The things that interest me…why not share it to the world???

Thursday, May 15, 2008

My Unique Way of Learning the Kanji (漢字)

Currently throughout the Philippines, most students are on their summer vacation. This period of the year perhaps, is their most desired moment for finally, they’ll be away from exams, projects, hectic schedules, “terror teachers” and bullies. I am a student by the way, and just like most of the Filipino students, I am presently spending my two-month long summer vacation. Nevertheless, I don’t consider it as such…because lessons incessantly haunt me.

I am an incoming third year student of the Mindanao Kokusai Daigaku (ミンダナオ国際大学). My course is BS in International Studies major in Japanese Language and Studies. At this period, me and the rest of my classmates will be handled by four Japanese Nihongo (日本語) professors—Prof. Ichido Miyake, Prof. Ayumi Kobayashi, Prof. Mika Haruyama and Prof. Yasuko Kuroda. The first three already made their move even though it’s still summer vacation. They gave us loads of Japanese-related stuff—signing up at, writing a diary, etc. Other than that, they also encouraged us to study…study…and study.

That request was the most horrifying of all. Honestly, I really find it difficult to study Japanese on my own especially, the familiarization of the Kanji characters. Though it’s hard, it must be done at once because it is my specialization. I’ve tried various methods of Japanese language learning and I must say, none of them were quite effective. But, I still never stop searching for a learning style that suits me.

Two days ago, I started a new learning method which I originally conceived. This method involves the labeling of certain things found within my room in Kanji characters. I only use a color marker, a piece of paper and a scotch tape in doing this activity. So far, I’ve labeled at least ten things. Some of these are the wall (), my mirror () and the windows ().

Before I label a thing in Kanji, I get to know first the correct stroking of the character through a Japanese language learning application. Learning the correct sequence of strokes is one of the elements in learning the Kanji. Although it’s not so a very important factor nowadays, I guess it is still better to follow the long-established rules. It will be a great challenge for anybody’s discipline for sure.

I have learned more than ten Kanji characters in just a very short span of time through this method. It never makes me feel exhausted. It rather excites me. Doing it everyday will really allow you to learn the 2000+ Kanji characters effortlessly.

This new method has proven itself to be very suitable to me. In fact, my interest about it constantly grows bigger and bigger and I’m so determined to pursue it in the future. I think I’m starting to love the Japanese language once again.

I am planning to expand the scope of labeling things anytime this week. By which time, the things in our house’ living room and in the kitchen will be included in the labeling. I’m also thinking of perhaps labeling my parents and my pets. That would be awesome! :)

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