It has been a few days since my last update, but I wanted to let everyone know that I am still studying kanji everyday. There are a few days that I wasn’t able to study (attending a friend’s wedding, busy work days), but for the most part I have stayed on track.
As of yesterday I was up to 835 Kanji and will finish today at about 870. That puts me very close to my target of completing the entire Remembering the Kanji book in 58 days.
I also have a few tips for using this book to study Japanese.
The stories are important. So when you get to the part where you have to make up your own, make sure you create a very visual story and don’t just skip though the meanings.
Focus when you are learning the stories. If your attention is divided you most likely won’t remember the kanji later.
Pay attention to the kanji when you are learning Japanese words for your normal study. The more reinforcement you have of seeing the kanji the better.
Don’t get overwhelmed. If you feel like you are going too fast and it’s too much, slow down.
Use the Glossary in the back or a kanji poster to mark off and see your progress. It will also give you one more chance at recognition.
Lastly, set your goal. It may seem like you will never finish, but if you have a goal, it is much easier to move forward.
If you are following along and study the kanji as well, please post a comment talking about your experience.
I finished my 5th day today and am currently at 299 kanji. I had about 50 reviews plus the new cards I studied today. All together it still took me about an hour. Finding and marking the kanji off the kanji poster took far more time. However, I have to say that the kanji poster has been very helpful. It has forced me to recognize the kanji to make sure I know meaning.
Now that the kanji are starting to pile up a little, it is more important than ever to focus on the stories and really imagine them. I studied in the car today while waiting for my wife in the store. It was easy to get distracted and I realized later that I didn’t remember those kanji as well. Make sure you seclude yourself and really focus. Don’t try to go too fast.
This is just a mini-update to let you know that I am still on track for Remembering the Kanji. I have been doing it for a total of 4 days now and am up to 234 kanji. In order to finish in time I need to continue to study at least 33 kanji per day. I am planning to continue at about 50 or so a day for at least the next couple of days, so that number should go down. At this point retention is still very good and I am not having any trouble with this many each day. I spent about 1 hour total today.
For those having trouble remembering the kanji after you’ve learned it, don’t focus on the writing. Instead, spend more time visualizing the story. It will make writing it much easier.
I just finished with day 3 and am up to 172 Kanji with a very high retaining rate. I also have them all reviewed in Anki and highlighted on the Kanji Poster.
I am a bit ahead of schedule, but I am doing it on purpose. I figure I will study as many as I can in these early stages while it is fun and exciting. That way I won’t have as big of a workload as the reviews get longer.
Today I studied about 70 Kanji in about 30 minutes and then reviewed 74 cards in 11 minutes with Anki. All together less than one hour.
I look forward to your comments and hearing about your own progress.
I should mention that studying the kanji won’t teach you any Japanese wordsor grammar along the way. It will however, teach you the basic meanings of the kanji and how to recognize and write them.
Is it possible? Many of you are probably thinking no! However, there are others who have done it. I won’t be the first. I should point out that I wouldn’t recommend this method for everyone. I have a lot of experience with kanji, I studied Japanese in the US, attended Waseda University in Tokyo, and currently live in Japan. Unfortunately, I haven’t taken the time to learn all 2042 kanji and make sure that I can recall and write them whenever I want.
I’ve decided that NOW is that time!
I calculated that to reach my goal of 2042 kanji in 58 57 days that I need to study at least 36 kanji per day. I actually started yesterday, and studied 52 yesterday and 52 today. So two days and I am now at 104 Kanji. For the first couple hundred I will probable keep this pace to give myself a little leeway at the end.
So what better time than to learn the kanji than to study along with me!
Here’s what you’ll need:
Remembering the Kanji 1: I did a full review on this book and was really impressed with the method it uses to teach kanji. You can get it here. (Purchasing using this link helps support this site.
Anki: We will be using this to review the kanji and make sure we are remembering them correctly. The full set of RTK cards can be downloaded from their site.
Reviewing the Kanji: I recommend an account here so that you can check out different stories for help (This will make more sense to you once you start). The downloadable card set in Anki already contains the links.
Kanji Poster: Recommended if you want to see the kanji all in one place. Cool to have, but not really necessary to reach our goal. (Link also helps support this site).
How to Study Kanji for this project
Choose your finish date, and then divide the number of kanji by the number of days you have left. In my case 2042 kanji/58 days=36 kanji per day.
Study the Kanji using the Remembering the Kanji book.
Review the kanji you have learned in Anki. I usually wait at least a couple of hours before reviewing.
Mark off or highlight kanji you know on the kanji poster (not necessary, but will help give me a visual of my progress)
Rinse and repeat, until you have conquered all the kanji.
Make sure you continue to study Anki and also use your learned kanji to read Japanese.
So, in order to stay motivated, lets do it together! I will be posting about my progress, and please feel free to leave comments or questions about yours.
I mentioned that I would make some learn Japanese videos and here is the first one. There was a ton of video, but I tried to edit it down to make it simple and short. Most of the Japanese words are pretty simple ones, and some are repeated several times. I have a ton more video, so there will be more on the way! Please leave comments and feedback, and please subscribe to my Youtube Channel. I have some free gifts to give out once the channel reaches a certain number of subscribers.