September 19, 2008

Finally Passed 2kyu (In School)

Hey I finally passed 2kyu. We took the test (using 1996 problems) the other day. Not bad, considering a couple months back (one which was of break time without class) I only got a 50% on the 2kyu-based assessment test. If I pass 1kyu this year, it will be thanks to the school--and I hope I do this year; it changes format next year!. I have to do a lot of vocabulary studying on my own time, but really, this place helps.

So speaking of which, I've decided to re-release some anki decks. Before, I've used a mega deck (like 9000 words), but recently I split off the 1kyu and 2kyu words and grammar. Another thing that is new is that I have modified a ton of the entries. Mostly, it's me putting suru (in romaji) next to suru verbs to help me remember and identify in context, but I corrected some definitions that I didn't like. I also put na, teki, and the occasional sei in romaji where appropriate too. Also, under some words I put, in italics, phrases or larger words that incorporate the head word. My goal is just to be familiar with these supplemental phrases; I don't count them for or against my judgment of how well I memorized the card.

I can't guarantee that all the cards are modified at this point (I think I've seen them all once, but...), and I will continue to modify cards, especially grammar cards. My understanding of grammar points gets a little better all the time. I may re-release again some day, but you should make decks your own. And perhaps most importantly, I deleted a lot of words I thought were too simple/knew by heart, so keep that in mind. Also, I understand there are a lot of decks to be found on the anki site; I am using a names deck now.

After the test in December, I think I will start converting definitions to Japanese, and maybe even start using a vocabulary technique in one of my many books. It goes like this: when memorizing a word, memorize the plain definition, the antonym, a simile, and an exaggeration. the plain def is the only one in English (or even not, if you are gung-ho). If you forget the plain definition, you have the others to rely on.

Also, when I was condensing knowledge from the JET translation books (and putting it here), I discovered I learned a lot from using comparative statements, like, "what is the difference between くれる and くださる", or, "what is a more polite way to say ~?" So I think I will start doing that with grammar points. I may make questions like, "what does 極めて follow?" or "What particle is needed before たえない?"
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Aoi Yu is one of the most モエ girls in Japan. Here's an article she wrote.