and passages from the chapters of College Korean. Today, I finally decided to try and actually read something outside of my textbook.

I headed over to Naver to find a news article to read. I started in the entertainment section since those articles don’t seem to be too long and clicked on a random one on the page.

It ended up being an article about the idol group Up10tion. I don’t really follow them so I had no idea that they were having a comeback soon. It was pretty much about the teaser they’d recently released on their official channel. It took me a couple of hours to read it even though is was only a few short paragraphs. And probably another hour to really understand it. I actually had to go and watch to teaser to understand better what they were trying to describe before some things finally made sense.  There was only one grammar point that I didn’t know but, there were around 35 words I hadn’t learned yet.

I’ve saved the article in Evernote to read again later though I’m sure I won’t remember every single one of those words. I’ll just have to keep reading.

 

Study Log: I’ve Finished College Korean~

Hey everyone! So I’ve finished my first Korean textbook, College Korean. It’s actually my first language textbook that I’ve ever finished honestly. The fact that I did it completely on my own though self-study makes me really happy. Yes, it took me longer to finish than I had planned. But, I finished it and that’s what’s important. I’m at around 68 hours of active studying.

As far as understanding everything 100%, I won’t claim to be able to do that. But I can read though the dialogues in the textbook without too much difficulty. And I can even understand some of the Korean posts on HelloTalk now. All I have to do is keep practicing. I might begin adding TTMIK lessons (or Korean Grammar in Use — I haven’t decided yet) to my study sessions for grammar reviews.

So what now?

I technically have two intermediate textbooks for Korean. Intermediate College Korean (which also has its own site if you can’t buy the book), and Modern Korean: An Intermediate Reader.  For now the plan is to alternate between them. While I like the way College Korean and Intermediate College Korean’s lessons are, the dialogues and passages can be a bit dry. Modern Korean on the other hand has lots of passages about Korean history, culture and customs, etc, so it will probably be more interesting to read.

As far as grammar points, there’s a lot of overlap between the two books but at the same time, they both have some grammar points that the other doesn’t.

Last, I’m still continuing with KoreanClass101. I’m starting Beginner Season 5, which is the last of the beginner lessons. Though I’m sure I can probably just start on the Lower Intermediate lessons since I’m pretty sure there’s overlap. Some of these later Beginner lessons don’t seem very beginner.

Anyway, I hope it won’t be so long before I post again.

Slowly Moving Forward

I’ve been slowly studying my Korean though not as much as I should. I’m still not done with College Korean. I’m on chapter 20. For Koreanclass101, I’m on Beginner Season 4 Lesson 12.

I haven’t really been actively studying a lot but, I have been working on outputting Korean. I’ve been using the app HelloTalk and writing and texting in Korean. Ah, my first conversation was so tiring. I learned the word for rainbow, 무지개. It wasn’t a long conversation but I learned quite a few words. I’ve talked with many people on the app and have of course made mistakes. The other day I learned the difference between 물고기, 생선, and 회. So even though I haven’t been studying a lot, I’m still learning and using what I’ve learned.

오늘밤 저는 생선을 먹을 거에요.

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Today, I did this to my keyboard on ny laptop. I don’t own 한글 stickers so I used whiteout and and wrote over it. Now I can type.

My Japanese Books are Here

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Today, all of the Japanese books I ordered are here. I have a subscription to Japanesepod101 also. Well almost. Modern Japanese: A Basic Reader has two volumes and I only received one. And it wasn’t even the reader volume but the volume with the vocabulary. Since Read Real Japanese is obviously a reader, I’m gonna go to the textbook.

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Japanese For Everyone.

Choosing a Japanese textbook was a bit of a struggle. I don’t like Genki.  I like Minna no Nihongo but it’s too expensive(I have a downloaded copy to test it out first). That and I can’t pace myself well through it. I tend to burn out when I try to use it. In the end I ended up going with Japanese for everyone. I’ve used this textbook before and I really like it. It introduces 4 – 7 grammar points per chapter for 27 chapters. This one book will teach what Genki does. I like the grammar explanations better in this book as well.

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The first few chapters have romaji. I can easily ignore that though. After each grammar point you have exercises. This book is great for self studying because there’s an answer section in the back of the book.

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Romaji is gone by the chapter 6. I like that this book has cute little drawings. My Korean textbook doesn’t have these.

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Another thing I like about this book is that it only gives you the vocabulary you need at the moment. You get a dialogue and then the vocab list only has words from the dialogue that you don’t know. So the vocabulary is in context and I’m not just learning random words. For the exercises, it’ll introduce words as you need them and not before that.

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A grammar point from chapter 6 plus the exercise. (*sobs* I’m sorry these are upside down.)

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There’s also reading and listening comprehension exercises. The scripts for the listening exercises are in the back of the book also. One thing though, the audio doesn’t come with the book. But it’s pretty easy to find online. I’ve had it for a while so that wasn’t too much of an issue for me.

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Next is Reading Japanese. I didn’t buy this book offline. I had randomly come across it at a thrift store years ago. On it’s own this book isn’t very useful. You need to know a bit of grammar or you won’t get far. It’s supposed to go with the books Beginning Japanese part 1 and part 2. I won’t use those because they are completely in romaji. But this still has its uses I think.

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(ignore my half painted nails…)

The kanji section. It introduces about 450 kanji. Some of them are old but I don’t think that’s too much of an issue. I have my phone to help me out if I need it. (See that romaji *sighs*) I do like that it shows examples of kanji actually written though and not just typed. It really helps I think when trying to learn to write them.

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The best part of this I think is the reading sections after kanji for the lesson is introduced. The book essentially becomes a reader. There’s no English translation. There are notes for some phrases like some readers have though but no full translations. There are even questions about the reading sections in Japanese. There’s also a rewrite of the reading sections in a handwritten format. Honestly even if I don’t end up using this for learning kanji, the reading selections will be pretty good reading practice there are 17 lessons. 25 in all but i’m excluding the kana lessons.

I’ll start setting a schedule for Japanese study now.

Korean Study Log: 5/9 – 5/15

I studied quite a lot last week. I went through Chapters 7 – 12 in College Korean and KoreanClass101 Beginner Season 2 Lesson 13 – Lesson 25. I also did two lessons in Beginner Season 3.

I’m considering adding Learning With Text to my studying. I already have it set up. I haven’t decided yet. For now I would just be copying in the KoreanClass101 dialogues since I don’t really want to type out the College Korean dialogues. Maybe I’ll type up the reading exercises. We’ll see. Though, I should start practicing typing in Korean.

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This is my current Notebook. As you can see I like writing in many colors. It makes things more fun. I choose color set depending on how I’m feeling. Or the paper I’m writing on since some of the pens will bleed through the paper and I can’t write on both sides if the paper isn’t thick.

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I have lots of different kinds of pens. I must confess that I have a pen obsession. I love to buy many different pens. I have ten actual sets at the moment. along with a random pen here or there. Never let me borrow a pen. You many not get it back.

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Last, I made myself a chart to hold myself accountable and to track how many hours I study. I got this idea from someone on Youtube. I forgot what video it was but, they were studying Japanese. If I find the video, I’ll link it. Each small block represents 30 minutes. Every row is 15 hours. I decided to start with a clean slate with Korean since I wasn’t tracking anything before. So far since I’ve been tracking, I’ve studied 32.5 hours since April 17. That really doesn’t seem like a lot. *sighs* But I study everyday, even if it’s only 30 minutes.

That’s all for now. I have to get back to studying.