Kind of losing my Japanese way? Advice is really appreciated

Hi guys,

I hope that this is not too noob of a question, but I kind of feel stuck and lost in my Japanese language learning. I have been studying WK along with Misa’s guide to absolute beginners. I have learned some Japanese, however, I am unable to find a good way to put what I’ve learned to practice. My Japanese isn’t good enough to even read at a slow pace.

  • Should I start by writting sentences and then read them?
  • Please give me advice on reading and better understanding practice?
  • Advices on active learning are welcome as well :smiley:

Is the below well constructed?

  • 私は、日本語を学びたい。でも、難しいだから、あまり学んでいません。

Thanks a lot for taking the time to read and help. ありがとうございます!

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Sure, why not? :smile:
Why don’t you try You can ask natives from Japan about sentences you write, and they can correct them or tell you if they’re natural.

Practice is the only way!

It is very difficult to read anything when you’re beginning :slight_smile: When I started I tried to read this sentence:
It took me (no joke) About an hour to understand this sentence, and I still couldn’t really get it :laughing:
The more you study, the easier it gets! I suggest looking at different websites for JLPT 5 and reading practice example questions :slight_smile: If you keep reading soon enough you’ll find it getting easier and easier!

I think so :smile:
Here’s the only advice I can give:
The comma between 私は and 日本語 isn’t needed. You could also remove 私は completely, because it is implied.
The second sentence is polite, so I would add “です” to the end of this sentence (And replace だ with です)
日本語を学びたいです。 でも、難しいですからあまり学んでいません。
If you’d like to combine the sentences, you could say:

Hope that helps :slight_smile: がんばってください~


A little more info on this point: unlike です, だ can’t go after -い adjectives. 難しいから is a totally valid way to say it.

I recommend looking up some graded readers for reading practice. Reading will get easier as you learn more kanji, just make sure to study grammar too. Tae Kim’s online guide worked well for me. Good luck!


One of the things I found that helped me the most in the beginning was exercises to go along with the new grammar I was learning. In my case, I used Genki and its workbook, which started from square 1 in teaching things like これはペンです. Have you done much in terms of practice exercises? That along with beginner’s reading practice can really provide you with a good foundation. In my case, again, the beginner’s level reading passages in Genki helped me practice and improve in that regard.

Are you looking for new resources in general? Or just some tips? I know not everyone is a textbook learner, so that depends on you, but I do think they have a lot to offer in terms of practice for someone at your level. For a slightly different, WK-like approach, there’s the site Bunpro for learning grammar (which is paid, although there’s a free version as well). There also are beginner’s level graded readers that offer good practice, though those can be more expensive.

Tae Kim’s site also has lots of practice sentences, and he begins from square 1 in terms of grammar, as well. His sentence translations are sometimes done more literally, which can make it easier to see why the Japanese constructs used resulted in that particular meaning in English.

It sounds like overall, you need to increase your input. You may not be seeing enough sentences or enough variety in them to be able to improve your comprehension right now.


I suggest listening to Japanese in whatever way doesn’t bore you, and reading something like Yotsubato and ignoring a lot of the things that you can’t get.


I agree, if I hadn’t watched tons of subtitled anime I think Japanese would be way harder for me right now.


Graded readers (they are way easier than Yotsubato) seem like something you would benefit from .
With a bit over 500 words under your belt and grammar corresponding with half of the first Genki textbook you’re set to go.

That way I had my debut reading japanese, a milestone in my routine and a key point at igniting my pleasure for reading … Totally recommended​:+1::+1:


@Ncastaneda Thanks! I live in Colombia, is there a way for me to get graded readers here?

@SleepyOne I have heard about that Genki thing, is that something I can buy in Colombia as well?

I have not really done much about exercises or practice-wise, so I am sure that your advices about graded readers and practice books would be really good for me. I just need to know where to find them, and plan my budget to pay for them even if one at a time. :smiley:

Thanks a lot for answering! I am peeking at よつばと and have a question. And again, if it is too silly I apologize in advance. Do I have to read the manga from right to left and from top down? (This question sounds really silly :confused: ) Thanks again.

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I just came here to recommend “Japanese the Manga Way”

My goal is to get reading sooner rather than later and this book is helping bring my confidence up in reading. As it provides a lot of panels to read from and explains them in a lot of detail. I also grabbed some physical kid manga cheep so I can write in them and take notes as I go along.

Getting started is always the hardest part!

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Top-down, right-to-left is the standard for artistic media such as manga. However, sounds effects will often still be written left-to-right.

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I bought my first volumes in the whiterabbit website, shipping was available for many countries, I guess Colombia would be possible too.
I would say though, reading graded readers for Japanese learners it’s much more expensive than native content, so maybe you can also make that a motivation to progress into more difficult lectures as you improve your overall skills.:smiley:

EDIT: there’s the Graded Readers series from Ask Publishers (paperback books) sold in the White Rabbit website and the White Rabbit’s own series sold through their app (definitely available in Colombia :wink: )

Might be worth pointing out that if the writing is vertical, it’s always read right-to-left.

If it is horizontal (like, say, a web page) it’s always left-to-right.


You can post on a スカーチャン board and say something like 日本語が練習したい外人です。タイムと申します。スペイン語も話せます。ゲームと料理が好きです。よろしくおねがいします!スカイプネームは(example Skype name) and people will talk to you. You can meet all kinds that way. It helped my Japanese more than anything else I’ve done. Especially if you can get in large active groups.

Thanks for your suggestion, however, I am not sure what you mean by スカーチャン board. Would you please elaborate a little on that?

@anon11519654 スカーチャン boards are online message boards that bored people post on who want to find people to talk to or even play games with. If you are having a hard time finding it the full name is スカイプチャネル, or you can just go here or here.

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I’ve never lived in Japan which has made learning Japanese more difficult for me. At this time my main focus is improving my reading abilities and I use the book Learn to Read in Japanese because I’m not quiet ready to read native material yet. The book has two volumes and introduces a set number of kanji characters each chapter and uses them in context via simple sentences. I’ve included some screen capture below.

I use a Dictionary of Japanese Grammar (Basic & Intermediate) to look up any grammar I’m unfamiliar with. I also recommend Tae Kim for Grammar and HiNative to practice new vocabulary words and grammar structures.

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