WaniKani (Flaming Durtles) + Kanji Study + LingoDeer
Hi all! I started my Japanese language journey a while ago and I would like to share my first steps with you. I’ve read tons of similar posts and study logs and they helped me a lot, so I thought this might be helpful for someone, too. And I don’t mind advise, so I will be thankful for tips.
I’ll describe my background, the source of my motivation and will get to my routine. So carry with me
I live in bilingual country, so I already know two languages since birth. I started studying English in middle school and carried trough high school and Uni (and language courses on a side). Then I lived in another country for a year and picked up my fourth language which I can understand, but can’t speak because I’m too shy. 4 languages, Gosh, isn’t it more than enough already? Nuh. No. Nope.
I’ve never ever considered learning Japanese. But then Yuri!!! on Ice anime happened (and changed me forever). I am not a teenager anymore, though I felt like one. This show was a huge trigger and it helped me to carry through the worst year of my life. But it wasn’t the final straw. Three years later (this February actually) I went to see Spirited Away on a big screen in a local cinema and even though I’ve seen it dozen times before, it hit me hard. So hard that the whole next day I spent on YouTube watching videos about Japan. The day after that I googled “Japanese for beginners” and started on hiragana.
Three days later I still felt motivated. One week later I still felt motivated. One hole month later I still felt motivated.
To be honest, I was surprised. I expected to lose interest, but the exact opposite was happening. Ten months later I’m even more motivated.
I don’t have a clear goal. Yes, I want to go to Japan eventually, but it’s not my goal. Yes, I want to read stories (and fanfiction cheesy grin), but that’s not it either. I am not here for fun. I just know, know deeply in my heart that I need to do it, but I don’t know why yet.
I am a self-learner. I don’t want to study with a teacher yet and I have my reasons.
I tried watching videos on YouTube, I tried textbooks and websites. But nothing worked as a strong foundation.
Until I discovered WaniKani 3 months ago. I installed Android app and bingo! An app is what I needed all this time. I am not tied up to my laptop, I can study wherever I want and whenever I need to, I don’t have to sit and stare at the monitor that hurts my eyes. I don’t have to buy textbooks (they are freaking expensive and hard to find in a paperback).
So, my daily routine.
5 kanji / 10-20 words in WK per day while I am on my way to work + KanjiStudy writing practice.
Reviews in a lunch time.
One LingoDeer grammar lesson after dinner (30-50 min), reviews on WK, some more KanjiStudy writing practice (no less than 10 min per day).
- one Graded Reader’s story on a weekend.
On a side note, sometimes I am binge-studying until my friends rescue me.
As for now, the routine seems quite balanced. Especially taking into account that my only resources are apps.
WK - super vocab (no need to explain ;))
KanjiStudy - I can’t stress enough how GREAT this app is (I paid for full access and it’s totally worth it). Look it up and if you don’t use it already, please TRY.
When I start a level on WK, I practice kanji WRITING in KS. I have a separate kanji group for each level and can quiz myself whenever I have a spare minute. The app has sooo many features and sooo many study modes that everybody can create a perfect routine with it.
It also works as a great dictionary AND you can sync it with AnkiDroid! And create a card in Anki in one click. Super convenient.
LingoDeer is a really great app for grammar and some listening since all sentences are voiced. It teaches you some vocab as well, but, like, 3 words per lesson. Not enough to learn the language, but perfect amount to go through grammar point without vocab overload.
Each lesson gives one small grammar point. For some people it can be too slow, but for me it’s just the right amount of new information. And it still takes me 40 min to get through one lesson + reviews.
First level is free, it has 60 lessons and covers the basics. 1 lesson per day = two months of studying.
I know that explanations are super simple there. And I know that it can’t be my only grammar resource. But it is a good start.
If you know other good Android apps, please share!
All the love,