I was inspired by Shanna‘s blog so I decided to create a blog of my own. =) In this post, I’m going to talk about how I study Korean. But before that, I’d like to mention one of the many reasons why I decided to study Korean. I studied Fookien for one school year during high school. I went to a Chinese-Filipino school and they offer Mandarin and Fookien classes to anyone who wants to take it. Those who don’t will have to take Math and English enrichment classes. Anyway, in a month, I was able to get #9 in the class ranking. Most of my classmates were pure Chinese and I have less than a quarter of Chinese blood running in my system. So I was kinda surprised that I have beaten my Chinese classmates who have been studying the language since elementary 1st grade. My teacher complimented me saying that I have the skill to learn a language fast. Back then, I just laughed it off thinking that I beat my classmates because they were lazy. LOL. One of the reasons why I’m learning Korean is to challenge myself, see how far I’ll go self-studying. By the way, I took Fookien classes when I was 13 years old. That was 8 years ago and I already forgot everything I’ve learned since my family is not Chinese and I have no one to practice it with. T__T
I’ve only started studying Korean about 2 months ago at TTMIK. So far, I’m still at level 2. Not that I’m a slow learner or something but I just like to take it slow so that I will not forget what I’ve learned after just a few months. I study at least 2-3 TTMIK lessons a week. In my own opinion, it’s not really wise to study 2-3 lessons in just a day. Well, you can if you want to but it would be better if you take some time to practice what you’ve learned in one lesson, make sure you’ve understood the lesson well before going to the next one. In TTMIK, the teachers encourage you to make sample sentences of your own. You can post your sample sentences on your comment. Do not be afraid if it’s wrong because it’s normal to commit a mistake especially if you’re a beginner like me. The teachers will help you and they will provide corrections to your sentences. Some of their intermediate listeners will also give you pointers. So you don’t have to worry if your sentences are wrong, no one’s gonna kill you.
I find it more efficient if I download their audio files to my mp3 player and print their pdf files rather than studying their lessons straight from their site because I have the tendency to wander around the world wide web instead of focusing on the lesson. I like to study at 3AM. I do not recommend that you study at 3AM like I do. It’s just that my brain absorbs more information at this time. My brain works best at 3AM. Maybe it’s because the house is completely quiet and there’s no one to disturb me while studying.
I bought a phrasebook while I was in Manila. I did learn a few sentences from it and I was glad I already know how to read Hangeul. Their romanization was crappy and it was far from how you should really pronounce the words. From then on, I swore to myself that I’ll never ever buy a phrasebook. But the phrasebook wasn’t completely useless. I learned a few new words from reading the sample sentences and there were notes on the last few pages explaining the particles. If you really want to learn Korean, I suggest you buy textbooks instead of phrasebooks.
In my spare time, I watch dramas or variety shows. By doing this, I can enhance my speaking and listening skills while getting a bit of entertainment. I listen to what they say, pause the video and mimic the way they pronounce the words. I say it over and over again until I finally got it. Watching Korean TV shows also helps me broaden my Korean vocabulary. Over the years, I learned a lot of Korean words from 안녕하세요 to 결혼 to 기도해 to even 씨발. LOL. To help me with my vocabulary, I quiz myself using this site.
Let’s not forget about the writing. Writing skills is also important. Whenever I learn a new sentence, phrase or word, I write it down on a piece of paper and write it again and again. My writing skills still sucks and on top of that, I really have a bad penmanship which makes it even more unpleasant to look at.
I’d love to buy Korean textbooks like Elementary Korean and Yonsei textbooks but they’re expensive and I’m unemployed which means I have no source of income right now unless you consider the allowance my dad gives me every month a source of income. I did manage to get a pdf file of Elementary Korean (hehehe, the beauty of piracy LOL) but I’d love to get a hard copy too because it hurts to stare at the laptop’s monitor for a long period of time and like I said earlier, I always wander off to Twitter. LOL
I’d like to remind to whoever is reading this (if there is), I’m a complete beginner. I do know several Korean words but I’m still a beginner so if you need help with Korean, I’m not the right person to ask. I suggest you ask other Korean language bloggers out there like Shanna for they’re far more better in Korean than I am and I think they’ll be able to help you more.
By the way, I’d like to apologize for the 2NE1 header. Sorry, big fan. XD