status: what I’m doing

This is a bit simpler than it would have been a couple months ago.

Right now, my main focus is finishing RTK.  I want to get all the kanji in my head before going any further.  This is because kanji is pretty much required for vocabulary acquisition, unless you want to confuse yourself badly.  (Full post on that coming up.)  So before I do much of anything else, this must be finished.

My method for this is to use the RTK site.  I add usually 20-30 cards a day.  I go through them and assign stories and practise them on Kanji LS Touch in practise mode.  Then I test myself on the same app – I leave the cards on the RTK site for later.  The next morning I go through the new cards on RTK site, writing them with pen and paper as I do.  Expired cards are reviewed in the same way, usually by end of lunch break.  So when I get home in the evening, I have no due cards and can add new ones as time permits.  This workflow gives me an error rate of usually no more than 5%, and a rapid increase in my kanji count with no sense of pressure.

For vocabulary, while this is on the back burner set to low, it isn’t off the oven entirely.  I use smart.fm with the Core 2000 goals.  Most of these words are already familiar, but there’s some new ones, and anyway review is good.  I don’t use Japanese Flip on my phone much anymore because it isn’t as efficient (no example sentences, no audio).  But if I’m away from a computer with a few minutes here or there it still gets some use.  The smart.fm iPhone app is pretty bad so I tend not to use it.  I prefer to use my netbook for late night reviewing.

Grammar is mainly gotten from japanesepod101 lessons at the moment.  This is not really focused on that much since I just listen to the podcasts during time that would otherwise be wasted.  I could get a lot more out of it by repeating lessons until they were mastered and using the pdf files.

Also, passive input and “exposure” time is still there, mainly in the form of anime.  This is usually an hour or so a day, on average.  It isn’t terribly efficient in terms of education but that’s hardly the point.  (The Endless Eight was a bit of an exception – repetition is the key to learning!)  I do find though, that when I hear a word that I recently learned in context, and recognize it for the first time, it sticks a LOT better from that point on.  This gives me a great hope for sentence-based SRS, both written and audio.  That is what I will mainly be doing once RTK is finished.

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