2 months to turbo charge my japanese - what would you do?

I’m able to do a Japanese learning binge right now.

My main change was to listening and reading.

Here is what I do:
Go for walks listening to Japanese talk radio
TV is on while I study.
Anki review
Anki self made cards
Wanikani review
10 Wanikani lessons
Read 2 pages from a novel
Make a sentence on Hello talk.
Go to classes if I have them that day
Take a bath and listen to 5 beginner podcasts
I use Teppei’s beginner lessons
Usually I watch a Japanese movie without subtitles.
I also changed my phone language to Japanese but that’s kind of a hinderance.

Is it working?
I have no idea but it is fun. Wanikani works for sure.


Do you know about language learning with Netflix? With that plus a VPN I have learned SO MUCH! The big thing for me is you are able to pause at the end of each subtitle (I only watch in Japanese with Japanese subtitles) and replay the line if you need to. You could probably do it with just the Japanese content in your country but if you get SurfShark or something then the Japanese Netflix has a ton more stuff.

In all honesty though? I would just keep working, keep saving your money, and do your sabbatical in Japan when you can. Three weeks isn’t enough, go for at least six, you won’t regret it!!!


Hi @fustian_garb san :wave:

I agree with TheRockstarMunch. Staying the course is a good idea. While trying to make use of free time to increase intensity is a good idea in some cases it might not be a good idea with SRS.

Rather than focus on intensity, might I suggest you to try a variety of options. Podcasts, Youtube channels, books, manga raws etc. This will probably add more bite to your real life language skills :slight_smile:

Good luck :four_leaf_clover:


This is another article saying they might not allow fans at the Olympics, depending on how the situation is going.

I live in Japan, and most people I know are opposed to holding the Olympics this year. That doesn’t necessarily mean much, but it does point towards the 80% statistics being correct (that number is also in the article I shared).

This whole time, Japan has been very much ignoring the virus and carrying on as normal, so I don’t doubt they will try to continue on with the Olympics, and with spectators, but it will probably have a lot of backlash from other countries. And if infections spread if foreign visitors come, it will case a lot more anti-foreigner sentiment (of which there is already a lot because of the virus).

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I hope so too! Keeping my fingers crossed. :slight_smile:

Sadly my commitments mean that even going away for three weeks is a stretch. You’d be amazed at how much improvement you can make in a short time though. When I studied German, I had the opportunity for a two week trip to Munich, where a week was working at the University (entirely in German) and the second week was travelling. The trip took place in July and when I returned to my German classes in September, my teacher asked me what I’d done over the summer to improve so much - and in all honesty I’d completely slacked off after coming back from that trip! This is why I’m keen to make the most of the time I have this summer as I know it can make a real difference, particularly when you’re at an intermediate level.


Hope you enjoyed your time here :laughing:
Hopefully that university was TUM and not LMU - our eternal rivals lol

Honestly I think three weeks is huge :slightly_smiling_face:

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Is it possible for you to postpone your 2 months off or only do 1 month off and then another month off next year (or maybe even later this year)? I know it’s a significant birthday this year, but still might be worth it to postpone it to a better time. I just think it would be great for you to be able to get those 3 weeks (or possibly more if you have more time to save up money to visit Japan). I will say that spending time in Japan will not magically make your Japanese increase, but the experience on traveling to Japan is great. If you can’t change the dates or really want to take the time off anyways then you can either focus on JLPT or you can focus on your conversation skills. I know you want to take the N3, but you might want to break it up with some conversation practice.

Vaccines won’t be available to the general public in Japan until late June with the current plan, so I don’t see them opening up for travel until fall at the earliest. They keep on insisting with the Olympics so who really knows.


I weighed all this up but decided I’d still have the time off round my birthday and a slightly shorter trip to Japan at a later date. I won’t be touching the money I’d saved up for the trip but with my commitments, even if I save more, it’s not possible for me to go for longer. But I will probably be able to have a more luxurious trip when I do get there ha ha.

I think conversation skills might be a good idea - someone else mentioned having Italki conversation lessons which I’m going to look into. My weekly classes are gradually getting more chatty as my japanese gets better (and also because I think my tutor and I are just both a bit desperate for people to talk to at this point in the pandemic!) but having another conversation partner would be good too.


That article you posted says only 35% of Japanese oppose holding the olympics, and that spectator sports in Japan are only limited to 50% attendance, which is far more liberal than the restrictions we’ve had in the states.

Definitely find a good iTalki teacher! I have six lessons a week. Expensive, yes, but I’m moving and want to prepare as much as possible.

Having said that, if you are learning for travel purposes, I would focus on set phrases and etiquette, etc. I’ve been to Japan for a total of six months over the last 8 years, and no amount of condensed grammar/vocab study prepared me all that much for real world situations (referring of course to beginner and lower intermediate levels - if one is well past that, I suspect it may help quite a bit more). If you practice your katakana reading speed and know when to say いっぱいどうぞ, you’re mostly good ;).

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It actually says 45% want to postpone and 35% want to cancel, which equals the 80% of people who oppose holding the Olympics this year. So 80% is correct.

And yes, I am aware of how many people are allowed to attend events, which is another thing many people here are upset about. No one is really pleased with how the government has been handling the situation. They promoted the domestic travel campaign for months and then had to cancel it when infections started spreading much more than before (shocker).


I also agree with most suggestions. I just want to add that you really want to be vaccinated before visiting Japan. Getting sick in Japan can be a real nightmare, especially during an emergency like this.

Don’t worry, I haven’t actually left my (very small) town since last March, I definitely won’t be going to Japan before I get the vaccine!

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Can I ask how you found a good italki teacher? I’m looking for more structured learning, and I’ve have 5-10 italki teachers and hardly any of them even corrected my errors! It was mostly conversation practice, which I could do for free in a tandem…

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Take the time to set expectations with your iTalki instructors. Tell them that you want more feedback on your errors. They’ll oblige you if they want you to keep attending. I have one tutor that provides instant correction, and another tutor that focuses more on letting me communicate my ideas and express myself without interruption. I told them both up front what I wanted from my time with them, and they’ve both been very valuable to my development.

Also, a lot of tutors might be more laid back initially because new students can often lack confidence because they fear making a mistake. Constantly correcting those kinds of students out of the gate can be detrimental. If you’re constantly swapping tutors it might become difficult for one to ever get a feel for you and start working with you to help you improve.

It also might be a Japanese thing to not be very critical of a total stranger, even if they’re a student. :thinking:


Sorry, I missed this post earlier. I tried a few teachers before settling down with my current three. First step is figure out what materials you want to use and search for it on the site. For example, I wanted to start Tobira, and there are only a handful of teachers already familiar with it. Most teachers will also state on their profile whether or not they provide written corrections or not. I think it a good idea to always go with that.

The downside of iTalki is that are some inexperienced teachers on there who see the site as a way to make money just for speaking Japanese in a casual conversation without actually teaching anything. It’s just trial and error, unfortunately.

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