View topic - Help. I'm not studying enough.
For the past few months. I have been studying... however I'm getting nowhere fast. I'm still on the first chapter of Genki I. It's not that I'm stuck on anything, rather it's because I'm not a self-learning person. I'm ashamed to acknowledge that I know more spanish than I do japanese (which is a mandatory class in high school). I can't find any classroom like classes in my area. Is there some sort of class that would allow me to learn in a way similar to a classroom? Because I need to at least understand what people say to me if they are speaking japanese to me. I want to at least understand the material in Genki I + II.
I am committed to learning japanese, but for some reason, I can't seem to buckle down and focus when I need to. I'd love to study alone, but that still leaves out speaking practice, which would be best done in a classroom type environment with other people.
I would really appreciate any feedback.
Dragos-chan (My input method is broken )
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My Japanese studies have been exclusively self-study for a very long time now, but I did start them out in classes, and continued them in university as well. I generally made the best progress during self-study, though.
In my experience, making no headway and being increasingly frustrated with one study material generally means it's time to move on to another source of learning. My experience with Japanese has been less that of a elevator, escalator, ladder, or even straightforward building staircase, but one of those long, winding paths that trace the exterior of a hill in a long, slow spiral. I find it essential to have several study systems going at once, moving between them to find the path of least resistance, until I reach frustration there too and must make my attempt on another front again. This of course is often expensive, though with the World Wide Web today being such a rich source of learning for the Japanese language, there are plenty of ways to get excellent study material (including materials not intended for foreign-language students) for cheap or free (say, reading the easier articles from the Japanese counterparts to your favorite websites, or enabling Facebook or Twitter or your online webmail in Japanese mode).
As to dealing with spoken Japanese, I'm less well-equipped to advise on that, as it is by far the most neglected area of my own studies. As you say, a classroom setting is beneficial; but in my mind far less so than a non-classroom setting involving patient, native speakers - classrooms and other practice areas too heavily populated by other learners run the danger of a "blind leading the blind" sort of situation. If I had the money and time available, I'd approach my spoken Japanese studies in the form of conversations with a paid (or bartered-with?) Japanese native speaker, and perhaps even watching some of my favorite movies in Japanese with them, asking them about the parts I couldn't make out (for some movies, that's most of it; for others, just enough to be painfully annoying when it happens ).
Hope that helps.
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However, that shouldn't be the case at Genki chapter 1... at all. This problem is psychological and I recommend adderall. <--- I've heard good things about it!!
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