I’m just about to ‘dial in’ for my weekly Japanese class. More in hope than certainty, I want to improve my spoken Japanese for future planned visits.
It’s a small class – just seven students – so it’s both intimate and impossible to avoid scrutiny! There’s weekly homework and a fresh download of materials from Google Classroom every Friday. I’m enjoying it, but have to admit that the two and a half hours of intense concentration on a Saturday morning is a little strenuous for a brain that’s been in overdrive all the working week.
Lockdown life means face-to-face learning isn’t possible, but I’m finding Zoom a really good substitute – but maybe only because it’s a small group situation.
Is it working? Yes. My confidence has grown, my vocabulary is expanding and I’m practicing for imaginary (but necessary) practical conversations for my next trip. I just need to convince some Tokyo-based friends to practice with me online. And to be gentle with me when I crash and burn on the grammar front.
It’s actually a very logical language, once you get your head around some the important cultural niceties. I can’t imagine how hard it must be for others to learn English and I’m continually grateful it’s my mother tongue. It’s a bizarre mishmash of grammar and vocabulary, never mind the inconsistencies of pronunciation. In contrast, Japanese pronunciation is largely very consistent.
Anyway, eyes down for some new vocabulary and discussion topics.