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another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

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another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

Postby opsidol » Sat 05.13.2006 11:18 pm

I was having real trouble with remembering a million different readings and also with learning words out of context that contained the kanji, so I started using the following method:

1. See a word
2. Look it up in the dictionary
3. Learn how to draw it and learn the reading of this one word
4. Move on
5. If you come across another word with the same kanji in it just learn this word seperately and independently of the other word even though it has the same kanji.

In this method I will only know one reading of the kanji until I come across another word which uses another reading, so I probably wont know how to pronounce a word I haven't seen before....

So what do you think of this method? Do you think it could work?

Thanks for your feedback.
私の間違いを直してください。
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RE: another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

Postby kotori » Sun 05.14.2006 1:47 am

I think it will work the best, IMHO.

Even if you study all the readings independently, you still won't know the reading of a word you've never seen before (you could try to guess, but.... yeah...)

This method builds vocab and teaches kanji in context, at the same time.
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RE: another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

Postby hungryhotei » Sun 05.14.2006 4:58 am

I think that this method will become more and more efficient the more Kanji that you learn, and doing lots of flash cards at the same time will help too.

I wasn't sure whether or not you were looking up the Kanji or just the word? Especially if you are using somthing like JWPce where it only takes a second, I really recommend looking up the Kanji too.

I don't know what your level is, but if you are worried about not knowing readings it may be helpful to read thigngs with lots oof furigana. Its faster to look words up that way too.
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RE: another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

Postby crowfeather » Sun 05.14.2006 12:05 pm

I am a beginner and this "is" the system I have been using.

My logic is that if I try to memorize numerius kanji that I can't use in sentences then I will forget them.
So I am only learning those I can use "now" in sentences. My list of Kanji that I know is growing every day.

I realize I will need to revist the same kanji when it has a different meaning or pronounciation. However, I am sure I would have forgotten it anyway without a way to use and reinforce it .

I am using simple sentences about things I see or know. Today is Sunday; that is a flower; what time is it; the car is white; where is the cat, the cat is black, etc.

I think the only kanji that I know both the kun and on readings is Yama-San
( mountain)

Periodically I look at sites with news articles written in Japanese and each time I see "one" kanji that I can read and understand I feel victorious.

When faced with an overwhelming task some people spend all of their time analyzing the best way to approach it and never begin.
I am inclined to just start where I am standing and work out the method as I go along.

Just my thoughts.
Barbara
Last edited by crowfeather on Sun 05.14.2006 12:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

Postby CajunCoder » Sun 05.14.2006 1:00 pm

crowfeather wrote:
When faced with an overwhelming task some people spend all of their time analyzing the best way to approach it and never begin.
I am inclined to just start where I am standing and work out the method as I go along.

Just my thoughts.
Barbara



Heh, there is a lot of wisdom in this post!
I especially agree with the last bit there - I often find myself avoiding and over analyzing - and thus never getting anywhere. Often, it's more important to simply jump in.
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RE: another kanji learning technique, what do you think?

Postby Mukade » Mon 05.15.2006 1:23 am

I think this method could work in the beginning.

In the long run, though, you'll want to start sitting down and working through the kanji themselves, learning as many of the readings as is feasible (I say feasible because many kanji have readings that aren't used that often anymore). Using the method you've described, it's imaginable that you may never study a lot of kanji simply because they don't appear that often in print or in textbooks. If you want to be as literate as possible, you need to know as many characters as possible.

Kotori mentioned that, even if you know the readings of the kanji, if you don't know the word, you can't read it. You can guess, though. And when you've got a grip on on vs. kun, and how they tend to be used, you can often make very educated guesses.

Just to illustrate - currently, I am focusing my study on four-character jukugo. I am finding that I am able to guess a good many of their readings. This wouldn't have been possible if I hadn't forced myself to look at all the readings for the characters I was studying.

-----

Keep in mind that I also believe that learning kanji in context is important, so even when you're studying lists, it's still important to learn them as words rather than stand-alone characters. So, when I encounter new kanji X, I don't just study 1, 2, 3, 4 ways to read it, but instead study four different vocabulary words, one which utilizes each reading. That way I learn new words, and I learn each of the readings for that character.

-----

Finally, Barbara mentioned making up her study habits as she went - I think there is a certain element of truth here. As your studies advance and your abilities grow, you'll find that the habits you had earlier aren't working as well anymore. As you adapt to the language, so too will your study style have to evolve.

Which brings me back to the beginning of my post. I think this method would work well in the beginning - when your vocabulary and kanji knowledge is limited. But when you start acquiring thousands of words and hundreds of kanji, I think this method would be just too slow.
Last edited by Mukade on Mon 05.15.2006 2:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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