Laddr's Study Log

This marks the start of my Study Log. I have been keeping one for myself and posting it publicly on Jalup. However Jalup stopped the monthly goal posts and I like the idea of public goals. So to kick it off here is a starter post on where I am in my journey so far summarized.

I am 3 years into studying as of 2021. It has been very consistent 2-4 hours a day everyday for the last three years. I made a major breakthrough in January where I can finally listen to podcasts and such and keep up and enjoy them.

Year 1:
Started with RTK for Katakana/Hiragana
Then RTK for Kanji
Listened to a bunch of stuff in the car from Pimseular and Michele Thomas Method
Started Jalup flashcard system and made it through almost 3000 cards.
Watched anime & Terrace house

Year 2:
Tons of Jalup through part of Jalup Master
Tons of Terrace House
Read a little manga
Read Grammar the Manga Way Textbook

Year 3:
Finished all 7000 Jalup cards and started my own deck
Started Shadowing with the book Letโ€™s Speak Japanese, finished beginner and started intermediate/advanced
Started using Hello Talk daily to work on output
Finished Terrace House, watched random shows and anime
Read a little manga
Started heavy into listening with listening to podcasts and Nihongo Con Teppei

Year 4:
This is just starting, about 60 days in. The biggest change recently is I started with italki this year and am doing at least 1 hour a week of speaking in Japanese with a Tutor. Going very well so far.
I finally feel like I understand my level in Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking and where I need to work. I also finally feel like I made a breakthrough on thinking, listening, and speaking Japanese without the need to translate and I can do it pretty real time. Obviously have a lot of work to do still to get up my level but I have confidence in what to doโ€ฆ

I always welcome thoughts and feedback!!!

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March 2021

This month I am going to try my first light novel ใใพใใ‚Œใƒญใƒœใƒƒใƒˆ it was a recommendation. I am expecting it to be hard because it is my first time. Generally right now I am very focused on listening and speaking but it shouldnโ€™t hurt to do some reading and try a novel.

I like dividing my goals into business and pleasure. It keep me focused on the important goals while also using my free time to cram in more โ€˜funโ€™ stuff.

Business Goals

  1. Keep up with reviews
  2. Listen to Nihongo Con Teppei podcast โ€“ 45 min a day (usually 3-4 eps)
  3. Hello Talk โ€“ Daily moments post and at least 1 direct convo a day
  4. Add new words from podcast, hello talk, books, shadowing etc to my self made deck
  5. Continue shadowing everyday. 15-30 min on average per day
  6. 2 italki tutoring sessions per week (30 min+ each)
  7. Get through half of ใใพใใ‚Œใƒญใƒœใƒƒใƒˆ

Pleasure Goals

  1. Watch as much Japanese TV/anime as I can
  2. Listen to podcasts (active, passive, semi-active) as much as I can

As always love feedback/questions.

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March Results

The month went well, I got a chance to get vaccinated and then take a trip so I took it, long overdue. That slowed me down a bit but I kept on pace. In detail:

Business Goals

  1. Keep up with reviews - DONE
  2. Listen to Nihongo Con Teppei podcast โ€“ 45 min a day (usually 3-4 eps) - DONE, this is probably the goal right now that is helping me progress the most
  3. Hello Talk โ€“ Daily moments post and at least 1 direct convo a day - DONE
  4. Add new words from podcast, hello talk, books, shadowing etc to my self made deck - DONE This was actually tricky. Now that I started a novel I am getting more than 12 new cards a day and I donโ€™t like adding more than that in a day to prevent reviews from stacking up, going to adjust next month
  5. Continue shadowing everyday. 15-30 min on average per day - DONE - but it was a slog. Finished book 2 lesson 7. This feels the least effective method right now. Going to adjust for next month
  6. 2 italki tutoring sessions per week (30 min+ each)- DONE - actually did a number of 1 hour sessions as well. This is super fun and I gain a lot of confidence.
  7. Get through half of ใใพใใ‚Œใƒญใƒœใƒƒใƒˆ - Great, I realized I could have done it all in one month but I was getting too many new words, slowed down and did half of it. But being my first novel I was expecting a ton of trouble. There was some but went way smoother than I thought. This was awesome and another confidence booster.

Pleasure Goals

  1. Watch as much Japanese TV/anime as I can This was minimal this month I was too busy
  2. Listen to podcasts (active, passive, semi-active) as much as I can This was moderate to minimal as I was busy
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April 2021

I am going to adjust something this month. I find myself barely paying attention with shadowing lately. I am almost finished the two part Shadowing book series (Shadowing Letโ€™s Speak Japanese) but I want to take a break this month. Instead of shadowing from my book I will shadow from podcasts instead to try that out. I will likely resume next month and try to finish off the shadowing books. It will be a good test anyways since I am almost finished with the intermediate book.

Business Goals

  1. Keep up with reviews
  2. Listen to Nihongo Con Teppei podcast โ€“ 45 min a day (usually 3-4 eps)
  3. Hello Talk โ€“ Daily moments post and at least 1 direct convo a day
  4. Add new words from podcast, hello talk, books, shadowing etc to my self made deck
  5. Continue shadowing everyday. 15-30 min on average per day, try using podcasts.
  6. 2 italki tutoring sessions per week (30 min+ each)
  7. Finish second half of ใใพใใ‚Œใƒญใƒœใƒƒใƒˆ

Pleasure Goals

  1. Watch as much Japanese TV/anime as I can
  2. Listen to podcasts (active, passive, semi-active) as much as I can

As always love feedback/questions.

2 Likes

Good work, keep it up!

  1. 2 italki tutoring sessions per week (30 min+ each)- DONE - actually did a number of 1 hour sessions as well. This is super fun and I gain a lot of confidence.

I found 1 hour lessons to work better. Itโ€™s like it takes 15 minutes for my mind to fully swap into Japanese.

ใใพใใ‚Œใƒญใƒœใƒƒใƒˆ

Looks good, I havenโ€™t heard of this one and itโ€™s good to find more approachable books. This makes me wonder if we should start a thread with good books for those starting out with reading native materials. Previously, things like ใ‚ญใƒŽใฎๆ—… were recommended and that is harder and much longer than ใใพใใ‚Œใƒญใƒœใƒƒใƒˆ, which is a bit off-putting for those starting off with reading!

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Thanks for the feedback! I was a bit worried to try the 1 hour. I am not a conversationalist so talking to a near stranger that long sounded hard, especially in another language. But I found that it was no more difficult maybe easier. I donโ€™t think I had the switching issue you mentioned. For me the longer duration just allowed the conversation to go deeper and be more natural. Not just like how are you, how was your week, what are you doing this weekend, 30 minutes, done.

Glad you like the book recommendation. My italki tutor recommended it. It was my first novel and it feels like the perfect recommendation. It is not too childish that it is boring. Every chapter is the same length (4 pages). They are pretty self contained so you are never too lost. They all have some twist ending and a sci-fi bent. Hoping once I finish this one I find some more similar ones.

Thanks again!

1 Like