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Notecards

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Notecards

Postby lonelytraveler8 » Thu 07.23.2009 10:49 pm

Hello, my current notecard system is very effective, but I'm considering expanding on it a bit, but am unsure whether it'll work the way I intend.

I currently have the English meaning on one side with the hiragana/katakana on the other side. As I learn Kanji, I'm adding the kanji for the word on the bottom of the hiragana/katakana side.

I'm about to pause my vocab and grammar lessons to go on a kanji learning spree so that I can start writing much of my current vocabulary using the necessary kanji. As I learn, I'm currently planning to scrap old notecards and replace them with cards that do not have the hiragana/katakana at all, except where it's actually part of the word. A couple examples:

Current card:

to eat | たべる (plus some conjugations and verb category)
Sunday | にちようび

Planning to replace with:

to eat | 食べる
Sunday | 日曜日

What do you think? I have separate notecards for just the individual kanji, of course. So I'd generally be able to quickly refer to them should I happen to forget something.
Last edited by lonelytraveler8 on Fri 07.24.2009 8:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Notecards

Postby Harisenbon » Thu 07.23.2009 10:57 pm

I usually put the furigana over the kanji when I'm learning the words, and use my thumb to cover the furigana when I look at the kanji.

So I'll test like this:
:thumb over furigana: -> Kanji reading
:take thumb off: -> English Meaning
:Check english Meaning: -> Next card

When you're testing Eng->JP there's really no reason to cover up the furigana, since you're trying to remember the pronunciation anyways, so I don't worry about try to put my thumb over the furigana.

It's best to keep the furigana on there, just as a reminder.
It's amazing how easy it is to start practicing the wrong pronunciation of a word because you mistakenly misread a kanji and think it's correct.
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Re: Notecards

Postby lonelytraveler8 » Thu 07.23.2009 11:22 pm

Harisenbon wrote:It's amazing how easy it is to start practicing the wrong pronunciation of a word because you mistakenly misread a kanji and think it's correct.


That's true. If I keep the furigana small in the new notecards, then that'll probably be the best way to go. The way I currently have it, it's hard to focus on the kanji rather than the hiragana/katakana, and I'd like to practice quickly recognizing words through kanji while using my notecards. That's the goal of the adjustments to my system.
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Re: Notecards

Postby jcdietz03 » Thu 07.23.2009 11:34 pm

Are you using Genki?
Most of the time, when you learn a word (using Genki), you do not know the kanji for that word. So in such a case, I make a temporary card with the kana on one side and the meaning on the other. During review, look at the kana side of the card. If you know the word well, do not bother checking the reverse side of the card.

If I know the kanji for a word, I make a card with the kanji on one side and the meaning and kana on the other.
During review of those cards, first I read the kanji side of the card. If you think you know, I wouldn't bother checking the reverse side of the card. When you are done, flip the cards over and look at the answer side from before. Your task now is to write the word using all kanji you know on a separate piece of paper.
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Re: Notecards

Postby lonelytraveler8 » Thu 07.23.2009 11:59 pm

That's basically what I already do. I'm in the process of going through the kanji taught in Genki and picking out 15 at a time to learn so that I can start writing using the kanji more.

Basically, I'm intending to replace many of those "temporary" cards that use only kana. I'm just trying to find the best format to replace them with, and I think I have the right idea now. It won't change the way I study, but I hope to get my eyes into the habit of looking at the kanji in Genki before the furigana, even if I haven't learned the kanji yet. I've noticed that I've been able to more easily learn the kanji that I've looked at before.
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Re: Notecards

Postby Sairana » Fri 07.24.2009 1:00 am

lonelytraveler8 wrote:I'm in the process of going through the kanji taught in Genki and picking out 15 at a time


Curious, are you choosing which ones you pick out? Cos Genki kind of does the legwork for you. Did you notice the extra practice in the back of the book for each chapter? Chapter 1 focuses on hiragana, Chapter 2 focuses on katakana, but from chapter 3+, it introduces 15 or so kanji including stroke orders, then has a few exercises using them. (Chapter 3's kanji starts on page 262)

If you compound the recommended Genki kanji, they kind of roll into each other as you move through the text, so you'll get reinforcement as you move along, too.

Just a thought. :P
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Re: Notecards

Postby Nostrum » Fri 07.24.2009 1:19 pm

Ok here's my opinion: it would be best to have Japanese (kanji) > hiragana + english. The ideal would be to have Japanese sentences (in Kanji, from japanese sources) > hiragana + definitions though, in the long run.

It is very bad to have English > Japanese, especially English > Hiragana. This is because you are able to say any given English word in many ways in Japanese, so it is not a fair test, and because most Japanese words are never written in hiragana, so that is useless anyway.

The reason is is even better to have Japanese sentences on the question side is because sentences give you *context*. A single word, such as "to eat" might not need much context, but if you get into anything more complicated (for example, grammar), you need context to actually understand the terms.

P.S. 日曜日 is にち・よう・び

EDIT: I also suggest reading All Japanese All The Time, a site which suggests how to learn Japanese.
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Re: Notecards

Postby lonelytraveler8 » Fri 07.24.2009 2:26 pm

@Sairana

I know Genki guides the reader through the Kanji, but I find that much of the kanji taught is not always useable right away, and much of the kanji in the later chapters is used in vocab taught in chapters 3 and 4. So to make the answer short, yeah I'm picking them out myself. I'll probably do this for the next 30-45 kanji and then go back to following the book.

@Nostrum

I really like the idea of making notecards with sentences. I'll probably start doing that once I know more Kanji. Unfortunately, I don't know enough Kanji to be able to write everything I know without using kana, and I'd like any sentence notecards to be strictly kanji, except where kana is used normally, of course.

I'll also look into that site you linked. Tips on studying are always welcome.
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Re: Notecards

Postby Nostrum » Fri 07.24.2009 2:49 pm

I find AJATT to be pretty motivational at least, myself :P If you do decide to do Remembering the Kanji, that book that he recommends at AJATT, there is a community that is doing that and shares their mnemonics/stories at kanji.koohii.com by the way. (If you haven't read about RTK yet, basically you go through all 2000 Jouyou [common use] kanji, and learn their meaning and writing based on stories which incorporate their meanings and the radicals that make them up. It takes surprisingly little time to complete all these kanji, and it is really helpful for when you read actual Japanese stuff)
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Re: Notecards

Postby lonelytraveler8 » Fri 07.24.2009 8:15 pm

I've actually heard of Remembering the Kanji. I'll probably give it a shot at some point. At the moment, though, I'm very happy with my current system and probably will be until I finish up the Kanji in Genki I.

There's a lot of reading to do on that website, so I'll probably read through it in parts haha
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