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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:23 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2003 11:09 pm
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Location: italy
any tips and advices of any form
are Wellcome

since i just want start learning
i'd like get more advices as possible
on how do it at the best

thx to all

i currently speek english french portuguese spanish and italian
not perfectly but it works
so if can be better learn from any of these languages to japanese ..

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 6:31 am 
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Location: Leafy Surrey, UK
Whilst not Japanese as such, my wife & I are learning Arabic from a Linguaphone home study course. The materials are pretty good, and we're making slow but steady progress (owing to our hectic lives more than anything else). They offer a Japanese course too, but YMMV.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 9:15 am 
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Joined: Tue May 23, 2006 8:49 am
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Location: Poznan, Poland
Quote:
i currently speek english french portuguese spanish and italian


Well how'd you learn them? You should have an idea of where to start foreign language learning by now.

If you did all that in school rather than self study, maybe try enrolling in classes cause that clearly works for you...

Which of those languages is your native language?


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 9:24 am 
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Rosetta Stone, it is pretty damn good. I am using it so that I do not lose my conversational French skills that I picked up in school.

http://www.rosettastone.com/


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 10:19 am 
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VenomousPinecone wrote:
Rosetta Stone, it is pretty damn good. I am using it so that I do not lose my conversational French skills that I picked up in school.

http://www.rosettastone.com/


I highly recommend it too, I used it to pick up some Japanese last year. It helped me get some conversational skills, my better half is using it to learn my native tonge so she can bitch behind my back to my folks :-)

Also, this sound silly, I also recommend that once you start to get somewhere learning Japanese that you complement it by watching subtitled movies in the language. Nothing helps like being inmerse in the language to pick it up...

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 10:32 am 
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since you are starting from the bottom, you need to start easy.
That means starting with the Hiragana and katakana characters, then working a little with Romaji and then start looking into kanji (hamei can help you on this because there are relations between kanji and chinece characters).

I just started taking japanese calsses.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 10:43 am 
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A sampling of the few Japanese words any geek needs:

hentai = pervert
baka = dumbass
gaijin = foreigner
ecchi = sorta perverted
biru = beer

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 12:13 pm 
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Location: Poznan, Poland
Don't forget kutabare.

Quote:
(hamei can help you on this because there are relations between kanji and chinece characters)


It's adopted from the Chinese.

And to the OP:

I can tell English isn't your native language so if you're looking at study materials written in English, make sure to check the IPA for it. Most common to English speakers is the Hepburn system of romanization which was made by a native English speaker, and that is important because when you see a "J", it is pronounced [d3] (not [j]!), and "CH" is it's devoiced counterpart, etc.

Which I thought was obvious and I don't mean to patronize, I just mention that because I have heard Europeans reading romanized Japanese pronouncing "J" as [j] and the like :?

"Yunichiro"!

Of course not all the sounds are in English at all, which usually gets explained and mentioned, but it's the subtle things the writers aren't thinking about that screw people up. Example: If you see something like "this is pronounced like the ai in sail" make sure you know how the author thinks "sail" is pronounced. It's easy for an ESL person or someone simply speaking a different dialect of English to miss things like, meanwhile the sound the 'F' represents gets detailed explanation.

...Of course if you get one of those computer programs that will pronounce to you you'll probably notice these things quickly anyway.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 2:42 pm 
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I have done night school, some of the books and CD courses above and it is all good. My favorite way of learning is, stay there. After you have read the same thing for the 400th time it will stick.
The JET program takes people from all over the world and puts them up in accomadation and gives them a job in a high school as a language teachers aide.

There is a Japanese cultural mission in some large cties (I have been to Sydney and Wellington New Zealand missions). They show movies in Japanese from the 50s and 60s and sometimes have lirbaries, with learning materials. Another way is to rent a room to a Japanese.

And here in Sydney we have Jenta, and Nichigo press and about a dozen Japanese cafes, ramen-ya, and restaurants some with waitress who dont mind chatting in Japanese and some who do. Oh and there is a Japanese second hand book shop where eingrish is a problem.
Attempt some conversation in Japanese and you might be surprised at the results.

Regan

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Last edited by regan_russell on Fri Apr 13, 2007 3:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 3:29 pm 
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The japanese language kit that came with my LC III was pretty helpful.
They come up on ebay every so often.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 11:24 pm 
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Location: Gilbert, Arizona
Don't forget the Pimsleur courses. They only focus on speaking, so if that's what you want then their courses would be a great fit.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2007 7:51 am 
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I found the book "Japanese Step by Step" by Gene Nishi to be very helpfull in understanding the basic structure of the language.

I find his approach very well suited to programmer-type people, probably because it was developped for teaching IBM folks...

The written language is really the limiting factor, as it will prevent you from acquiring vocabulary just by reading (it is for example much easier to acquire vocabulary in any roman-alphabet language just by reading and looking up in a dictionnary, my english is now quite decent and was learnt that way).

The kanas can be memorized very quickly and will definitely be a big help. I'm still struggling with kanjis, can now recognize about 200 (which makes me at the level of the average 2nd grader :( but that is far from enough to read anything) I think the worst obstacle to progress is lack of graded reading material.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2007 11:38 am 
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radrob wrote:
any tips and advices of any form
are Wellcome


best way to learn a foreign language is in bed, so get yourself a japanese girlfriend :lol:

MisterDNA wrote:
A sampling of the few Japanese words any geek needs:

hentai = pervert
baka = dumbass
gaijin = foreigner
ecchi = sorta perverted
biru = beer


add bukkake to that list!

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2007 2:01 am 
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I learned Japanese in university with the handbook "Genki I" (ISBN4-7890-0963-7). It's an excellent tool, imo. There's a workbook and cds with listening excercises for it too. Don't expect quick results though if you want to be capable of reading and writing though - it may be an easy language grammatically, the writing (and certainly kanji!) sure make up for it :)

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2007 4:05 am 
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zahal wrote:
best way to learn a foreign language is in bed, so get yourself a japanese girlfriend :lol:

This is true for Chinese but Japanese ... well, I haven't seen anyone mention this but there is boy Japanese and there is girl Japanese. If you learn from your girlfriend, as a friend of mine did, then travel to Japan you will most likely be looked at somewhat askance. Might not be exactly what you want, unless you are familiar with cross-dressing and so on.

Another case of Total Immersion I know of involved a foreigner carefully learning Chinese from his Anhui housekeeper. He did a great job. Everyone was amazed at the foreigner who spoke exactly like a Chinese hillbilly. Too bad the only people who could understand him were Anhui countryside people.

Before learning anything, make sure the teacher teaches what you want to know. In my experience, a large proportion of the chinese language teachers in the US do not speak very good chinese. And then there were the three dreadlocked Jamaicans I met near Hangzhou, who were in China as English teachers. Mmmm.

Be careful.


Last edited by hamei on Sun Apr 15, 2007 6:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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