My Journey of Learning Japanese
Wtitten by Jenny
I was exposed to Japanese language through manga and animation since my secondary school. Like most of the anime otaku, we love to watch animation but we couldn’t understand Japanese. That makes us frustrated and has an urge to learn and understand Japanese. It is the thought and wish that I could watch the anime without the need of depending on the subtitles leads me to the journey of learning Japanese.
I started to use online resources to learn Japanese. To master Hiragana isn’t difficult, but katakana took longer time. Till now I still unable to recognize Katakana in a second. I learnt basic language structure and some simple vocabulary. I was determined to take Japanese course as minor when I would be going to enter my university in one month time. However, things didn’t always go as planned. Japanese wasn’t included in the lists of choice of foreign language that a medical student could choose from. I had been putting so much effort so I didn’t want to give up. My flame was still burning. Thus I decided to sacrifice my study and leisure time to attend extra Japanese class. It lasted for about one year and the heavy-loaded medicine curriculum had rubbed down my enthusiasm and forced me to stop learning Japanese at the end. And all those what I had learnt was buried at somewhere deep inside my brain.
It took 5 years for me to complete my medicine degree. And I know it’s the time for me to begin learning Japanese again. I use Minna no Nihongo main textbook, grammar and translation and kanji books.
If you are interested, you can download the e-books through https://japandaisuki.com/free-download-ebook-minna-no-nihongo-iii-honsatsu-book-audio-cd/
It is better to start every lesson from Minna no Nihongo Grammar and Translation Book to memorize the vocabulary first and glance through the sentence structure. There is video clip available on you tube for the reading and pronunciation of each vocabulary in each lesson.
After understanding the vocabulary and grammar structure, let’s use the main textbook and practice writing, reading and listening. Minna no Nihongo Kanji Book should be used together too to reinforce the mastering of Japanese.
To memorize basic greeting phrase isn’t difficult but to be able to communicate for basic conversation isn’t as easy as I thought too. It really takes time and a lot of effort. The Japanese sentence structure is very different compared to other language but I think I am at the better side as being a Chinese, Kanji are quite similar. A learning partner is important as you can motivate and encourage each other. It is more fun and efficient when you have someone to discuss with and practice speaking. Watching Japanese shows helps a little bit in listening. Choose the shows and anime that you like! I am glad that I had the chance to stay in Japan for one month and exposed to the local environment, as it really contributes in improving my Japanese. My Japanese friends helps a lot in teaching me too. Most of the time I could understand and guess the content of the conversation when others are speaking but when they are speaking directly to me, my mind go blank. But try to speak out things that you want to express, instead of speaking things that you only know.
Learning a new language isn’t an easy thing. It needs persistence and enthusiasm. It depends on what your motive is, how much effort you are willing to put in and how long you will invest your time in. Doing it halfway is a wasteful of time, I would say. I am now just at the starting point of learning Japanese. And it’s still a long journey for me. No matter what your original motive is, let’s work together to nail this language and love Japanese!