An idea to do after level 60: Study real Chinese in a multi-language table

I mean, I am serious. I regret a little that I didn’t realized this sooner, rather than trying to create INFINITY

The reasons are many:

  • Non-kanji vocab / optional kanji vocab
  • I am not even an English speaker. Why do I have to study Japanese in English? I want to correlate it with Thai as well.
  • Don’t you know how powerful a table / Excel is? Visual is important.

About differences between writing Kanji and Hanzi, I summarized here.

My vocab lists are open on GitHub, here and here.

For me, it does have to come from Thai books / websites, teaching Chinese.


Oh, are you from Thailand? I love thai food

Anyway, to the point.
First of all, thank you for sharing <3

I’ve always wanted to learn Chinese as well, but I’ve always been afraid that in order to learn Chinese I might have to unlearn Japanese.

So, what would you say that your Japanese level was before attempting to learn Chinese?
And, what are your main struggles while trying to learn both?

Thank you :slight_smile:

My Japanese level is still bad, but I can still somewhat read novels and mangas.

Main struggle is of course, when I see characters, I see 訓読み and 音読み. Even when the word make sense or doesn’t make sense, I still see 訓読み and 音読み. I read Chinese sentence in mixture of Chinese and Japanese sometimes, and it still makes sense.

Only when I know the EN->Chinese vocab in prior that I can read in Chinese. That’s why the table JPG I posted has English as the first column. (I might move Thai to the first column later, though.)

Oh, Chinese characters can have multiple reading as well. Most famous of them would probably be 好,乐,读. Don’t be afraid if you misread though. The most important thing is the meaning, and you can somewhat read.

I also get a human 老师, and I plan to take HSK to 4 or 5 before resuming studying Japanese.

I never had a せんせい, but if I plan to take JLPT 2 or something, I plan to get one.

I still follow many YouTubers and Twitters in Japanese… I always do. But I have very few in Chinese.

About tables, it might be possible to do cloze test and space-repetition without programming, i.e. with table alone, as well. Leebo’s post somewhere is a good place to start.

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I don’t get the idea. You are having trouble still to read in japanese, and you want to start with chinese? why would that make easier to progress in any of the two??

seems like an idea that “sounds logical”, yet untested can become into a huge rabbit hole like… :sweat_smile:

I don’t know what proficiency level are you aiming in any of those, but I guess where similarities can be “helpful”… differences can become an issue when knowledge still ain’t properly fixed.

I’ve heard people studying chinese after japanese like as a way to go deeper into the etymology of the language and to understand classical japanese texts better… but even putted in that way sounds like such a mayor endeavor.

zero interest in chinese. but it’s a nice idea. could actually learn any language through japanese, too, if that’s your thing. i know some polyglots try to do stuff this way, like richard simcott, for example, or stephen kaufmann.

My real reasoning is that I think it is more profitable to learn Chinese than Japanese in real life.

So, I paid for a 老师 rather than a せんせい.

But I want to get to upper intermediate in both languages, if possible.

The topic here is more like me suggesting people, not really about me myself, though.

NB: I might be wrong though. In medical academic field, I see more Japanese than Chinese…

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This concept of displaying 3 languages might be cool if I wanted for example, to make a Portuguese => Japanese deck. I would use English as the intermediary, and then it would be more simple to fix the differences between languages (compared to doing everything from the beginning) :thinking:

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Another idea I didn’t say explicitly, is to rely less on SRS or Anki, but rely more on smart timing, and blinding / filling in the tables.

Don’t make the table too big, and allow sorting the tables with Excel, and everything should be fine.

About the word list, it should be made for self, my idea is

You can manually put in SRS level (as in 0-8), and use no Anki.

Another thing is about Chinese… Thai is more Teocheow than Mandarin…, but mandarin is my target language…

Last night, I got a message with a text in Portuguese (my native language) and an image with some kanji. At first I thought it was Japanese, but after realizing there was no way that could form a sentence, it dawned on me it was Chinese, haha :sweat_smile:
Anyway, the bottom line is even knowing three or four kanji on the image, I could still understand what the message was trying to convey.

I think you’re right and I also plan on learning Chinese someday. I’ve always thought that if you already had a Japanese foundation, things should go smoothly…
On the other hand, a friend of mine decided to start learning Chinese a few years back, since she was fluent in Japanese. She told me she thought it would go easier, since she knew the meanings of kanji. However, she said the main problem with Chinese was the pronunciation, because its rules and phonetics are way harder than Japanese, for instance. She ended up quitting :no_mouth:

I liked your idea though. I think after I get the gist of Japanese, I may try to come up with a table like yours to see if it would work with Chinese :slightly_smiling_face:

Yes! When I started WK, I though of doing the exact same thing! :grinning:

In the end, what I am doing is using the space reserved for notes to write down the meaning in Portuguese. I usually write down the grammar classes as well. It might not be a table, but it’s a start and it may come in hand should I need to look up any kanji in Portuguese, I guess :woman_shrugging:

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I used Portuguese quite often for my own mnemonics, since the sounds are closer to Japanese than English is :slight_smile: We should take advantage of the fact that we know 2+ languages after all ^^

My idea was more because I hate the fact that someone might be learning a language that is not English (think Portuguese for example) and not have decent resources to learn it. Everyone should learn English, but English should never be an obstacle for someone to learn another language. Like, all my Japanese friends learning Portuguese are not even aware of SRS.

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I think you’re absolutely right! :slight_smile:
I also speak Spanish and French, but back when I was learning these resources were neither broadcasted nor available - if there were any. I just recently discovered the combo SRS and mnemonics and this should definitely be more widespread. In fact, I’ve been using this system even for studying other subjects and it works wonders :grinning:

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My idea of Tables (Google Sheets) to create SRS system.

I’ve got a ways to go yet, but looking forward, my immediate plan after reaching level 60 is to study the JLPT N1 Kanji not covered by WaniKani and creating my own Anki deck for them using WankiKani-inspired mnemonics. I have the Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary, so hopefully that will be a good resource (should have plenty of Kanji then even after I learn the N1 Kanji).

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