finding my feet

After doing nothing but hoovering up new kanji for months, it felt a little strange and confusing once I didn’t need to anymore.

I tend to get a little lost without a fairly strict routine so it was important to get my new habits formed early.  Anyway I still have RTK kanji reviews tapering off, and they will be for quite a while, so there was some continuity there.  Also the usual anime and japanesepod101 hasn’t changed.  I’m not sure if I want to carry on with japanesepod101 past the “beginner” lessons.  I suspect repeated comprehensible input of natural Japanese, in podcasts and other audio, will prove more efficient.  So I need to set up iTunes to grab a bunch of podcasts, get some more fluffy sugary j-pop (heh), rip the audio from my graded reader CDs, and perhaps get some stories from that classics at bedtime site.

The first thing I started was the core2000 on  I’ve nearly finished step 1, 3/4 done step 2.  Those were mainly review.  Step 3 is more difficult and at the moment I’m only 30% into it.  Apparently step 4 is easier again.  It’s hard to say when I can expect to finish these ten steps, but I’m guessing by end of summer probably.  With a 2000 word vocabulary I should easily be able to read a lot of manga, simple magazines, light novels, and the like.  So from there I can mine my own sentences.  I’ll probably start before then, but for the time being the sentences in core2000 are satisfactory.  It’s quite a good feeling though, comparing how I can go through it now compared with before doing RTK.  Before the kanji were an obstacle, but now they are a help.

Also, I bought AnkiSRS for my iPhone and put the Tae Kim grammar deck on there.  This isn’t high priority but I spend probably ten or maybe fifteen minutes a day on that.

Today’s RTK reviews were 83 in number, and those will continue to go down.  Those are easily dispatched during break time at work.  Doesn’t even use up nearly all of it.  So I can do during part of lunch hour.  Kanji recognition is still a bit of a problem though, so I want to put a reverse RTK deck in Anki and go through it that way.

I’ve started to read the graded readers a little, and need to increase the time doing that.  I breezed through the first reader without having to look up a thing, which was almost a little disappointing.  Also bought some simple manga (Lucky Star, Minami-ke, and Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei (which is maybe not all that simple)) but found it very difficult, because there’s quite a bit of slang, exclamations, words trailing off or cut short, etc., and it’s often hard to sort out which the actual words are.  Kanji are helpful in such cases.

Also I played with the Read the Kanji site.  I really like this and intend to buy a membership.  It’s cheap enough.

I keep intending to rewatch some anime with subtitles off, but I have so much new stuff I want to watch.  Just finished Hand Maid May yesterday, which was a great deal better than I expected (granted I wasn’t expecting much), and today started Kino no Tabi which is really different and quite interesting.

So there it is.  Status reports after RTK are going to be a little fuzzier, apart from goal percentages.  That’s quite all right though.  How many people know how many English words they know?  I sure don’t.  It’s just a matter of continuing to get used to the language day by day.

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