It’s been almost 2 months since I’ve picked up Japanese, and for sure progress have been made. However, it has become an unhealthy obsession for me to think about how I should learn Japanese throughout each day. I’m hardly able to focus on my other convictions at this point.
So I need feedback:
1.How often should one think about language learning? Should it be a mere hobby and not an integral part of life early on or even later?How does one ensure that progress is made without disturbing life?
2.Is it okay to just spend around 1 hour a day if it’s intensive content?Right now, most of my time goes to finding the most frequent words in small context w/ audio and knocking out around 30~40 a day with review,which isn’t the intensive wall-of-text kind.
3.What materials are effective?The library doesn’t provide me of too much of interest content-wise and I struggle to find interesting and understandable Japanese material w/ audio+transcript ideally to import.I ordered Assimil recently and am contemplating Luca’s method.
4.I get the message that it’s okay to not talk with Natives early on, but should I be shadowing and articulating the sounds of the language?I’ve done basically none of that although I pay careful attention to intonation and pronunciation.
- Put in the time when you can and don’t worry about when you can’t. The more time you spend with the language, the more you learn.
- I spend about 45 to 90 mins listening, wherever I can, mostly while doing other tasks. I spend about 30 mins reading and LingQing. I don’t review my words that much, maybe 20 mins every three days or so.
- I am sorry that you don’t find the content in our library interesting. For the languages that I have learned here, I have found interesting content on the web. Maybe others can suggest good content. I have not used Assimil for Japanese.
- Shadowing and pronouncing out loud is not something that I don’t do, but others like doing this. I think you have to find what works for you and what you like doing.
I look forward to comments from others too.
@Red - Steve says it all better, but take a chill pill - relax! It’s not a race… you don’t have to stress… If you go at it too hard, you won’t enjoy it, and you’ll just end up dropping out.
Imho, you’ll make steady progress spending an hour a day or even half an hour a day, whatever materials you use, and it doesn’t have to be intensive. Your world won’t collapse if you miss a day or two - just aim to be regular.
I use a variety of methods including LingQ (and yes, LingQ is great), Luca’s method, Goldlisting, you name it: I just do what I feel like doing. I don’t worry if my LingQ stats don’t reflect everything I’m doing. Many people do a Michel Thomas or a Teach Yourself etc. before or concurrently with LingQ in the beginning.
I don’t shadow like Arguelles; I just simply repeat sentences aloud, and that does wonders. If shadowing works for you, go ahead.
Re early vs late study in life - I’ve sat university exams in Japanese and Mandarin after the age of 50. Never having studied Mandarin before was no impediment. I’m concurrently learning Farsi script. I have plans for further languages; age is no barrier.
I jot down a record of materials worked through and time spent on various activities in a language log notebook. This way I can track all my progress, and balance activities according to my goals.
I guess it would be wise to spend time to recompose myself. For now, I’m lessening my time spent and changing materials. Perhaps I’ve been reading too much about how many people talk about language learning efficiency, how it’s hard work, and how many people give up along the way.To me, such thoughts sink in quite easily.
The idea of giving up or hitting the point of non-progression is possibly my greatest concern.I do have faith in reaching my language goals within a few years’ time,but that is if I’m able to sustain myself until I get past the deliberate learning phase.