Learning Japanese | Phrases & Grammar

MindSnacks Japanese

Hands down, my absolute favorite app thus far. It’s only on iphone/ipad, but it’s totally worth it if you own one. It’s free for the first lesson but I paid the $4.99 to access the rest. It’s amazing. If you’ve ever used the MindSnacks app before, you know that you learn key phrases through fun games, where it doesn’t feel like learning. This has given me very useful grammar phrases, like greetings, food, and numbers (so important!) and also teaches you in either romaji, kana, or kanji, so you can learn based on what you want. Personally, I already knew I wouldn’t be learning kanji so I focused on learning in kana.

Japanese from Zero

I admit, I got this book because it was one of the cheapest on Amazon, and had good reviews. I’m not disappointed. I’m making my way veryyyyy slowly through this and making flashcards with each lesson. So far it’s been very helpful – easy to follow, with manageable lessons. I think it’s been a great resource for the price, especially if you’re looking to learn at a leisurely pace.

Anki

I’ve only just downloaded Anki, but every article I’ve read says Anki is one of the best tools out there. It’s like a really powerful, pre-made flashcard software you download on your computer. I’ve downloaded a few decks so far and what I’ve found really helpful is the audio, and the way you can mark up or bookmark specific cards. We’ll see if I keep using this in the next few weeks.

Chegg

Speaking of flashcards, I was pleasantly surprised to find that Chegg (an app on my phone) has a lot of decks in Japanese that you can download and study with. Or, like Anki, you can create your own (though I prefer to use ones people have already made). Unlike Anki, however, there’s no audio but I like the simple interface of being able to “turn over” cards. Because these are student-made, you’ll find everything from full kanji, words in hiragana, and words in romaji.

Memrise

I mentioned this in my previous post, but that was for learning Basic Japanese, and I have moved on to learning the JLPT N5 vocab (though there isn’t a focus on learning kanji; it quizzes you based on hiragana and katakana, so if you learned that, you’ll be fine taking these courses). I wouldn’t call the terms I’m learning particularly useful for a vacation to Japan, but they’re basic words you’d learn in any language so it’s still interesting and of value to me.

 

As always, I’d love for you to share your favorite language-learning apps and tricks!

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