Japanese Learning Blog Week 4 - I'm Not Gonna Catch 'em All

HappyPixels

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Greetings, lovely littles and diapered delinquents. Hope you're all have an awesome day.

This week started out okay. Focused on learning some verb base forms and got to a section in one of my learning apps that talk about food. Learned the Japanese word for a snack is おやつ (oyatsu). Productive and happy all around. Then I decided to play Pokemon Black for the NDS. People always say Pokemon is a great game to play for beginner learners so I figured why not take a break from my normal flashcard learning and play a game for a change? This'll be a lot of fun! I picked Black because I've never played that one before and I've seen several people online say it has the best story out of any of the mainline Pokemon games. Too bad I can't understand ninety percent of what the heck anyone's saying.

Turns out when folks say it's good for beginners, I think they mean more people that have been studying for six months and not just one. Played for several hours and still haven't come close to any gyms and just have the one Pokemon because I spent so much time looking up vocab and grammar that left me stumped. Damn this is hard. But even though it's difficult as all get out, truth is I'm glad I'm playing it because it's pushing me pretty hard and I have actually been learning. I'll keep playing and maybe by next week I'll have my first badge. がんばって!
 

TwoOfBraves

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わぁ、頑張ってね👍!Japanese is extraordinarily hard to learn solo, but you’re right- playing games in Japanese is a great way to practice! I recommend playing a pokémon game you have played before too, because familiarity can definitely help a lot.
Unfortunately, Japanese is one of those languages that’s really hard to learn just by immersion alone… Focus on your fundamentals before you worry too much about vocab! Google translate and Jisho are great with kanji words (you can even draw them in!), so don’t worry too much about memorizing everything. Vocab comes naturally with repetition and time; grammar is a lot harder though, and you need a decent grasp on particles and verb forms (particularly -て and -ている forms) to make sense of most things. It’s been a while since I’ve been able to call myself conversationally fluent, but I like to think I’ve still got a trick or two up my sleeve!
 
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HappyPixels

Est. Contributor
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Thanks for the tips! I use Jisho and its for sure been a life saver. I love that you can search up kanji by radicals. And I'm definitely going to be focusing more on conjugation and particles more. Today I learned から has way more uses than I originally thought and now I'm side eyeing the other particles, wondering what more horrors they have to hide.
 
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