Author Topic: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress  (Read 242 times)

Kwill

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East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« on: September 22, 2018, 05:31:48 AM »
I'm starting this to spin off one topic from a journal discussion. Feel free to join in with your goals, progress, tips, and tricks related to studying an East Asian language.

I started studying Japanese in 1991 and passed level 1 of the JLPT in 2009. I use Japanese at work, but I'm also using Crunchyroll for listening practice.

I started studying Korean on my own in 2016, and I'm still very much a beginner. I'm feeling unreasonably frustrated with it because my Korean is so far behind my Japanese, and I'd love to hear tips for speeding up the process. So far I've finished 'First Step Korean' and 'Learn to Speak Korean 1' on Coursera, in addition to trying and giving up on various other books and websites. I'm using flashcards on Quizlet to review vocabulary, and I occasionally watch Korean dramas on Dramafever. I read a little bit of Korean at work but could do a lot more if I could catch up.

What languages are you studying? What are your best tools? What do you find the most difficult?

Not There Yet

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2018, 04:04:09 PM »
I'd like this information also - I'd like to learn Korean, but without spending a lot to do so. 

Freedomin5

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2018, 04:20:34 PM »
Attend weekly meet ups with Korean native speakers and do a language exchange (one hour Korean lesson for one hour English lesson). Years back, when DH wanted to learn Chinese, that was what he would do. Found people wanting to chat with a native English speaker through meetup.com, then hung out with them for several hours. Two hours every week turned into four hours, to the point that we were traveling and taking weekend trips with these new friends and using Chinese most of the time.

He also started reading Chinese (for you it would be Korean) books and newspapers, and writing down the translations of whatever words he didnít know.

Kwill

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2018, 04:23:30 PM »
Hi Not There Yet!

Here are the links for the things I've used and liked for Korean so far. All are potentially free with subscription options. I pay for Dramafever but use the others for free.


For Japanese, the ones I still use are Crunchyroll and sometimes Kanji Koohii.

Kwill

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2018, 04:32:33 PM »
Attend weekly meet ups with Korean native speakers and do a language exchange (one hour Korean lesson for one hour English lesson). Years back, when DH wanted to learn Chinese, that was what he would do. Found people wanting to chat with a native English speaker through meetup.com, then hung out with them for several hours. Two hours every week turned into four hours, to the point that we were traveling and taking weekend trips with these new friends and using Chinese most of the time.

He also started reading Chinese (for you it would be Korean) books and newspapers, and writing down the translations of whatever words he didnít know.

Hi Freedomin5! That sounds great. Part of my frustration is related to not feeling like I have much connection to the country to be putting so much effort in--this is coming from work rather than an independent personal interest. Maybe it would help to be practising with real people.

I've met a couple times with a native speaker, but I didn't know enough Korean to really be doing language exchange. It seems like there's an initial hurdle to get past before it's possible to spend time talking. Or maybe it would have worked better if we had gone into the meeting with an agreed structure for language exchange, rather than just meeting for coffee.

When you were spending all that time with the Chinese speakers, did you start learning the language as well?

Freedomin5

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2018, 04:43:14 PM »
The first several months, DH brought his textbook with him, or brought the book he was currently reading and asked about words and phrases that he didnít understand. For example, there were often phrases or idiots for which the translation didnít make sense. So yes, it was very structured.

I already spoke conversational Chinese, so I only joined them for trips and the first meetup (so the other party would know that DH isnít some creepy white stalker with an Asian fetish).

The way Iíve improved my Chinese over the years is to use it more at work (started accepting Chinese clients), and I took a position teaching a university course in Chinese. Iíve found that you really have to use the language with native speakers in order to build and maintain it, so if you have no job opportunities to use Korean, then find social opportunities to do so.

Not There Yet

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2018, 08:30:52 PM »
Thanks Kwill!  I've also heard it's useful to watch Korean Language videos with English subtitles.  I'm thinking of ordering this - https://www.amazon.com/dp/581990608X/?coliid=IWJJ2MWJR10JM&colid=2I9TBW5PR7FJ0&psc=0&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Twelve discs - that should do it!

Freedomin5

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2018, 09:30:34 PM »
Thanks Kwill!  I've also heard it's useful to watch Korean Language videos with English subtitles.  I'm thinking of ordering this - https://www.amazon.com/dp/581990608X/?coliid=IWJJ2MWJR10JM&colid=2I9TBW5PR7FJ0&psc=0&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Twelve discs - that should do it!

Having spent many years teaching Chinese people how to speak English as a second language, experience tells me this is not true because you end up reading the subtitles and not paying attention to the oral language. Also, itís hard to figure out which Korean word you just heard matches which English word on the screen.

A better method is to watch Korean videos with Korean subtitles (you will need to learn the Korean basics first). Then youíre getting both auditory and visual input.

yakamashii

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2018, 11:48:42 PM »
Thanks Kwill!  I've also heard it's useful to watch Korean Language videos with English subtitles.  I'm thinking of ordering this - https://www.amazon.com/dp/581990608X/?coliid=IWJJ2MWJR10JM&colid=2I9TBW5PR7FJ0&psc=0&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Twelve discs - that should do it!

Having spent many years teaching Chinese people how to speak English as a second language, experience tells me this is not true because you end up reading the subtitles and not paying attention to the oral language. Also, itís hard to figure out which Korean word you just heard matches which English word on the screen.

A better method is to watch Korean videos with Korean subtitles (you will need to learn the Korean basics first). Then youíre getting both auditory and visual input.

I agree that same-language subtitles are most effective. I started learning Japanese 17 years ago and am now a J-E translator (so, like, understanding Japanese is half my job), and I still take something away almost every time I watch Japanese TV with Japanese subs.

Kwill

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #9 on: Today at 01:37:23 AM »
Thanks Kwill!  I've also heard it's useful to watch Korean Language videos with English subtitles.  I'm thinking of ordering this - https://www.amazon.com/dp/581990608X/?coliid=IWJJ2MWJR10JM&colid=2I9TBW5PR7FJ0&psc=0&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Twelve discs - that should do it!

Having spent many years teaching Chinese people how to speak English as a second language, experience tells me this is not true because you end up reading the subtitles and not paying attention to the oral language. Also, itís hard to figure out which Korean word you just heard matches which English word on the screen.

A better method is to watch Korean videos with Korean subtitles (you will need to learn the Korean basics first). Then youíre getting both auditory and visual input.

This seems a good point. Dramafever is a streaming site for Korean dramas and maybe some Taiwanese ones as well, but I think it only offers foreign language subtitles (English, Spanish, Portuguese and Chinese) on and off, not same-language captions. I wonder if it would help if I tried re-watching a series I liked, this time without any captions.

Kwill

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #10 on: Today at 01:47:53 AM »
I agree that same-language subtitles are most effective. I started learning Japanese 17 years ago and am now a J-E translator (so, like, understanding Japanese is half my job), and I still take something away almost every time I watch Japanese TV with Japanese subs.

That's neat. Until you and Freedomin5 mentioned it, I wouldn't have thought of watching TV with same-language subs as a method to seek out.

Japanese is a big part of my job, but my options for legal viewing of Japanese TV are more limited because I live in the UK. I've used Crunchyroll for Japanese anime for years, watching with the subtitles turned off, but they recently changed their viewer to one that doesn't allow you to turn off subtitles. For now I'm watching with Spanish or German subtitles, but I think it might be time to find a different site.

Do you or does anyone here know of good, legal ways to view Japanese or Korean TV from abroad with same-language subtitles?

Kwill

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #11 on: Today at 01:57:34 AM »
The first several months, DH brought his textbook with him, or brought the book he was currently reading and asked about words and phrases that he didnít understand. For example, there were often phrases or idiots for which the translation didnít make sense. So yes, it was very structured.

I already spoke conversational Chinese, so I only joined them for trips and the first meetup (so the other party would know that DH isnít some creepy white stalker with an Asian fetish).

The way Iíve improved my Chinese over the years is to use it more at work (started accepting Chinese clients), and I took a position teaching a university course in Chinese. Iíve found that you really have to use the language with native speakers in order to build and maintain it, so if you have no job opportunities to use Korean, then find social opportunities to do so.

Sorry, I had forgotten you've been in China a long time. That's great that you've gotten to such a professional stage with the language.

Structuring the meetings would help, I think.

Googling around my current town, there seem to be a lot of potential options for meeting Korean people, but it's hard to know quite where to start. It's also depressing to think of setting aside more time to do something for work on weekends when I'm already doing a lot on evenings and weekends, but I think I could put in for comp time for it if it is sufficiently structured that I feel comfortable calling it work. From that point of view, setting up a formal language exchange might be best.

expatartist

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #12 on: Today at 02:41:37 AM »
A better method is to watch Korean videos with Korean subtitles (you will need to learn the Korean basics first). Then youíre getting both auditory and visual input.

+1 On every visit to China I watch Chinese TV, it's really helpful to see the characters as people speak. Reading English is translation vs immersion.

yakamashii

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Re: East Asian language study -- share your goals and progress
« Reply #13 on: Today at 05:38:09 AM »
Do you or does anyone here know of good, legal ways to view Japanese or Korean TV from abroad with same-language subtitles?

Nothing free, but Netflix has plenty of Japanese content, and a lot (if not most) of it is subbed. VPN + Netflix = East Asian Netflix here we come. Can't speak to the quality of the Korean content, but the original Netflix Japanese dramas are better than anything I've seen on TV here.