Learning Japanese • 日本語の勉強 |これはOTです| ゆっくりしていいぞ!

Jintor

Member
Oct 25, 2017
17,118
I knew it lmao a name kanji kept coming up when i searched it

context and asking human beings questions instead of algos/search engines helps so much for languages haha
 

ROM

Member
Dec 28, 2017
22
What are your guys' opinion on Mass Immersion Approach(MIA) by MattVsJapan? He seems to make a lot of great points but I don't know if I like the idea of studying nothing but kanji at the beginning...
 

Nakho

Member
Nov 1, 2017
60
What are your guys' opinion on Mass Immersion Approach(MIA) by MattVsJapan? He seems to make a lot of great points but I don't know if I like the idea of studying nothing but kanji at the beginning...
...Huh? I don't think that's what Matt advocates at all, at least currently. Have you checked his website?
 

Kilrogg

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Oct 25, 2017
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What are your guys' opinion on Mass Immersion Approach(MIA) by MattVsJapan? He seems to make a lot of great points but I don't know if I like the idea of studying nothing but kanji at the beginning...
As Nakho said, he doesn't advocate that at all. Even back when he was hardcore into RTK, he never said anything like that.The core of MIA (and AJATT before it) was and still is immersion (hence the name), with i+1 (or what he now calls 1t) flashcards. For a while now, he's been advising doing kanji via the Lazy Kanji method (which I'm not too familiar with, can't tell you anything about it) to learn how to read them quick and dirty, and let the immersion and dictionary do the rest.

I'd suggest checking out his website and his more recent YouTube content if you want to know the deets.

Regardless, as a general rule, yeah, immersion-based approaches like MIA are recommended if you want to actually acquire a language unconsciously, in a way that's somewhat similar to how you acquired your first language as a baby.
 
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ROM

Member
Dec 28, 2017
22
...Huh? I don't think that's what Matt advocates at all, at least currently. Have you checked his website?
I must have misunderstood because I read this on the Balanced Path Overview page:
"(Japanese/Chinese only) Go through Recognition RTK / RTH (1K cards)" and "“Ongoing” means that the step is meant to be practiced alongside the other steps in the stage, rather than completed before moving on. Steps that are not marked as “ongoing” are meant to be completed one at a time, in the order that they are presented in...". I took this as meaning that I should immerse at every point of Mia on top of whatever step I'm at.
 

Nakho

Member
Nov 1, 2017
60
Yeah, you start immersing in native content from day one. Also, in the beginning, you do lazy kanji which is barely studying kanji (basically try to recognize a basic meaning from that specific kanji using mnemonics, and if you can't recall a few times, just give up on that Kanji) and practice grammar and vocabulary from Tae Kim/Genki/whatever.
 

ROM

Member
Dec 28, 2017
22
Yeah, you start immersing in native content from day one. Also, in the beginning, you do lazy kanji which is barely studying kanji (basically try to recognize a basic meaning from that specific kanji using mnemonics, and if you can't recall a few times, just give up on that Kanji) and practice grammar and vocabulary from Tae Kim/Genki/whatever.
Ahh, gotcha. My mistake. The wording tripped me up because the step saying to learn the Kanji didn't say ongoing and this: "Once you’ve learned kana and completed Recognition RTK, you’re ready to start studying the language formally. In MIA, this takes the form of basic grammar and basic vocab." Sorry if I'm coming off the wrong way, I just want to be clear why I thought what I thought initially.
 
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Coverly

Member
Oct 28, 2017
151
Yeah, you start immersing in native content from day one. Also, in the beginning, you do lazy kanji which is barely studying kanji (basically try to recognize a basic meaning from that specific kanji using mnemonics, and if you can't recall a few times, just give up on that Kanji) and practice grammar and vocabulary from Tae Kim/Genki/whatever.
Speaking of immersing oneself in japanese, is there an equivalent of resetera in japan? can anyone recommend forums that are similar to the two main forums of this site?

I tried looking at nhk easy, but I think i was bored to death by the third sentence. Japanese twitter is entertaining, but a bit chaotic, just want something more consistent. I'm now making a transition so jp browsing so having something to a news site and a forum similar to this one would make me want to actually read more. I've installed yomichan this morning so I'm ready to go.

Also, I just hit the midway mark in WK at lvl 30, half way through N4 in bunpro. I wanted to make a good long post about being in the half way mark somewhat, but frankly im just tired lol. Work, family, social obligations - im just worn out.

It's depressing when I get a review of a kanji that I learned two levels ago and its' like 'what the hell is this' and having to learn it all over again. or when you understand the kanji in a sentence but the grammar leaves you stumped because you're quite not there yet. It's rare but deflating. The upsides are that you can see the kanji paying dividends quite well now. Even if I can't quite recall the correct on/kun I can get the word pretty well. I've been able to get by FF14 trial and the division 2 in japanese with kanji making more and more sense. ff14 is actually easier with bigger font and text that stays until you press for the next part, the div 2 is harder because text flies by and the description text is like size 6 font, making kanji really hard to make out.
 

Kilrogg

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Oct 25, 2017
1,866
Speaking of immersing oneself in japanese, is there an equivalent of resetera in japan? can anyone recommend forums that are similar to the two main forums of this site?
I wish. The closest thing you can find to a popular video game forum in Japan is 2ch, which became 5ch a couple years ago, but even that's pretty different... And also, I don't know if it's something about the site or the region I'm trying to access it from, but isn't it completely broken? Most boards I try to go to just plain don't work. Like, i get blank pages and error messages. I've never actually been able to browse 5ch.

Online forums - let alone decent forums - are a dying breed all over the internet, but they're deader than dead in Japan. To my knowledge anyway.
 

Jintor

Member
Oct 25, 2017
17,118
Ikki Tousen? It's the name of a legend of something or the other.

Huh i guess I'm able to read those kanji now and nearly guess the right sounding pronounciation.
 

Hypron

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,660
NZ
I wish. The closest thing you can find to a popular video game forum in Japan is 2ch, which became 5ch a couple years ago, but even that's pretty different... And also, I don't know if it's something about the site or the region I'm trying to access it from, but isn't it completely broken? Most boards I try to go to just plain don't work. Like, i get blank pages and error messages. I've never actually been able to browse 5ch.

Online forums - let alone decent forums - are a dying breed all over the internet, but they're deader than dead in Japan. To my knowledge anyway.
5ch is also hot garbage from what I’ve read on it. Like, the quality of the content is more similar to 4 chan’s than to resetera’s lol
 

gachapin

Member
Oct 25, 2017
469
Tokyo
I wish. The closest thing you can find to a popular video game forum in Japan is 2ch, which became 5ch a couple years ago, but even that's pretty different... And also, I don't know if it's something about the site or the region I'm trying to access it from, but isn't it completely broken? Most boards I try to go to just plain don't work. Like, i get blank pages and error messages. I've never actually been able to browse 5ch.

Online forums - let alone decent forums - are a dying breed all over the internet, but they're deader than dead in Japan. To my knowledge anyway.
2ちゃんや5ちゃんは専用のブラウザ使わないと使い物にならなよ。
一般的なことを話題にしているスレッドは酷いことが多いけど個別の事柄を扱っているスレッドはトピックかなり深くまで掘り下げられていることが多いと思う。


What does 一機当千 mean?
正しくは一当千だよ。一人の騎馬兵が千人に対応できる-->有能

現代戦では騎馬兵が活躍する場はないので一機当千のがしっくりくるかもしれないけど。
 

Deleted member 1635

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Oct 25, 2017
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2ちゃんや5ちゃんは専用のブラウザ使わないと使い物にならなよ。
一般的なことを話題にしているスレッドは酷いことが多いけど個別の事柄を扱っているスレッドはトピックかなり深くまで掘り下げられていることが多いと思う。



正しくは一当千だよ。一人の騎馬兵が千人に対応できる-->有能

現代戦では騎馬兵が活躍する場はないので一機当千のがしっくりくるかもしれないけど。
Yeah, as Gachipin pointed out, the actual original phrase is 一当千. I'm guessing this is Gundamn Musou? It must be a play on words (or Kanji) since Gundam and mechs, etc. can be referred to/counted as 機体.
 

RangerBAD

Member
Oct 25, 2017
737
Yeah, as Gachipin pointed out, the actual original phrase is 一当千. I'm guessing this is Gundamn Musou? It must be a play on words (or Kanji) since Gundam and mechs, etc. can be referred to/counted as 機体.
That's the results that popped up, but it was in a manga. There is manga called Ikkitousen (一騎当千) that has Three Kingdom spirits in it, so Gachipin's explanation makes sense. In the manga I'm reading it's basically talking about human sized robot foot soldiers.
 

Hypron

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,660
NZ
I'm about to sign an internship contract for this summer, so it looks like I'll be able to do what I wanted next year :D

I'll do the internship until mid Feb, come back and finish my PhD around April and then self study Japanese full time for the rest of the year while doing a couple of hours of tutoring each week to avoid spending too much of my savings.

The goal is to achieve basic fluency by the end of next year.

I've been stagnating so hard for the past few months, I'm really looking forward to being able to dedicate myself to learning the language.
 
OP
OP
Resilient

Resilient

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,358
I'm about to sign an internship contract for this summer, so it looks like I'll be able to do what I wanted next year :D

I'll do the internship until mid Feb, come back and finish my PhD around April and then self study Japanese full time for the rest of the year while doing a couple of hours of tutoring each week to avoid spending too much of my savings.

The goal is to achieve basic fluency by the end of next year.

I've been stagnating so hard for the past few months, I'm really looking forward to being able to dedicate myself to learning the language.
Congrats mate. Is your internship in NZ or Australia?
 

meadowdrone

Member
Oct 27, 2017
169
UK
Finding Japanese people to talk to is like looking in a hay stack.
Personally, I've found this to not be the case (assuming you meant needle in a haystack...) every time I've used a language exchange app, it seems to me as though when it comes to numbers of English speakers looking to practice Japanese vs. Japanese speakers looking to practice English, it leans way more heavily in our favour. And they almost all seem willing to share a healthy 50/50 time balance of talking either language, which is only fair. I've had to mute the apps because I get so many requests and people really really appreciate the opportunity to practice English. This is for one-on-one chats though, I think some exchange Discords I use for larger conversations lean a bit more towards native English learning Japanese, but regardless it's still a healthy balance that serves both sides.
 

Kilrogg

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Oct 25, 2017
1,866
I'm about to sign an internship contract for this summer, so it looks like I'll be able to do what I wanted next year :D

I'll do the internship until mid Feb, come back and finish my PhD around April and then self study Japanese full time for the rest of the year while doing a couple of hours of tutoring each week to avoid spending too much of my savings.

The goal is to achieve basic fluency by the end of next year.

I've been stagnating so hard for the past few months, I'm really looking forward to being able to dedicate myself to learning the language.
Awesome to hear. If you truly can dedicate most of your time to JP, and depending on how far you are along the journey, reaching basic fluency by the end of next year is totally feasible, so good luck!... Just don't be a lazy dumb dumb like me. I find that it's hard to truly go all-immersion over months at a time without burning out after a while, but honestly, this is probably because I struggle to find content that really interests me in Japanese. You shouldn't have that problem :).
 

Coverly

Member
Oct 28, 2017
151
I wish. The closest thing you can find to a popular video game forum in Japan is 2ch, which became 5ch a couple years ago, but even that's pretty different... And also, I don't know if it's something about the site or the region I'm trying to access it from, but isn't it completely broken? Most boards I try to go to just plain don't work. Like, i get blank pages and error messages. I've never actually been able to browse 5ch.

Online forums - let alone decent forums - are a dying breed all over the internet, but they're deader than dead in Japan. To my knowledge anyway.

Thanks yeah. I kind of felt the same way about those ch channels.
I looked through the OP for this thread and went through the online reading sources. Jin155.com looks to be about what I was looking for. It has items I have some interests in and there are a lot of comments to read through for each piece.
 

RangerBAD

Member
Oct 25, 2017
737
Personally, I've found this to not be the case (assuming you meant needle in a haystack...) every time I've used a language exchange app, it seems to me as though when it comes to numbers of English speakers looking to practice Japanese vs. Japanese speakers looking to practice English, it leans way more heavily in our favour. And they almost all seem willing to share a healthy 50/50 time balance of talking either language, which is only fair. I've had to mute the apps because I get so many requests and people really really appreciate the opportunity to practice English. This is for one-on-one chats though, I think some exchange Discords I use for larger conversations lean a bit more towards native English learning Japanese, but regardless it's still a healthy balance that serves both sides.
I guess its better if you have a smart phone.
 

Cloud-Hidden

Member
Oct 30, 2017
2,181
Does anyone know if you're able to share a JapanesePod101 account? In other words, can two people be signed into the account at the same time on mobile devices? If so, I'd be interested in splitting the cost with someone (am I allowed to ask this?).
 

febLey

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,204
Germany
Learnt about 110 words, it's not that much, but I'm pretty proud of it anyways.
I think I'll start with WaniKani when I'm done with the second chapter of Genki 1.
 

Hypron

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,660
NZ
Congrats mate. Is your internship in NZ or Australia?
Thanks man! It’s located in NZ (Christchurch). The few internships I applied for in Australia didn’t pan out sadly. When I start looking for a full time job for 2021 I’ll do it more thoroughly though.

Awesome to hear. If you truly can dedicate most of your time to JP, and depending on how far you are along the journey, reaching basic fluency by the end of next year is totally feasible, so good luck!... Just don't be a lazy dumb dumb like me. I find that it's hard to truly go all-immersion over months at a time without burning out after a while, but honestly, this is probably because I struggle to find content that really interests me in Japanese. You shouldn't have that problem :).
Thanks Kilrogg! Yeah I’ll do my best to get as much immersion as possible. There are lots of things I find interesting (and I have barely read any novels in the language so there’s a whole aspect of Japanese pop culture I have barely even touched) so hopefully it works out haha. I can already understand a decent amount, so I think spending almost a year on the language should take me to a good level if I can keep it up.
 

Kilrogg

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Oct 25, 2017
1,866
Thanks Kilrogg! Yeah I’ll do my best to get as much immersion as possible. There are lots of things I find interesting (and I have barely read any novels in the language so there’s a whole aspect of Japanese pop culture I have barely even touched) so hopefully it works out haha. I can already understand a decent amount, so I think spending almost a year on the language should take me to a good level if I can keep it up.
Rooting for you!
 

Jintor

Member
Oct 25, 2017
17,118
いやだ、ハイパローンさんと会うチャンスがないになった。残念だけど、いい仕事を持ったと思うから、おめでとう。

Fuck i hope that makes sense. When you don't output often you get way less confident :<
 

RangerBAD

Member
Oct 25, 2017
737
いやだ、ハイパローンさんと会うチャンスがないになった。残念だけど、いい仕事を持ったと思うから、おめでとう。

Fuck i hope that makes sense. When you don't output often you get way less confident :<
Just throw it out there and don't worry about it.
 
Oct 28, 2017
3,560
Applying for JET UK when the applications go live today. Been studying kanji for ages now, grammar for a little less, but still feel like an idiot. Got a private tutor (1 hour a week) to reinforce grammar, and think that going there to work would be a great idea to really accelerate my learning.

Anyone else considering applying?
 

Raybunzy

Member
Oct 26, 2017
200
Amazing post. I been self-styding for a couple months follwing the tofugu guide (https://www.tofugu.com/learn-japanese/)

Been following a couple other resources for Kanji and Grammar.

For kanji been using Wanikani and for grammar been using Tae Kim guide, Bunpro (paired with the Genki I lessons) and a couple youtubers.
Most precisely: Organic Japanese with Cure Dolly and That Japanese Man Yuta

A good follow up on your thread with resources (paid and free) : https://community.wanikani.com/t/the-ultimate-additional-japanese-resources-list/16859
 

Raybunzy

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Oct 26, 2017
200

Kilrogg

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Oct 25, 2017
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Organic Japanese with Cure Dolly and That Japanese Man Yuta
If I may give my unsolicited opinion (everyone loves an unsolicited opinion): whatever you're using Cure Dolly for, I hope it's not pronunciation. Their accent is absolutely terrible. Their advice seems otherwise fine I suppose, though still kind of stuck in the traditional mold of intellectually breaking down the language - despite their claims of uniqueness. And I don't like the fact that they don't give any credentials whatsoever (unless I haven't looked hard enough - happy to be proven wrong). I don't mean university degrees and such, but just some recordings or writings or context isn't too much too ask. Especially when you have a Patreon.

But hey, I'm a bit biased, since I know for a fact that they're the antithesis of MIA/MattvsJapan in a number of respects, and I very much think Matt's approach is, by and large, good. In fact, every time Cure Dolly refers to "other immersionists" or "people who talk about pitch accent" in their content, you can be sure they're talking about Matt. They don't have much consideration for accent in general, because it's cute to have a foreign accent and people will still understand you and blahblahblah, but it kinda grinds my gears to be honest. People will understand you, but 1) only if your accent isn't too terrible, 2) listening to a foreign accent over a long stretch of time gets mentally tiring after a while, 3) consciously or unconsciously, we do tend to treat people a bit differently if they have a poor accent. Kinda like they're children. People should strive for a good accent. Maybe not a perfect accent, because that takes a lot of time and dedication (and/or a good ear) and you'll experience diminishing returns after a point, but a good accent will help you be more accepted, and it's easier on the ears and the brain of the listener. IMO, Cure Dolly's Japanese accent isn't at a level where it could be considered good enough yet. From what I've heard of it anyway, because it's surprisingly difficult to find recordings of them actually speaking Japanese at length.

So yeah, I'm a big hater I guess :p, but tl;dr: don't listen to their advice for pronunciation and accent. Rest is whatever. Not a huge fan, still too much leaning on traditional conscious learning of the language for my taste, but I don't know their content enough to comment beyond that.
 

Raybunzy

Member
Oct 26, 2017
200
If I may give my unsolicited opinion (everyone loves an unsolicited opinion): whatever you're using Cure Dolly for, I hope it's not pronunciation. Their accent is absolutely terrible. Their advice seems otherwise fine I suppose, though still kind of stuck in the traditional mold of intellectually breaking down the language - despite their claims of uniqueness. And I don't like the fact that they don't give any credentials whatsoever (unless I haven't looked hard enough - happy to be proven wrong). I don't mean university degrees and such, but just some recordings or writings or context isn't too much too ask. Especially when you have a Patreon.

But hey, I'm a bit biased, since I know for a fact that they're the antithesis of MIA/MattvsJapan in a number of respects, and I very much think Matt's approach is, by and large, good. In fact, every time Cure Dolly refers to "other immersionists" or "people who talk about pitch accent" in their content, you can be sure they're talking about Matt. They don't have much consideration for accent in general, because it's cute to have a foreign accent and people will still understand you and blahblahblah, but it kinda grinds my gears to be honest. People will understand you, but 1) only if your accent isn't too terrible, 2) listening to a foreign accent over a long stretch of time gets mentally tiring after a while, 3) consciously or unconsciously, we do tend to treat people a bit differently if they have a poor accent. Kinda like they're children. People should strive for a good accent. Maybe not a perfect accent, because that takes a lot of time and dedication (and/or a good ear) and you'll experience diminishing returns after a point, but a good accent will help you be more accepted, and it's easier on the ears and the brain of the listener. IMO, Cure Dolly's Japanese accent isn't at a level where it could be considered good enough yet. From what I've heard of it anyway, because it's surprisingly difficult to find recordings of them actually speaking Japanese at length.

So yeah, I'm a big hater I guess :p, but tl;dr: don't listen to their advice for pronunciation and accent. Rest is whatever. Not a huge fan, still too much leaning on traditional conscious learning of the language for my taste, but I don't know their content enough to comment beyond that.
Ofc you may! Welcome imo. I appreciate your point of view. As I mentioned before, just started learning all feedback and comparisons are a step closer to find a good studying path.

Regarding Cure Dolly, indeed the way that robotic voice speaks/pronounces japanese is not in par with what I find on wanikani (male and female voices) or JapanPod101 (real japanese speaking). I use it as intuitive visual grammar support when done with my Bunpro/Genki reviews and lessons. Didn't knew about MattvsJappan until you mentioned it, and by the way what is the MIA resource you mentioned before?
 

sackboy97

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,589
Italy
Had I not recently started getting an interest in classical music, I'm sure that reading リストのピアノ•コンチェルト would have left me quite confused.
 

Jintor

Member
Oct 25, 2017
17,118
speaking of classical, I'm still slowly ploughing through 響け!ユーフォニアム and I recently learned that a bassoon is called a ファゴット which is, you know, derived from Italian so it's not that weird... but it's still weird.
 

Nakho

Member
Nov 1, 2017
60
speaking of classical, I'm still slowly ploughing through 響け!ユーフォニアム and I recently learned that a bassoon is called a ファゴット which is, you know, derived from Italian so it's not that weird... but it's still weird.
Ha! There is an anecdote of a famous orchestra conductor from Brazil (where the instrument is called "fagote") who went to the US for a masterclass or whatever... And it went about as awkward as you'd imagine lol
 

Thuddert

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,165
Netherlands
Learnt about 110 words, it's not that much, but I'm pretty proud of it anyways.
I think I'll start with WaniKani when I'm done with the second chapter of Genki 1.
Sounds good. The first few levels may feel slow, but it's necessary to learn the ropes of the system. In the downtown waiting for reviews you can study grammar or something else.
 

Kilrogg

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Oct 25, 2017
1,866
Regarding Cure Dolly, indeed the way that robotic voice speaks/pronounces japanese is not in par with what I find on wanikani (male and female voices) or JapanPod101 (real japanese speaking).
I don't know if it's just voice distortion or some kind of affectation for the character, Cure Dolly doesn't seem to speak English natively, let alone Japanese.
If you want to know what actual, real Japanese sounds like (even phonetically), there's a sort of hierarchy:
1. Real, unscripted speech by native speakers
2. Scripted speech by native speakers (such as a speech/conference/presentation, for instance) / YouTube-type vlogs / reality TV (like Terrace House on Netflix) / podcasts
3. Acted speech by native speakers (e.g. Japanese movies and drama)
4. Voice acting, i.e. anime - yes, it's lower than other kinds of acting because it's hyper enunciated to an unrealistic degree, and the way they talk itself doesn't really reflect real speech, but it's still a good resource because it's native Japanese
5. Speech aimed at foreigners (JapanPod 101 for instance, which you mentioned, but also any tape or CD that goes with a language learning textbook, or a native Japanese teacher dumbing down their language so that you understand)
6. Anything said by a non-native speaker (excluding someone who speaks at a near-native level, obviously)

In other words, if you're interested in getting used to real Japanese (be it phonetically or meaning-wise), your best bet is to listen to media aimed at Japanese people, not relying on stuff like JapanesePod 101 forever. I mean, it's alright at the very beginning when you literally don't understand anything, but you should soon graduate to native content, even if you don't understand everything. Have you ever met people who've learned a language for years, with a decent knowledge of vocab, grammar, etc., but the second people talk to them, they barely understand anything? Yeah, that's because they haven't spent enough time with the 'real' language.

I use it as intuitive visual grammar support when done with my Bunpro/Genki reviews and lessons. Didn't knew about MattvsJappan until you mentioned it, and by the way what is the MIA resource you mentioned before?
Very long story short: MIA is Mass-Immersion Approach, which is a sort of refined version of AJATT (All Japanese All the Time). MIA, as the name implies, is heavily focused on immersing in the language for hours every day over a long period of time in order to achieve true fluency. It heavily draws from the "language acquisition" theory of a linguist named Stephen Krashen, which basically states that language isn't something to be learned consciously through lessons or even practice, but to be acquired unconsciously through massive input (i.e. listening and reading native material), kinda like babies learn languages. Because the human brain is wired to acquire language.

The goal of MIA is to reach a high level of language ability in the shortest amount of time. Among the tools used to optimize the process, the approach teaches you how to use SRS software such as Anki and integrate it into your routine. Lately, Matt has been focusing on improving the Anki experience by developing a series of add-ons and tools that will make the experience of 'mining' native content in the most efficient, streamlined way possible. Immersion still is king obviously, but the tools help you speed up the process. 95% of the content (including the Anki add-ons) is entirely free, so I'd just suggest giving the official website and the MattvsJapan YouTube channel a look if that sounds interesting to you.

(don't know if that counts as a disclaimer, but I'm one of Matt's patrons on Patreon and have spoken with the guy a number of times, so yeah, again, I'm kinda biased, but his experience and outlook reflect mine when it comes to learning English - my second language)

Here's the go-to video for anyone who's interested in Krashen's language acquisition theory:

[EDIT] A key part of all this, as counter-intuitive as it may sound, is not to focus too much on output (i.e. speaking and writing). Speaking will give you confidence and is very satisfying, but it'll make you build habits over time if you start outputting too much too soon. At the beginning of the journey (say, first year?), ideally you'd want to barely output at all. Input is the key.
 

Cloud-Hidden

Member
Oct 30, 2017
2,181
I don't know if it's just voice distortion or some kind of affectation for the character, Cure Dolly doesn't seem to speak English natively, let alone Japanese.
If you want to know what actual, real Japanese sounds like (even phonetically), there's a sort of hierarchy:
1. Real, unscripted speech by native speakers
2. Scripted speech by native speakers (such as a speech/conference/presentation, for instance) / YouTube-type vlogs / reality TV (like Terrace House on Netflix) / podcasts
3. Acted speech by native speakers (e.g. Japanese movies and drama)
4. Voice acting, i.e. anime - yes, it's lower than other kinds of acting because it's hyper enunciated to an unrealistic degree, and the way they talk itself doesn't really reflect real speech, but it's still a good resource because it's native Japanese
5. Speech aimed at foreigners (JapanPod 101 for instance, which you mentioned, but also any tape or CD that goes with a language learning textbook, or a native Japanese teacher dumbing down their language so that you understand)
6. Anything said by a non-native speaker (excluding someone who speaks at a near-native level, obviously)

In other words, if you're interested in getting used to real Japanese (be it phonetically or meaning-wise), your best bet is to listen to media aimed at Japanese people, not relying on stuff like JapanesePod 101 forever. I mean, it's alright at the very beginning when you literally don't understand anything, but you should soon graduate to native content, even if you don't understand everything. Have you ever met people who've learned a language for years, with a decent knowledge of vocab, grammar, etc., but the second people talk to them, they barely understand anything? Yeah, that's because they haven't spent enough time with the 'real' language.



Very long story short: MIA is Mass-Immersion Approach, which is a sort of refined version of AJATT (All Japanese All the Time). MIA, as the name implies, is heavily focused on immersing in the language for hours every day over a long period of time in order to achieve true fluency. It heavily draws from the "language acquisition" theory of a linguist named Stephen Krashen, which basically states that language isn't something to be learned consciously through lessons or even practice, but to be acquired unconsciously through massive input (i.e. listening and reading native material), kinda like babies learn languages. Because the human brain is wired to acquire language.

The goal of MIA is to reach a high level of language ability in the shortest amount of time. Among the tools used to optimize the process, the approach teaches you how to use SRS software such as Anki and integrate it into your routine. Lately, Matt has been focusing on improving the Anki experience by developing a series of add-ons and tools that will make the experience of 'mining' native content in the most efficient, streamlined way possible. Immersion still is king obviously, but the tools help you speed up the process. 95% of the content (including the Anki add-ons) is entirely free, so I'd just suggest giving the official website and the MattvsJapan YouTube channel a look if that sounds interesting to you.

(don't know if that counts as a disclaimer, but I'm one of Matt's patrons on Patreon and have spoken with the guy a number of times, so yeah, again, I'm kinda biased, but his experience and outlook reflect mine when it comes to learning English - my second language)

Here's the go-to video for anyone who's interested in Krashen's language acquisition theory:

[EDIT] A key part of all this, as counter-intuitive as it may sound, is not to focus too much on output (i.e. speaking and writing). Speaking will give you confidence and is very satisfying, but it'll make you build habits over time if you start outputting too much too soon. At the beginning of the journey (say, first year?), ideally you'd want to barely output at all. Input is the key.
Thank you very much for this post. I've been farting around with Duolingo and JapanesePod101, and I started the first Genki book and workbook, but progress has been slow. I've knocked out Hiragana and Katakana and then kind of lost it, and now I'm building it back up, along with some Kanji (just today I created a WaniKani account).

I think since I have a fragile baseline of knowledge, MIA would be useful. Since I'm at work, I may load up a live Japanese news stream on youtube to just play through my headphones throughout the day.
 

RangerBAD

Member
Oct 25, 2017
737
Ymmv, I’ve made some real life Japanese friends thanks to Twitter. Randomly followed some accounts tweeting about bands I dig.
Just find and interact with peeps with the same interests.
I really don't want to join twitter, so maybe it's my own fault. I've used italki for like 3 years and I've talked to maybe 5 people twice at most.
 

Kilrogg

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,866
Thank you very much for this post. I've been farting around with Duolingo and JapanesePod101, and I started the first Genki book and workbook, but progress has been slow. I've knocked out Hiragana and Katakana and then kind of lost it, and now I'm building it back up, along with some Kanji (just today I created a WaniKani account).
Glad it helped.
(also Duolingo is crrrrrrap ;( )

I think since I have a fragile baseline of knowledge, MIA would be useful. Since I'm at work, I may load up a live Japanese news stream on youtube to just play through my headphones throughout the day.
Passive listening all throughout the day is good so yeah, definitely keep it up. That said, active listening (i.e. sitting down and actually focusing on a show, looking up words that jump at you every now and then and making a few flashcards) should definitely be the priority whenever you can do it.

Also, to your first sentence: keep in mind that language acquisition and immersion are an organic, procedural, random process. In other words, the order in which you're going to fill in the holes in your knowledge and comprehension of Japanese is going to be almost completely random. Your brain will pick up words that stand out to it, but they might not be the same words as someone else's brain. Obviously the more common a word, the more likely you are to pick it up before others, but still. That's what makes immersion-based methods kinda feel ineffective at first. By contrast, the traditional way feels like you're making progress of the time because you're studying themes and grammar points comprehensively and consciously in a way that feels like "okay, that's one piece of the puzzle solved". Never feels like that with immersion. It's much more gradual and subtle than traditional study.
 

Cloud-Hidden

Member
Oct 30, 2017
2,181
Glad it helped.
(also Duolingo is crrrrrrap ;( )



Passive listening all throughout the day is good so yeah, definitely keep it up. That said, active listening (i.e. sitting down and actually focusing on a show, looking up words that jump at you every now and then and making a few flashcards) should definitely be the priority whenever you can do it.

Also, to your first sentence: keep in mind that language acquisition and immersion are an organic, procedural, random process. In other words, the order in which you're going to fill in the holes in your knowledge and comprehension of Japanese is going to be almost completely random. Your brain will pick up words that stand out to it, but they might not be the same words as someone else's brain. Obviously the more common a word, the more likely you are to pick it up before others, but still. That's what makes immersion-based methods kinda feel ineffective at first. By contrast, the traditional way feels like you're making progress of the time because you're studying themes and grammar points comprehensively and consciously in a way that feels like "okay, that's one piece of the puzzle solved". Never feels like that with immersion. It's much more gradual and subtle than traditional study.
Thanks for your insight. I'll still be sticking with Genki and the Human Japanese app, so I'll have some structured, tiered learning as well. Hopefully by combining the two methods I'll start to soak things in and piece things together a little more rapidly. Now that I'm home from work I'll definitely check out the MattvsJapan channel.