The podcast about learning Japanese.

Episode 3 – Getting Conversational

Posted September 13th, 2008 by Enrico in Podcast Episodes

In this episode, we talk about how to start speaking Japanese, how to practice, and how to keep on improving.

Cast: Enrico Bianco, Kimberly Fraser, Anton Khan, Mike Oetlinger

Related links:
http://buna.arts.yorku.ca/japanese/ (Japanese Studies at York University, including free course materials)
http://www.language-exchanges.org/ (The Mixxer: language exchange via Skype)
http://lang-8.com/ (Language exchange – get your writing corrected and help others with theirs)

I say ling-8 in the episode but the site is actually called lang-8.  Sorry about that.

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  1. 2 Responses to “Episode 3 – Getting Conversational”

  2. By Anand Mohan on Sep 14, 2008

    Hi there, thank you for the interesting tips on making conversations. I am particularly thankful for the information on Mixxer, which I was previously unaware of. I do, however think you missed out on a good way to practice speaking, even if it is not conversational per se. What I am referring to is the use of music, and specifically karaoke in learning Japanese. Again, the way language is used in songs is much different that the way it is spoken in conversation, but I still think it is an excellent bridge from reading and studying written Japanese to actually speaking it. Of course, songs are no substitute for conversation…I suppose the best scenario is going to karaoke with some japanese people.

    If you sing in front of a bunch of salarymen, you might just get a free beer out of it. Lord knows I have.

  3. By Enrico on Sep 14, 2008

    I love singing karaoke in Japanese myself but I didn’t mention it. It isn’t so much conversational as a catalyst for conversation and possibly a good way to get used to Japanese pronunciation.

    The only issue is that Japanese intonation is based on pitch. So when listening to Japanese words in a song, you don’t necessarily get to hear the proper intonation for using it in a conversation. But I don’t doubt that karaoke can be an effective icebreaker and a great way of getting started with spoken Japanese.

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