4/25/12

I’ve finally managed to get my Anki reviews to a manageable place, and it feels good. I went through all three decks today with very little desire to stop and I want to keep going. I’ll have to add a bunch of sentences/vocab today from either kino or fma.
Something to note, I’m no longer going to Japan over the summer 😦 It just wasn’t in the cards for me. It was just a screw up on my part with the application process, so I ended up missing the deadline with not enough time to submit everything that I need before CIEE mails everything over to Japan. It’s okay though. While I’m not too happy about screwing up, I’m okay with not going. It was causing me a lot of stress, and honestly, I’d like to go over to Japan when I feel a little more confident in my Japanese (I know I know, everyone says this, but I’m serious). I haven’t hardly practiced any output or production, I don’t think I could convey my feelings past “I’m hungry”, “Let’s go”, “What do you want to do today?” etc.
Okay enough about that. I’d like to start practicing speaking more since I’m obviously pretty horrible right now. I was thinking about just working on reading and listening and letting speaking come with time, but I’ve since changed my mind and would like to work on all three skills concurrently. I don’t think this will cause any problems since they will sort of be separate entities.
For speaking practice, I want to buy the White Rabbit Press Let’s Start Shadowing book (or whatever it’s called) and go through that as many times as I can. I would also like to just TRY to speak with Jan and Andrew in Japanese more. Perhaps setting a timer for something like 5 minutes and just trying to communicate with them (no english). I’d also like to try going to the kaiwa tables up at UT, but I’m always doing something else when they have those so I’ll have to try hard to make some space in my schedule for those every now and then.
For listening practice, I just need to listen more. I have to put new drama/animes on my ipod because I’m getting tired of the ones I have on there now. Shadowing will also help with listening practice. I would like to make a transition over the summer to watching dramas and anime without subtitles or with Japanese subtitles. My problem with this move is that I really enjoy knowing what’s going on in the story and, at least for awhile, I’m going to have to let go of that desire. I can always read the synopsis on wikipedia after I watch an episode (that’s actually a really good idea). I want to start a really big anime series (I’m thinking Gintama) and watch the whole thing without subtitles. If I can get a hold of an American show dubbed in Japanese, I want to do that instead (I’ve heard 24 and Lost are good shows for this).
For reading practice, I want to read a helluva lot more. I’ve been carrying my copy of FMA with me for the past couple of weeks and I just need to bust that out and read when I have a free moment. I would really like to be able to go through the book several more times, mining sentences as I go along, to the point where I’ve pretty much mined everything. I wonder if that’ll translate over to the anime? In terms of vocab, that is. I bet it does.
Oh yeah, one last thing. I’ve been manually creating MCDs (if you even want to call them that) out of some mature sentence cards that I have. I’m really just clozing out each kanji in vocabulary words so that I’m able to recognize and produce them easily. Example, for the vocabulary word 悪気, I would take the sentence and cloze out 悪 for one card, then make a new card and cloze out 気. I think that this gives me a clearer image of the vocab, which is pretty cool. I’m going to keep experimenting with this, hopefully I’ll find a way to semi-automate this process since the MCD plugin for anki doesn’t work for me (for no apparent reason). I might do all my MCDs in Surusu since there’s a function for automatically creating mcds, but then again I don’t really like having multiple places to go to do my reviews. Okay that’s it.
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