Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

WWN's Social Lounge. The place to come and chill out for a relaxed conversation about life and stuff, or some more serious debates.
User avatar
scraggypunk
Rank: legendary cartographer
Location: deoxy knight

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by scraggypunk » Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:36 am

i believe in ya
wisdom
"the law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread" - anatole france

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:53 pm

end of month thoughts on how I'm spending my money, time, etc:

-The meetups are very hit and miss, but this can be made up for with preparation. They're obviously not too efficient since at best half the time is spent talking in English, but what can you do.

-The meals afterwards are basically always positive experiences, I learn a lot about what I don't know here compared to the meetups. Little cultural things, that sort of stuff.

-I ate out eight times this month, when I usually eat out about once. Based on the types of places we tend to go out to eat at I can probably afford to eat out about three-four times a month over the long term.

-The 'easy' conversational gains I was making seem to mostly be done. I've had Japanese people talk to me at full speed slang included and I definitely can't understand fast enough to respond yet.
---
I think I'll probably keep going to the meetups twice a week, but getting tutoring is a better use of my money than going out for meals.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Aug 04, 2017 4:27 am

Meetup was fine, this time it was two Japanese people and me at my table. It really made me realize how bad my Japanese is. I don't really have a lot of active vocabulary.
---
Vocab woo~

Mostly just doing a bunch of JLPT N2 practice tests to see how much vocabulary work it would require for me to take that test. Probably will do these tests until the end of the month.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Sun Aug 06, 2017 1:19 pm

random stuff for pk

stuff you can watch as beginner:

this is just shows with subtitles in various settings. idk how smooth it runs now, it was a bit too slow for me.
https://animelon.com/

this is a fairly exhaustive list of shows that have japanese subtitles. let me know if you need help setting them up.
http://kitsunekko.net/dirlist.php?dir=s ... apanese%2F

this was the least boring resource i found for pure listening at a beginner level
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVhqkey1ucA

the readers i mentioned a few pages back have audio CDs that come with them. let me know if you need help finding them.
---
looking up words:

jisho is gold standard for looking up japanese words
http://jisho.org/

there's a PC version of the jisho content
https://www.tagaini.net/

use this one if you want to look up how to say something in japanese from english
http://ejje.weblio.jp/
---
grammar references:

taekim has an android app and is probably the best for helping you understand native stuff

http://www.guidetojapanese.org/learn/grammar

imabi is probably best if you care about translation

http://www.imabi.net/

i felt genki relied way too hard on its exercises. there's a book called japanese the manga way that might make more sense for you, let me know if you need help finding it.

User avatar
Pkdragon
Rank: very chuuni

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Pkdragon » Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:28 am

Excellent, Sven. Now that payroll is over I'm exploring some of these options. Already use Jisho a lot, the pc version is interesting though.

Animelon looks like it could be amazing, a lot of good shows and not so good shows that would nevertheless make for useful listening practice! I'll also definitely be listening to that youtube video soon.

Payroll hits my wanikani hard, my accuracy definitely took a hit- normally I answer about 92-94% correct, today it was definitely more like 75%, lol. Same thing happened two weeks ago. Still, that's acceptable given a lot of the mistakes were on newer words that I haven't fully learned yet, so I didn't lose much progress.

For those that haven't followed my ramblings on the Discord server, I've been learning the kanji through a website called wanikani. My progress has been massive compared to previous attempts to learn kanji, and it also teaches a fair amount of vocab too. This stuff should help with the other pieces of the japanese language beyond the kanji, though : )
HPD wrote:You know the only thing on the agenda of the Squirtle Squad is pure, unadulterated chaos.

That, and watching Euros squirm.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:23 am

It feels like all the Japanese people I talk to at the meetup suddenly decided I could speak Japanese. They talk to me in much faster, more natural sounding Japanese. It's a bit tricky to understand immediately and respond sometimes. And that really made me realize that I have a long, long, long way to go. Ayyy X_X

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Mon Aug 14, 2017 5:53 am

In the past, I learned most of my vocab from reading. Recently I've been trying to study vocabulary deliberately instead of by reading. It didn't work, and I don't know why I expected it to work.

I'd rather focus on reading/watching more stuff than deliberate vocabulary study. We'll see how it goes I guess.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Aug 18, 2017 7:00 pm

I've been going to the meetups for two months now. There's one thing that I have to jot down here so that I never forget it:

For whatever reason, maybe a third of the time I seem to be placed in groups where Japanese people either don't show up or there's a beginner to Japanese in the group. Constantly switching between English and Japanese is impossible, and results in me using English. If I end up with a beginner in my group, I'm going to speak in Japanese and refuse to use English. I would rather learn to restrict myself to Japanese from a beginner's textbook than deal with English.

I've talked about feeling like I have to fight the other native English speaker to speak Japanese at these meetups, that's just the reality unfortunately. I think I'll try different meetups around the city to see if anything changes, but I'm not too optimistic.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:23 pm

Meetups are becoming a bit routine, gonna go back to posting 1x a week even if I'm going twice.

I got to listen to a JLPT N1 speaker for the first time today, it's the highest level of Japanese test available for learners. They were surprisingly... mediocre? They were much better than me, sure, but there was still a huge gap between them and the native speakers.

We ended up in a small argument over whether or not it was even possible to start learning Japanese "within" Japanese past a certain point in the learning process. What I mean is, when I find grammar I don't know, I look it up and I find the answer in the Japanese version of Yahoo answers. When I find a word or expression I don't know, I look it up in a dictionary for Japanese people, or I google it online, again hoping for something on Yahoo answers. To represent the other side, they were quite insistent that translation was necessary, especially for grammar. They'd been studying for about 10 years and they'd gone through a local university's Japanese program.

I think that probably unfairly coloured my views of their skill to be honest. Seeing someone who was obviously so much more proficient than me in terms of vocabulary still fumbling around with one word English translations for abstract, nuanced concepts was bizarre. They would a describe 'translation headache' that they would get while speaking Japanese, leaving them unable to speak for more than about an hour at a time without feeling exhausted. If the translation headache isn't going away after 10 years it's never going to go away...

They did tell me about a couple libraries around the city that I didn't know about though, so that was pretty awesome of them.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Sat Sep 02, 2017 11:04 pm

I didn't really use Anki at all this summer. I want to restart it during the school year, but I'm not really sure what sort of goals to have with it. I've always gotten frustrated in the past while using Anki or other flashcard systems, and I want that to change.

I remembered I actually read something earlier this summer about this topic that I shelved away in my mind to be forgotten forever:
Sven wrote:
Sun Jun 25, 2017 2:34 am
I read Fluent Forever by Gabriel Wyner this week.
...
He advocates making Anki cards for yourself instead of using those created by others. In his mind, Anki is something to review things the way you learned them, not to learn and review things the way someone else did.

I'll give it a try I guess.
Last edited by Sven on Sun Sep 03, 2017 1:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Linkman
Tri-Star CO
Tri-Star CO
Rank: Master of Fiction

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Linkman » Sun Sep 03, 2017 1:10 am

I didn't read Fluent Forever, but I am making flashcards for myself as advised. It does work a lot better.
"everytime I try to draw xen I end up drawing a kangaroo smoking a cigar while chainsawing a tree" - Deoxy
"I can't believe I'm the only person who voted Stallone. His appeal lies in watching is movies again and again just to hear what the hell he's talking about." - Kilteh

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:08 pm

Was in a group with 2 English people 1 Japanese person today. The other English person was way more fluent than me, had the thickest fudge white person accent I've ever heard, and he mostly directed the conversation towards his interests about film.

It was the first time in a really long time that I had no idea what the fudge someone was saying in Japanese. Was a really bizarre feeling. I never really got used to his accent during the whole hour we talked.
---
School's starting tomorrow and I'm back to Anki. Woo! We'll see how long I can keep up using Anki this time I guess.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:59 pm

1 day of Anki before giving up lul. i'll have to figure out something japanese related to do on the subway even if it's just listening.

Today I had a one on one conversation instead of a group conversation. At first it was a bit intimidating but it worked out well enough. It was much better than the usual group conversations to be honest.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Sep 22, 2017 10:17 am

idk i give up on learning new stuff lol. busy as hell. goal is to just keep reviewing what i know by meetups/watching/reading stuff.

User avatar
Linkman
Tri-Star CO
Tri-Star CO
Rank: Master of Fiction

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Linkman » Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:03 pm

I've been doing a lot of reviews before my return to German class next week. I haven't taken any notes, but rather been creating my Anki decks.

I basically have 3 decks:

1. Vocabulary: That's a pic, and the German word+sound on the backside. It's easy enough for nouns, and I find it very useful to remember Noun genders (stuff like "das Fenster", "der Computer"). I also have adjectives here, but it's much more difficult to come up with good pics for them; like, if I have a picture of an old guy it could be "alt" (old) or der großvater (the grandfather). I briefly flirted with making a separate deck for Verbs and Adjectives, but then decided I would just have the card say if it was an adjective or verb.

It's also difficult to come up with proper pics for Verbs as they are not always simple actions. For example "besuchen" (to visit) is easy enough, but then "verstehen" (to understand) is much harder to represent visually.

All that said selecting the pictures and making the flashcards has been very good for memory purposes.

2. Grammar: these have been very useful. Grammar concepts (specially in German) can be easy to learn and easy to forget; I have been taking the exercises from my book and making them cloze cards. So for example I will take something like:

"Gestern (sein) wir in der Hagia Sophia." (Yesterday [be] we in the Hagia Sophia).

That way I have to figure out it's past tense and remember the proper conjugation of sein. It is equivalent to drilling but in a flash card, so it comes up every now and again and reinforces that thought in your brain.

3. Expressions: stuff like "Guten Tag", "Wie Gehts?" (How are you?), "Zusammen oder Getrammt?" (Together or separate?). This deck is the one I'm unhappiest with; I find it very useful to know these expressions but I feel they are not working as flashcards. I want to rework them as cloze cards and make them dialogues, so that I am forced to remember the proper answer to such an expression. So something like:

"Zusammen oder []?"
"Zusammen, bitte."

That way I would have to remember the expression and not just cycle through them with no purpose.

Regardless, Anki is being helpful.
"everytime I try to draw xen I end up drawing a kangaroo smoking a cigar while chainsawing a tree" - Deoxy
"I can't believe I'm the only person who voted Stallone. His appeal lies in watching is movies again and again just to hear what the hell he's talking about." - Kilteh

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Sep 29, 2017 1:38 pm

feels like i have no time. :/. i guess this is how people plateau.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Sun Oct 08, 2017 5:02 pm

i've noticed i'm definitely forgetting a lot of stuff now that i'm not using anki or watching anime anymore.

i'm a lot more tired at the meetups, and my listening comprehension is getting worse. need to get my crumpets together to somehow make time for ~10ish hours a week of engaging with japanese, even if it's just zoning out watching anime.

User avatar
Linkman
Tri-Star CO
Tri-Star CO
Rank: Master of Fiction

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Linkman » Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:15 am

ANYWAYS

My new German teacher is like a bullet train, she is fudge restless

The class flies by and we end up tired at the end
"everytime I try to draw xen I end up drawing a kangaroo smoking a cigar while chainsawing a tree" - Deoxy
"I can't believe I'm the only person who voted Stallone. His appeal lies in watching is movies again and again just to hear what the hell he's talking about." - Kilteh

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:26 am

got some library books

User avatar
Bonesy
Rank: Dog Peddler
3DS Code: 0318 8318 0000
Location: Arid Zone

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Bonesy » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:56 pm

spoilers: the library books are actually mangoes

User avatar
Pkdragon
Rank: very chuuni

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Pkdragon » Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:37 am

yeah i've been busy too and have been barely keeping up with wanikani, never mind doing other stuff like grammar practice

language learning is HARD

but I'm past the worst of it i think (for the time being) and am consistently learning new lessons again
HPD wrote:You know the only thing on the agenda of the Squirtle Squad is pure, unadulterated chaos.

That, and watching Euros squirm.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:32 pm

during reading week (beginning of november) i'll have to spend a day picking some realistic goals and gathering materials/scheduling time to make stuff happen.

until then i'm just reading whenever i have the opportunity. my commute time has turned into math time unfortunately, so i mostly read jp before i go to bed.

User avatar
HPD
Tri-Star CO
Tri-Star CO
Rank: Mentat
Location: The Mountain

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by HPD » Tue Oct 24, 2017 6:48 am

time for a wwn learns math topic?
"So when I say the fudge shaman flies he goddamn well flies and that's that." - Narts
"My motto is that there are far too many women in the world to waste time with men." - thefalman
"It's just that I'm not really aware of how a common conversation goes." - Imano Ob, talking on MSN about talking on MSN
"As for FE8, that was IS' variant of Man Spam - Dudes with Swords edition." - Xenesis

User avatar
Dragonite
Rank: My face is beaming.
Location: the netherlands(mostly)

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Dragonite » Wed Oct 25, 2017 11:56 pm

HPD wrote:
Tue Oct 24, 2017 6:48 am
time for a wwn learns math topic?
WWN learns statistiscs would've been nice before :P

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Wed Nov 08, 2017 1:36 pm

Overall, I don't think I've improved much over the past six months. I spent a lot less time reading and using Anki and a lot more time going to meetups. Originally, I thought there might be some magical secret part of the language I was missing by not talking with other people, but I don't really believe that's the case. I just don't know enough words yet for talking to be useful.

I've decided not to continue with meetups. They're just not a good use of my time if my goal is to improve. It feels like I only get a good conversation at a meetup maybe a third of the time I go. The dinners afterwards, while enjoyable, are mostly in English, and I can't count them as a learning experience. When I am much better and can safely put myself down as "Advanced", I'll consider going back, but at my current stage of learning there's really no point.

At least until the end of the school year in April, the most realistic thing I can do to improve is to read really, really easy material on the subways during my commute, and to remember to use the Japanese equivalents of Reddit, Youtube, etc that I've found at home.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Mon Nov 13, 2017 1:12 am

I've got to take back what I said about improvement over the past six months, I tested myself a bunch on grammar structures and I seem to answer the questions a lot better based on instinct than I used to. The tests used to be a chore where I would have to dredge up the correct rule every time to answer the questions, now it's pretty similar to answering English grammar questions. To be fair, there's still some beginner/intermediate grammar that I don't have a good intuition for, but I think that's probably going to be the case for a long time.
---
It would be really, really nice if I could pass the JLPT N1 next year. I don't think it'll happen though.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Fri Dec 01, 2017 10:41 am

I have exams over the next couple of weeks so I'm not really going to do any active studying. I'm reading on the subways, watching anime/youtube, and that's about it. I look up 10ish words a day, though there's no guarantees I'm remembering them without something like Anki.

User avatar
Pkdragon
Rank: very chuuni

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Pkdragon » Sun Dec 03, 2017 7:36 am

Five months into learning Japanese, I've made some massive improvements (in some areas).

- Kanji is my strongest area due to using WaniKani (kanji learning website, for those that don't lurk the discord and have to deal with me and Sven's chatter about it). Still have a long ways to go but I'd say in the stuff I'm reading I recognize every fourth or fifth kanji (due to them using really basic kanji, lol).

-Grammar is getting better and better. I can look at a basic japanese sentence and have an idea what is going on. I can recognize verbs, adjectives, noun-desu sentences, subjects, objects, and topics, and obviously that's all really basic, but it's still really helpful in the basic readings I've got. I've got enough tools to start to pick apart more advanced sentences as well. Looking back at the graded readers Sven gave me back in the day, the difference in understanding is massive- before I had to pick apart the sentence word by word and figure out what the sentences were saying based on individual vocabulary that I'd look up, because I lacked the grammar. Now I recognize a lot more of the kanji and understand much of the grammar immediately. This is a great indication that despite my scattered learning course, I am making progress.

-Acquisition of Vocab is weaker than I'd like. Wanikani has given me a smattering of kanji-based vocab, but I can't say I've got them as firmly committed to memory. Vocab just hasn't been a huge focus yet, because I've proven before I can memorize random vocabulary, while I hadn't ever reached firm ground in grammar or kanji. As I start reading more, I'll be ratcheting up the vocabulary machine.

- Verb conjugation is basically something I haven't really been paying attention to much- I can recognize present/past/negative forms of both politeness types, and I also can generally figure out when something is a Te-form verb (which is new), and often I can even understand what the word being conjugated is because I've learned my Kanji (if they were written in hiragana I'd generally be clueless), but the details definitely need some work. This is definitely something I plan on working on more, but also should directly benefit from reading.

My next step is to start seriously reading material in addition to my wanikani. I have, waiting to be read:
- Yotsubato volume 1
- Chi's Sweet Home volume 1
- Little Busters VN
- The graded readers Sven gave me
- A collection of Super Robot Wars screenshots if I want a challenge

Plenty of good beginner material to crunch through.

All in all, I'm definitely novice level. Very much novice level. But progress is good and directly compared to the other times I've tried picking up Japanese, my progress is massive. Feels good to be in the part of the learning process where motivation is high and i feel confident, before the plateau =3
HPD wrote:You know the only thing on the agenda of the Squirtle Squad is pure, unadulterated chaos.

That, and watching Euros squirm.

ThunderWalker
Rank: Elf
Location: Netherlands

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by ThunderWalker » Sat Dec 09, 2017 10:03 am

I am trying to pick up Japanese as well, with mixed success. I'm not as long into the learning process as you guys but I do know about WaniKani, though I'd leave it alone for the time being until I have the hiragana and katakana firmly into my head. Not the case yet, but I should be getting there around Christmas.
I do recognize some kanji, but I think those can be counted on one hand, so yeah, long way to go there.

For now it's just a matter of getting familiarity points and then I'll start studying with the kanji. Having some daily exposure to the language also helps.

To be fair, I'm terrible at languages in general, and I am prone to forgetting things very quicly, which is a problem.
So yes, I'm a novice with Japanese even more than you are, but I'm only studying for about six weeks now, so yeah...

It's also my second try actually at learning Japanese, but the first try went up in smoke for some reason. While I liked the Japanese culture I lacked any motivation or exposure out of my study book, which makes me incredibly prone to forgetting a language (French was doomed because of this at high school), and that is something that has changed for the better.
There's a game I play which happens to have a small Japanese community (and a Japanese chatroom on Discord) and there's some Japanese music I listen to now, which is both very helpful to have some exposure to the language even when I don't want to study.
My sig is a void.

User avatar
Sven

Re: Alors! Dann!! WWN learns a new language!

Post by Sven » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:43 pm

idk what to do. i'm not burned out, but i don't really care about getting better either.

i guess i need to find something difficult that i actually want to read to push me forward. wish me luck

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Data [Bot], Multivac [Bot] and 0 guests