All posts tagged: self study

First ever Korean class

So after many months of not really studying Korean (despite what it looks like on my blog, I rarely pick up a textbook and study. Almost everything I write about comes from random one-off things I read in Korean.) I decided what I really needed was external motivation to take my skill to the next level. SO! I signed up for Advanced Korean classes at San Jose Language Center. I really feel like I struck gold here because it’s incredibly close to where I live and it’s a language school designed for adults – which means all classes are after working hours. There are only two other students in the class and they’re both of Korean heritage. At first, the instructor said she was worried when she saw me (clearly not of Korean heritage) on her roster but we conversed for a bit, and then afterward, she said I might actually be too advanced for the class. Welp? Either way, I was really nervous about taking an actual class for Korean that’s also completely taught in Korean. In my 7-ish years of …

Q&A: How to start learning Korean

Ishani asked: Hi Archana! I am dying to learn Korean! I know a bunch of random Korean words but cant frame them in sentences…I want to start from ABC of Korean..but how and from where do I start? Please show me a way…kamsahamnida! Hi Ishani!  Thanks for the question.  There are lots of different ways to start learning a language.  I can share with you how I got started and point you in the direction of some resources, but if this doesn’t work for you, don’t get discouraged!  There are tons of blogs out there about language learning and there many different approaches.  This was my approach.  Listen to a lot of Korean.  I am a very auditory learner and I’m guessing you are too!  I started learning Korean the same way as you – by picking up random words from songs and TV dramas.  I kept a word document with a list of words I “learned” through listening to dialogue.  This was before I even learned Hangeul, so my list was just romanized approximations of the …

The “F” word

Oh, you all know the one I’m talking about. As language learners, I think we’ve all thought about fluency at one point or another.  It’s to be expected.  For many people, fluency is the ultimate end goal of their language studies, often driven by external motivation (e.g. wanting to watch TV shows without subtitles, understand music without translations, communicate with celebrities, etc.)  It’s a way to keep them going when they hit plateaus or troughs.   What, they might ask, is the point of learning a language, if not to become fluent?  I can’t quite understand people like that, honestly.  I am in constant amazement of people who have the discipline to put themselves through the rigors of dry textbook learning, routinely, all in the name of the “F” word.  Kudos to you. In my case, I’ve experimented with lots of different languages and, for one reason or another, Korean’s the only one that really stuck.  The only thing I did differently was to make up my mind to ignore the “F” word.  And, bam, …