1. Youkai

    OP Youkai Demon

    Jul 1, 2004
    Hi there !

    I have a small problem with learning vocabulary so I would like to ask about your methods and or tricks to learn vocabulary.

    When I was in school I allway had to go to the so called "G-Kurs" for the "stupid" kids because I could never do it and allways got a 6/F in English tests :(

    For me it helped much watching Anime with English sub title but now I am learning Japanese and there is no way for me to learn Japanese with Japanese subtitle as I can only read about 80 Kanji and there is hardly any Subtitle that has only Kana in it :(
    I was thinking about reading a book but I could only read children books which use no Kanji but they might use some "cute" kiddy language instead of normal langauge and for more adult like books I need more Kanji and already a bigger vocabulary than I have as of now ...

    Anyway I am even interested in tips that would not work for Japanese/Chinese/Korean/whatever as I am interested in several langauges and who knows I or someone else might need those informations sooner or later as well ^^
  2. Phoenix Goddess

    Phoenix Goddess The Ninja's Protégée

    Apr 25, 2009
    United States
    I personally use Anki. The Kore decks are a bit dry sometimes but I like the challenge. There are also decks with vocabulary from Japanese textbooks. The words you learn won't mean anything though unless you practice. After I feel like I'm making progress with vocabulary in Anki, I read something in Japanese.

    Keep in mind, Kanji is a good thing. It makes reading Japanese much easier to read than Hiragana-only. Books are pretty hard to read in Japanese if you're a beginner. It's more of something you go for at an intermediate level. Japanese video games, light novels and short stories are good practice, though.

    I've heard this news site was easy to read. If you have Rikaichan or Rikaisama, words shouldn't be too hard.
    Cyan likes this.
  3. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    Given Japanese, or at least the Kanji, finds itself with a logographic (each character means something/represents a complete idea) nature after a fashion and the Japanese education system has various lists of kanji for people to learn (see joyo kanji), people that then go on to write modern Japanese, it might be an idea to start there. Bonus is you are already used to stitching together "words" to make others so you have a leg up when it comes to the second part.
    However from what you have said that might not be quite so in line with the way you prefer to learn things, a perfectly valid method of learning things by the way, so you might need to find something else or approach it from a different direction. Sadly when it comes to languages I can just memorise things though I absolutely recognise the value of immersion or something approaching it.

    That said are there no shonen anime/similarly targeted films/TV shows with either plain subs or romanised subs? Such things are quite noted for downplaying kanji and though they are not flawless as far as etiquette/language use goes there are many instances where you could do worse, quite often several of those pull double duty as education on said etiquette/language use as well (various characters being chastised for a lack of it).

    The other part of languages I do find useful though is to play with the language, this means things like rewrite a sentence to say the exact same thing but with different words, engage in wordplay (a favourite among users of Japanese) and maybe do some comparative translations (get a work already in a language you know well and Japanese and read them side by side).

    I have let the non encoding/computer troubling side of my study of Japanese, and with it the small understanding of the language I had garnered, slip in recent years though so I should probably refrain from giving any more specific advice.
    Phoenix Goddess likes this.
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