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Grammar retention problems.

#1
I'm pretty good with kanji and vocabulary, and using words I know in conversation but I absolutely cannot retain grammar.  It's like I immediately forget patterns exist the day after I study them.

Is there any app or program that I can just drill grammar patterns/conjugation with?
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#2
https://www.jpdrills.com
Textbook drills, if you have any
Writing on Lang-8 might work
Grammar cards in anki where you're reading the grammar and have to explain it


Also, read read and read. Then read some more. Watch tv as well.
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#3
(2017-04-13, 5:37 pm)theadamie Wrote: I'm pretty good with kanji and vocabulary, and using words I know in conversation but I absolutely cannot retain grammar.  It's like I immediately forget patterns exist the day after I study them.

Is there any app or program that I can just drill grammar patterns/conjugation with?

There are anki and memrise decks full of example sentences from various books, just search for the ones that you used. But honestly, I think the best way to retain grammar is to read a lot of long-form writing, not flashcards. That is,  prose fiction and/or long essays or non-fiction books. Substantial context will help keep you on track and reinforce half-remembered grammar points until they become intuitive.
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#4
(2017-04-13, 5:59 pm)SomeCallMeChris Wrote:
(2017-04-13, 5:37 pm)theadamie Wrote: I'm pretty good with kanji and vocabulary, and using words I know in conversation but I absolutely cannot retain grammar.  It's like I immediately forget patterns exist the day after I study them.

Is there any app or program that I can just drill grammar patterns/conjugation with?

There are anki and memrise decks full of example sentences from various books, just search for the ones that you used. But honestly, I think the best way to retain grammar is to read a lot of long-form writing, not flashcards. That is,  prose fiction and/or long essays or non-fiction books. Substantial context will help keep you on track and reinforce half-remembered grammar points until they become intuitive.

I didn't explain very well.  I can generally recognize grammar I've learned but I can't remember the rules to use them in conversation.  Like is it たべる+×, たべ+×, たべれらる+×?  本+の, 本+な?. And the stem combinations between verb useage, adjective usage and noun useage are completely inconsistent.  

Pattern B may use verbs in the same way as pattern A, but conjugate nouns and adjectives in a totally different way.

Pattern D may use verbs and nouns the same as Pattern C but adjectives are conjugated differently.

い and な adjective rules also seem to flip around a lot.

I just want to drill and drill until I have a "feeling" of correctness instead of logical reasoning.  I started studying korean 10 years ago and I don't remember rules anymore, I just know what feels correct. I can speak Korean all day without feeling stifled, or exhausted, whereas Japanese feels like I'm extremely stifled, never able to say things exactly the way I want and with constant focus that is exhausting.

My Japanese wife is my proofreader but even with writing it's like it just falls out of my head.

Is there any way to set up anki for random drilling instead of SRS? If I could do that I could just make a massive spreadsheet of grammar examples and import to anki. Like side 1 > 行く + 行かなければ成りません。 side 2> 行かなければ成りません and have column for verbs, adj, nouns etc.
Edited: 2017-04-13, 7:18 pm
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#5
Ahhh. Some people use cloze-delete decks for this so that you're asked to fill in the grammar point, but I've never been very fond of such decks. My own production is still weak, but, what I find helps the most is remembering key sentences that illustrate the point.  In my case, that's mostly lines that I remember from shows I've watched, or occasionally songs that I listen to.

In any case, memorizing 'pattern sentences' is a kind of old-school way of learning grammar that isn't used much any more but is probably much better for improving production. You could take any sentence deck and flip it around so the English is on the front and the Japanese is on the back. Throw hints on the front if you need to; the point in this exercise isn't, after, any logic exercise, it's simply to prod your memory to see if you can produce the Japanese sentence word for word. 

If your wife thinks any of the sentences are odd, you can delete them or correct them to her specification.

I don't really use this technique myself, but if I wanted to improve my production in a hurry I would. I've certainly noticed my production has improved greatly simply from incidentally memorizing sentences from my Jp->En cards (which have a sentence on the front and require typed answers, so I'm exposed to these sentences to the point that they're just echoing around in my head). And that's with only a small percentage of sentences chosen specifically for their grammar point, most are just vocab drills that have whatever grammar happens to be in the example. Well, that ended up being a very wide range anyway. Going the other way to deliberately memorize the Japanese sentences would surely be much more useful for production.
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#6
I recommend going through a lot of song lyrics. There's no need to go about the basics in this painful manner.
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#7
I restarted from scratch last year and changed my approach to grammar. I used Tae Kim and A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar. Here's the ADoBJG course: https://www.memrise.com/course/1123872/s...mmar-pt-1/

Learning: First, read over the entire entry in the book, especially the notes. Understand what they're talking about. Next, sentence by sentence I read out the Japanese sentence, listen and use TTS audio to comfortably say the sentence out loud, and type out the sentence (just a step I do).

Reviewing: I'm given the English sentence and a grammar point. I translate the sentence to Japanese out loud, search for the correct sentence among choices, then read it out loud, click the answer, hear the TTS then lastly say the sentence out loud from memory one last time.

If during reviewing I think I'm missing something, I can quickly look up the entry again. I don't sweat about not being able to translate exactly. Really, I treat these are more reminders than anything else. The act of repeating all of these multiple times out loud has helped to the most to be honest. That in turn has helped my passive reading ability. If you care, here's a video of one of my learning sessions with ADoBJG: https://youtu.be/5KEDbAjdDHg?t=1h29m00s

Anyway, I'm not saying it's the right way, but it is a way that's been resonating well with me.
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#8
You need more input. Reading, listening, and watching anything at all will help you to retain grammar.

If you're not constantly using the grammar rules you 'learn' in textbooks it's natural that you forget them quickly.
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#9
(2017-04-14, 3:19 am)risu_ Wrote: You need more input. Reading, listening, and watching anything at all will help you to retain grammar.

If you're not constantly using the grammar rules you 'learn' in textbooks it's natural that you forget them quickly.

Well, I speak Japanese at home, watch dramas/news at home and read novels/ do Anki at work.  It just doesn't stick.  Not sure how I can input anymore without moving back to Japan.

(2017-04-14, 12:14 am)Nukemarine Wrote: I restarted from scratch last year and changed my approach to grammar. I used Tae Kim and A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar. Here's the ADoBJG course: https://www.memrise.com/course/1123872/s...mmar-pt-1/

Learning: First, read over the entire entry in the book, especially the notes. Understand what they're talking about. Next, sentence by sentence I read out the Japanese sentence, listen and use TTS audio to comfortably say the sentence out loud, and type out the sentence (just a step I do).

Reviewing: I'm given the English sentence and a grammar point. I translate the sentence to Japanese out loud, search for the correct sentence among choices, then read it out loud, click the answer, hear the TTS then lastly say the sentence out loud from memory one last time.

If during reviewing I think I'm missing something, I can quickly look up the entry again. I don't sweat about not being able to translate exactly. Really, I treat these are more reminders than anything else. The act of repeating all of these multiple times out loud has helped to the most to be honest. That in turn has helped my passive reading ability. If you care, here's a video of one of my learning sessions with ADoBJG: https://youtu.be/5KEDbAjdDHg?t=1h29m00s

Anyway, I'm not saying it's the right way, but it is a way that's been resonating well with me.

Thanks a lot, I may do this.  Just curious, are you living in Japan now?

(2017-04-14, 12:03 am)howtwosavealif3 Wrote: I recommend going through a lot of song lyrics. There's no need to go about the basics in this painful manner.

Who said it's basic?  Grammar goes on forever in Japanese.  I would say I'm intermediate.
Edited: 2017-04-15, 11:25 pm
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#10
(2017-04-15, 11:23 pm)theadamie Wrote: Who said it's basic?  Grammar goes on forever in Japanese.  I would say I'm intermediate.
erlog described his difficulty with the retention of grammar points. He created a specific grammar deck to overcome the problem. It is not basic, so this deck or at least the format could be helpful for you too:
http://forum.koohii.com/thread-12095.htm...ht=grammar
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#11
(2017-04-15, 11:23 pm)theadamie Wrote:
(2017-04-14, 3:19 am)risu_ Wrote: You need more input. Reading, listening, and watching anything at all will help you to retain grammar.

If you're not constantly using the grammar rules you 'learn' in textbooks it's natural that you forget them quickly.

Well, I speak Japanese at home, watch dramas/news at home and read novels/ do Anki at work.  It just doesn't stick.  Not sure how I can input anymore without moving back to Japan.


i agree with risu_ you need to input more! maybe you should get more selective about the stuff you consume so you actually care enough to pause/rewind to try to catch watch the person said or look up the word/grammar. don't watch something because it's in japanese. watch it because you want to watch it and it happens to be in japanese. just passively consuming japanese media doesn't add up if you don't actively engage with it and try to understand whatever it is you don't understand/can't catch.

also watching stuff with Japanese subs maybe prove useful to you. for me MCD or rather cloze deletion were game-changing.
Edited: 2017-04-16, 3:16 pm
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#12
(2017-04-16, 3:13 pm)howtwosavealif3 Wrote:
(2017-04-15, 11:23 pm)theadamie Wrote: for me MCD or rather cloze deletion were game-changing.

What's 'MCD'?
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#13
(2017-04-16, 11:32 pm)ItaiB Wrote:
(2017-04-16, 3:13 pm)howtwosavealif3 Wrote: for me MCD or rather cloze deletion were game-changing.

What's 'MCD'?
mass cloze deletion
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#14
(2017-04-16, 3:13 pm)howtwosavealif3 Wrote:
(2017-04-15, 11:23 pm)theadamie Wrote:
(2017-04-14, 3:19 am)risu_ Wrote: You need more input. Reading, listening, and watching anything at all will help you to retain grammar.

If you're not constantly using the grammar rules you 'learn' in textbooks it's natural that you forget them quickly.

Well, I speak Japanese at home, watch dramas/news at home and read novels/ do Anki at work.  It just doesn't stick.  Not sure how I can input anymore without moving back to Japan.


i agree with risu_ you need to input more! maybe you should get more selective about the stuff you consume so you actually care enough to pause/rewind to try to catch watch the person said or look up the word/grammar. don't watch something because it's in japanese. watch it because you want to watch it and it happens to be in japanese. just passively consuming japanese media doesn't add up if you don't actively engage with it and try to understand whatever it is you don't understand/can't catch.

also watching stuff with Japanese subs maybe prove useful to you. for me MCD or rather cloze deletion were game-changing.

Could you maybe take some screenshots of some of your cloze deletion/MCD stuff?  I hear people talk about this a lot but I don't really understand it.

(2017-04-16, 9:24 am)Matthias Wrote:
(2017-04-15, 11:23 pm)theadamie Wrote: Who said it's basic?  Grammar goes on forever in Japanese.  I would say I'm intermediate.
erlog described his difficulty with the retention of grammar points. He created a specific grammar deck to overcome the problem. It is not basic, so this deck or at least the format could be helpful for you too:
http://forum.koohii.com/thread-12095.htm...ht=grammar

I'll look at this tonight when I get home Smile
Edited: 2017-04-17, 6:07 pm
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#15
MCDs are just a cloze deletion card that's a paragraph or more rather than a single sentence.  MCDs give more context than sentences and according to MCD orthodoxy, should be pulled from native material.

http://learnanylanguage.wikia.com/wiki/M...e_Deletion
Edited: 2017-04-17, 6:13 pm
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#16
(2017-04-17, 5:57 pm)theadamie Wrote:
(2017-04-16, 9:24 am)Matthias Wrote: erlog described his difficulty with the retention of grammar points. He created a specific grammar deck to overcome the problem. It is not basic, so this deck or at least the format could be helpful for you too:
http://forum.koohii.com/thread-12095.htm...ht=grammar

I'll look at this tonight when I get home Smile
When you look at it you will also see what cloze deletion is. I take an example from the deck:

original sentence: 日々の 練習あっての 勝利だ
=> question: 日々の 練習( ... ) 勝利だ
You can do this with any part (word/kanji/hiragana) of the sentence that is how it becomes mass cloze deletion (MCD). [@Yogert: actually you do not need a paragraph. You do not even need a sentence: one example from AJATT were 四字熟語 => one "word" and four cards (or more if you also combine two kanji).]

Obviously here you want to concentrate on one grammar point only, so here you create only one card.

For many of the open points there might be more than one possible solution therefore a disambiguation can be helpful. Here is the way erlog did it:

question: 日々の練習 (indispensible to...) 勝利だ
answer: あっての
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#17
(2017-04-17, 6:43 pm)Matthias Wrote:
(2017-04-17, 5:57 pm)theadamie Wrote:
(2017-04-16, 9:24 am)Matthias Wrote: erlog described his difficulty with the retention of grammar points. He created a specific grammar deck to overcome the problem. It is not basic, so this deck or at least the format could be helpful for you too:
http://forum.koohii.com/thread-12095.htm...ht=grammar

I'll look at this tonight when I get home Smile
When you look at it you will also see what cloze deletion is. I take an example from the deck:

original sentence: 日々の 練習あっての 勝利だ
=> question: 日々の 練習( ... ) 勝利だ
You can do this with any part (word/kanji/hiragana) of the sentence that is how it becomes mass cloze deletion (MCD). [@Yogert: actually you do not need a paragraph. You do not even need a sentence: one example from AJATT were 四字熟語 => one "word" and four cards (or more if you also combine two kanji).]

Obviously here you want to concentrate on one grammar point only, so here you create only one card.

For many of the open points there might be more than one possible solution therefore a disambiguation can be helpful. Here is the way erlog did it:

question: 日々の練習 (indispensible to...) 勝利だ
answer: あっての

you can even make it easier like

Question: 日々の練習 _______勝利だ
(indispensible to...)
answer: あっての

I make it easiest as possible for myself because making it hard doesn't necessary mean i'll learn it better. i also find it useful for just learning single words since japanese words tend to be long and usually one of the syllables stump me.
Edited: 2017-04-17, 9:59 pm
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#18
(2017-04-15, 11:23 pm)theadamie Wrote:
(2017-04-14, 3:19 am)risu_ Wrote: You need more input. Reading, listening, and watching anything at all will help you to retain grammar.

If you're not constantly using the grammar rules you 'learn' in textbooks it's natural that you forget them quickly.

Well, I speak Japanese at home, watch dramas/news at home and read novels/ do Anki at work.  It just doesn't stick.  Not sure how I can input anymore without moving back to Japan.


Hmm, maybe try reading something harder?
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#19
Here's a link to my post
http://forum.koohii.com/thread-14013-pos...#pid237705
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#20
I'm usually an advocate of massive input and it is definitely crucial. However you have a lot of input and it isn't helping this particular problem very much, which actually doesn't surprise me completely because I think this particular area is one where output is the key factor.

Obviously you are doing a lot of output too, speaking Japanese at home. However my own experience in this area is that the often-neglected fourth skill, writing, really comes into its own here.

I have exactly the same problem as you and it takes time to overcome. I am very bad at learning from grammar books though I do read them (and occasionally watch the Nihongo no Mori N2 and N1 grammar videos which are more fun), and I find them useful in conjunction with writing.

To explain my own experience, I don't write "for practice" but I do get involved in written discussions of various kinds (about things I actually want to discuss - just like here only in Japanese), which constantly throws up the problem "how do I express this?" If I read it expressed I usually don't have much difficulty, but putting it correctly myself poses a problem. This is where I often remember "yes I read how to say this in a grammar book but exactly what was the form?"

At this stage one can hunt down the grammar form (in the original book, Anki if you Anki'd it or elsewhere) and use it. This is why writing is vital. It throws up real-life expression problems in a situation where you actually have time to research and get it right.

Of course it doesn't really matter if you haven't read it in a grammar book before. But I do find that encountering the problem from the two angles (grammatical explanation and real usage) helps somewhat.

Actually using the grammar is far more effective in glueing it into the mind than trying to abstractly "learn" it, or at least so I find.

Hearing/reading the form in actual use also helps but it takes a lot of encounters to make it stick to
the level of actual usability. Output is far more effective than input in this area, at least for me.

I talk a lot in Japanese too, but for this particular problem that is only a little bit helpful because obviously there isn't time to find out the correct form and one just has to work around the problem as best one can.
Edited: 2017-04-22, 3:01 pm
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#21
RE: Writing
I've recently been thinking that a good writing exercise for stretching your grammar would be to come up with an absurd or random topic (I was actually thinking randomized absurdity) and find a way to explain it or incorporate it into a short narrative. It's basically a creative writing exercise, but the point is to improve your writing skills, not just your creative writing skills.
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#22
(2017-04-13, 6:40 pm)theadamie Wrote:
(2017-04-13, 5:59 pm)SomeCallMeChris Wrote:
(2017-04-13, 5:37 pm)theadamie Wrote: I'm pretty good with kanji and vocabulary, and using words I know in conversation but I absolutely cannot retain grammar.  It's like I immediately forget patterns exist the day after I study them.

Is there any app or program that I can just drill grammar patterns/conjugation with?

There are anki and memrise decks full of example sentences from various books, just search for the ones that you used. But honestly, I think the best way to retain grammar is to read a lot of long-form writing, not flashcards. That is,  prose fiction and/or long essays or non-fiction books. Substantial context will help keep you on track and reinforce half-remembered grammar points until they become intuitive.

I didn't explain very well.  I can generally recognize grammar I've learned but I can't remember the rules to use them in conversation.  Like is it たべる+×, たべ+×, たべれらる+×?   本+の, 本+な?.  And the stem combinations between verb useage, adjective usage and noun useage are completely inconsistent.  

Pattern B may use verbs in the same way as pattern A, but conjugate nouns and adjectives in a totally different way.  

Pattern D may use verbs and nouns the same as Pattern C but adjectives are conjugated differently.

い and な adjective rules also seem to flip around a lot.

I just want to drill and drill until I have a "feeling" of correctness instead of logical reasoning.  I started studying korean 10 years ago and I don't remember rules anymore, I just know what feels correct.  I can speak Korean all day without feeling stifled, or exhausted, whereas Japanese feels like I'm extremely stifled, never able to say things exactly the way I want and with constant focus that is exhausting.  

My Japanese wife is my proofreader but even with writing it's like it just falls out of my head.

Is there any way to set up anki for random drilling instead of SRS?  If I could do that I could just make a massive spreadsheet of grammar examples and import to anki.  Like side 1 > 行く + 行かなければ成りません。  side 2> 行かなければ成りません and have column for verbs, adj, nouns etc.

This is the kind of thing where standard textbooks and their workbooks come in handy. The Genki text and workbooks cover these very well.
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#23
This is the kind of thing where standard textbooks and their workbooks come in handy. The Genki text and workbooks cover these very well.
[/quote]

Jeez, this was an example.  I'm way past Genki.
Edited: 2017-04-23, 10:32 am
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