Well, I have only been doing my RTK randomly about 5-20 minutes a day with no new cards, just trying to get my reviews caught up. Surprisingly having 2 kids eats up a lot of time and doing flashcards with my daughter has been so stressful I can't even look at mine after that. Anyway I am going to try to get these cards done by the time the girls summer vacation is over.
I am feeling the pressure to get more into my studies as my daughters first day of Japanese kindergarten is quickly approaching. I feel like I would like to be really at a decent place with my Japanese by the time she finishes kindy so that I can understand what her teachers are saying to them at the kindy promotion event. I put in several hours of listening while parenting and 15 minutes of reps. At the park with the kids I made sure to sit near some Japanese women who were chatting a lot so I could listen to more Japanese and even more natural than my podcasts. I wanted to talk to them, but I don't really know many nouns or verbs or advers or adjectives so just spouting off hello and really? seemed like a weird thing to do. I should have done some shadowing or copycating to see how those work, but I didn't. I also need to buy some more dramas. The hubby started Pimsleur last night and I am hoping to be able to keep up with him too. It is stressful because he is learning the meanings of the things he is saying so he is closer to being conversational than I am. I have been spending time on Fluent in three months while nursing to hear his ideas on speaking quickly. A lot of it makes sense and I may try it for another language since it is too late to consider anything in Japanese soon. He makes me jealous with all of his traveling though. I want to go places too.
Well I have been looking at this blog Tanoshimini by Matt. He has been posting about the things he is doing with AJATT SilverSpoon which I am so jealous that he is participating in. He has been posting about two specific techniques - Copycat and Shadowing which he did in the very beginning while setting up his Japanese environment as well as starting kanji. I have been going a little crazy thinking what to do while I get enough kanji to start reading to be able to sentence mine. Now I have an idea. I am still trying to get caught up with my reviews, but with my new 5 minute session limit on Anki I am able to stay motivated to do some everyday. I don't know when I am going to get caught up, but I will eventually.
So I just wanted to mention that I recently discovered extensive reading. Through an AJATT tweet I found Liana's Extensive Reading Blog which lead me to Culture Quirk's Video. I am only just starting to find out about it, but it seems like just what I need to be doing. I just need some super easy level one books. Luckily in the area are some lovely japanese bookstores and libraries!
So I have made a little change to the way that I study my kanji in Anki that has made a huge difference in the level of boredom. I have been playing with timeboxing. I know that I read all bout it on AJATT long ago but I ignored it. I thought 30 minutes is a really short amount of time to review hundreds of kanji. It appears that it was too long. Khatzumoto was right. Smaller chunks are better. I have changed my session limit from 30 minutes to 5 minutes. Now I am finding that I am running out of time long before I am bored with the process and then I am just irritated enough that I didn't get to finish that I want to go back and study more. I have gone from 0 reviews a day to at least 15. I feel really good about that even though it is just a baby step. I am entertaining the idea of an even shorter time like 2 or 3 minutes, but maybe I'll wait until I feel bored with everything again. I am not studying new kanji yet and am holding steady at 395, but my number or reviews due is getting smaller bit by bit. Yay! I just need to spend some time reading somehow so that I am seeing the kanji more frequently so they stay in my brain.
I rented a Kids World disk from HQ Video for Miss S who will be attending a Japanese immersion school this fall along with たまごっち she really enjoyed them both even though she doesn't understand a single word of what they are saying aside from はい. I have to confess that I felt really pissed off that I couldn't understand these shows that are made for little kids. However it is great to have Japanese playing that is appropriate for little eyes and ears and maybe I'll be able to learn from it too.
Well the kids over at Kanji & Tea are posting which always reminds me that I need to post. . . and study kanji. Watching Dramas over and over again isn't all that helpful. Though I may just have a decent fake Japanese accent. Plus my deadline is approaching pretty quickly. My daughter was accepted into a Japanese school so she will be learning Japanese starting this fall. I would love to be able to stay a little bit ahead of her at least through kindergarten. The key will be getting past the 300 kanji I have done so far. In order to do that I have to unbury my RTK from beneath my sewing.
Ok, so thanks to Heisig "災" is one of the few kanji I recognize easily. Unfortunately Japan has had a huge 災. There is fire and water just like the kanji. I am seeing it over and over again on the blogs and many tweets on twitter. I have been watching NHK on Ustream http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nhk-gtv. I am lucky and grateful that I was able to hear from my "little sis" Yuki in Tokyo and know that she and her family and her husbands family are all safe. Also there are 4 of Miss S's classmates at preschool who have family in Japan and all are safe. I have 4 "siblings" in Japan I haven't heard from. They are probably fine since they live in Tokyo, but I wish I I knew for sure. I have so few of my Japanese posts to read these past 2 days I hope that all of the bloggers and their families are safe as well. Positive vibes for Japan.
Well I have a friend who is also trying to learn Japanese and we had a great day on Saturday. We spent the whole day shopping in Japanese stores and hearing いらっしゃいませ over and over again. There is something comforting about hearing that phrase. I really like it. I like it almost as much as おかえり. Anyway we started the day at Mitsuwa and HQ Video. I bought ホタルノヒカリ２。I rented ホタルノヒカリ Disk 1. I love my HQ Video Card. 2 hours of immersion fun for $1. It was fun but sort of awful because there were so many movies and I only had a little money and I had to save some money for lunch. At the grocery store I bought a grape juice drink and it was yummy. We had lunch at Shojin. I ordered a delicious spicy ramen. Then we went to Bookoff and I bought a back issue of Sakura magazine for $3.