Having a few issues in regards to grammar, some help\advice\even just conversation would be great

So it’s really frustrating to know a fair few Kanji (Only level 7 but I’m seeing so many recognizable\readable things now) but not be able to actually string even a simple sentence together. I have had multiple conversations die due to my lack of being able to from a coherent sentence on Hello Talk.

I’ve tried a few things now (free things, obviously) and nothing seems to be sticking as well as WaniKani does. 文プロ is good in that it uses reviews and SRS like WK but I find it attempts to tell me too much at once, like it teaches me that てもいい means is alright to, is okay, can, may (which is hard enough to grasp anyways) but then also presents a sentence that requires のんでもいい and marks てもいい as incorrect.
It’s probably just me being dense but remembering 4 different variations on the meaning, with no mnemonic, all in kana and having to remember that even though the lesson is titled (I can’t be bothered changing IME right now) temoii its actually nondemoii is rather difficult.

The websites it links you to are ok but vary wildly in both their specificity and explanation on usage.

I’ve looked at Tae Kim and every time I even try to read that my Brain goes “Nope” and just gives up, I tried Anki but find it too hard to have whether I’m correct or not entirely on my shoulders.

I don’t mean to be like “Tried that, it sucks, that does too, nope, no way” but I’m a really slow, painfully bad learner and literally have myself and only myself to lean on, no foreign friends, no friends undertaking this journey with me and my family tells me to stop babbling gobbledigoop whenever I try and speak.

Is there anything around that teaches you things, one at a time, as if you’re a total dumb***?

ごめんなさい for wall of text.

I felt like I was is a similar position. I picked up the first Genki book slightly used from Amazon and it seems to be helping me learn grammar. I going slow, but making progress.


I keep hearing about that but of course am hesitant to drop money on anything without testing it first. I guess I’m just having a frustrated “moment”. I want so much but can only do so much as well :frowning:

I’m also eternally paranoid that I’m all of a suddenly going to forget everything randomly :stuck_out_tongue:

Here’s my worthless 2 cents:

As I was reading your post, I wanted to recommend Tae-Kim as I think it’s really one of if not the best resource for Japanese grammar for beginners, but then I read that you’ve tried/attempted to try it and didn’t work out for you. Bun-Pro is good to reinforce grammar you know, not to memorise grammar imo.

I personally think grammar should be understood, not memorised. For example, temoii, and demoii should be understood as (te-form of verb + mo particle (=even/even if) + ii (=good)). Which translates to Even if I do verb, it’s good/ok? Then you’d learn which verbs are te and which are de. Nothing to memorise but verb conjugations.

All of this as opposed to memorising temoii with a mnemonic as a vocabulary. Learning everything with mnemonic, imo, adds a massive overhead to learning a language.

I know I haven’t answered your question of

But I’m just sharing my experience hoping that something rings a bell. I’m personally learning Japanese the same way I learnt English. That’s not necessarily how everyone learns (I tried to force my way of learning on a friend, it did not work at all (sorry mike)), so I suggest you find out what’s the best way for you to learn, and adopt it.

I like this “replying…” feature…I see powerpuncher and Chop typing.


I feel similar. I’ve started to recognize a lot of kanji, but have trouble understanding anything despite that, because I lack a lot of grammar. I’ve also tried bunpro and that alone just doesn’t cut it.
I recently bought the 8020 japanese grammar book, which in my opinion does a great job of explaining things in an understandable way. Just the second chapter alone has helped me a lot in understanding at least simple sentences (and you can read the second chapter for free).
It isn’t that expensive either if you go for the digital version ($39 for the lowest tier). It doesn’t teach you everything, but it’ll definitely give you a good base understanding to go further.
You can also look into the resources list here on the forums for other good grammar sources.

I’m having a hard time understanding what you mean. The blank required のんでもいい and you answered てもいい? I don’t see how there’s any confusion about why your answer is wrong.

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I think the problem is you don’t really have a structure here. I don’t really think SRSing Grammar to learn it is the answer, but it works as more of a review.

Any good textbook explains why it is 飲んでもいい because you are using the Te-form here and the te form of 飲む is 飲んで, 飲んて is therefore wrong.

Anyways, I think you just really need a structure and to stick with it. The benefit of Genki (Plus workbook) is that it isn’t just some grammar on a page, not only does it teach you the grammar, from zero, but then it gives you exercises with that grammar, and follows it up with more in the workbook. In addition, it has both reading and listening comprehension, and even writing exercises. So you get a much more complete, structured course with Genki than with any of these other.

The main thing is you just need to stick with something, and gradually do it. But you need the kind of practice that is in Genki one way or another.


Because whatever it says when you learn only teaches you てもいい but not the Te-form or anything else so he didn’t understand why that was the wrong answer.

I can’t really explain exactly what happens when I try to read Tae Kim or learn in a way that isn’t for me, it really does feel like my brain is just shutting down and rejecting reality, like I’m not trying to sound bratty or anything it’s a legitimate problem for me and if it wasn’t for こういちさん and his amazingly helpful Hiragana guide and WaniKani website I’d just be another anime watching dude who really wishes he could learn a language but never does anything about it.

Even your explanation of that grammar point has me staring at the screen with a blank expression in a homer simpson-esque fashion (or because it’s 1:30 AM here, merry New Year btw).

I know very basic grammar like kono, kore, sore, are etc. but even they require about 5-10 minutes of thinking and double checking before I actually speak\post it.

I also like the whole “replying” thing, I was going to go to bed then saw people replying and got all excited :smiley:

It’s because the lesson is titled as Temoii, so of course I remember the lesson as Temoii, then a sentence comes up and I’m like “ohhhh, Can, I know that!” and eagerly type in Temoii then get marked as wrong because it was nondemoii for some inexplicable reason that was probably buried at the bottom of the Tae Kim page that the site links you two.

I fully acknowledge I’m not smart, just trying to work with\around that than against it.

Edit: I just looked and apparently I’ve been taught Temoii without being taught what Te form is, I mean what 一体 even is Te form, no clue at all. Guess I’ll go look at getting Genki (Look at getting Health, lol)

I agree that something like bunpro shouldn’t be used for learning things the first time. You need to find another resource to actually explain things to you, then the SRS can be used to keep it in your mind.

Yeah, but presumably the て form comes before てもいい on bunpro, right? Still, I guess it goes back to needing to do the actual learning elsewhere.

Doesn’t bunpro give you the verb they want you to use? Presumably it said のむ over to the right of the sentence, so you know that you need to tie のむ to てもいい in order for it to fit into the sentence.

Yes of course, I think this just stems from an improper learning order or for some reason not learning that the て form is sometimes voiced.

it does, but having not learnt what Nomu even means yet is a problem, have no clue, at all. Hasn’t appeared in WK yet and BP expects me to not only remember it but know to switch kana around because of it.

Well, eating (たべる) and drinking (のむ) are kind of “lesson 1” type verbs, in general Japanese lessons. As was mentioned above, learning the て form of verbs (which includes the differences for verbs that end in む, ぶ, ぐ, ぬ having で instead of て) should come before learning てもいい

Pretty much every resource out there teaches you one thing at a time, and builds on what you know afterwards.

From what I can understand from your posts, you are simply not practicing the basics enough. I realize it is considered passé nowadays, drilling and working with what you have already learnt, and not expecting to run before you crawl is crucial in language learning.

There’s a bunch of ways to work with what you already know. Some have been mentioned in this thread. Workbooks for textbooks, Bunpro, and all of those jams. I like to do substitution drills on Anki (This requires immense dedication but they payoff is big.) You should just keep learning. :slight_smile:

One resource I’ve seen that focuses a lot on n+1 is JALUP. Mind that I didn’t go though more than a couple of cards on the site, so I’m not qualified to tell you if it’s any good, but some people swear by it.

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Weirdly te form is after temoii so that explains my cluelessness, but people are saying it’s a better tool for reinforcement than actual learning so…idk. Man, theres so many, like, not only te but mu, bu, gu, nu, de AND te? sigh at my pace that’s like a week for each just to remember 俺はばか :frowning:

I don’t agree that the Tae Kim’s Guide is the best resource for beginners out there. There are a lot of blogs/youtube channels that are far superior.

The basis on the Tae Kim’s is to keep it simplistic while giving you a basic notion of what you’re learning. That’s it. The best way to use Tae Kim’s is as an introduction to what you’re learning. You get the main points from there and you don’t ask any complicated questions about it. Stuff like “why is it this way, what’s the difference between A and B” won’t be fully answered with Tae Kim’s Guide… and that’s okay. Why? Because then there’s over complicated blogs that will focus on telling you all the details about it. For example, Maggie Sensei is definitely a blog that might be pretty heavy if you’re looking up a thing for the first time, but if you already have a notion of what’s going on (through Tae Kim’s Guid for example), then you’ll be okay getting what’s being taught.

I think you need a more structured thing that a teacher can give you. Since paying for one is probably not a possibility, I would suggest you Japanese Ammo with Misa and Japanese from Zero youtube channels. Go by the order of episodes.

EDIT: Learn the て form through Japanese Ammo with Misa. Check her youtube playlist. She divided it into 5 lessons (13 to 18, I believe). てform is easier than it sounds, but that many videos will definitely give you a great basis to make it a natural thing for you :slight_smile:


Yeah, I understand I’m just trying to find what suits me best. I’m reminded of those times in school where they babbled about learning styles, some learn through reading, others doing. I learn better via doing, but it’s hard to get to the doing when you don’t know how to do in the first place :stuck_out_tongue:

Maybe what I said was confusing because you haven’t done the て form yet, but it’s called the て form because it’s usually… て. But verbs that end with those endings I mentioned don’t end in て in their て form, so you have to remember those.

BTW, I checked bunpro just now and て form is in N5 Lesson 4, while てもいい is in N5 Lesson 5. So, I’m not sure if they changed it since you went through but it’s in the “proper” order currently.