Best approach to learning Japanese? (47)

1 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 02:21 ID:oDi3TMG1

I wish to study Japanese (considering the JET Programme in a few years), and I'd like to know what has helped you study. Is there a special approach or technique, or is it similar to studying a European language like Spanish or French?

2 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 03:59 ID:KkCpW6rh

Japanese taxpayers are footing the bill for JET. Stay away.

3 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 04:48 ID:KQMOpQCe

What does JET stand for?

4 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 04:59 ID:oDi3TMG1

It's the *J*apan *E*xchange and *T*eaching Programme.

5 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 06:13 ID:KQMOpQCe

What is your purpose of studying Japanese?
As one of the taxpayers,I really want to know it if what 2 said is true.
If you wish to study Japanese for your private interests,I want you not to utilize the JET Programme. lol

6 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 06:15 ID:oDi3TMG1

>>2 & >>5
OP here. I wasn't really thinking of doing it solely for JET, but the idea of getting involved with JET has crossed my mind. Mostly, i just want to learn Japanese for my own benefit and to perhaps travel to Japan one day.

7 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-25 07:13 ID:KQMOpQCe

I advise you to be a sumo wrestler, which is the best way to learn Japanese. lol
I'm always amazed to see how quickly they master Japanese.
There seems to be some reasons for that.

8 名前: 2 : 2007-11-25 07:20 ID:KkCpW6rh

Yeah, true. It's not a private enterprise.

9 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-29 00:08 ID:4qG/icsw

so basically, don't use jet if you just want to read manga.
sorry if my English and my Japanese is bad

10 名前: 5 : 2007-11-29 10:16 ID:KQMOpQCe

Oh, please don't take it seriously.
At the time, I just made fun of 1.
I don't know much about JET,so そのことについて軽々しく意見を言える立場にないのです。寧ろその質問は2さんにしてください。彼(彼女?)はJETのことに詳しそうだから。
As far as I'm concerned, it's OK with me if you use it in order to read manga. because I am a broad-minded person. lol

11 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-30 12:07 ID:2QicFO88

I'd suggest learning it as any other language (seems to work reasonably well for me).

But if you're taking regular university courses, and if it's possible, consider taking a beginners course part time first. Full-time study can be pretty intimidating, and you might want to get started slowly.

12 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-11-30 18:24 ID:3Zgpuuce

I recommend learning Kanji first. RTK from James Heisig really helps. After that just dive into the language.
Read about grammar, read manga (especially with furigana) if that's your thing. Try to decipher real sentences. Watch japanese tv without subs.
Just don't force yourself to speak early on.

13 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-01 02:07 ID:Heaven

I don't agree with >>11 at all. Either do it 100% all the way or leave it alone. Language course won't get you anywhere, you'll have half-assed skills (speaking from personal experience). Sure, full-time study is intimidating and time-consuming as fuck, but at least after a year you're pretty much set (also speaking from personal experience). Set to do the rest by yourself, I mean. All you have to do after that year full-time studying is learn the remaining kanji and go to Japan for a few weeks if possible now and then. Learning Japanese = a laborious (yet fun) experience.

14 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-03 19:32 ID:Heaven

Kanji is the worst to start off with, start with hiragana then move on from there.

I also found watching fansub 'karaoke' helped with my reading.

15 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-04 04:32 ID:fXWohOg4

That's a large part of how I mastered hiragana. Katakana just seems to escape me, though.

16 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-04 10:51 ID:Heaven


17 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-04 17:53 ID:Heaven

I didn't think mastering hiragana was hard at all, but there's still so much to do...

18 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-04 20:28 ID:TY2Yj9tH

Kana are a piece of cake.
You can learn them in a few days, although I thought most people interested in learning Japanese know them already since they're so easy to pick up.
Also, if you're not dedicated enough to learn Kanji just give up now instead of wasting your time.

19 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-05 01:57 ID:5ylgHr27

I suppose this is all well and good, but I think that actual skill in the language itself cannot be achieved by anything but complete immersion. Think about it, we learn to speak before we learn to read or write, isn't it only logical and sensible to learn through trial and error by actually going there and speaking to people who don't actually know any English?

21 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-05 03:07 ID:fXWohOg4

It's not that I don't have the dedication, it's just that I don't have the time at the moment.

22 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-05 03:11 ID:5ylgHr27

Blah blah blah, a i u e o, ka ki ku ke ko. Make up a mnemonic device or something.

23 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-05 03:27 ID:fXWohOg4

I've got the kana down. That's not tough.
It's just that I don't have the time for the crazy kanji.

24 名前: 11 : 2007-12-05 22:13 ID:Heaven

>>1, there is an expanded answer for you after the rant. Feel free to jump ahead. :-)

Well, I'm speaking from personal experience too. (English is not my first language; and I'm taking Japanese in college now.)

Classes are good. Learning grammar is good. Having a good teacher is invaluable. And if you want to spend all your spare time learning on your own; guess what - that's perfectly fine too. One does not exclude the other.

But going at it on your own? Lots of people do that, and quit pretty soon after. That doesn't mean it's impossible of course. But it takes dedication. For a given random poster on a discussion board, that is not something you can just assume.

Therefore: >>1, if it's available to you, take a class and find out if this is something you really want to do. A good class, one where you learn hiragana and a few kanji right away. Make sure you have a good teacher, a native speaker if possible. Spend as much time as you can, and as much as you feel like, studying on the side. Hang out with the other guys in class. Try all the technical tools available to you (like the Rikaichan Firefox extension, a flashcard programs for your PDA/phone, maybe an electronic dictionary if you can get one).

Then decide how to continue. Maybe complete immersion is the way to go for you; maybe not. But you'll have no idea what it's like until you start.

25 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-06 05:18 ID:5ylgHr27

After a year and a half in a Japanese class at my college, I've noticed some things about my learning style. I am generally better than average with reading and translating text, but I cannot write coherently unless I write what I want to say in English first, laboriously translate it (roughly) into Japanese, and continually tweak it until I'm happy with how it looks. On the other hand, I completely suck at speaking, it's like I can't hold a coherent conversation. I'm starting to think that complete immersion is the only way I'll ever be fluent in another language.

26 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-12 12:04 ID:AwjfRSI0

Best approach?
It's vest way you have friendship with me!

Please teach me English....

27 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-18 03:41 ID:8FEnloHw

Learning English for writing is a lot easier than Japanese once you have the basics down, I say as a native speaker of neither. For speaking, it is much harder, since pronunciation is crazy, but for writing, the only obstacles after you have basic grammar are spellings. It is also very easy to look up words you do not know.

I would suggest posting on English discussion boards like this one. It is major practice for your skills on the language, as well as fun, a lot of the time.

28 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2007-12-18 04:09 ID:5U1JL3y0

>>24, thank you very much for your post. I feel that would be a great way to go about learning any language, really. =P

>>26, boards like 4-ch are great places to practice English. Try searching Google, too. You can find many places to practice and learn. Try your best to get a dictionary or find one online.

29 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-01-12 08:46 ID:Gq3MCtpr

Japanese is the world easiest language, especially if you want to learn to speak it ; its grammar is easy and its pronunciation is quite simple. You can learn it by watching your favorite Japanese stuff - dramas, animes, variety shows, news, or whatever. Anything else to ask me about?

30 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-01-12 09:25 ID:ZIeQQe1Q

I read and write a lot better than I speak. When I read my lessons I say them out loud, looking at each word/kanji as I say it. I practice conversations/phrases out loud, this way the correct phrases come easier during oral quiz time. Sometimes I will randomly pick an object, point at it and try to come up with the correct word as fast as I can. I used to have Japanese labels all over my house even.

I never fool with anything written in romaji. It only ends up confusing and irritating me.

I try to watch as much movie and television in Japanese as I can, just to get used to hearing it and try to pick out enough words to get the idea of what they're talking about

Flash cards. A metric fuck ton of them. Every day, every night.I see the word and say it out loud.I have a lot of them, and it takes a while...

Do not take up learning Japanese. Hit your genitals with a hammer instead, it's much less emotionally traumatizing.

I hope that helps.

31 名前: An0n : 2008-02-12 17:54 ID:N1g6lD+W

Multi Faceted. All i've learned so far is from:

3 years of HIgh School Class (1st Year Failed, don't ask)
Learn Japanese the Manga Way - book title
Kana/ Kanji practice book
Japanese for Dummies
Joke/ Buisness Japanese books

32 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-02-29 14:00 ID:lpB/FW+P

Mike Wright, after acquiring Spanish and German in high school and college, and after learning Mandarin in 1963, Japanese in 1967, and Arabic in 1973 in the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, states that "Mandarin is the easiest by far." It is "pretty easy for native English speakers, while Japanese is one of the most difficult". For example, he could "pretty much discuss any topic" when he arrived in Taiwan. On the contrary, after learning Japanese and spending a total of 7.5 years in Japan associating with "people who spoke little or no English", he never felt confident in the language. Same thing holds true for his fellow Defense Language Institute graduates, he says, including one who graduated from Japanese course with an average of 98, the highest on record. "He was quite angry when he arrived in Japan and found that he couldn't get around in the language as he had been able to do with Mandarin in Taiwan."

33 名前: AZ : 2008-03-05 17:54 ID:+YJ1TH6F

Are you serious? That looks like a paste, do you have a link?

34 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-07 10:22 ID:lpB/FW+P

The slightly surprising thing is that Japanese is the only starred language in Category III: that is, according to the experience of the US State Department, Japanese is somewhat harder to learn than Chinese, Arabic, or Korean.

Or, in other words, Japanese is the most difficult major language in the world for English speakers.

35 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-07 14:47 ID:Heaven

>Japanese is the only starred language in Category III

Link please.

36 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-07 20:21 ID:lpB/FW+P

37 あぼーん

38 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-08 20:18 ID:lpB/FW+P

A quick recap for those unfamiliar with the system: Japanese actually uses three different sets of signs for writing. The syllabaries hiragana ひらがな and katakana カタカナ are the easy part, there are around 50 of each and, with a very few easily learned exceptions, they never change their readings: ひ is always "hi" and カ is always "ka". It is entirely possible to read and write Japanese with these alone; that's the way Genji Monogatari was written 1000 years ago and that's how children's books are written to this day.
The clincher is the third set, the Chinese characters known as kanji 漢字。Basic literacy requires knowing about 2000 of these, and estimates of the number actually in use (including specialized fields) go as high as 5000.

So far, this is no worse than Chinese, which by most reckonings uses more distinct characters. However, while characters have one (or rarely two) readings in Chinese (esp. if we discount tone changes), in Japanese characters tend to have at least two completely separate readings. The worst offenders like 生 (sheng in Mandarin) have, depending on how you count, as many as 80 different ways to read them: JDIC lists

SEI SHÔ ikiru ikasu ikeru umareru umare umu ou haeru hayasu ki nama naru nasu musu u asa iki iku ike ubu umai e oi gyû kurumi gose sa jô sû so sô chiru naba niu nyû fu mi mô yoi ryû (phew!)

39 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-03-11 08:46 ID:XKSiDYsJ

>>1 You'll be able to somewhat understand Japanese quickly.
But you'll never be able to speak Japanese with proper intonations because most Japanese are too polite to correct your Japanese.

The basic grammatical rules are supposed to be easy.
But they have teineigo hanashikotoba hougen kenjougo sonkeigo and the verbs are different from each others.
You don't have to remember hougen but you have to know the differences between teineigo, hanashikotoba, kenjougo, sonkeigo.

Most non-Japanese speakers who think he/she can speak Japanese or think he/she is perfect know only hanashikotoba or teineigo or most likely the mixture of both which is pretty odd.

My advice is this.
Decide whether you wanna study hanashikotoba or teineigo, first.
Always pay attention so that you won't mix those two.
If you master teineigo, then try understanding sonkeigo/kenjougo.
Some Japanese cannot speak/write sonkeigo/kenjougo correctly and they are considered uneducated low class people.

40 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-04-14 04:47 ID:mI3MleRr

I suggest you read and listen to Japanese in your spare time. The more you read, the more you understand how sentences are supposed to be written and you get a feel for it :3 The more you listen, the easier it is to pick out words you know and eventually even say them correctly without having to look at them.

41 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-04-14 19:36 ID:e3Y7qJJ2


> hanashikotoba or teineigo or most likely the mixture of both which is pretty odd.

Since that has been brought up I would like to ask for clarification on something since you seem to know the subject well.

I have guessed by myself from reading Japanese that these two forms are commonly mixed within sentences, but it depends whether the expression is... facing towards the other party, or internal.

For example, 「彼は来ると思います。」
And I think, 「彼が来るのはずっと待っていました。」

Is this correct?

Then, what did you mean by a mixture? Ending a sentence with ~masu one minute, and then plainly the next?

That would be weird in a conversation I guess, but I seem to remember seeing it in internet posts and such, perhaps to make a single sentence a bit more polite, often at the end of a post... I don't know.

42 名前: スッテプ : 2008-05-23 04:20 ID:wAaibhKh

u guys are amazing!! i know this topic was aimed straight to poster number 1 but i just seemed to learn soo much and its true when this person said that if you aren't dedicated then dont even try starting and that you'll need to try going to classes rather than thinking u can do this on your own cause i started out that way and after buying so many books, im back to stage1:( and i feel so sad about this. but after reading the post i have decided to take on a course for japanese lessons and will try again.. i guess i really love japanese but just dont have the will power to continue!! thanks so much guys!!

43 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-05-24 03:54 ID:Heaven


Maybe it's something like あなたはご存知と思うが, when it should be ___様はご存知と思っております?

I can only write sentences in hanashikotoba, I'm hopeless at teineigo! I have to force myself to memorize set phrases like ご多忙中とは存じますが、お手数ですが真剣にご検討しておりますので、ご返答のほど宜しくお願いいたします。

And I don't even know if it's correct!

44 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-05-26 14:45 ID:3IQKNChE

I just decided to try to learn some, just for fun and understanding a little of what was being said in anime, and ended up taking exams in it and I am going to study Japanese at university this autumn. I never had a teacher or any plan or anything, just bought some books(let's learn kanji is good) and watched a lot of anime and played games and tried to read some manga. I have spent two years doing so in my spare time and I can now understand most of a normal conversation and read simple texts like manga etc.

Short version, just go for it, spend time on it(don't believe you'll accomplish anything by studying 5 minutes every other week) and don't give up. You will pick it up eventually.

45 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-07-01 10:59 ID:CSqbRuBE

Watching anime and dramas in Japanese with English (or other) subtitles works really well... your brain subconsciously links what it's hearing with what it's reading.

46 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-07-01 13:46 ID:3othPzrF

It doesn't work well at all. You'll pick up some adjectives and such but it won't get you anywhere.

47 名前: 名無しさん@日本語勉強中 : 2008-07-01 13:54 ID:Heaven

It helps in getting used to hearing the language but that's about it.

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