First  Prev  1  2  3  4  Next  Last
Post Reply learning to read japanese.
35293 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
22 / M / KS, USA
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
Another thing I will say, and this may only be for me. But when practicing Japanese, don't just read and try to memorize. It may help some, but true practice I have learned, for this language especially, is when practicing you need to write everything down yourself. Multiple times over and over and over again. To really learn it at least.

Start small, literally like elementary school level learning. Start just learning letters, how to write and say them. Continue from there to learn words, sentences and their structure, then finally later you will learn how to write say full essays.

Others have posted great sources to start learning, flashcards like the Moekana/Moekanji from Culture Japan/DannyChoo. The Genki workbooks/textbooks/etc are also a great source of learning here. I prefer using J-List/J-Box here as I have trust in them when ordering from them, but they can be slightly more expensive as they generally are shipping FROM Japan. I am sure you can find the Genki books elsewhere like Amazon though.

If money isn't your problem, go for programs like Rosetta Stone, NO this will not completely teach you the language (in my opinion after using the German version). But it is a good stepping stone that lets you learn more. Also getting Japanese - English dictionaries and guides and what not help.

Learning a language (properly) takes a lot of time, money, and effort. Money can be a hit or miss mattering WHAT and how much of all of this you use. Some people will try and sometimes, but rarely in my opinion, succeed in learning a language merely by using free sources on the internet once or twice a day for a few years. But like I said, in my opinion, this doesn't work. If you don't put in the time or effort, you won't get anywhere, no matter the language. Using money to get more sources or pay for classes in a proper education environment, are the best ways to get more to learn. But it won't effect the time or effort needed to learn.
29850 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
23 / M
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
I'm studying Japanese on my own, and I've reached the point at which I can read pretty well on my own with only the occasional aid of a dictionary. One of the books I would recommend the most is Japanese: The Manga Way by Wayne P. Lammers. It's great for learning grammar and the structures of different types of sentences, but it doesn't offer much in terms of kanji or vocabulary aid.

If you've got an idevice, I'd recommend Imiwa for a good free electronic dictionary.
19009 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
Something that helped me a lot, was learning the radicals. (Radicals are the parts that make up a kanji.) It is much easier to look up a kanji, by the radicals, on jisho.org if you can spot the individual radicals. (It is kind of like learning the alphabet. It is much easier to look up a word, if you already know the letters.) textfugu.com was a lot of help for me in learning the radicals. It has fun, easy to remember stories for each of the radicals, and has anki decks to quiz yourself.

18012 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
24 / F
Offline
Posted 4/28/14 , edited 4/28/14
I've studied Japanese for 4 years in and out.

A good website for beginners is: http://japan-activator.com, they also have a mobile app.

Right now, I use 2 free Android apps to build vocabulary and learn kanjis: kanjisenpai and yomikata. Jisho is a great dictionary, but if you have an Android phone, take a look at Makimono.

I'm starting to read mangas in Japanese and can understand 70% of shoujo mangas. ebookjapan, booklive and honto are 3 ebooks store I am currently evaluating. They offer many free ebooks which is great to study.

15462 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
21 / M / Seeking the Future
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
Currently taking my 2nd course in japanese at my university. We use the genki books which are pretty great. What I do is write the kanji/hiragana/katakana multiple times to practice them. Practice is important!!
12063 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
19 / M / Tampa, FL
Offline
Posted 4/28/14

Aethix0 wrote:

I'm studying Japanese on my own, and I've reached the point at which I can read pretty well on my own with only the occasional aid of a dictionary. One of the books I would recommend the most is Japanese: The Manga Way by Wayne P. Lammers. It's great for learning grammar and the structures of different types of sentences, but it doesn't offer much in terms of kanji or vocabulary aid.

If you've got an idevice, I'd recommend Imiwa for a good free electronic dictionary.


How long have you been practicing?
247 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
101
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
I tend to use a combination of Jeffrey's Online dictionary and Jim Breen's. Breen is great for kanji lookup, but their dictionary listings are hard to read, so I prefer Jeffreys for that.
10220 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
I've done university courses as well as Rosetta Stone. Rosetta Stone is a little pricey, but honestly I think it's an awesome way to learn a language. I give it two thumbs up. Also I parrot all praises for jisho.org
50523 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
42 / M / Canada
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
I've done a combination of things. At first when I just wanted to learn how to read manga I started learning on my own. Then once I needed to use Japanese for work, they paid to send me to school for a year. Then I actually went to Japan and learned as I lived there in my daily life and work. Then I continued learning on my own when I came back as a way to keep up with it, not lose it as it goes quickly if you don't use it. I find I need to read a lot of different things in order to keep my vocabulary up as reading just one series or genre tends to limit the words you are exposed to.

It takes a while to get to the level where you don't need to consult a dictionary constantly and you can figure out words from their context. It is a great place to get to as you can read much faster than when you have to stop and look up words.

I tried using sites like LiveMocha I think it was called. It was a cool site, you'd do some Japanese and then some written and spoken (recorded) exercises and Japanese speakers on the site who were learning English or some other language would listen to and read your Japanese and critique it. And you would have to do that for people learning English (or another language).

This was cool but to me for speaking practice I'd rather speak to someone rather than into a microphone. And rather than do exercises I would rather be reading and when necessary stopping and figuring out what a difficult passage really means. In some ways this isn't ideal, learning by a book or a course is better but for me, learning a language is all about having the drive to do it and for me that drive leads me to read, to watch anime without subs, to do actual translations into Japanese and from Japanese and to speak with other people in Japanese.

Find something which drives you. At first for me it was the same as the OP, it was being able to read manga as soon as it came out instead of waiting and instead of reading a translation, reading the actual words the author wrote. I think this is a GREAT motivation to learn Japanese. Having to use it for work I found was an even better motivation. Being in Japan, especially outside of Tokyo (where most of them know English quite well, or someone in the room probably does), being in more remote locations where people know less English than you know Japanese so you can use your Japanese really helps. But from home, reading manga is great!

For manga I suggest starting with shounen or shoujo with full furigana. You can learn kanji as you go that way. You will learn the kanji that you need to know instead of trying to learn hundreds or thousands of kanji characters from lists, many of which you will never or only rarely encounter.
49152 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
19 / F / Tiphares
Offline
Posted 4/28/14 , edited 4/28/14

hpulley wrote:



Just a question, but do you have dual citizenship? Always wondered... if you don't mind answering.
50523 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
42 / M / Canada
Offline
Posted 4/28/14

Shrapnel893 wrote:


hpulley wrote:



Just a question, but do you have dual citizenship? Always wondered... if you don't mind answering.
No, I do not. It is difficult or impossible to get dual citizenship for adults in Japan. You either choose to be Japanese and renounce your original citizenship... or you remain a person living on a work visa.
1055 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
Offline
Posted 4/28/14 , edited 4/28/14

Maea2016 wrote:

The tricky part comes in the fact that kanji have an "on" and "kun" (basically a main and secondary) reading. So you need to pick up on under what context each one is used.


Kun-reading is the reading of the kanji by itself, and on-reading is the reading when the kanji is placed with another kanji forming a "jukugo" (compound word). Not without exceptions of course.

Edit:
Note: Okurigana after kanji/jukugo makes the reading kun.
49152 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
19 / F / Tiphares
Offline
Posted 4/28/14 , edited 4/28/14

hpulley wrote:

No, I do not. It is difficult or impossible to get dual citizenship for adults in Japan. You either choose to be Japanese and renounce your original citizenship... or you remain a person living on a work visa.


Yeah, from what I understand it's very difficult. Would you say dual citizenship for any country is worth it? Or, if you had the chance, with Japan?

Oh, that could be a new discussion topic...
50523 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
42 / M / Canada
Offline
Posted 4/28/14

Shrapnel893 wrote:


hpulley wrote:

No, I do not. It is difficult or impossible to get dual citizenship for adults in Japan. You either choose to be Japanese and renounce your original citizenship... or you remain a person living on a work visa.


Yeah, from what I understand it's very difficult. Would you say dual citizenship for any country is worth it? Or, if you had the chance, with Japan?

Oh, that could be a new discussion topic...
new topic not manga anymore
247 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
101
Offline
Posted 4/28/14
Not to go too off-topic, but I would think it would be more convenient to have a dual, and how easy it is to have that varies by country. Then you don't have to monkey around with travel or work visas every time, etc. And more convenient if they were connected by land instead of expensive airfare.

I believe if your spouse is Japanese though, the family visas have no restrictions. And there is also a Permanent Resident one that is indefinite, but not sure how many years of residency are required for that. I would assume something like 10+
First  Prev  1  2  3  4  Next  Last
You must be logged in to post.