So… I spend a lot of quality time in my car every week: at least two 2.5 hour trips. Know of any good Japanese audio courses that don’t require following along in a book? And that reach into intermediate levels? Pretty much Genki lessons 1-6 will make me gag to have to sit through again. I can still handle 7-12 reviews gag-free. Genki book 2 levels are still helpful review, but I would like to start looking beyond that.
What about trying to listen to podcasts about topics you like instead of listening to learning material?
I could try that. I just often feel like I need to read what’s being said before I try listening or read it after listening. But in either case then I add a substantial workload outside of the actual driving time.
Maybe just give it a shot for a few weeks and see how it goes.
I might be able to add one or two podcast episodes. I don’t think I’m going to be able to to add all that preparation time to my regular time, though. 5 hours of dialogue is a whole lot of dialogue… Like translating 2.5 full length movies every week. @_@
I meant, don’t prep. Just listen and see what you can understand. And see if after a few weeks your comprehension improves.
It’s certainly not beginner level, but I LOVE ひいきびいき. It’s so soothing to listen to and the episodes are pretty long. You should give it a shot, just for the experience of listening to a lot of Japanese and getting used to the sound of the language. Plus, it’s always a huge win when you recognize words or grammar points!
I’ve heard this works for some people, but man. Not for me. There’s probably some minimum level you need to be to get more out of it than recognizing one word every couple of minutes, but at my level, listening to “japanese sound” is not any more helpful than it was when I didn’t know any.
There’s a guy who made a voice controller for WaniKani somewhere on the discussion board. That might work in the car, but I don’t know if it works on mobile. Ideally, something like BunPro full sentences at full speed, you repeat them for accuracy and also translate them, voice controlled in the car. Lazy web, make it so.
I listen to NHK hourly newsbroadcasts every day. Each day I understand more, and I hear words used in context that I have learned in studies. Then, I learn a worrd in studies that I have already heard a zillions times.
For me, it works.
Absolutely. I tried it once over a year ago and it didn’t work for me at all. But I think it’s worth trying a few times.
Over the last half year I had to drive two hours a day for an internship. In advance I recorded the basic and essential grammar of Tae Kim’s Guide to Japanese as 3-5 minute podcasts. I threw these together with a bunch of Japanese songs on my mp3-player and listend to it over 4 month.
After that I knew the simple Japanese grammar and I had a way better grammar-listening-comprehension. I still suck at recognizing vocabs, but at least I hear the structure of the sentences.
By the way: I heared that Japanese Pod 101 sould be a good ressource, if you can only listen to podcasts. They say that a buch of material is for free, so there sould be enough material to check it out. But the pro versions are too expensife for me (poor student )
Once upon a time I was fundamentally opposed to courses such as Pimsleur’s Japanese, but I went through a slump this year where I was working three jobs and had virtually no time for studying outside of the couple of hours a day I was driving, and that changed my mind about them. On their own, they’re not a great way to learn the language (they don’t teach grammar so much as leave it up to you to piece it together), but they’re not so bad as supplementary material and needless to say listening to those courses was far better than hardly studying at all during that time.
I listen to Japanesepod101 on my work commute. Each podcast is about 15 to 20 minutes in length and they cover a range of levels from absolute beginner to intermediate/advanced. There are thousands of lessons available. The quality of the lessons varies - some of the early podcasts are not very well-organized and they jump around in difficulty a bit. However, they cover a wide range of topics and many of the later series are more professionally done. Most of the lessons involve a brief introduction, followed by a short dialogue in Japanese that is repeated once slowly and again with English translation, followed by a discussion of the dialogue and key grammar points or vocabulary.
A somewhat related question (and I mean it genuinely):
Isn’t it like super dangerous to actively (speak: no music/radio) listen to something while one is supposed to be driving and concentrating on the road? Like, don’t one need to actually pay attention to the material for it to have any effect and would this attention not be diverted from the attention to the road?
I know that daily drivers get pretty good to subconsciously take in a lot of information for staying safe, but I really wonder if one can become so good that learning while driving really becomes safe?
I don’t see it as any different than having an active conversation with a passenger.
This may be below your current level, but the podcast NHK Easy Japanese is free and has short episodes with a dialogue, grammar points, vocabulary review, and usually some kind of onomatopoeia. They’re really high quality and hopefully they’ll add more high-level episodes over time!
In my case that was abolultely no problem. When I had to concentrate on the road, my brain just switched the audio off. After that, I did rewind 2 Minutes and everything was fine.
I am a really careful driver, but this was actually no problem at all.
Which I believe is also super dangerous!
Thanks, this is interesting to hear.
Same, in fact I’ve had a number of occasions where I’m listening to a song and want to hear a certain interesting part, and then a few minutes later, “oh foo, I missed it when that car wanted to merge in”. The brain can prioritize driving and pre-empt listening when necessary. As long as you don’t stop watching the road, which unfortunately some people do when they get engrossed in a conversation.
I often call a Japanese friend on my phone with the bluetooth connection of my car radio during my commute. [We don’t always practice Japanese, though, only sometimes.]
The free app Easy Japanese from NHK World has 50 pretty basic lessons, but depending on your level they could be helpful. They basically walk you through simple conversations and explain every piece of the dialogue with chances to repeat. Each lesson is about 10 minutes long.