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1M Challenge - NHK News Easy & NHK News #2

#1
Time for a new challenge!! This time we will be aligned with the month March and Tadoku (short version).

As always everyone is welcome to participate, you can sign up using THIS spreadsheet, just go to sheet #2 (on the bottom, there are sheets #1 & #2) and put your nick on the list. You can join in at any time during the challenge, your score might not be as perfect as some of the powerhouses we have here but you can still put up a fight Smile

Like I said before, if there are no new Easy articles on weekends and holidays use these packed articles from almost a year ago.

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Rules: Read & listen to NHK News Easy and corresponding NHK News article (there is a link above the picture in every Easy article) every day (6 articles each day) for a month. Whatever form and combination works for you its fine (I do: listen, read, listen+read), using Rikai* is fine.

Participants: Beginner and Intermediate. If you find Full articles too hard even after reading the Easy version, you can just focus on Easy. If you find Easy a little too easy, focus on Full.

Goal: Help with transition from beginner to intermediate and motivate yourself to read regularly.

How: I've created a spreadsheet to help everyone track their progress, its available here. Just add your nick in an empty row. Pick 'O' from the drop-down if you've read that set of articles for that day or 'X' if not.

When: We start Friday 1st of March and end on 31st of March.
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#2
I've still been reading my NHK articles daily. Thank you for helping me build the habit, thurd!

For those who don't know about Tadoku, it's an extensive reading (friendly) competition that takes place a few times a year. The next one is from March 15-31st--only a half month compared to January's round of a full month.

Here's the Tadoku site:
http://readmod.wordpress.com/

The Tadoku web app (you'll need Twitter to use this):
http://readmod.com/ranking

and the author's explanation of Tadoku and extensive reading:
http://readmod.wordpress.com/about/
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#3
Has anyone considered the option of tracking the number of articles read each day (from 0 to 6), instead of just "all" or "nothing"?
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#4
I'm excited to get started. Smile I need to get into the habit of reading every single day and this will help get me started.
Edited: 2013-02-28, 11:11 pm
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#5
winterpromise31 Wrote:I'm excited to get started. Smile I need to get into the habit of reading every single day and this will help get me started.
Definitely will help. I got into a groove in January, and challenged myself to read 5% of a novel every day (save for school days twice a week), and have been able to keep that up since then. I think routines hold even better when you give yourself minor rewards. I often rewarded myself with playing an hour of games if I did my fill of reading for the day.
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#6
Moving this to Group Study and stickied =). (and added the link to the NHK in the first post)
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#7
Today's articles had a nice variety. The stuff about iPS細胞 was quite interesting, but man the full-blown NHK article (not the 'easy' one) was quite long.
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#8
It was, but aside from the medical terms it was pretty reader-friendly. The extremely short tablet article makes up for it =).
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#9
I read easy version of the article on ips. While I understood the grammar, I had to look up a LOT of vocabulary. Is that normal? What do you do with unknown vocab? Add it to Anki now? Make a note for later? Push through without looking everything up? I'm excited that I can understand the grammar/meanings of the sentences once I look up the vocab but have no idea how to get past the vocab hurdle.
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#10
Given the amount of medical terms, I think it'd be natural to encounter unknown words...
If you have a lot of them, just add the more likely to encounter ones (e.g. I'm fairly sure you will not encounter 加齢黄斑変性 any time soon...)
Or add them all + their subwords (加齢+黄斑+変性)if you think it's worth it... I wouldn't.

(if you're talking about the non-medical terms, then mine away!)
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#11
Well, thanks to many years of listening to Paul Harvey push his miracle cure I've heard the term macular degeneration before, but if you were to ask me precisely what a macula is I wouldn't be able to give you a satisfactory answer.

When an article in English has a lot of unfamiliar technical terms it's a slog to go through. Reading the same thing in a foreign language just compounds the problems. Although I'm sure in the long run I'll benefit from having thrown the vocab in Anki, I was really glad when I came to the end and was able to put that article aside for good.
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#12
Bump. It looks like a couple people missed the first day. Maybe Feb 28 -> March 1st threw them off Tongue GL everyone.
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#13
s0apgun Wrote:Bump. It looks like a couple people missed the first day. Maybe Feb 28 -> March 1st threw them off Tongue GL everyone.
It's a stickied thread though, haha.

I was actually curious if, on weekends, we can use 3 NHK articles and then 3 other sources (non-NHK). Since weekends yield no new NHK Easy articles. I kind of like Asahi news better than NHK so I was thinking of getting some of their articles in.
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#14
TheVinster Wrote:I was actually curious if, on weekends, we can use 3 NHK articles and then 3 other sources (non-NHK). Since weekends yield no new NHK Easy articles. I kind of like Asahi news better than NHK so I was thinking of getting some of their articles in.
Do the old NHK articles on weekends, they're much faster and more "robotic" so its harder to understand them.
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#15
Bump.

This Challenge rules. Thanks for the motivation!
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#16
May I make a couple of edits to the design of the spreadsheet?

The spreadsheet as of now looks like this:

[Image: e08053702455c1734792eff2adeff6a572bb51d8...32e46g.jpg]


If we made it look like this:

[Image: a8217accb6f73a5663cfcd9772d8be9221342984...9cf06g.jpg]

We could create pivot tables to make rankings for each category, plus a general ranking, that would look similar to this:

[Image: 76db8452464c0ac7c119706569d63817975a36f8...bd686g.jpg]

But with each ranking in a different spreadsheet.
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#17
How often do you guys read the political articles? I find myself thinking I should read them for the wealth of vocab I'm sure to learn, but also I don't want to be bored to tears. So I typically end up just reading about a bunch of dead people.
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#18
Sebastian Wrote:May I make a couple of edits to the design of the spreadsheet?

The spreadsheet as of now looks like this:
...

But with each ranking in a different spreadsheet.
Go ahead, but I think its best to make the rankings on the same spreadsheet so each edition is confined to its own. It'll also be easier to navigate with just #3,#4 etc. than #2 Data, #3 Rankings etc. I wanted to combine the scores anyway so a lot of stuff would count on its own.

There was a cool ranking system done by somebody in the very first edition but I didn't have the time to adapt that to subsequent ones.
Edited: 2013-03-03, 4:10 pm
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#19
TheVinster Wrote:How often do you guys read the political articles? I find myself thinking I should read them for the wealth of vocab I'm sure to learn, but also I don't want to be bored to tears. So I typically end up just reading about a bunch of dead people.
I'm having a lot of trouble not avoiding them for the same reason. The steep hill of weird, new vocab coupled with the relatively uninteresting content is quite the challenge.

What I do is since we have to read 3 articles every day I go by the labels NHK gives and won't let myself read more than one article of the same type in one day. For example today I read 1 国際、1社会 and 1政治. There's 7 categories overall so you don't have to do one about politics everyday but you can throw in a challenge everyone once in a while to stay on your toes.

That's the closest thing to a solution I've been able to come up with so far.
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#20
I have yet to complete a full day's worth of articles. I've been trying but it takes me soooo long just to read the Easy articles. So far I've read 1-2 articles a day and it takes roughly 45 minutes for 2 articles. I have other studying to do (Anki, my grammar book, and writing to my language exchange partner) and can't devote enough time specifically to 3+ articles a day. *sigh* I'm going to admit failure, that even by the end of the month, I will probably not be able to read all of the articles in one day. I second someone's request that we are able to record 1-3 articles per day on the sheet instead of just "yes" or "no." Wink

I will not give up!
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#21
Are you using the rikai plugin for you browser? It helps speed things up for looking up the definition for words you don't know.
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#22
I use Opera as my browser and have the rikai plugin installed. I've tried to use it but it's really awkward. It's hard to highlight an entire word instead of just one kanji. I'm not sure if it's me or if it's not truly Opera friendly and it would be better to use Firefox while reading... does it work well in your browser? Right now I have the article open in one tab and jisho in the other. Copy, paste, repeat.
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#23
Rikai in Firefox is pretty good about selecting the whole word as long as I point at the starting character. If it's a proper name I usually have to toggle to the names dictionary (unless it's a common enough name to be in the main dictionary).

Sometimes whole phrases light up because the fixed expression is in EDICT.

In any case, I never 'select' a word, just point at it and it gets selected. I have to use the toggle in the upper right corner to turn rikai off sometimes when the selecting is in the way, of course, but that's easy enough.

Edit: Considering the topic, I should note, the pop-up definitions in NHK Web News Easy are not very friendly to Rikai. I've never been able to point at the words within the definitions that NHK web news pops up. On the other hand, they don't really -hurt- anything either. Rikai's definitions appear over them, so if you want to read them, you may have to turn rikai off or toggle an alternate rikai popup location.
Edited: 2013-03-06, 2:03 am
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#24
If you want to up the ante you can always subscribe to a news channel on YouTube and watch all the videos for that day. Better yet is listening to the NHK hour-long podcast, because if you read the articles for that day, and maybe some others, they always discuss them and go into further conversation. I found I was able to follow their conversation easier because I had studied the particulars of the articles and learned those words.

This challenge is so useful and I feel like I'm already seeing very slight progress.
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#25
Whenever I come across a word rikai doesn't know (countries, towns, people, or models) I just highlight it and right click Search google for "blah" which usually comes up with a fast picture or other context to clue you in on the definition.
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