All posts filed under: japanese immersion

Japanese Immersion: October week 3

This week, I mostly read magazines! I bought the autumn edition of the 趣味の文具箱 and a magazine called Sapio. 趣味の文具箱 This magazine is all about fountain pens and ink. The issue 47 is called 『万年筆インクの知りたいこと』and is all about ink. You will find in it interesting charts and analysis, as well as the new colours available in Japan. I particularly liked the “user’s ink life” section where are displayed how people use their ink to write, draw and keep ink journals. It is not the best magazine to practice reading because it is often enough to look at the many pictures, charts or writing samples. I try to force myself to always read the captions and additional explanations. But even without a heavy reading practice, I think that there is nothing better than associating one’s hobby with the language you are learning. You will naturally feel motivated to read and understand something if it is about your hobby, and the language will be associated with positive feelings as well. The site ei-publishing has a lot of …

Japanese Immersion: October week 2

I have been a little sick this week and haven’t done much for my Japanese. First of all, I was a little disappointed, when I watched the 5th episode of the drama 『シグナル 長期未解決事件捜査班』, to find it very difficult to understand. I thought I had made progress, and it is discouraging to realise that I still have to struggle as soon as the actors speak a little faster or use difficult words. Not feeling well certainly did not help me because I was not willing to put in the extra effort and look up words as I would have done otherwise. I also watched the first episode of 『流星の絆』. I have finished the novel by Keigo HIGASHINO and wanted to have a look at the drama, but I didn’t like it. It is a good listening practice though, so I might continue to watch it, but I don’t like it enough to study it or listen to it several times. As they made 10 episodes out of a single novel, they had to add scenes, …

Japanese Immersion: October week 1

Watching a drama, at last! I finally found a drama I like: the Japanese remake of the Korean drama “Signal”: 『シグナル 長期未解決事件捜査班』. It is about a police investigation team specialised on old unsolved cases. A walkie-talkie allows one of the members of the team to communicate with one of the detectives from the past, who is living at the time when the murders they are working on were committed. I have always tried to watch romance or daily life comedy because they are easier to understand than dramas with a criminal investigation that are set in a police environment. The problem is that I don’t usually like romance and comedy while I would buy anything even remotely connected with a police investigation. While it can be wise to choose something at your level and force yourself a little bit to study it even if it does not interest you, this method does not work for me. If the drama does not interest me, even if I can feel that it helps me to improve my listening …

Japanese immersion: September week 4

To be exact, this post should be entitled Japanese non-immersion because the week was a complete disaster. I have been busy with other things and could not even hold to my weekly challenge (it was listening and repeating lines of Isao TAKAHATA’s film Only Yesterday). As for immersion, there was almost none, apart from some usual things I do like listening to a video in Japanese while cooking, but then I don’t really listen with attention. The only active step that I took was to watch the first episode of a Japanese drama. I chose 『慰謝料弁護士~あなたの涙、お金に変えましょう~』because it was on the list of the popular Japanese drama of our VOD’s catalogue. As almost every first episode of a drama is available for free on this VOD, I took the resolution, some months ago, to watch as many first episodes as possible until I find a drama worth watching and paying for. So I watched the first episode of this drama but it was not a success. I can see the appeal of such dramas, but it …

Japanese Immersion: September week 3

My focus for this week was to read my novels, so I haven’t done many non-bookish things for my Japanese immersion. Japanese Songs This being said, I did work a little on my immersion with music. I already mentioned it in a previous post, but I have difficulty finding Japanese songs I like. The Japanese artists I loved before learning Japanese are mostly in the instrumental sphere. Now that I am learning Japanese, I am looking for songs with lyrics, but I am starting from zero and slowly building my Japanese playlist. (If you are like me, check these recommendations, they are a good starting point!) Here are two songs that I have discovered this week and like very much: 『夜の流れ』by Cantaro IHARA (井原寛太郎). The first time I saw the artist’s name, I thought it was a great name for a singer because it meant “let’s sing”. Then I wonder why on earth I was thinking that, and I realised that I was mixing Spanish “cantar” (to sing) and Japanese grammar -おう (let’s sing), haha. …

Japanese Immersion: September week 2

どうぶつの森! I woke up this morning to hear the good news: Animal Crossing is coming for the Switch! To me, Animal Crossing is closely linked to learning Japanese: it is a game I play in Japanese, and it created an unconscious association between “Japanese” and “a fictional world I love, where the smallest acts of kindness matter and make you smile, your efforts always rewarded, where everybody is nice and where animals talk”. I started playing Animal Crossing because it was a refuge against the real world where your efforts are not always appreciated, people are not always nice and animals don’t talk. What is funny is that I watched Animal Crossing New Leaf videos in Japanese this week. I like the channel of a YouTuber called くるみ. I like how she creates stories (she’s dating the cat ジンペイ) inside the Animal Crossing world and makes a game released 6 years before feel fresh and new. LDP election But of course, my Japanese immersion of this week is mainly due to reading the news. I …

Japanese Immersion: September week 1

The main thing I did to listen to Japanese this week was watching episodes from 『ちびまる子ちゃん』. I also re-watched the film 『舟を編む』which is one of my favourite films. I love equally the novel by Shion MIURA (三浦しをん) as the film by director Yuya ISHII (石井裕也) I really recommend this film to anyone interested in the publishing world, dictionaries and the pursuit of one’s ideal against sales and profit considerations. This film always makes me feel that hard work and dedication can always win against the lack of immediate recognition and approval. I also have to fight an impulse to buy a paper dictionary! JapaNews24 I have found a YouTube live video called “JapaNews24 ~ 海外へ日本のニュースをLIVE配信” on the channel ANNnewsCH. I wish I had known sooner that such a live video exist. Apparently, they take broadcasted news in Japan, put them all together in a YouTube live video for people living outside Japan. I don’t know exactly when they add new contents, but it seems to be always news from the same day. Anyway, I like …

Japanese Immersion: film, anime, magazine and news!

I am quite happy with my immersion in Japanese this week! I watched the film 『ちょっと今から仕事やめてくる』and several episodes of 『ちびまる子ちゃん』. I also spent a lot of time reading and translating the magazine 『趣味の文具箱』. Finally, I started reading the news again. 『ちょっと今から仕事やめてくる』 This film by Izuru NARUSHIMA 成島 出 (なるしま・いずる) is an adaptation of the novel (same title) by Emi KITAGAWA 北川恵海 (きたがわ・えみ). While I loved the novel I have mixed feelings concerning the film. As long as the film follows the novel, I found it quite okay. The actors are good, the setting is good, the slight deviations from the novel are good too. I loved the scenes at Takashi’s workplace, that really convey the daily’s nightmare to work there. The end of the film is however completely different. While the novel mainly focuses on Takashi, the protagonist, the film wants to give more place to Yamamoto, the other character. At some point, it leaves the novel behind to follow its own step and add new scenes to the story. This is where I felt like watching a …