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Just wondering...

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Just wondering...

Postby Gareth » Wed 09.14.2005 8:56 pm

Now that I've learned Hiragana and Katakana, what should I learn next? Should I learn grammar, vocabulary, or start learning Kanji?

EDIT: Oh, nevermind, sorry. I forgot to read the "Read this before posting a question" thread...
Last edited by Gareth on Wed 09.14.2005 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby kanadajin » Wed 09.14.2005 9:41 pm

lol... vocabulary is what i learned befor anything... if i were you i'd learn vocabulary then grammer then kanji kanji's not really important..
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby mandolin » Thu 09.15.2005 1:35 am

Kanji isn't important? Only if you're not interested in /reading/. If you want to read anything you will have to learn kanji at some point.

Most publications do not include furigana for every kanji. Most books and newspapers, for example. Exceptions are some mangas, and children's books, and kanji from outside the 1,945 Jouyou Kanji list.
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby redfoxer » Thu 09.15.2005 8:50 am

what he means is kanji isnt so important as vocab/grammer early on in the learning progress. think about english. children always learn to speak (vocab/grammer) before they learn to write. If i saw a kid who was aged around 4 who knew how to write but not speak, id think that would be some weeeeird kid.
日本語はとても面白いと思いますよ!私は日本語が大好きです!
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby toni » Thu 09.15.2005 9:39 am

Learn Kanji and you'll learn vocabulary, too.
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby Kates » Thu 09.15.2005 10:42 am

Okay, I said this yesterday in another thread. >_< DO THEM ALL. Why do you just have to chose one? Make a schedule, like; Mon/Wed: grammar, Tues: kanji, Thurs: vocab, Fri: review.

You can't learn one bit of any language at a time... you have to study it AS A LANGUAGE. And anyway, I don't even think you CAN study one bit of a language without reaching into another. Studying one new kanji, you will (or SHOULD) learn new vocab words that use that kanji. Studying new grammar, you will learn new words to use in context with that grammar.

Bottom line: Study it all--a little bit each week. You have to tackle Japanese as a language--not bits and pieces of one.
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby WacKostRacKo » Thu 09.15.2005 10:56 am

Culture and history as well, if you can.a countries' language is derived from its culture.
tanuki wrote:
How about:

外人: これはすしです。すしが好きです。
日本人: おお!日本語が上手ですね。
外人: Erm....what?


story of my life...
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby Die » Fri 09.16.2005 2:45 pm

The professors at my college like to introduce kana first (hiragana primarily first), then move on to learning vocabulary and conversation, as well as culture of course. You don't even learn a single kanji in the first semester of Japanese here...it's really a bad way to begin learning in my opinion, especially for someone who wants to get the most out of learning the language in the least amount of time.

I would primarily focus on kanji as soon as possible. If I had a chance to start over learning kanji, I would pay more attention to identifying/learning the 70 or so radicals/roots as well.
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby redfoxer » Fri 09.16.2005 4:09 pm

you see, i dont understand why everyone wants to learn kanji so fast... just cos you can recognise kanji doesnt automatically mean you can read japanese text. learners shouldnt generalise a language in such a way...

*oncoming rant*

left > i think you professor was teaching in a really good way in my opinion. hes building you a foundation...i dont understand why so many people wana learn japanese as fast as possible. note. *its not going to happen*. learning a language takes time. learning hirigana and katakana helps majorly because it helps you pronounce the vocab. thats why (most) people always start there. maybe your teacher should of scatter a few kanji here and there but with the vocab and grammer you learnt over the first semester, when kanji does gets introduced into sentences, you should be able to see how they work more easier, rather then wonder whats the difference between on-yumi and kun-yumi and what readings to use, so on so forth.

*rant over*
日本語はとても面白いと思いますよ!私は日本語が大好きです!
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby Die » Fri 09.16.2005 10:38 pm

Actually, not everyone feels that way. I've already got the whole Japanese faculty at my college to blame for this. I am not saying that you should rush into learning kanji if you're not competent. Nor am I saying that you can read Japanese fluently if all you know are kanji characters (that's why the Chinese cannot read Japanese fluently). Don't put words into my mouth please.

I am saying that if you're going to use your time economicly you might as well learn kanji characters and the whole background of kanji (their on and kun readings as you mentioned, as well as the radicals used to organize them, their various meanings, and so forth) as soon as possible while you're learning the grammar and vocab. The Japanese professers at my univesity (all female just for the record) are all native Japanese. It is in my opinion that they feel that foreigners cannot comprehand reproducing kanji characters so soon into learning the language. I personally have done some research and have noticed other universities introducing around 80 or so kanji characters in the first semester of study. I am hesitant to believe my instructors are introducing enough content in one semester. Our Japanese program is relatively new here, so this is understandable. I hope later on they change the practice. In the end, it's money wasted on the student's part for not learning as much as they could have.

And don't get me started on the piece of crap textbooks and work book they choose to use for the first two years of Japanese, Nakama -- it's horrible. Plain and simple. I feel sorry for anyone who is taking Japanese 100/200 courses at my college...it's better to just self study the first four semesters' content (you can do it in a few months or less) and try getting permission to get into a 300 level class.
Last edited by Die on Fri 09.16.2005 10:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Just wondering...

Postby Kates » Fri 09.16.2005 11:01 pm

Learning NO kanji in your first semester of a college Japanese course is sad. FIRST GRADE Japansese children learn 80 kanji. Kanji is essential to understanding Japanese, and I think it poor form for 100/101 classes to skip kanji lessons. Please don't think your teachers think you and your classmates 'can't handle' kanji yet. I'm sure they have your best interests in mind--and think it may be better to focus on grammar and vocab before delving into kanji--which CAN be difficult and daunting. As a student of their program, I'd say it's your DUTY to tell them what you feel about your Japanese language education.

However... I highly doubt that your class moves much slower than any other 100/101 Japanese class at any other university. What you lack in kanji, I'm certain you make up for in grammar, speaking skills, vocab or some other area. Luckily, kanji are very easy to self-teach--just find a really good kanji workbook. (I highly recommend the "Basic Kanji Book" by Bonjinsha Co. LTD. If you need the ISBN, I can give it to you.) Since you will be learning vocab in class, most likely you will learn the kanji used to write those words.

Good luck in your studies. I hope you aren't completely disappointed by the program you are in... you just have to find ways to make up for what it lacks.
Last edited by Kates on Fri 09.16.2005 11:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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