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My humble 2016 JLPT N3 thread

Thanks @sumsum!

Yeah, that's the funny thing with goals. Once you hit big one you're kinda lost until the next one comes around!
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Brief update: The lesson was great. I can't believe it: $11 for 30 minutes. I feel like I easily got 10x the value of it.

In addition to the talking, he's also going to review some emails that I want to send my friends in Japan. I'm so rusty with any form of writing, it's holding me back.

I just scheduled my second lesson, in 2 weeks.
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Congrats ariariari!!

I'm also in a bit of a holiday slump. Admittedly, I'm out of town, out of my comfort zone, etc, spending Christmas with family. I've been doing at least a little bit every night, but still not adding new stuff. Ah well.

Gonna make it more of a thing once I'm home in less than a week.

edit - yay! That's awesome. Big Grin Sounds like a good value for its price.
Edited: 2016-12-27, 3:35 pm
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JapanesePod101
Recently I've been encountering tons of specialized vocabulary, which has just been fun to observe.

I'm at a point in Orange where the high school teacher is explaining theories about how time travel might work. Black holes, gravity, speed of light, etc.

And then I picked up some NHK easy news and encountered refugee, missing person, and words like that!

The time travel / astrophysics stuff was totally new to me. But the NHK stuff I was like "Oh, I used to encounter this stuff *all the time* when I reading NHK regularly!"

I'm thinking in 2017 it might be nice to create a "2017 social lower intermediate thread" that continued the vibe that this thread. Anyone here interested in that?
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(2016-12-29, 12:39 pm)ariariari Wrote: I'm thinking in 2017 it might be nice to create a "2017 social lower intermediate thread" that continued the vibe that this thread. Anyone here interested in that?

Sounds good :-) I don't mind if it has N3 somewhere in the name as well
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(2016-12-29, 3:52 pm)sumsum Wrote:
(2016-12-29, 12:39 pm)ariariari Wrote: I'm thinking in 2017 it might be nice to create a "2017 social lower intermediate thread" that continued the vibe that this thread. Anyone here interested in that?

Sounds good :-) I don't mind if it has N3 somewhere in the name as well

Noooooooo!!!!!! no more N3 please!!!!!!!!  Big Grin Angel   Tongue
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Two threads worked best last year. Maybe a 2017 N1/N2 thread and an 2017 N3/N4/N5 thread?

Or is ari3 just tired of JLPT in general?  Big Grin
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I think what's most interesting about the lower intermediate bracket is that you are starting to look into native material Smile But honestly I don't really care for the name, it's more about the people posting there and getting some motivation! I just thought that there's probably going to be an JLPT thread in some form and having two "midlevel" threads might be too much, but I don't know
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(2016-12-30, 2:27 am)tokyostyle Wrote: Or is ari3 just tired of JLPT in general?  Big Grin

Totally tired of it. It stinks that it's a pass/fail exam that's only offered once a year, and that you have to register 6 months in advance. Having failed N3 once, I feel like it's kinda just hanging over me until I pass. So I wanna just step away from that for now.

It's cool, I'm getting an all expense paid trip to give a talk on my work there at the end of the year. I'm happy to focus on that, and having a teacher help me improve my speaking and writing skills, so I can communicate well with people before and during the trip. And I like reading manga and watching anime. I just wanna enjoy the language for a bit, and have a nice community for a year to help support and encourage me in improving my skills.

Some of my IRL friends are supportive of this, some think it's silly that I'm learning Japanese. But none of them can really be "in the trenches" with me to help me improve, or understand what a "win" like understanding your first podcast is like. That's probably been the biggest benefit of the last thread was for me.
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(2016-12-29, 8:18 pm)ariariari Wrote: Noooooooo!!!!!! no more N3 please!!!!!!!!  Big Grin Angel   Tongue
Ha! I was just thinking how you've totally changed tactics 180 degrees from drilling jlpt textbooks to almost exclusive native material. I do think you are on the right path as I've always thought the best practice is practicing the actual thing rather than doing too much isolated drilling. Of course you can't do too much native material when you first start out, but seeing that you are able to enjoy reading native material, it's best to shift to native material to the front seat.
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(2017-01-04, 8:40 pm)yogert909 Wrote:
(2016-12-29, 8:18 pm)ariariari Wrote: Noooooooo!!!!!! no more N3 please!!!!!!!!  Big Grin Angel   Tongue
Ha!  I was just thinking how you've totally changed tactics 180 degrees from drilling jlpt textbooks to almost exclusive native material.  I do think you are on the right path as I've always thought the best practice is practicing the actual thing rather than doing too much isolated drilling.  Of course you can't do too much native material when you first start out, but seeing that you are able to enjoy reading native material, it's best to shift to native material to the front seat.

I feel the same way about native material for languages in general, although my experience with Japanese so far is that at lower levels using native material is just too hard. I'd be interested to know where the advanced people feel is a good threshold for switching to mostly native material (N3? N2?).
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(2017-01-05, 2:33 pm)ChestnutMouse Wrote:
(2017-01-04, 8:40 pm)yogert909 Wrote:
(2016-12-29, 8:18 pm)ariariari Wrote: Noooooooo!!!!!! no more N3 please!!!!!!!!  Big Grin Angel   Tongue
Ha!  I was just thinking how you've totally changed tactics 180 degrees from drilling jlpt textbooks to almost exclusive native material.  I do think you are on the right path as I've always thought the best practice is practicing the actual thing rather than doing too much isolated drilling.  Of course you can't do too much native material when you first start out, but seeing that you are able to enjoy reading native material, it's best to shift to native material to the front seat.

I feel the same way about native material for languages in general, although my experience with Japanese so far is that at lower levels using native material is just too hard. I'd be interested to know where the advanced people feel is a good threshold for switching to mostly native material (N3? N2?).
N2's a good jumping off point to switch to mostly native material, though in my case I always kept a lot of native material around, even if at first it was stuff meant for little kids, so do whatever feels right to you.
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(2017-01-05, 2:33 pm)ChestnutMouse Wrote: I feel the same way about native material for languages in general, although my experience with Japanese so far is that at lower levels using native material is just too hard. I'd be interested to know where the advanced people feel is a good threshold for switching to mostly native material (N3? N2?).

I think the N3 level is a good point to be 'mostly' working with native materials, but there's probably still quite a lot to be learned from formal grammar study too so I wouldn't neglect that entirely.

At the N2 level I think you should be spending the vast majority of your efforts on native material and unless you've got a really good resource, not be 'studying' as such but rather just 'looking up' points that you don't recognize or that give you trouble.

Of course if you're very concerned about passing the tests in a timely fashion you'll always want to be studying JLPT prep materials, but if you're only using the tests as a benchmark then you can look up interesting bits of grammar wherever you happen to encounter them and that'll work out just fine for your overall comprehension and will -eventually- work out for the JLPT.
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(2017-01-05, 2:33 pm)ChestnutMouse Wrote:
(2017-01-04, 8:40 pm)yogert909 Wrote:
(2016-12-29, 8:18 pm)ariariari Wrote: Noooooooo!!!!!! no more N3 please!!!!!!!!  Big Grin Angel   Tongue
Ha!  I was just thinking how you've totally changed tactics 180 degrees from drilling jlpt textbooks to almost exclusive native material.  I do think you are on the right path as I've always thought the best practice is practicing the actual thing rather than doing too much isolated drilling.  Of course you can't do too much native material when you first start out, but seeing that you are able to enjoy reading native material, it's best to shift to native material to the front seat.

I feel the same way about native material for languages in general, although my experience with Japanese so far is that at lower levels using native material is just too hard. I'd be interested to know where the advanced people feel is a good threshold for switching to mostly native material (N3? N2?).

I can't answer the "mostly" part. But I can say that when I was preparing for N4 I started reading NHK Easy. But it was extremely hard due to the vocabulary. 

But a few months after passing N4 it became a lot easier. And then I started reading my first mangas. 

Now I consider myself "literate but".

I'm literate BUT I only read easy manga and I need a dictionary Smile

I assume that it will only go up from here.
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I can't believe it, but I actually passed! And I was so sure I bombed the vocab, especially the kanji part (I guessed SO many words... and the few I looked up afterwards were all wrong...) but apparently the rest was good enough. I also initially forgot that Grammar was in the same scoring part (I kinda thought it was together with Reading, as that's how the test time is split up) so that might have saved me?

Sooo my scores are:
Language Knowledge 36/60 (Vocab B / Grammar B)
Reading 45/60
Listening 51/60
--Total Score 132/180

I was pretty confident that I'd pass Listening and Reading but the score is still higher than I expected (especially Listening) and Language Knowledge is just way way WAY higher than I expected. (Which sounds funny as it's my worst score, right?) So definitely positively surprised. I'm still a bit dumbfounded. I mean, what?! That's actually not a bad score. ... what? how?! Oh well, so happy right now :3
Edited: 2017-01-23, 8:22 pm
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(2017-01-23, 8:20 pm)sumsum Wrote: I can't believe it, but I actually passed! And I was so sure I bombed the vocab, especially the kanji part (I guessed SO many words... and the few I looked up afterwards were all wrong...) but apparently the rest was good enough. I also initially forgot that Grammar was in the same scoring part (I kinda thought it was together with Reading, as that's how the test time is split up) so that might have saved me?

Sooo my scores are:
Language Knowledge 36/60 (Vocab B / Grammar B)
Reading 45/60
Listening 51/60
--Total Score 132/180

I was pretty confident that I'd pass Listening and Reading but the score is still higher than I expected (especially Listening) and Language Knowledge is just way way WAY higher than I expected. (Which sounds funny as it's my worst score, right?) So definitely positively surprised. I'm still a bit dumbfounded. I mean, what?! That's actually not a bad score. ... what? how?! Oh well, so happy right now :3

CONGRATS!

I'm so happy for you!

Can you tell me how you prepared for reading and listening? Those were by far the hardest parts for me back in 2015.
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I wish I could say "THIS really helps" but especially for reading, I have no idea. I basically tried a bunch of stuff and dropped it again, because that's just what I usually do... So for a while I would try to read an NHK Easy News article a day, but I don't think I did it for that long (maybe like 3 weeks or so... and after that only occasionally an article...). I also read a couple of satori reader articles (when it was still in beta) and I think I read a few chokochoko library stories, but I never got to the N3 stuff. I also read 10分で読める伝記 for first graders. And in the local library I actually found a book with N3 readings, but I only read a couple of pages (~10). Okay, If I list all of that it actually doesn't sound too bad, but I don't feel like I did that much reading as I was super inconsistent with it. But I guess in the long run it did add up a bit?

For listening, I listened to anime episodes in the background of series I had watched with subs before. I don't know how many times I listened to Baby Steps and Haikyuu by now. Sometimes I wouldn't really listen properly at all, sometimes I'd tune in a bit more, depending on what the "main activity" was. It's hard to say, if that helped or not. I never really felt like I learned all that much but I might have gotten better at actually parsing some words? No idea. The content is not really difficult and I pretty much knew what was happening anyway, so it's definitely a whole other story than listening to JLPT material.
I also have the iknow app on my phone and you can listen to the sentences in bulk there (you can't do that on the regular web page Sad ). For a while i would do that on my way to work, so I'd listen to like 100 different sentences (with two repetitions per sentence) or something each way. I also listened to the nihongo no mori N3 grammar series (while washing the dishes...) and on the week before the test I rushed through the first part of the Kanzen Master N3 Listening book.

All in all I definitely spend much much more time on listening, BUT most of it was while doing other stuff and not really test specific, so I always thought it probably wasn't really effective. But seems like it wasn't the worst idea after all.

And well, let's better not talk about grammar/vocab studies, as a) my score wasn't the greatest and b) uh well there's a lot of "last minute cramming" involved, especially with grammar and I just wouldn't want to recommend that Wink
Edited: 2017-01-23, 9:43 pm
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