Japanese is a great language to learn and if you’re interested, you’ll be able to find many resources online and in your community to help you navigate the process of gaining fluency in a new language.
1. Set specific goals.
Even if you’re learning Japanese just for fun, it’s a good idea to create a set of goals that you can use to measure your success. Whether you want to be able to converse in basic Japanese within a year or you hope to read a Japanese book in its original text, creating benchmarks to judge your progress is the way to go.
2. Focus on your speaking and listening skills over handwriting – at least at first.
Although being able to read and write in Japanese can be extremely useful, your first step should be to learn how to speak and understand the language. This will help you learn skills that are most immediately useful without overwhelming you.
3. Sing Karaoke.
Listening to music in the language you’re learning can give you a big advantage when it comes to learning about the speaking rhythms. Musical hooks can also help you memorize phrases and words easier which can contribute to your overall learning.
4. Watch television and movies that are in Japanese.
Japan produces a large amount of media so you’ll have plenty of choices when it comes to media to consume. One of the types of media the country is most famous for is anime, which is a type of animated programming. There are so many popular series that you can get into, and you’ll be able to join fan communities where you may be able to practice speaking Japanese as well.
5. Read some manga.
Another form of media that Japan is famous for is manga, which is a kind of comic or graphic novel. Even if you don’t live in Japan you’ll be able to find manga at many bookstores and online retailers and there are literally thousands of stories targeted towards every kind of audience. It will help you learn nuances in the language and get used to reading in the Japanese language.
6. Use language apps.
A great way to increase your Japanese vocabulary is by using apps like Duolingo to practice. While these apps may not be the best way of learning for every individual, it’s a great way to boost your vocabulary and get into a routine of thinking about Japanese each and every day.
7. Find a good textbook.
A good textbook can make a huge difference even if you are mostly working by yourself to learn a language – they aren’t limited to classrooms! You can find good beginners textbooks that are designed for those who are self-teaching or for those who are in hybrid learning environments.
8. Join a Conversational Group.
The only way to learn how to speak Japanese is to speak Japanese! While it may be intimidating at first and might be difficult, joining a group of people who are simply there to practice their language skills can do wonders for your confidence and skill levels.
9. Allow yourself to fail.
This may seem like a counterintuitive step when it comes to learning anything, giving yourself permission to not be perfect every single time is crucial. You will occasionally make mistakes but don’t be hard on yourself when this happens.
10. Take an online course.
Of course, the best way to learn a new language is by taking private one-on-one lessons and using the eight methods listed above as supplemental strategies to help you become more comfortable with the language. If you’re interested in taking your language learning seriously and taking the next step, consider taking lessons from Mingo Space. You can start at whichever level you are currently at and learn from native language speakers. Feel free to get in touch with us today!
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