Recently in japanese Category

a nice start

I don't think it will last much longer, but I'm quite pleased with my first week of quiz grades in Japanese.


(That's for the 46 hiragana kanas that we learned last week; the first quiz was あーさ, the second was たーは, and the third was まーん .)

japanese mnemonics

The textbook we're using for the Japanese class provides little mnemonic images to remember each of the hiragana kanas (a bird's beak saying "ku" for く, chopsticks with a long NOOdle for ぬ, etc). I'm finding them tremendously useful, since I'm a heavily visual learner. But I'm wondering if it's a bad thing to be too dependent on these image/character relationships.

I'd be interested to hear from people who've studied Japanese whether, over the long haul, they found it helpful or detrimental to use these as methods for remembering kana? Is it likely that with repetition, I'll stop needing them?

Many thanks to Boris, by the way, for his link via my comments to the Nuku Japanese kana tutor software for OS X. It's been a wonderful way to quiz myself on the kana, and I really like that you can set it up to quiz you only on specific columns of the hiragana chart.

beginning japanese, day one

What have I gotten myself into??

Taking beginning japanese as a five-week summer session course seemed like a great idea...until I found out how much we'd have to accomplish each day. The first assignment is to learn the first fifteen hiragana characters--recognizing them, pronouncing them, and writing them. By tomorrow. Ack.

I did find a great site with javascript-powered hiragana flash cards , which is helping tremendously with recognition. I'll deal with the writing part tomorrow.

This is going to be a rough five weeks, I think.

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