Saturday, February 11, 2012

My latest learning Korean method - Utilising online dictionary

Hello everyone, or no one...? it's been a while.
Either way, i'm going to blog about my latest learning method. I'm going to keep this blog documenting my  learning experience as much as i can (..will myself out of my own laziness). Hopefully, one day i look back and have a recollection of how i learnt, to get to where i am.
One thing about self learning is having the complete freedom to adjust, or adapt our methods of learning to our learning needs. If we're clever, we manage to customise our learning to it's best fit.
No one uses one mode of studying all the way to the end these days. Especially, with language learning. That really would be mindless studying

So moving on from the bookworm language exchange partner also calls for a different mode of studying.
Lately, instead of just translating words so i get a definition of what i don't understand, I've incorporated writing out sample sentences that is provided from online dictionary.
[Physical copy of dictionary from Korea, that are made for Koreans learning English also have heaps of sample sentences!]

Advantages of using online dictionaries:

  • Get an idea on how a Korean word is used in a sentence
    • This deals with untranslatable word problem in language learning - the sample sentences reduces the focus on how it make sense in our own language and forces us to infer how it is used in Korean.
    • Allow us to see how the words are commonly used - i assume the sentences given are one that are somewhat commonly used... who puts uncommon sentences in their native language dictionary for examples? 
    • Make sure that the word is even in use in the way i intend to use it - no matter how we try we will always think of words in our native language when learning and so forming our sentences can be a little messed up~ this is a nice reassurance that i've got it right
  •  Learn additional new words along the way
    • Exposure to vocabularies that goes with the word/phrase i'm learning - it's endless really, but it's a good start to keep exposing myself to new vocabs without strenuous effort.
  • Look up words that are not in the dictionary format i.e. ending with -다
    • Helps learner recognise words with different stem endings - helps with grammar.
      [Can't imagine learning Korean without this] 
  • Good for drilling in new vocabs without forcing yourself too hard to remember
    • I find that if I see things in multiple ways/context, it becomes a little more familiar... as though i know the word kind-of-feeling. Then when i hear it in action, that familiarity of the word starts to work its magic... and whoohoo i learnt something without knowing  
  • Allows me to also google search in another tab for images or related links on the word
    • Makes learning a word more than just learning about a language but also what surrounds it. 
    • It's also gradually guiding me to browse in Korean search engines. Right now, it's just an overload of information i don't understand. However, i'm hoping this will help ease me into using Korean search engine....  i'll elaborate on this more one day, when this makes sense to me
Another advantage that isn't related to the dictionary so much is:
  • Practice writing in Korean through copying the definition into a book
    [I'll probably cover this in a later post]

On top of that, i met another prominent language exchange partner. Prominent as in he stands out, in the way Mr. Bookworm has made a difference in my learning. In short, this language exchange partner is total opposite to Mr Bookworm as a person. Super talkative, lively and has a more familiar sense of humour. In that way, it makes things more comfortable and open in our communication. So complementary to my dictionary sample sentences, I've got this responsive language exchange partner helping me figure things out. I think i'm lucky to have met these two language exchange partner, who have left an influence in their own way on my learning. I'm not sure how long this language exchange partner is going to stick around, but i hope he stays around with me for a while longer.

PS i edited my previous post after reading it over, and finding that there was a massive hole in what i was trying to say -___- hopefully it makes more sense now, and everything in my head is transferred over in words more completely... if that makes sense. 


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