LOL this is the best post I’ve seen all day
I think JFZ is definitely a good resource. He is enthusiastic and his love of the language shows. While he isn’t a native speaker he as the advantage of knowing what areas are difficult to grasp for an English speaker.
I’ve only had native teachers and they sometimes fail to understand why English speaking students struggle. For example last night I was having trouble inflecting タバコを吸う remembering if the verb was 一段動詞 or 五段動詞 (Type 1 or Type 2). Why? How often do I discuss “smoking” in Japanese? Very little. And because of that I don’t inflect “to smoke” often. The other student in the class had the same problem.
We both had to explain to the teacher our inability to immediately inflect the verb. Particularly in the imperative case that we were practicing! タバコを吸え! ((You) smoke!)
So don’t knock learning from someone who has been where you are now.
That’s definitely a good point. It was never my intention to knock him either, I’m just curious if others consider him to be a good resource. Personally I like his content, I’m just at a point in my learning where I can’t exactly tell if I’m being mislead.
While I was learning French I encountered a lot of resources that I later found out were offering me very poor or outdated information and it was a problem because I didn’t realize it until further down the road
I wasn’t trying to suggest you were specifically knocking on JFZ. Sorry I wasn’t as clear as I could have been.
One interesting thing JFZ does is introduce romaji and hiragana together as you learn the hiragana which I thought was a rather clever way to get used to reading kana. He also co-writes his books with his Japanese wife so in some ways you get the best of both approaches.
At my stage of learning I find him useful for reviewing grammar. As my teachers and textbooks are all from Japan and written by Japanese it gives a different perspective that can be helpful.
Thank goodness I’m past hiragana and katakana. While some people claim the kana can be learned in a week or two speaking for myself I can say it was easily three months before I was proficient. Defining proficient as in if somebody spoke a sentence I could write it down in kana.
Just remember that 一段 verbs always end in -える and -いる sounds. So, 吸う must be 五段. It’s those tricky 五段 verbs that end in -える/-いる that you need to look out for!
Anyway, $88/month is crazy. You could hire a tutor for far less than that.
I just watched one or two of his grammar videos yesterday and he finally got it to click for me. Previously I had tried learning those grammar points in a lot of different places without success, so I definitely commend him for that!
Currently grammar is by far my weakest point and I’m trying to make it my focus. It makes me feel a lot more confident that others find his grammar lessons useful!
Not to take away from Yuta, although that price is insane, even for permanent content, but there’s also his friend that quit his job to teach Japanese “Find Your Love in Japan.” His course seemed cheaper. Lol. Although, I don’t think I’d go for either of them, personally.
I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to be offensive. If you have the money for it, I certainly cannot and should not judge that.
I learned it from a YouTube comments section! Also learned 舐める from the same post…
Sounds like some quality YouTube comments lol. I usually hear ペロペロ used in reference to licking but that is more of an onomatopoeia
Well, I am no expert (yet!), but I note that 舐める also carries the meaning of “to taste” and “to experience” so…maybe the comment was meant to be more in-depth than just a lick, i dunno
Interesting to find out for sure… but I think i’m along the same lines as most people here. I’ve only seen a few of his earlier videos, but eventually youtube kept recommending his slightly awkward interview videos to me and I got a bit turned off.
Personally I have a normal tutor that lives in a nearby state. I found them through a random flyer sitting at an empty artist table at a local convention incidentally. Currently paying $40/hour class over skype about once a week. I suppose the main benefit was so it fits my wacky work schedule whenever I need to adjust to fit my night shifts, but overall more expensive than his monthly fees.
Anyone else have a private tutor? How much do you pay?
I was thinking the exact same thing. If he’s not offering at least 1 hour of Skype one-on-one tutoring with you a month, it’s probably not worth it. He’s not checking your pronunciation, so how would you know for sure you don’t sound like a textbook or foreigner.
BTW, thanks for posting this because it reminds me that I bought several Udemy courses right before Christmas because they had this discount, but I have barely touched them. Rather than buying something new that I don’t know if I’ll use, I should probably do those Udemy courses first LOL
I subscribed to Yuta and love it. Big fan.
The reason is this: I’ve been on and off again learning Japanese for a while, and I’ve always found it pretty time-consuming to search down resources that were engaging, logically ordered in one place, and focused on casual Japanese. Especially for non-keigo Japanese, it’s important to understand when using it would be not only appropriate but more natural, which is what Yuta does. With Yuta’s course, I’m still early in the modules, but I’ve had many “Ohhhhh, that’s how that works!!” moments. He takes things I’ve read here and there on countless websites — but not really understand in practice — and makes it easy to digest in a single website.
I was a little put off initially by the cost but his value proposition spoke to me. The content clarified things in a way that I couldn’t grapple with through just reading about online. This includes things like “んだ” or “explanatory emphasis,” which means little to me without a native Japanese speaker explaining and then giving examples with kanji, kana, and romaaji.
So, I guess I’m in the minority here on WK that actually loves Yuta’s course!
No offense taken, I was more thinking of my boss (who is always telling me I earn to much for someone with such low outgoings)
As promised; a much improved review than I could possibly have given last night:
As has been said by others in this thread, Basic Japanese Premium does have a focus of speech, and not sounding like a foreigner. This isn’t sounding like a foreigner by accent, what it means is things like word choice and word order:
“She’s the girl I have a crush on” as opposed to “She is the girl on whom I have a crush”. Yuta is teaching the first type as opposed to textbooks which teach the second type.
Whilst there is nothing wrong with the second sentence, in fact it is more grammatically correct than the first, however it is not the type of sentence you would use in a normal conversation. Yuta is trying to teach you how to use the language, as opposed to how the language works.
He says that he has looked through several textbooks and taken the bits that work from them and cut the useless parts, he trys to cover things which are not covered in great deal in textbooks (an example of this is the glossing over of tones in Genki, which he covers in one section).
One thing you will find with his videos is that each thing he teaches in a video is followed by another video where he takes clips from his interviews and highlights the thing you just learnt: Here the man says boku, yet this man says watashi, he will give some explanation of the differences between the styles of speech in the interviews.
Another bonus is access to a facebook group which contains several additional things: you can send in clips of you speaking and he will provide a video response to the group so you can see where you went wrong (or where others went wrong) and he provides guidance on how your speaking can be improved.
Currently in the course, there are 16 modules with most being around 10-15 videos long. These videos start with the basics of an overview of pronunciation and progresses through nouns, verbs, adjectives, particles, sentence ending particles,past adjectives, past verbs te-form, a story module, potential form, probable form, desire, super polite keigo, and pitch accent.
There are then some bonus modules covering Anime, Dating, Minna no Nihongo, Genki, 16 dialogues, 10 keigo dialogues, correcting pronunciation videos, and a collection of interviews which you would then be able to follow without subtitles. Also a selection of Kana modules which cover correct pronunciation and kana only words (both hiragana and katakana)
To begin with the videos are fairly short, but I personally find that this is one of the best things about them; you can rewatch over and over in order to firmly drive the point home, and I’ve even just listened to them while at work. You are able to mark the videos you have grasped well as complete, which results in a tick next to them, and you get a congratulatory email when you finish each module - I’ve received 2 emails because I don’t like clicking complete
Well I think that is enough from me for now, I do have a google drive which contains the videos but that would be illegal and I don’t want to do anything illegal on the forum (cause it is against the rules).
Now I’m off to start the whisky tonight.
Your boss sounds like a meanie. Here’s some ** hugs **.
I was actually very tempted to sign up for this when it was open but it caught me at the end of a very expensive month for me and I did NOT have the money for it. From the reviews though it sounds like the kind of thing I might be looking for so hopefully the next time he opens it I can give it a go. The casual, actually spoken Japanese is exactly what I want to learn since I’m living in Japan. The kind of things that textbooks, with their more formal focus just don’t teach you well.
He mentions somewhere that if you’re having trouble getting the funds together you can actually message him and he will work something out with you.
Best of luck!
I pay about 250$ for a semester long course in a class, with three hours per class. Unless he’s offering three hours of video per week for those 4 months and also one-on-one sessions to correct pronunciation and grammar, I’d say it’s too expensive. Our teacher is Japanese, so she teaches us to speak the same way she naturally does, not textbook standard necessarily.