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Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

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Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby makisushi » Sat 07.12.2008 4:26 pm

I am a beginner and I mostly do self study now (going through JFBP,Pimsleur and I grabbed Genki books recently) and i have this problem that makes me really disappointed in my knowledge and intelect,when i try to say something i know to my Japanese friends i just mess up everything i will use tabemasu for drinking nomimasu,mix up trivial things which i KNOW and then after uttering them realizing what i said.... will read hiragana and katakana wrong although i can write them all up from my mind and when reading from the book will get all of them right.................did you guys have problems using things you have learned in the beginning or is it just a problem with me?
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Sat 07.12.2008 4:32 pm

Two things:
1. You can't learn without making mistakes.
2. If you haven't practiced speaking, you won't be able to speak well until you do practice speaking.

So your experiences are perfectly normal, it's all part of the learning process. It's not always smooth, unfortunately.
-Chris Kern
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby becki_kanou » Sat 07.12.2008 10:05 pm

What Yudan said.

It's completely natural to make mistakes when you're starting out, and no one expects you to speak perfect Japanese from the get-go. Don't worry about making mistakes, and definitely don't let a fear of making mistakes turn into a fear of speaking.

You said you have Japanese friends and that's great. I've found (on the whole) Japanese people tend to be very forgiving and tolerant of learners beginning to study their language (although quite often too easily impressed), so I really wouldn't worry about making mistakes when speaking to them.
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby Dustin » Sun 07.13.2008 10:53 pm

I have gone through the exact same process.

It is all a matter of it becoming almost automatic, just like our native language.
I still randomly swap words i learned years ago from time to time when I have not used them in a while.

Good luck with your future studies, and keep up with the speaking practice, even if pimsleur is all you can do sometimes.

-Dustin Quigley
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby Mike Cash » Mon 07.14.2008 8:38 am

Anybody who says he never had those or similar woes is a damned liar.

Want to know how to show consideration for your Japanese listeners and (unduly) impress the hell out of your friends who don't speak Japanese?.....Just speak up nice and loud, no matter how riddled your speech is with mistakes.

Mistakes are mistakes, whether they're loud or whether people have to strain to hear you, so it just shows more consideration for people who are being kind enough to wade through your mistakes to not inflict upon them the burden of having to struggle just to hear you. And your friends who don't speak Japanese will most likely mistake volume for proficiency; it seems to be a common trait.

At the meeting of my photo club here in Kiryu this month myself and a Japanese guy were called upon to go around and critique all the photos the members had submitted for consideration.

He had some good stuff to say....but mumbled and spoke so softly that I doubt anyone caught much of what he said.

I had nothing brilliant to say....but I opened my mouth and let it out loudly enough that at least it got inside people's ears.

Eyes were glazed over while he was talking. I got a few nods and other sorts of feedback. His Japanese and his ideas were far better than mine, but I did better in managing to communicate what I had to say.

Holding back over concerns of making errors is the single largest self-imposed roadblock you could ever have on the road to Japanese proficiency.
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby makisushi » Mon 07.14.2008 9:53 pm

Im glad to hear that from you guys because i really get depressed when i do that, and lose motivation since i have this feeling i am not learning anything for instance when i self study at home and read out loud i will read ka as ki or something else wrong although i will stop and say oh thats not ki its ka, but i guess i had the same problem with English when i read half of the words wrong because i didnt practice reading enough.

Anyway thank you for feedback [= .
Im thinking of switching to Genki for the summer at least because it is much more serious than JFBP 1 which i used in my japanese intro course and we covered only around half of JFBP during that course which is why i didnt learn a lot from it.
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 07.15.2008 3:48 pm

Only by straining your muscles, will they ever grow. A child falls over a few times before they ever master walking.

You are not the only one to have made mistakes while speaking or trying to remember words.

Have you ever called an angel a bicycle or viseversa? I have.. How about calling a person a carrot or the other way around? I have done that too.

Mike is very specific with his praise and criticism, yet, I am sure he has stumbled over Japanese every once and awhile. Although it might have been more frequent when he first started out.

Perhaps, Makisushi, you shouldn't be so hard on yourself. I know for many Americans, they can't understand what it means to be bi-lingual, let alone multi-lingual. My African friends typically speak 4-8 diferrent languages and it impresses me. Then they tell me that they make mistakes all the time. Which impresses me more. At least they are honest. And more specifically honest with themselves.

Continue to struggle, it's the best way to grow.. :mrgreen:
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby AJBryant » Tue 07.15.2008 4:22 pm

I'm reminded of the old joke:

Someone who speaks many languages is called a "polyglot."
Someone who speaks two languages is called "bilingual."
Someone who speaks one language is called "American."


Tony
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Re: Just wondering if you guys ran into simillar problems....

Postby furrykef » Tue 07.15.2008 6:12 pm

My favorite error that I have made is not with Japanese, but with Spanish. (I haven't spoken enough Japanese to really worry about my errors; I already expect my Japanese to be full of them.) There were no native Spanish speakers around to witness it, though. As a joke, I had changed the topic in an IRC channel to something like, "De ahora en adelante se habla solamente español en esta canela," which turned out to mean, "From now on, only Spanish is spoken in this cinnamon." Instead of "canela" I actually wanted "canal", "channel". What really rubbed it in was that the person who noticed the mistake barely spoke a word of Spanish. There was another occasion where the same person couldn't tell "madre" ("mother") from "mierda" (to put it a bit mildly, "crap")!

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