Our Story So Far…

Here’s how things are going so far:

I have had an incredibly busy couple of weeks, so Japanese, while it hadn’t fallen by the wayside, certainly hadn’t gotten the attention it requires.

I had fallen rather behind on memrise (which I am doing a course on vocabulary from みんなの日本語 volume 1). Two days ago I sat down and cleaned all that up and have kept up with it sense. I have finished running through all the vocabulary for 十七課 (Chapter 17 – the chapter I am on now).

I had fallen a day or two behind on my nihongoshark.com anki vocabulary deck, so I cleaned that up, too. I have it set to show me 12 new cards a day. I would prefer to have it on 20, but the time just isn’t there for that. (This deck, by the way, is immensely useful, but more useful if you already know some vocabulary and some grammar.)

(Both of these resources are, by the way, ただ – our favorite price!)

At some point today, I will hit the grammar for十七課. I also feel like I need to review the て-form, which is a kind of exquisite torture, but it needs to be done. In all the studying I’ve done, the て-form has been, for some reason, the most unpleasant thing. I just don’t enjoy studying it. It is, however, absolutely crucial. (In fact, in the anki vocabulary I studied this morning, the て-form popped up in several of the sentences, as did the ない-form, which is the basic grammatical topic of十七課.

So, the take-home lessons:

  1. Learning a language takes time and consistent effort. (Yes, we already knew that.)
  2. Having good resources helps, but they don’t eliminate the need for #1 (We already knew that, too, even though there are a lot of ads out there that claim you can learn a language effortlessly. Maybe somebody can, but I sure can’t!)
  3. Not every part of your studying will be fun, but you have to work just as hard (or harder) on the parts you don’t enjoy as you do no the fun parts.
  4. It won’t all stick the first time, so be prepared to review…and review…and review…
  5. If you apply the above rules, you can learn a new language. So go ahead and do it.

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