rold2007 reminded me about Human Japanese. Way back in the early days of the blog (as in, late last year) I did a single post about Human Japanese, a product that I really like and which gives you a ton of good content for a very low price. I have the original Human Japanese (which, at one time – before Cafetalk, I used quite a lot) and I also have Human Japanese Intermediate, which I haven’t used much. Last night, I opened it up and started to dig into it.
The first thing that it did was to send me back to the basic book to review counters. –mai, -ko, -hon, days of the month, numbers of people and the つ counters, which are a great fallback if you can’t remember which counter to use (and you have ten or less items to count).
Reviewing it reminded me of one of the greatest features of Human Japanese – the way it explains things. It gives the clearest and best explanations of grammar points that I have ever found anywhere. They are consistently excellent.
If you have not dived headfirst into the Kanji, by the way, Human Japanese Intermediate does a nice job of introducing you to at least some of them and then working them into sentences.
My biggest goal right now, though, is finding reading material. I am trying out the Japanese reader that I mentioned in an earlier post, but now it has annoyed me.
大きい is a familiar word. It means “big” and I learned that it was an い-adjective. Well, this book sometimes uses it as an い-adjective and sometimes uses it as a な-adjective! Well which one is it?! Is it both? If it is, why confuse a poor Japanese student by using it both ways right out of the box? At least in the beginning, pick one.
Also, in the vocabulary for lesson one, the book introduces two words which mean student: 生態 and 学生 but only uses one of them (生態) in the first lesson. It does the same thing with 今 and 現在, both of which it translates as “now” and also with some other words that I won’t bother to list here. In each case, it only uses one of the words in the actual text. Why not save the second word for a later lesson when you’re actually going to use it?!
Don’t confuse me. There’s no challenge in it.
I still do want some reading practice. Maybe it is finally time to tackle Yosubato! The trick is to find level appropriate reading practice, even if it isn’t the most interesting material you’ve ever tackled. It’s out there somewhere. I’ll keep looking.