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Everything posted by Nekomimi_mode

  1. Recently I went through my old power points from high school and this year of college and compiled most of the Chinese sentence structures I learned into a mini book. It's only about 35 pages long but i'm selling it for 5$ if anyone is interested. I also have a ton of old power points and pdfs I'm trying to turn into one huge review, but I've been working on that for while with no end in sight. I'm on page 112 and it's not even halfway done. Sighs Link for it is here
  2. 1. English 2. Chinese(mandarin) 3. Arabic 4. Korean 5. Japanese
  3. Watching movies with subtitles definitely help. Not only does it help you learn how the language should be spoken it also helps you learn new words. The only issue I have with this is sometimes the subtitles don’t give you the real translations. I especially realize those when I’m watching anime. A lot of times different sites will sub an anime before the official subs come out. They end up mistranslating things and adding extra words to smoothen things out. This is fine if you know what the translation should be, but for a person who is trying to learn new words it can be very confusing. Even the official translations do this sometimes. I don’t know if this happens for Chinese subbed movies because most times there is just one sub. If I am skeptical about the translation I will usually just look it up. Other than that subtitles are wonderful.
  4. I’m so ready for the New Year! I plan on making more pen pals and improving my language. I need to study more Chinese and practice my Japanese. I also plan to formally start learning Korean by taking a class on my college campus. I starting compiling all of my Chinese notes a while back into a huge study guide but I stopped half-way through. I want to finish that out before I start taking more Chinese classes. I don’t think I’ll be taking anymore Japanese classes for now since I’ve been mixing my kanji and Chinese characters up as of late, but once I get my Chinese down I plan to take a Japanese class again. Honestly I also want to focus more harshly on learning characters. I have really been slacking in that regard and so I can speak way more Chinese than I can write. I want to switch over to writing traditional characters as well since I plan to visit Taiwan next year and I heard they don’t use simplified characters. It’ll be hard but I have a whole year to put my plan in action before I come up with another one.
  5. I feel the complete opposite. I am more confident speaking the language than I am writing. I am learning Chinese and when it comes to writing characters I always cringe. If you asked me to write half the stuff I know how to say I would just be standing there. Seriously I have no idea how I’m supposed to remember all these characters. Not to mention there is a stroke order (the proper order for writing the character) that I always forget. There’s a rule about what direction to start in but there are so many discretions that I can’t really trust the rule. Then there’s traditional characters (screams) which I will never be able to write. I’m sorry but if I’m learning how to write a character and there’s more than 14 strokes in it I’m either going to quit, or re-evaluate my life. I love Chinese but it takes way more effort to write cat than it does to say it.
  6. I would say listen to music. The more music you listen to the better your listening skills will improve. Also whenever you get a chance listen to conversations between native speakers. I also recommend listening to Chinese dramas. Don’t actually watch it with the substiles, just listen to it and try to figure out what they are saying. Audio books are also a plus. I love downloading Chinese audio books and listening to them when I’m not busy. Even when you are busy you can listen to them. Having the language of choice as background noise whenever you are doing something will help you process it subconsciously. Also I’m not sure if this works or not but I also listen to the music while I’m asleep. I figure if my subconscious is always processing things I might as well give it some Chinese to have fun with. If you had to choose one or two methods though I would definitely say listen to music and listen to audio books. Just make sure you don’t pick a song that goes too fast or is too heavily accented, and for audio books don’t choose a book that is way over your head.
  7. I learn better when I’m immersed in it. The rules are a nice thing to learn but when people speak their native language ½ of it is going to be slang and shortened words anyway. There’s going to be nicknames for a ton of stuff and words that are insinuations for other stuff. I think one of the best ways to give away you’re a foreigner is to talk like a walking textbook. Immersion is definitely the best option.
  8. I prefer handwriting. It makes things easier to remember and helps me learn how the character should be written. Even if it’s a long assignment like writing a letter to a friend I’ll write it first then type it. If I always type things out I will forget how the characters should be written. However, if I’m making flashcards or a table I will type it. In those cases its readability vs practice and I need my cards to be readable in order to practice. Most of the time I will handwrite it. My penmanship is already crappy and always typing will just make it worse.
  9. It depends. If the person I’m talking to has already learned about three new languages and this is language number four I’d take it pretty seriously. If it’s the first new language they’re learning I wouldn’t pay much attention to it. Easy and hard are relative words. For someone who has only had easy work, work of medium level will be hard to them. To a person who has only had hard work, work of a medium level will be easy to them. As such, the more languages they have studied the more weight their opinion holds for me. Their opinion however, will not discourage me from learning a new language if I am interested in it.
  10. I’m in America and they don’t teach it anymore either. They really should still teach it since a cursive signature is still required on many important documents. They updated the PSAT a couple of years back to add a clause that stated we wouldn’t try to cheat and we were required to sign it in cursive. Most of my class didn’t even know what the cursive letters looked like so my teacher had to draw them out on a whiteboard at the front of the class. I was homeschooled until third grade and I didn’t even know people had stopped writing in cursive until I hit public school in the eighth grade. Now whenever I go to start a new class I always ask my teacher if they can read cursive because I got into some trouble a while back when I wrote in cursive and my teacher couldn’t read it.
  11. I think it’s really useful to write down the words of the song. They help me commit the words to memory faster. I only have a slight problem with this method, I’m taking Chinese. When someone is singing really fast or rapping in can be hard to catch all the words and even when I do catch them I have to figure out which tone they were using. There are five tones in mandarin Chinese and depending on which tone they used the word can mean completely different things. I’ve remedied this by simply looking up the lyrics but unlike Japanese songs, there isn’t a website dedicating to translating them to English. So I’ve had to use google translate which completely butchers the meaning. I’ll figure it out one day.
  12. 阿,这个主题太老了。可是,二月快到了。今年我觉得我应该买很多的巧克力和礼物。
  13. 我觉得这圣 诞 节 我会帮我的妈妈厨。我也会给我的朋友们一些礼物。
  14. I'm studying Japanese and Chinese and honestly I find Chinese to be the most difficult. It would have been the same for me except for the fact that Chinese has tones. Once you get used to the tones learning it is a bit easier but if a native speaker comes up to you and starts speaking really fast I just blank out. I can handle Japanese a bit better since there isn't going to be four different meanings for a word depending on how they say it. Plus a lot of Chinese characters have the same meaning in Japanese kanji so it's a bit fun to come across those.Korean is an oddball for me. My friend tried teaching me a bit and I find it not to be as hard as Chinese.
  15. Do you guys have any favorite Chinese songs? When I first started learning Chinese I would randomly download a bunch of songs and filter out the ones I didn't like. As a result I have a couple of songs that I love and keep on reply almost every day. I also got some nice Cantonese ones in the process too; I can't understand them though. I think one of the best things about listening to Chinese songs is the more words you learn the more of the song you understand. It's kind of like the song your listening to is a mystery, but a couple of months later after you learn some more Chinese you can understand it. It just feels so good to be listening to the song you've had for months and suddenly be like "I know what he's saying!". Do you guys have any favorite songs? I'll link some of mine. Post yours below!
  16. I can recommend some great resources for Chinese. Before you do anything like trying to learn some of the grammar rules or building sentences you're going to have to learn the tones. Mandarin Chinese has 5 tones, one of which is an oddball but you'll learn that pretty soon. I recommend these videos to help you understand how the pitches should sound. After that you'll want to learn how the consonants should sounds. It looks like a lot but all that's really changing is the vowels behind the few consonants in the column. This video really helps you understand how they should sounds. Once you have those down you're ready to start learning some words and sentences structures. These websites will help you from here. I also used to take Chinese as an actual course(in high school and college) and have quite the accumulation of Powerpoints and Pdf files so pm me if you want some. If you're still a bit confused after that consult these forums and you'll definitely get an answer.
  17. Yes! Pleco is my life! I downloaded the app 3 years ago and i'm never removing it! It gives me so many words I need to study and is has a little dictionary in it too. You can search for words meaning and I think it also translates things for you. Skritter is pretty okay. My teacher made us use that one and it was't amazing but it wasn't terrible either. The flashcard website I use the most is Quizlet. Quizlet lets you make your own flashcards and look at the flashcards of other people. A lot of teachers use that website to make flashcards for their classes so if you know the right words to search you can really hit the jackpot. My old teacher put almost all of the flashcards she made on that website and they're still there. She had also made some Japanese ones(I had her for Chinese) and they've helped improve my Japanese as well! Another cool thing about Quizlet is you can add audio to the cards, so if you're not sure how something is pronounced click on it and they'll tell you!
  18. Subs definitely help me understand Japanese better. I would take it one step further and just listen to the raws every once and a while, no subs or dubs at all. You should choose an anime that you pretty much know by heart so you already know what they're going to say. Then listen to them and try to piece together what word means what. It's a fun exercise that you might like! Subs also stay truer to the source material because a lot of times in dubs the voice actors they cast don't match how the character is supposed to sound. Then instead of learning new words I'm going to be focusing on how terrible Usui sounds in English. I try not to go to the anime where people have thick accents to learn either, Yowamushi Pedal and Barakamon have great plots but those accents are another thing. To be fair one of them is from Kansai so that might have something to do with it.
  19. 太好了!为什么你学过中文?你特别喜欢什么?汉学是什么?冬假快到了,你计划去旅游吗? 我想去台湾各地自助游。我也想去中国和香港。可是我得知道很多的汉字所以我懂行程和中国人。然后我可以平平安安地出门 。
  20. Can anyone recommend me some children's books that are in Chinese? I can't read much above the level of about second grade but I enjoy testing my limits with the books all the same. If you can provide any links or pds files I'd greatly appreciate it. 谢谢!
  21. 你好我也是美国人。我是从德州来的,可是妈妈和爸爸从纽约来的。你的普通话比我的普通话很棒。我花了三个年学中文可是我还不懂很多的东西。我可以读一些中文书可是所有的它们是孩子的书。学中文在美国很难。我的朋友不说普通话他们学西班牙文。德州来墨西哥不远。
  22. Subs for Life! Anime that's been dubbed over loses some of the meaning in the process. I don't know how many jokes are lost in translation when it gets dubbed over. Also can I just rant about the voice actors for the dubbed anime for a minute? Why why why do all of the voice actors for the dubbed anime just seem to half-way everything? Even some of my favorite anime like Kuroshitsuji just doesn't pass the muster for me when it's dubbed. Sebastian's voice is supposed to sound smooth and slightly amused but he just sounds so meh in the dub. Don't get me wrong some dubs are amazing like Yuyu Hakusho and Rurouni Kenshin but most of them are just mediocre. Also some anime just shouldn't be translated over like Xxx Holic and Bakemonogatari because a ton of the dialogue is entrenched heavily in Japanese culture. Holic had a bunch of lines that were a play on words and aren't even translatable to English. And the thing that gets me is they don't even try to make up for the jokes that are lost, they don't insert anything in. It's like they figure out what won't translate and just cut it out(screams). To top it off there seems to be a small pool of voice actors for the English dubs because every time I look up I see the same people dubbing a different anime. I seriously want to know if there's only like two studios for these people because they are everywhere. Now i'm not saying all the voice actors are terrible because there are some super awesome ones, but man are they far and few between. Not we get to my other issue with dubs, censorship. If the anime that's been dubbed over is for kids man oh man do they censor stuff out. I watched the original Yugioh about five years after I watched the dubbed version and some of the stuff they took out was essential to the plot. They even censored out the people who died in the anime. I was just sitting there like "you mean people actually die in Yugioh?". And don't get me started on Pokemon and Sonic. Anything that even seemed remotely Japanese they took out of the dub. Why there was even a need to change the rice balls in Pokemon to sandwiches and donuts i'll never know.
  23. I watch A TON of anime. I've at least watched 400(I know, it's an obsession) and I completely agree. Anime definitely helps you with Japanese, I guess it's that whole "If you hear it long enough you start to understand it" logic. I watch all types but I'm mostly a supernatural anime connoisseur so I'll leave a few must watch ones below. Hellsing- If you only ever watch one vampire anime this needs to be the one. Not only is the soundtrack amazing, the character development is 100% believable and interesting. There aren't many surprises or twists per say but it's wonderful all the same. Watch Hellsing Ultimate instead of the original one because Ultimate actually follows the plot of the manga while the original kind of just starts doing it's own thing about halfway through. Beware though, there is a lot of blood and gore so it's not for the faint of heart, also Alucard is super OP. Trinity Blood- Another vampire anime but this one focuses more on how what they do effects those around them instead of the main character himself. There isn't much character development for the main character, though they have flashbacks to a time when he was conflicted with himself. They also let us learn a little about his past. The main character in this one is the OP(over powered) type so while there is a lot of conflict you don't really feel any dread over the main character losing until about half-way through. It's set in a word where vampires and humans live apart but there is still a lot of conflict between the two and the church is trying to make headway in making a treaty to help resolve some of the underlying issues. NightWalker- This is also a vampire anime(surprise!) and a pretty old one at that. It focuses around a vampire detective(there are a lot of those aren't there?) who works with his human assistant and part time helper(who doesn't know he is a vampire). That's about as much as I can say about this one without spoiling the entire plot. Kuroshitsuji- A demon butler(Finally not a vampire) works for a young boy who is head of the Phantomhive household. The Boy, Ciel, is given orders by the Queen of England to investigate certain issues that can't be handled by the police. Okay, the pacing and character development of season one is perfect. It doesn't go too fast or slow and you find yourself starting to empathize with the main character more when at first you'll probably just think he's a brat. Season two was terrible. Somewhere along the line they decided they should add a second season that is not related to the manga in anyway and season 2 is that exactly. They add characters that don't exist in the manga and pretty much train wreck the whole thing. They redeemed themselves a little bit when they recently made Book of Circus which gets the anime back on track.
  24. Music definitely helps me learn Japanese especially J-pop, however I find that if the accent is too heavy I don't get the words easily. Something with a catchy but not super dynamic melody helps too. I think in the end I end up listening to mostly anime openings since I watch a lot of anime anyway. Story time! Okay so when I'm watching anime I hear characters say 問題 ない/もんだいない(mondai nai) all the time which means no problem, and then later on in the day I was listening to some Kyary Pamyu Pamyu and she said あたしは もんだいガール (Atashi wa mondai garu) and it just clicked. I was like "She just said i'm a problem girl" . It always feels good when you're listening to music or watching anime and then later on in the day you hear something and you're all like "I know what that means yes!" . As for the artists, I prefer solo artists as opposed to groups when trying to pick up words. Different artists have different inflections on how they pronounce the words, and it can be hard to keep up if i'm trying to get used to the pronunciation of 10 different girls/boys in one 4:00 song. Especially when they're trying to add a funky/jazzy sound to the song, for the life of me I can't understand those. I mean, I love Flyers by BRADIO but that is not the song to go to if you want to do more than hum the melody and dance. Vocaloid songs are a huge help, especially the Miku, Luka, and Gumi ones. Kaito has some type of weird inflection in his voice that makes everything sound soft and muddled. Gakupo sounds a bit like a sheep if he hold long notes. Rin and len are pretty good except sometimes they completely butcher a word(like cut it in half and pronounce the one word as two separate ones), and the less popular ones usually don't have as good voice banks(seeU, yowane, lily). Some of the vocaloid songs are especially good for leaning words like Onomatopoeia Glasses or Circus Monster because they repeat a lot of lines and the pronunciation is really clear. I feel Like I've really gone off topic here so to sum it all up, listening to music helps my Japanese greatly.
  25. I've always been a pretty fast reader so I never encountered the whole "subtitles are too fast" problem. However my mom will make me pause a movie multiple times because the subtitles went by too fast, so I know where you're coming from. I still completely need the subtitles(I can only make out a few words without them) but I find in a lot of romance dramas they tend to repeat certain phrases so I know a handful of frequently occurring ones. Believe it or not the most Korean I have learned has been from the songs, ballads to be exact. Ballads tend to stretch the words out enough so I can actually hear the pronunciation and remember it later. Stuff like rap is also helpful because I love a good beat. If the beat is good enough to get stuck in your head you'll want to be able to sing along, and you can only sing along if you know the lyrics. Needless to say I know the lyrics to a lot of Korean raps and songs with crazy beats. It still gets pretty hard to sing along though, I can only speak so fast before it's a never ending tongue twister. A lot of Korean phonetics are hair splitting close and that gets really hard to sing if they're strung in a sentence together. I can also sing them while I'm doing stuff as opposed to Korean dramas where I'll need to be there in order to read the subtitles or I'll miss something. Also once you know the lyrics to a song you can try to translate it into your language, I do this often. I'll be singing Overdose by EXO and then I'll try singing the whole song in English. It sounds terrible because I have to add or remove words to get the same meaning as the song but it's fun all the same. I think the main idea with learning another language is to practice it as much as you can and have fun with it. And that's definitely going to happen if I keep listening to K-pop. When the brain equates something with fun they tell you to do it more often, and I want my brain to tell me learning Korean is fun. Anju have you ever considered watching interviews or product reviews in Korean? They'll be much shorter(only about 5-10 minutes) and won't effect the suspense if you pause them a bunch of times. Personally I love watching reviews of Korean beauty products. I get to learn Korean and the latest beauty trends at once, it's like killing two birds with one fabulous smelling subtitled stone!
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