After Hiragana, Katakana or extended reading practice ?

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Reply #1 - 2011 July 01, 8:04 am
Bouazza
New member
From: The complex axis
Registered: 2011-07-01
Posts: 5

こんにちわ !

I just started learning Japanese 2 days ago using Tae Kim's guide. I did 1h/day SRSing ( Anki ) to memorize the hiragana, and after 2 days I finally memorized them all. I solved the Hiragana exercises in Tae Kim's guide quickly, and it seems that the next step in the guide is Katakana.

But, am I the only one who thinks it's too early ? Don't you think that I still have to practice hiragana reading before learning a new character set ?

I thought about trying to read some short Hiragana novels, but maybe my lack of vocabulary ( I know only about 10 words now lol ) and grammar ( I didn't even start it yet ) will only frustrate me when trying to do so ?

What would you advise me ?

ありがとう !

Reply #2 - 2011 July 01, 8:07 am
wccrawford
Member
From: FL US
Registered: 2008-03-28
Posts: 1551

Katakana.  You'll lose all the loan words, and all words that are stressed, if you don't have it.

Reply #3 - 2011 July 01, 8:21 am
thecite
Member
From: Adelaide
Registered: 2009-02-05
Posts: 781

Have you gone through RTK1? That's a pretty good first step.

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Reply #4 - 2011 July 01, 8:22 am
Bouazza
New member
From: The complex axis
Registered: 2011-07-01
Posts: 5

Never said that I would skip Katakana wink My question was if it is better to do intense hiragana reading practice ( if yes, where ? does someone know of some easy novels in hiragana ? ) before learning Katakana, or learning it right away.

Reply #5 - 2011 July 01, 8:24 am
Bouazza
New member
From: The complex axis
Registered: 2011-07-01
Posts: 5

@thecite : sorry, didn't see your message. I don't know much about RTK, but it is for Kanji, no ?

( maybe I sound noobish but it's only 2 days since I started learning Japanese ^_^ )

Reply #6 - 2011 July 01, 8:29 am
Superfreek
Member
From: Tennessee, USA
Registered: 2011-01-14
Posts: 46

The more your in the language the more it will be reinforced.  Just keep studying everyday.  In a month or two it will be second nature.

Reply #7 - 2011 July 01, 8:34 am
thecite
Member
From: Adelaide
Registered: 2009-02-05
Posts: 781

It's for kanji, but it's good to get a solid understanding of kanji from the outset, otherwise you won't be able to read anything native. You can learn kana anytime, doesn't take too long.

Reply #8 - 2011 July 01, 9:34 am
wulfgar
Member
From: canada
Registered: 2009-06-15
Posts: 151

the hesig remembering the Kana is awesome for katakana.  I would recommend that book.  Learn it before or during your kanji jouney because it uses the same imagery techniques as the kanji.

Reply #9 - 2011 July 01, 9:43 am
Nagareboshi
Member
From: Austria
Registered: 2010-10-11
Posts: 569
Website

It is not too early to start with Katakana. You are done learning the Hiragana, so start learning the Katakana. You will get plenty of reading and writing practice soon enough. So keep doing your Grammar Guide, or get yourself a good textbook, or Anki Deck for learning sentences, vocabulary, basic expressions etc. And if you feel that Japanese is for you, start learning the Kanji, with Remembering the Kanji.

This is what I did. I started learning the Hiragana and Katakana, along with writing some basic sentences, and a basic set of vocabulary. You can get free material from the Meguro Learning Center website. You can also watch Nukemarines videos in which he teaches Hiragana and Katakana. They are pretty good, and entertaining, i must say.

After that i started doing Genki I, learning to read some Kanji along the way, and later last year, i actually started learning how to write and to memorize Kanji. You are not forced to learn the Kanji right from the beginning. You would still be able to at least read Kanji, but some similar looking Kanji may or may not confuse you. It is easier to learn vocabulary, and read sentences, when you know the kanji already. You can look at them, and you would know, aha this means this and that means that.

Just keep learning, and have fun doing it, have fun doing it, have fun doing it, and you will be fine. Oh, have i mentioned that you should be having fun doing it? If not, just remember, have fun doing it. ;-)

Reply #10 - 2011 July 01, 10:27 am
jishera
Member
From: California
Registered: 2011-01-19
Posts: 174

I agree with what others have said about going to katakana. You don't need to be 100% perfect in order to move on to something new. In fact, if you try to accomplish that you may burn yourself out from boredom! I knew the hiragana relatively well (at least by sight) before starting my textbook. Didn't know much katakana, so I worked on that next. My reading/writing is still pretty slow but it is improving as I work my way through Japanese for Everyone. I try to aim for around 80%-90% "correctness" until going to the next chapter. The SRS will help you remember that last bit that isn't sticking, so don't worry about it right now. Just keep moving forward. You'll probably feel better going to something new instead of focusing on the same thing for days and days. Have fun! I found katakana much easier to write than hiragana, hopefully you will too.

Reply #11 - 2011 July 01, 11:02 am
Bouazza
New member
From: The complex axis
Registered: 2011-07-01
Posts: 5

Okay I'll say you convinced me, thank you all :-)

I'll surely return when I have more questions smile

Reply #12 - 2011 July 03, 5:07 pm
Bouazza
New member
From: The complex axis
Registered: 2011-07-01
Posts: 5

I just finished Hiragana and Katakana practice using the worksheet ( 29 pages roll ) you linked to Nagareboshi ( thanks by the way ! ) smile I'm doing some grammar with Tae Kim's guide right now ( + some resources on the net when I search for a specific lesson ).

Just gave a look to the RTK1 sample, and it seems like the Kanji pronunciation isn't covered. I will not criticize the Heisig method ( I'm not qualified to do that ), but does that mean that his method is : learning how to write and recognize around 2000 Kanjis using mnemonics, THEN learning their pronunciation ?

Reply #13 - 2011 July 03, 5:57 pm
KanjiDevourer
Member
From: Wherever I may roam
Registered: 2010-02-23
Posts: 133

Bouazza wrote:

Just gave a look to the RTK1 sample, and it seems like the Kanji pronunciation isn't covered. I will not criticize the Heisig method ( I'm not qualified to do that ), but does that mean that his method is : learning how to write and recognize around 2000 Kanjis using mnemonics, THEN learning their pronunciation ?

Exactly. It is common practice here to learn to write the kanji and familiarise oneself with them using the Heisig method, and then start studying vocabulary to memorise the kanji readings in context, which is considered the most useful.
The Heisig method is primarily useful to be able to tell the kanji apart; this can be quite hard if you skip Heisig. This also explains why he recommends studying keyword -> kanji, and not the other way around. A kanji does not have one meaning which can be captured in one keyword. Meaning can be studied by studying vocabulary. As nest0r put it very nicely, the keyword serves as a small trigger to make you able to recall the kanji.
All this isn't entirely uncontroversial: some people claim to have made good progress studying in very different ways and the general though generic advice is: try to find out what works best for you.

Reply #14 - 2011 July 03, 6:36 pm
caivano
Member
From: Tokyo
Registered: 2010-03-14
Posts: 695

if you want to practice reading hiragana, children's picture books are good. It's worth doing to get your speed up imo.

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