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increasing your vocabulary

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increasing your vocabulary

Postby crowfeather » Sat 07.08.2006 3:03 pm

Several times I have read posts from people ( especially beginners) who want suggestions for ways to increase their vocabulary.

I just followed the link to the site with the words, kanji and grammar on the various levels of the JLPT tests.

Level 4 ( the easiest one) has a list of 680 vocabulary words. That looks like a good place to start.

the site url:
http://www.mkjapanese.co.jp
The lists are in the free material tab

Then the new Kodansha Communicative Dictionary has sample sentences for most of the words as an aid to learn to use them.

The site also has a list of the first 80 kanji to be learned.

Barbara

opps-- has to fix the link
Last edited by crowfeather on Sat 07.08.2006 3:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby paul_b » Sat 07.08.2006 3:13 pm

crowfeather wrote:
Level 4 ( the easiest one) has a list of 680 vocabulary words. That looks like a good place to start.

the site url:
http://www.mkjapanese.co.jp/Download.htm

Then the new Kodansha Communicative Dictionary has sample sentences for most of the words as an aid to learn to use them.

Edict and (reluctant as I may be to admit it) Eijirou have a massive number of example sentences. (Quality not guaranteed on either site but correction suggests made with the proper form for Edict will be promptly addressed ;-)
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby Schattenjedi » Sat 07.08.2006 3:20 pm

You seem to not like Eijirou so much. How come?
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby Nibble » Sat 07.08.2006 4:03 pm

I would also like to know what you dislike about Eijirou. I have found it to be very useful, especially for the example sentences.
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby TrilinguisT » Sat 07.08.2006 6:44 pm

Schattenjedi wrote:
You seem to not like Eijirou so much. How come?


to me, eijiro looks too intimidating
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby zankoku na tenshi » Sat 07.08.2006 8:35 pm

TrilinguisT wrote:
Schattenjedi wrote:
You seem to not like Eijirou so much. How come?


to me, eijiro looks too intimidating


O_o that does look a little intimidating... but that's probably just because I know almost no kanji... ^_^()

I can't find the example sentences on Edict, though... (LOL, ごめん。。。)what part of the site are they in?
[insert witty comment here]
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby richvh » Sat 07.08.2006 8:50 pm

Look up a word, and if there's an [Ex] tag, click on it for example sentences.
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby CajunCoder » Sat 07.08.2006 9:24 pm

I absolutely love 英辞郎. You're doing yourself a great disservice if you're letting all the Japanese scare you. Why should you run from the language you're trying to learn? =P

Anyway, ALC/英辞郎 is an invaluble to me when I wish to find out how to say something, or get some examples of how to use words. Its the next closest thing if you don't have a knowledgeable person to ask.
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby Infidel » Sun 07.09.2006 3:06 am

Personally I like vocabulearn. I really picked it up to work on my pronounciation because my written japanese course doesn't have audio. It has been increasing my passive vocabulary. Unfortunatly, it has a few flaws. For example, it was obviously made by some english speaker who gave a list to 1 Japanese speaker. The Japanese speaker would then give a Japanese equivilant to each word. As most of us know by now, lots of words do not directly translate but there are no explainations provided.

I was specifically surprised when the english speaker said "sister" and the japanese speaker said kyoudai. Right, but wrong. Of course brother = otooto isn't much better, right but wrong again.

Still, any student of a language should know that a thesarus is no substitute for a dictionary and that's what vocabulearn is basically, a thesarus. If you hear a word that sounds useful look it up, but at least it will be bouncing around in your head for later reference. And it DOES have sound, which is of course the reason I bought it in the first place.

Otherwise you can just type "japanese vocabulary" at amazon.com and go down the list.

As usual, the most effective way to add vocabulary words I've found is when creating my own Japanese sentences. Whenever I end up having to ask the question, "What is the japanese word for,...." Looking it up goes a long way towards adding that word into my active vocabulary.

I do wish they had more than one japanese speaker too. All of the japanese is by the same female.
Last edited by Infidel on Sun 07.09.2006 3:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
なるほど。
さっぱりわからん。
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby TrilinguisT » Sun 07.09.2006 3:15 am

i increase my vocabulary by learning new kanji. New kanji spawns new words, thus a double super effective benefitial system. you learn new kanji and at the same time you learn new words.

infidel's method to increase vocabulary isnt bad, but one downside of it that i have come realize is; its not for those who are lazy to jot notes on the new word, and you easily forget it if you dont use the word in 7-10 examples as practice for the new word.

cajun coder >

i'll give that place a try
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby paul_b » Sun 07.09.2006 3:20 am

Schattenjedi wrote:
You seem to not like Eijirou so much. How come?

Professional rivalry, well technically amateur rivalry. :-P

As far as technical differences go the main lack in the Eijirou example sentences is that they are only indexed as plain text.

For example if you search on 中 then there is no way to tell which are 中(ちゅう), 中(じゅう) or 中(なか).
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby Infidel » Sun 07.09.2006 3:26 am

I really wish the kanji in jidc had rubi like the new kodansha communicative dictionary's example sentences.

I of course realize that retroactively adding them is a major task, or I would have actually suggested it. If my own Japanese were better I would be able to volounteer for it. Then number of sentences that I could modify now is rather pathetic.
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby paul_b » Sun 07.09.2006 3:34 am

Infidel wrote:
I really wish the kanji in jidc had rubi like the new kodansha communicative dictionary's example sentences.

I of course realize that retroactively adding them is a major task, or I would have actually suggested it.

It's suggested from time to time. Jim hasn't been interested it because
a) display of furigana isn't straightforward (Firefox _still_ doesn't natively support the <ruby> tag although there are extensions for it).
b) as you say, large job.

What I recommend is from the customized version link on the home page of WWWJDIC check "Examples: check here □ if you would like to see the words indexing each Japanese sentence."

Otherwise if somebody offered me suitable recompense I could put together something myself. :p
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby zengargoyle » Sun 07.09.2006 3:40 am

paul_b wrote:
Professional rivalry, well technically amateur rivalry. :-P

:o
As far as technical differences go the main lack in the Eijirou example sentences is that they are only indexed as plain text.

For example if you search on 中 then there is no way to tell which are 中(ちゅう), 中(じゅう) or 中(なか).


plus, the EDICT material is free to download and use. ;)
the Eijirou, seems you need to pay for a key to unencrypt the downloads. :(
but i still use the ALC web page every once in a while...

Update
re: Ruby... that's the same reason i haven't tried to add ruby option to the forums... the firefox plugin actually rewrites the ruby markup into tables.... and figuring out a way for easy input has been hard. who want's to type <ruby><rbc><rb>漢</rb><rb>字</rb></rbc><rtc><rp>(</rp><rt>かん</rt><rt>じ</rt><rp>)</rp></rtc></ruby> :( arrrggghhh!
Last edited by zengargoyle on Sun 07.09.2006 3:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: increasing your vocabulary

Postby giles » Sun 07.09.2006 7:27 am

crowfeather, do you mean http://www.mlcjapanese.co.jp?
(http://www.mkjapanese.co.jp doesn't go anywhere.) The MLC site is very useful.
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