Mistakes you made when you first started learning Japanese


Books? Maybe?


Well, yes, that’s what I would have recommended to my younger self (e.g. get a library card, and get in there).


Not a big one, but only now did I realize, after few weeks of usage, that you can take out the romanji and furigana on lingodeer and use it only in Japanese. Also you can sometimes write your answers with keyboard and not just pick the correct kana. It’s harder but I feel like I’m learning more.


My first year or so of studying Japanese was done with a book using only romaji… Why did these kinds of books even exist… Textbook should be full fledged Japanese with furigana only, no full hiragana, no spaces and god forbids any romaji…


Look long and hard on the web before choosing my Japanese textbook. In the end I choose みんなの日本語.
It is in full Japanese 100% with kanji and furigana so if you want to learn with it you either need a Japanese teacher or the blue book that will accompany you through this journey.

My biggest mistake that I still make is that I’m always trying to find a parallel from Japanese to English or French but since their way of thinking is different a lot of the time I either waste my time or confuse myself.


That’s an easy one! I started learning Kanji too late and with not enough effort. As Japanese words are built from only around 50 fixed syllables (and even fewer frequently used syllables) I had big difficulties remembering vocabulary because the words all sounded so similar (everything seemed to be kika, kaki, kokyuu, kyuuko, taka, kata). It is so much easier if you know the kanji. Especially in the wanikani method where you first learn separate kanji (which is sometimes difficult to memorise for me) and then a few words using these kanji in different combinations (suddenly incredibly easy).


This was today… (thankfully only in my thoughts and not outloud)

Brain: Hey, you know whats the word for human and definitely not the word for mermaid? 人魚


I wasted time thinking about the best way to learn rather than just doing something.


Didn’t we all do that?


All except those people who claim to get fluent in a year, of course. There’s no way they could have even wasted a single minute!


To be fair, some people really do just want to get in and get out with no slowing down. If they need to be able to use Japanese verbally in a few weeks time but probably won’t continue after that, a romaji book makes the most sense for them.


True, it make sense in a survival japanese guide for tourists or the like.


The textbook Im using now is all in romaji actually and I think it is actually really helpful in terms of where I am. Doing wanikani its easy rely too much on kanji to understand words so seeing it in romaji and actually having to say the words out loud to understand them is reinforcing them in a different way.

Because romaji looks so alien to me I can throw away the visual of the word and just retain it as a spoken element. Im hoping this will all come together with reading practice and create fluency!

If I didn’t know hiragana and wasn’t learning kanji though I do think it would be a disaster.