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Next step?

Have a textbook or grammar book that you find particularly helpful? What about a learning tip to share with others?

Next step?

Postby TheEnglishKnitter » Thu 06.02.2011 2:27 pm

I have just finished my 40 lesson course on the iphone, learning 5-8 words a day and 1 Katakana and hiragana a day. Not nearly enough fanfare upon completion, I expected a whizzy graphic at least and perhaps a round of applause!
I now 'know' all my kana and can say some basic sentences in Japanese...
such as 'Dare-ga Nihongo-ga wakarimasu ka?'
istart Japanese on the iphone was perfect for me, I have very little time and need 5-minute chunks daily to fit into my toddlers schedule.

I plan to revise what I have learnt so far, try and revise the kana by transcribing all the romaji vocab into kana and complete the Kana Workbook from Japanese for Busy People on my 1-week holiday (with my husband and toddler so I wont have a ton of time!).

Can anyone recommend a next step? Similarly based on bite sized daily learning. I liked the iphone because it was handy and always with me so if my toddler decided on an unexpected nap (rare event) I could whip out my study.

I really don't think I have the time, energy and commitment required for an evening class, I could take a day class based in London so long as I could get the creche hours for my toddler, but as a stay at home Mum taking classes while my toddler is in creche wasn't really par of the plan (when I quit work originally).

Any ideas?
TEK
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Re: Next step?

Postby TheEnglishKnitter » Thu 06.02.2011 2:30 pm

Oh and we are trying to be paperless so text books will end up on my Kindle or iphone.
And cheap/ free because babies cost alot more than you would have thought!
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Re: Next step?

Postby micahcowan » Thu 06.02.2011 5:56 pm

I don't really have anything to recommend for you. My impression (haven't been able to pick through everything exhaustively and verify) is that most mobile phone apps aren't very good or don't provide much coverage. Kindle apps are still ramping up, I haven't seen any Japanese items, and as for Japanese learning materials for the Kindle, I don't think there are any to speak of. There wasn't strong Japanese-language support in the Kindle until the 3rd generation, and there are no Japanese-language books available on the Amazon store that I know of, apart from a handful that are made up of image-only pages (can't highlight or annotate, etc). I don't think there are any decent Japanese language-learning resources for the Kindle currently.

There _are_ non-Amazon Japanese-language books for Japanese. Mainly manga, but also others may be found (in .mobi format) if you do a search for 電子書籍 or the like. The site ebookjapan.jp seems to have books for iPhone, maybe.

There's "My Japanese Language Coach" for Nintendo DS, but unfortunately that's not really recommended, and for good reason. It's a great idea, with some excellent benefits, but it has a few seriously fatal flaws, including that they teach the wrong stroke order for many characters, and force you to use the incorrectly-drawn characters in order to pass their quizzes. That can lead to some pretty nasty habits.

Of course, if you have the 3rd-gen Kindle, then you have Japanese-language websites available to you, so you could try to find some decent Japanese-learning resources on the web (I'm not aware of anything terribly great, though there are of course some basic lessons offered through this site.
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Re: Next step?

Postby micahcowan » Thu 06.02.2011 6:15 pm

Hm. Apparently I'm mistaken about how many resources are available for Kindle. Looks like it's been stepped up a bit since the last time I checked. There are at least some basic Kana introductions, and some (kana-less) grammars. And they have "Kanji de Manga". "Japanese for Dummies", too (NO idea whether that's any good). Can't really comment on the quality on any of those.
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Re: Next step?

Postby TheEnglishKnitter » Fri 06.03.2011 4:44 am

Thank you,I did write to Kindle and mention the lack of a japanese keyboard for searching and downloading resources, in my (very long) feedback to them.
It is a new one so perhaps there is more functionality available via the web instructions - I'll ask my husband to help me.
I think I'll pop down to Waterstones today and see what they have by way of text books and download a sample of the 'dummies' book on my kindle, see which one grabs me.

Honestly, for a technical age we still rely so much on paper. I am sure when my 2-yr old grows up, handwriting will be obsolete and paper books will be in museums not shops!

Thanks
TEK
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