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July 14, 2024, 11:21:22 am

Author Topic: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students  (Read 135009 times)  Share 

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J0nnyb0i27

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #30 on: November 09, 2012, 12:53:19 pm »
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Thanks a lot for the quick reply Jibba- despite having Chemistry this Tuesday, i'd much rather focus on Japanese haha. Cheers mate.

acciodraco

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #31 on: November 09, 2012, 09:31:35 pm »
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Hi there :) 

I'm doing Japanese 3/4 next year. However, there are things that really worry me, and that is my vocab, writing and speaking (which is pretty much everything). It takes me forever to formulate what I want to say, and when I do, it's really basic, like year 10 stuff. My school doesn't take Japanese really seriously as there are only a few students, so this year (unit 1/2), I haven't really been paying attention in class. I'm also not feeling really motivated, but my friends tell me to continue it anyway. I've been getting scores ranging from B+ to A+, (I haven't tried, so maybe I might have gotten better). I feel like I have no hope next year.. yet I don't want to let 5 years of Japanese go to waste.. I read what you, Jibba, wrote before and I think I'll be aiming to achieve those things, but honestly, for someone who's Japanese is very, very average, what should I do to improve in all areas and somehow make it out alive and well?   

Thank you~

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #32 on: November 09, 2012, 11:09:48 pm »
+1
@acciodraco

I think if you put your mind to it and work hard over the break, you could definitely improve your Japanese level. I've always enjoyed studying Japanese, so I don't really know how to make one start enjoy learning Japanese and become motivated. BUT if you can find something in Japanese culture that makes you want to learn Japanese, that could become your motivation (like for me)

For learning vocab, first I read over vocab in my textbook. Then when those words would pop up in drama, music or anime, they would stick in my memory.

For writing, you need to understand the VCE grammar really well. Watching drama, listening to music also helped me in this area. Even if you just always read English Subtitles, the fact that you are listening to Japanese helps your comprehension and understanding of the language. To improve your writing itself, you could try use something like lang8 (http://lang-8.com/) I didn't really use it myself but it looks like a great forum to improve your writing skills. Basically it's an exchange off, you correct other people's English, Japanese people will correct your Japanese.

For speaking, I had a tutor with whom I had conversation practice on a regular basis (nearly weekly during year 12). To improve speaking, a tutor is the best method as they can point our your mistakes. You could also try to speak with a native or friends in Japanese as much as you can to help you improve. I've never been but I have friends who go to Language Exchanges to help meet other Japanese people and people learning Japanese. http://www.languageconnection.org.au/language-exchanges/ That could also be a good forum to get some speaking practice.

During Year 12, I would always look forward to Japanese class because it seemed like a break from all my other classes (not in the way that we didn't study, but because I enjoyed studying Japanese). Our teacher was really good so everyone always paid attention in class. I was probably lucky to be in that type of situation.
In your case, you still have plenty of time til next year. If you build your vocab and your Japanese ability gradually, you'll start seeing results by the end.
Good luck, it can look daunting but Japanese can be a fun subject to study for (unlike other VCE subjects). It might be a bit more challenging to study for as you can't cram all the work right before the SAC/exam, but with gradual work you can do well.
   

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

sheepgomoo

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #33 on: November 09, 2012, 11:27:11 pm »
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Adding to what jibba said...

I'm a 3/4 student this year, and at the start of the year i was pretty much in your shoes, acciodraco. The only real difference was that I was really motivated to do well because i love jap :). The thing that helped me improve the most was my tutor, in my opinion. I recommend you to start lessons during the holidays and touch up on your basic grammar/vocab first, then proceed to more difficult patterns afterwards. In terms of speaking, in my case, my tutor conversed mainly in jap, save for a few occasions when i needed translation for some difficult words, so my listening and speaking improved quite rapidly (i'd like to think so anyway, haha).

My most difficult hurdle was definitely writing essays, because my sentence structures weren't really taught very well. However, i started writing one essay every two weeks starting from... idk. term 3?, ensuring that my tutor would enforce this "rule" and now my writing has improved a lot.

Oh and for vocab, use anki. I cant stress this enough. It has been my holy grail for this year for all my languages.

Long story short; get a tutor :)

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #34 on: November 09, 2012, 11:30:54 pm »
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I agree with xoangelicc, I became a lot better myself when I got a tutor! They can be expensive, but they will definitely improve your Japanese and give you confidence in yourself~

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
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My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
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2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
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sheepgomoo

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #35 on: November 10, 2012, 12:07:40 am »
+1
^ there are some that arent especially expensive (compared to English anyway *cringe) and still be very effective with improving your jap. For example, my tutor was actually a uni student, and for me i found that their teaching style was effective for me. Of course, you might not be so lucky as to find one suited to your needs first time round, but in any case, generally, any tutor can set you off on the right track is what i think :)

And i might be going off by myself for saying this but I'm sure that jibba (hope you dont mind!) and other previous japanese students would be happy to help you with any problems via pm or otherwise :)

acciodraco

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #36 on: November 10, 2012, 11:09:17 am »
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Thanks Jibba and xoangelicc for your feedback. :D I'm going to return to my tutor, and next years it's a class of min 4 students, but is it better to have one-on-one tutoring?

I do hope it's not too late, because I feel like Japanese has to be a gradual thing, and I've already wasted so much time. I guess I do like Japanese, but at school it's just so :( The teacher is non-native, and literally teaches from the book. But as you said, I should probably watch Japanese shows and check out those other resources you both suggested.

Btw, I'm going to Japan for ten days in Dec for a holiday. It's not much, but is there anything I could do to somehow make it more worthwhile? 

Thank you

 

Fyrefly

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #37 on: November 10, 2012, 12:02:00 pm »
+1
Btw, I'm going to Japan for ten days in Dec for a holiday. It's not much, but is there anything I could do to somehow make it more worthwhile? 

It sounds ridiculously obvious, but actually engage and interact with Japanese people. If you're travelling in a group of English-speakers, it can be easy for you to just stick with your little group and close off outside interaction without even realising it. For people who have trouble with socialising, one of the easiest ways is probably for you to sit in your hotel or hostel common room in the evening by yourself, doing something that makes it obvious you speak Japanese, even if it's just flicking through a travel brochure or something. In truth, Japanese people love the chance to talk to foreigners, but they're deterred by the thought of an awkward language barrier. If they know you can speak Japanese, then the hard part is over; they'll likely look for the opportunity to talk to you, so make sure you create that opportunity - no headphones in ears, no looking completely engrossed in your activity of choice, etc. Don't talk about whaling or politics or religion. Do ask them about their hometown and their job.
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sheepgomoo

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #38 on: November 10, 2012, 01:05:00 pm »
+1
Also - notice your surroundings and see if you are interested in things like convenience stores and fast food restaurants, vending machines, etc. and take lots of photos! I'm not sure about the arrangements regarding how your school deals with detailed studies, but if you're very interested in general topics like those and are able to write a considerable amount, I'm pretty sure they'll let you do what you want :)

Your experience should definitely be worthwhile. I mean... it wont only help with your speaking and jap skills in general, you also get information for your detailed study and a topic to talk about for general convo! I think you're really really lucky and I'm actually super jealous of you at the moment :P

Its definitely not too late! If you enjoy jap and have the drive to do well you'll be fine. I pretty much was/am in the same boat: i felt that my jap class was redundant, because the teacher was teaching very slowly for the kids who couldn't keep up. It was only after getting a tutor that i really got into jap. And regarding the tutor; if you've had them before and didnt notice a big difference, I suggest finding a one-to-one tutor. It really depends on your learning style though. If its more effective for you to be in a group, then so be it. Good luck and have fun ^^

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #39 on: November 10, 2012, 05:42:55 pm »
+2
To add onto what Fyrefly and xoangelicc said,

If you have the chance, I would recommend going to Osaka! The people on the street there are much more friendly than the people in Tokyo (my personal opinion). When I went to Osaka, people on the street would come to talk to us, try their best to speak English when the conversation got stuck and were really friendly. In Tokyo, especially the city areas like Shinjuku, people seem to be too busy with their own lives. But that just depends on who you happen to bump into xD. Definitely recommend going to Youth Hostels common rooms like Fyrefly said. Japanese university students regularly come to youth hostels to practice their English and talk to foreigners in Japanese (if they can speak it).

Eat a lot of Japanese food and try speak as much Japanese as possible! 

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

Fyrefly

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #40 on: November 10, 2012, 09:54:53 pm »
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If you have the chance, I would recommend going to Osaka! The people on the street there are much more friendly than the people in Tokyo (my personal opinion). When I went to Osaka, people on the street would come to talk to us, try their best to speak English when the conversation got stuck and were really friendly. In Tokyo, especially the city areas like Shinjuku, people seem to be too busy with their own lives. But that just depends on who you happen to bump into xD.

This is SO true. I actually started to type something about Osakans being awesome and more personable than Tokyoites, but I figured I'd already typed out that giant block of text and should stop ^^;
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acciodraco

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #41 on: November 12, 2012, 01:05:04 pm »
+1
I see, I see. Being open and active is the key. I'll try my best to do the things you've stated. All of your responses got me somewhat excited for this trip haha.

I don't know how to thank everyone for your quick and very informative answers, but I really appreciate them all. Thanks! :D

hongs-

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #42 on: November 13, 2012, 06:37:27 pm »
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Just a random quick question to reconfirm..

How long should I spend on each section ? Seeing as though listening during the exam goes for about 30 minutes, therefore an hour for writing and 30 minutes on reading right ? :/

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #43 on: November 13, 2012, 08:35:55 pm »
+3
The suggested time is
Listening: 30 mins
Reading: 40 mins
Writing: 50 mins

Here's how I planned to do the exam
Listening: 30
Reading: 40
Writing: 25-30
Checking Everything: 20-25

In the actual exam I spent more than 45 mins on Reading but finished the writing in 25-30 mins. So I had about 15-20 mins to recheck everything (which I think is crucial)

I think you should aim to finish Section 3: Writing within 30 mins because it's only 400-500 ji. It doesn't take that long to actually write that, it mainly takes time thinking what to write about and how to use grammar patterns. Try and decide which topic you are going to choose in the 15 minute reading time at the start. I chose to do the story and spent roughly 5 mins planning for it and thinking what grammar I could use. I also tried to prepare for another topic as a backup if I changed my mind. As soon as reading time was over, I jotted a few points down as a plan for my writing while waiting for the listening to start. (I also added to it in the breaks between dialogues for Listening in English)

How fast you can finish the writing section is dependent on your own ability in Japanese (ie: the amount of vocab you know so you don't need to rely heavily on the dictionary, your ability to translate your thoughts into Japanese). You can definitely practice to improve your speed. I practiced writing essays withing 25-30 mins leading up to the exam. I wrote around 6-8 pieces and they helped a lot ^^     

To sum up, I think the time you leave for checking at the end is really important (Probably the main reason I was able to score as high as I did).

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
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My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
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2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

hongs-

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #44 on: November 14, 2012, 12:20:44 pm »
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Ohh okay thank you so much! :)
I kind of didn't really consider checking time before, just as long as I can write something well in section 3..