Language learning tools?

  1. I am looking into buying some language learning guides to start a new particular, I really want to learn Japanese!

    I know without formal training and tons of practice, you can't ever really be fluent, but what has worked for you in the past? Living Language? Rosetta Stone? Pimsleur? I try to read Amazon reviews, but they are all so conflicting.

  2. I love the living language in the car...all that dead time anyway.
  3. although I havent tried it, Rosetta Stone is supposed to be incredible
  4. You should pm my DD Nerphanie. She taught herself Japanese by reading Japanese manga. I think she is fluent in Japanese.:yes:
  5. ^ Did she really- good for her!

    I really want to learn German, so this is a helpful thread for me too!
  6. Whichever class, etc you choose, also call your cable or satellite provider and ask about getting some TV channels in Japanese.

    And for your iPod or Walkman or whatever you use, get some music with lyrics in Japanese.

    We learn the languages that we hear, so the more that you are hearing your "target" language, even though you do not understand it, which you won't at first, if you make a conscious effort to hear only that language 24/7, the absolute closest to that you can come, you will be surprised after 6 or 8 months or so, how much better you are doing than everyone else in your class!
  7. ^^^ Great advice!

    Thanks, everyone! I figured this would be something to do in my free time since I took the semester off from school for an internship.
  8. I learned english by watching TV with subtitles which worked really well for me although I ended up speaking with a heavy american accent, but now that I've started learning other languages, I read a good introduction book where I can get a grasp of the easiest grammar, until I proceeeds with trying to read magazines and listen to music in that language. I've also had some stays in the country of the language I'm learning to get classes there, but I'm really not good at classrom studying.
  9. full immersion is the most effective way. i'd at least start out with classes for about a year or so to learn the basics (twice a week or so), but i'm not motivated enough to learn on my own. i hate learning from tapes, it just doesn't work for me. the manga is actually a genius idea, because you have some sort of idea of what's going on from following the picture whereas with a book you could be totally lost. if i'm feeling out of practice with a particular language i listen to music and watch movies but i'm not sure i could learn that much from doing that. children can, but they're in a totally different position anyway and can pick up a language in a few months.
  10. Go to a college bookstore (provided that the college teaches Japanese, of course), and buy the books they use.

    From all the languages I've studied, I've found the best books are the ones that are used in an academic study. While the Rosetta Stone & the rest of them are good (especially if you're planning on going on vacation), they're not really designed to make you fluent. It's more to help you out if you're a businessperson going to that country or a tourist.

    With the academic books, they're designed to teach you the language from the ground up, and to hammer in the grammar points. They're a little more expensive than the books you can buy at Borders and B&N, but they're worth the money.

    For listening, I know that Talking Panda iLingo by Talking Panda - Learn foreign languages with your iPod, effortlessly has language programs for your ipod. I haven't tried it myself, but I know a few people who have, and they said it's good for building a basic vocabulary.
  11. I'm trying to learn Italian by myself with Pimsleur. Listening is good for learing the pronounciation and the intonation. In addition, I bought an old textbook from a charity (thrift) shop to learn about sentence stucture. (I haven't started though.)

    I also got the idea of using foreign subtitles on DVDs like 'Sex and the City' where I already know the plot and the dialogue. This is only effctive when you are concentratiing on the TV 100%
  12. There are some free websites that offer the language courses. PM me and I will send you the links!
  13. I have also heard these are suppose to be great!
  14. we should try the tpf way! there are so many people on here that speak other languages we should learn a new word every day in a variety of languages and although it won't be prefect we'll have a greater understanding. I learnt a little italian 5 words each day and they have really stuck (although they are not very useful words)

    What do you think learn a a language the tpf way 1 to 5 words a day?
  15. i learned some Korean by watching all kinds of tv shows... mostly variety/entertainment shows, different genres of films and tv dramas, etc. i also picked up some books to teach myself how to read and write... i get practice by visiting Korean language sites (i even have a cyworld page!). every day, i try to learn new vocab words and just practice reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

    i took high school French, and tested into 4th semester college level, but never pursued it or took any classes after high school. i wish i had, though. some of it comes back to me when i hear it, or when i go through my old textbooks, but i haven't had much exposure to it in so many years that i really can't carry on much more than a basic conversation.