Sorry if this was already asked. I was wondering how autodidactic learners divide their time to learn Japanese - speaking, reading, grammar, vocab, listening etc. I feel like I don’t know what to concentrate on, because there’s so many great resources, and I jump around. Thanks for your help!
I think what’s helped me most is to get organized and start small/simple. There’s LOADS out there, but you need to figure out what YOU need, because not all resources are going to be the best for you.
So figure out what resources you have on hand (any books, CDs/mp3s, etc) and write that down. Figure out about what level you’re at. (Most resources divide things up by JLPT.) And start stacking where things go. (You might have a more advanced book that you aren’t ready for yet, for example.) And I would honestly start there. It’s so easy to get lost in all the online resources available, it can get confusing. I think once you get started with what you have, then you can start to figure out what you need.
If you don’t have any resources and don’t know where to start, that’s a different question, and you’ll get lots of different answers. I think then it might be best to narrow things down by popularity, what’s most recommended, and go from there. Ignore the small/obscure stuff for now, you can get back to those or explore them later. Least that’s how I’ve done it, and it works for me. But you might be different.
I do WK at set times each day to sync w SRS timings, and do other studies after each session: 7am - writing practice; 11am - grammar study and practice; 7pm - listening and reading.
If you don’t already have resources, this wiki post could be of help.
My goal is to pass the JLPT N4 in Dec. Right now this is what I’m doing:
I start with Wanikani- its not my priority but I’m taking it in pretty measured pace (14 items 5 days a week, kanji four of those days, not on Friday, review on weekends as necessary) I’m at the point for the N4 vocab minus the last four, so I’m doing this slowly. But it has increased my access to Japanese SO MUCH that I keep it first, because most of what I do is read, so the more I know, the more access I have to other materials)
I do afterwards Bunpro for grammar practice. I also read these sentences aloud for additional speaking practice. On the weekends I do Bunpro first and Wanikani second (reviews only, no new items). I add 3 grammar points a day 5 days a week. This is my current priority.
I do Kitsun decks last. I have JLPT decks (I’ve completed N5 and N4 and now working on 3 albeit very slowly like 1-2 new words a day) and a 10k deck. If I find a word in the wild, or in my textbook or am having trouble with it in the other SRS decks, I add it to the 10k deck that I don’t do in order, I use it as reinforcement, unlocking cards at will. If the word isn’t in the 10k CORE deck I don’t worry about it right now. This deck has audio and sentences, so I’m attached to it and its useful. BUT it also sucks up a ton of time, and its the LAST thing I do in the day. So some days it gets skipped.
I do once a week online tutoring via Italki for one hour going through Genki - I have an homework assignment a week. This gives me some structure and focused practice I wasn’t getting otherwise, and forcing me to interact in, ya know Japanese, which is the point of this. We do some homework, some practice and some conversation in that hour.
After ALL that- (?!?!) I do some random stuff that’s just whimsy, listen to Japanese music, look up lyrics, anime, whatever as the stuff I do.
I’m not sure this is the most effective. Its definitely time consuming, but the most important thing is that I do it. Regularly. And my Japanese is improving. So for me its effective.
I would also like to try italki, since out of the four grammar points, speaking is probably my weakest, but they’re expensive.
Right now my everyday schedule is
WK: if my work permits, I do my reviews as soon as they show up, but I generally do them while eating meals.
KW: Same schedule as WK
Iknow: I do them in large batches in one go every night before I sleep (~100 reviews + 10-15 new vocabs per day)
TangoRisto - at least 2 articles a day
…and reading manga in Japanese, listening to Japanese music and listening to Japanese drama cds. If I’m not busy, I watch several YT videos of seiyuu in some live event or something. All these just my hobbies since before (except reading manga raw; I used to rely on translations), but then it reinforces my Japanese
I’m still thinking on how and where to study grammar since Genki (or any other textbook-like stuff) and Bunpro is not really effective for me.
I take practice JLPTs and try to focus on what I’m weak on.
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