Cantonese + MIA (Japanese)

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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Fri Jan 24, 2020 9:51 pm

chove wrote:I've been reading *about* Basque in my Spanish course, about how it survived despite Franco's ban on minority languages. How safe would you say the language is these days?
In some areas it's still the main language used in daily life, in others it's more marginalized, but that's largely due to a generation gap or two that didn't get Basque passed down to them. Most young people in Donostia at least understand Basque and many speak it as well. I see a lot of young parents (early thirties) speaking Basque with their children, so unlike in the Iparralde (northern/French Basque Country) it's very much a young person's language. It's impossible to go around the city without at least noticing Basque, and as you get further away from the larger touristy cities you'll see Basque usage go up immensely, in many areas in Gipuzkoa at least, Basque is the main language you'll hear in the streets.

So Basque is definitely not endangered, and it's usage appears to be rising, but for a good majority of the Basque Country, it's not their daily language and most of what goes on here goes on in Spanish. But i think over the next decade or two this is going to change. The first episode of a new TV show "Itxi liburuak" (close your books) came out last night about prehistory in the Basque Country, and one of the things they said was that while they have drawings and archeological findings from prehistory, those are all dead. We only have one thing remaining from European prehistory that survives to this day: the Basque language itself. And it's the duty not just of the Basque people but of all of Europe to preserve and make sure this one remaining treasure continues to survive.

golyplot wrote:I'm curious what things you felt worked well and didn't work well with Japanese.

I've been studying Japanese for three weeks, and am hoping to use a pseudo-immersion focused approach as well, but I haven't started that yet because I feel like I'm still not at the point where listening to even the most basic stuff would be useful. So for now, I'm just trying various study methods and hoping that I'll get there soon. So far, the only one I've really liked was Wanikani, though it seems like it would be largely superfluous for you, since you've already done RRTK.

I liked Wanikani as well, however it felt like falling into the same trap i ran into with Mandarin: learning words/characters individually and out of context. It works and is relatively easy (but boring) but in my opinion it's not the most effective method in the long term, at least not without lots of additional exposure. Learning in context via sentences and phrases, while harder to gather, so far has made studying much more fun. RRTK was boring and i'd hate to do that for all of the characters and words that i'll have to learn in Japanese, even with Wanikani's fun interface. Not to mention i probably should've skipped it altogether as most of the characters were familiar to me already, and in my opinion RRTK isn't meant so much to learn the meanings of words as it is to get your mind around the concept of a character (which i'd already done with Mandarin), coming from my Mandarin experience i just wanted to be thorough.

Another plus for my current method (which is basically the one outlined by MIA) is that cards that are too difficult or i just grow to dislike are either turned into leeches very quickly or suspended, so my main deck is of cards that are interesting and understandable, making doing my reviews very quick and with sentences that i enjoy. I'm still on the beginning side of things (today at 246 cards, only 2 of which are mature) so i've yet to really get overwhelmed by cards. I'm also still reviewing my RRTK deck (generally 10-15 cards a day) and the Tango deck (20-40 cards a day). But i'm not worried about deleting cards or leeches as i know those words and structures will show up again. Doing my HSK decks for Chinese i never would've dreamed of letting a card turn into a leech. I learned all the words from HSK 1-6, but out of context and the end was painful (and i stopped many many times). With Japanese, my idea is to take a slower, more relaxed approach as my end goal isn't really to speak Japanese but to understand it.

Another thing to keep in mind is that currently all of my new cards are audio cards (taken from Hunter X Hunter). Audio cards are much more interesting (but harder to gather), i'm not sure how i'll feel about text only cards when Stage 2 starts. For getting started with sentences, the Tango books are really nice, though i feel like i've been learning more through sentence mining on my own.

EDIT: Also, please keep in mind that i'm very much a beginner in Japanese, i just started last August and have been taking it slow. My main goal is to make studying Japanese sustainable and enjoyable ;) Now off to watch one of Misa's videos!
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golyplot
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby golyplot » Sat Jan 25, 2020 1:47 am

crush wrote:I liked Wanikani as well, however it felt like falling into the same trap i ran into with Mandarin: learning words/characters individually and out of context. It works and is relatively easy (but boring) but in my opinion it's not the most effective method in the long term, at least not without lots of additional exposure. Learning in context via sentences and phrases, while harder to gather, so far has made studying much more fun. RRTK was boring and i'd hate to do that for all of the characters and words that i'll have to learn in Japanese, even with Wanikani's fun interface.


Interesting. I've had the opposite experience, where when reading stuff on other sites, I find it very difficult to remember any of the words unless I've already learned the kanji on WK. That being said, I'm only lvl5 on WK, and already have a major problem with leeches. (My last review session was only 57% correct if you exclude radicals).

Ultimately, I think everything builds on each other, so the ideal solution is to learn the same words from multiple sources and methods at once. But that's easier said than done.
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sat Jan 25, 2020 9:10 pm

golyplot wrote:Interesting. I've had the opposite experience, where when reading stuff on other sites, I find it very difficult to remember any of the words unless I've already learned the kanji on WK. That being said, I'm only lvl5 on WK, and already have a major problem with leeches. (My last review session was only 57% correct if you exclude radicals).

Ultimately, I think everything builds on each other, so the ideal solution is to learn the same words from multiple sources and methods at once. But that's easier said than done.

Yeah definitely, my issue with Mandarin was that i spent more time with individual words and characters than with seeing them in context. As a result, my speaking ability far surpasses my reading skills and reading long texts (i.e. anything beyond IM conversations) is slow. It's from a lack of reading, but i feel like i set myself up for that since so much of my time was spent on studying words rather than immersing myself in texts. Learning words in context means the word likely won't stick at first but assuming you're pulling words from your own reading, you're actively building your reading skills and slowly reinforcing a wider range of words than just focusing on individual words and you'll have a better overall idea of how that word is used.

Just my thoughts from my experience learning Mandarin, with Japanese i wanted to feel comfortable reading, similar to reading Spanish or even Basque for me now.
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:24 pm

Basque
My Basque studies are generally pretty normal, i'm currently reading Jack London's "Pirataren espedizioa" (in English: The Cruise of the Dazzler). It's pretty interesting, one of those runaway adventure novels along the lines of Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer. I found the book at a secondhand store for 30 cents.

Japanese
Currently at 379 cards, 349 young and 30 mature. Progress is slow but i'm starting to notice words pop up more and more frequently, it's still mostly unintelligible to me though. I've got about 60 episodes left of Hunter x Hunter. I'm looking forward to starting something else after this, though as a vegan the past few episodes have been pretty interesting as a new species evolves that views humans as inferior and begins to farm them for food. One line in particular when some girls were begging for their lives, "お前らは豚や牛の命乞いに耳を貸したことがあるか", which i think is something along the lines of "Have you all ever listened(/paid any attention) to a pig or cow begging for its life?"
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sat Feb 08, 2020 3:34 pm

Basque
I'm finishing up Pirataren espedizioa. The beginning was pretty interesting, as was the middle section, though it lost a bit of steam as i reached about the 2/3rds mark. I guess i'll follow it through to the end and see how it goes, though it seemed like it had a lot of potential for wild adventures like a Mark Twain novel. It's written either in a mix of Batua and Gipuzkera (the Basque dialect of Gipuzkoa) or an early form of Batua, but a lot of older books have this style of writing so it's much more transparent to me now when spellings deviate from standard Batua. A lot of the more modern books i've read have a Bizkaiera influence which can be more difficult as there are more words that are different (not just different pronunciations), though for the most part they are also accepted in standard Basque, just not used as much in this part of the Basque Country. But i've started to recognize a lot of these words as well from having read quite a few books with Bizkaiera influences. I'm also slowly learning to recognize the different hika forms.

Basque is known for having a huge verb system, the main auxiliary verb has probably thousands of forms, however on top of this there is a parallel set of forms known as "hika" which is used to show intimacy between two people, e.g. between friends, from a parent (generally father) to child, from a child to the family dog, etc. which change depending upon whether you are addressing a male or female person.

For example, the normal verb for "I am" is "naiz", in hika that would be "nauk" (when talking to someone who identifies as a man) or "naun" (for a woman). The verb for "it/he/she is" (similar to Spanish's está) is "dago" in the standard form and "zegok/zegon" in hika. In many areas, usage of hika has been going down, but it's seen as something very Basque and unique to the language. Here in Donostia there are conversation groups who get together to practice using hika.

Japanese
I'm up to 517 cards, 75 mature and 442 young cards. As i play through Pokemon Blue (青/Ao), it's interesting to come across words that i've recently studied. I'm sure if it were written in Kanji my comprehension would be much higher, especially as i come across more new grammar structures in my immersion, though that's skewed quite a bit due to my Chinese studies. I wouldn't know how to pronounce most characters yet.

I'm also still moving forward with Hunter x Hunter, but comprehension there is very low. I do catch common short phrases and words, things like "actually", "however", "in any case", etc. which don't add a lot to my overall comprehension, but i guess you have to start somewhere. Hopefully these little pockets of comprehension will gradually get wider and wider until it's more an issue of dealing with the remaining pockets of unknown words/phrases ;) I think i've got about 50 episodes left to watch.

EDIT: Ah, and another interesting statistic, according to Morphman, i've got just under 5000 n+1 cards and about the same amount of cards with multiple unknown words (n+2/3/4/etc.). It's kinda neat to think that there are so many sentences that i'm (in theory) one word away from understanding!
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sat Feb 15, 2020 11:07 pm

Basque
I ended up getting sick last week and didn't spend much time with the book. I'm close to finishing it, around 20 pages left. Another student in my class lent me another book to read (Ahazten diren gauzak -- Things that get forgotten), it's relatively short (about 130 pages) so i'll try to get through it quickly and get on to some of the ebooks that i've purchased. I'm not too sure what Ahazten diren gauzak is about, though.

Today i went to a nearby town, Zumaia, and heard tons of Basque being spoken there. Someone bumped into me at one point and instinctively apologized in Basque. I heard everyone speaking it, little 2 year old babies, school children, parents, and grandparents. Though as i walked through different parts of the city it switched back and forth, and at some points there were bilingual conversations where one person was speaking Spanish and the others Basque (and vice versa). It was a bit odd, at first it seemed like Basque was the main language there, but by the end of the day i wasn't quite sure. It was an interesting day nonetheless hiking in the hills around the town and visiting the beautiful beaches there. They have some longer 25km trails as well, perhaps for another weekend...

Japanese
610 cards: 182 mature, 428 young cards.
This week i decided to start slowing down the rate i add new cards to 10 new cards a day. MIA stresses that when you have to choose between one or the other, to choose immersion. I've been spending much more time doing reviews/adding new cards than in my active immersion as that feels more immediately useful, especially since i'm doing much less active immersion than they recommend (generally 30-60 minutes a day). I haven't done any yet today except playing a bit of Pokemon Ao on the train, so gonna cut this post short to watch an episode of Hunter x Hunter before bed.
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sun Feb 23, 2020 8:15 pm

Basque
I finished Pirataren espedizioa. As a whole the book wasn't what i was expecting (or hoping for), but it was relatively easy apart from the naval terms. I started Ahazten diren gauzak but haven't gotten very far. I'm not really sure if it's a novel or more a collection of thoughts on memory. It's not looking too promising, though, despite the foreword being somewhat interesting. Once i finish this i can start going through my ebooks which should hopefully be more interesting.

Japanese
688: 324 mature, 364 young.
I'm nearly finished with Hunter x Hunter. I'm going to be watching an anime about ballroom dancing (ボールルームへようこそ: "Welcome to the Ballroom"). I'm not particularly interested in ballroom dancing or dancing in general, but i listened to it as passive listening while working and the beginning in particular were quite interesting to me, in particular a rather humble kid finding something new he'd never even considered before (dancing) and spending hours and hours without even realizing it. I have a lot of similar memories as a kid having those sorts of experiences and the first few episodes brought those memories back to mind. I'm not sure how i'll like it, but it's far shorter than Hunter x Hunter, in any case. I'm also not sure if there is a published subs2srs deck or not, so may have to make one first.
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sun Mar 01, 2020 3:30 pm

Basque
One of my classmates is going to a barnetegi (from barne, "inside", and tegi, "place") for two months. A barnetegi is essentially a boarding school where you are surrounded in Basque 24 hours a day (well, apart from when you're sleeping). It's kinda like an extreme version of AJATT, though they general also focus on classes and grammar as well. But there are also other activities related to Basque culture going on as well, and all the other students (and teachers) are required to speak only in Basque during the time they are there. I'd love to do something like that, perhaps once a year to make sure that my Basque doesn't begin to fade away.

Japanese
763: 424 mature, 339 young
I've continued watching ボールルームへようこそ. I don't know why to be honest but i find it pretty enjoyable. It's likely because the plot is simple and easy to follow, at times there are entire conversations i can mostly understand (and other times long stretches of things i can't). I decided to try adding more new cards over the weekend (Friday/Saturday/Sunday), so for now i'll see about 10 new cards during the week and 15 over weekends.
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sat Mar 07, 2020 2:07 pm

Basque
This was a bad week for Basque, i missed three days of class this week and didn't get a whole lot of reading done. Ahazten diren gauzak has some interesting stories, the first story kinda wavered back and forth but overall i thought it was ok. It was about a deteriorating relationship with the backdrop of the guy's wife's brother getting imprisoned for his involvement in the Basque nationalist movement (and getting sent to a prison 600km away, as is common for Basque political prisoners, meaning their relatives have to drive 6-7 hours both ways to visit them thus estranging them from their circle of friends and acquaintances, several families have had accidents, some fatal, on these trips). The second story i've yet to finish, it's about a group of friends with differing views on how to go about achieving Basque independence and takes place around the assassination of Gregorio Ordóñez. I'm about halfway through this story.

Japanese
831: 507 mature, 324 young
I've got two episodes left of ボールルームへようこそ. The episodes where they focus mostly on the dancing are less interesting, though seeing the characters' background and how they came to be interested in dance, especially the male-bodied folks, is interesting as there can be a lot of stigmatization against them both at school and from their own parents (generally father). I'll probably finish the series tonight, next i think i'll start watching Lucky Star. I found a subs2srs deck for it and i saw it recommended as a good show for beginners, though looking at the plot overview i have my doubts as to whether i'll actually enjoy it or not. We'll see!
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crush
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Re: ABATT (All Basque All The Time) + MIA (Japanese)

Postby crush » Sat Mar 14, 2020 3:12 pm

Basque
Classes have been canceled here due to the Coronavirus, so i didn't go to class Thursday or Friday. Classes will be canceled for at least two weeks, i'm not sure what i'll do with Basque in the meantime apart from just reading.

Japanese
937: 582 mature, 355 young
I'm nearing the halfway point of Stage 1 (2000 sentences mined). Since i'll be at home all day for at least the next two weeks, i've decided to push my daily new cards up to 20 again. I'll probably lower them back down to 10 when classes start back up.

I'm about halfway through 四月は君の嘘 (Your lie in April). I've found i enjoy this kind of more somber shows, though i'm still not a huge fan of the exaggerated/cartoony expressions which seem to be all over anime. In golyplot's log, user "ロータス" posted a link to a new manga project geared at beginners. The story itself leaves a lot to be desired and the characters are a bit shallow, but i believe it only uses around 90 distinct words (not including particles) altogether and it's really impressive. I've read the first two (of three) sections and have been enjoying being able to read in Japanese. It's not the kind of immersion MIA recommends as it's specifically simplified for beginners, but it's fun and got me thinking about what i could start reading for additional immersion.

Last night i also beat Pokemon 青 (Blue), or rather defeated the "Elite 4" which i decided to mark as the end of the game as after that there's very little dialog. It was such an influential game for me as a kid that much of the story has stuck with me and i was able to follow along pretty well in Japanese. I picked up a few words here and there that have showed up in other areas of my immersion (a lot of the fighting-related vocab showed up in Hunter x Hunter, for example). I'm not sure what game to pick next, i love old (J)RPGs which works well for language learning, but they can be complicated when your comprehension is so low. The only two games i know well enough to play in Japanese even if i don't follow the dialog are Final Fantasy VII and Legend of Legaia, however both of these games are very special to me and i'm saving them as an "end goal". I'm definitely open to any suggestions!

EDIT: Also, i've watched the first five episodes of Lucky Star. It's not really interesting to me and i don't really like that overly cutesy childy voice acting, it's hard to understand and just seems annoying to me (i'd rather hear a "normal" voice), but i suppose most people don't mind it or else it wouldn't be used so often (almost every anime i've seen has had at least one character who speaks like that). I've been watching about two episodes of 四月は君の嘘 per one episode of Lucky Star in an attempt to get more bang out of my buck for the subs2srs decks (since it can be time consuming making them/formatting others' decks to work well with my setup) ;) After Lucky Star (if i finish it) i may use Doraemon to fill this role, as i don't mind that show as much and the characters are easier to understand.
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