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Reviews by David Chien

Japanese kana workbook

Boring if you hate to write 'gana over and over again, but this programmed method does work well and it does force you to recall them without cheating.

Goes basically like, A in hiragana is written like xxx. How do you write A in hiragana? _____ etc. Not that boring however as they do change sentences on you and introduce lots of words and patterns.

Otherwise, for most, an easy ride and a quick way to learn the 'gana.

Pronounce It Perfectly in Japanese

Nothing better than to have a Japanese language tutor to have you practice speaking Japanese like a Japanese, but if you don't have one, this tape will help a lot in getting those words out right. Goes over each and every 'gana in detail along with word combinations so you understand and hear how Japanese is supposed to be pronounce correctly.

You'll still find yourself goofing up when talking to a real japanese speaker, but at least you won't be as bad as a total newbie.

Utsukushii boorupenji no kihon renshū

Starts off with dozens of pages of examples of how characters should be written (kanji, hiragana/katakana, numbers, etc.) in pen. Blank space next to them with shadow of character to mime. Lots of Kanji after to mime. Some examples of running script (continous pen writing ala English ... read more

Jitsuyō fudepen kofude ji shoho no shoho

Brush examples of writing Japanese characters in both single characters and in running script. Filled with examples, strokes given for a few pages of characters, what to look for and how to write balanced characters given. Overview of brush writing & picking the proper brushes & tools. Examples ... read more

A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Sentence Patterns

It tends to use formal sentences, so in real life, you may not see them in your other textbooks until later. But, if you get a good Japanese friend to help show you what the informal sentences look like, you'll have a leg up on the basics.

It repeats the same concept a few times so you get familiar with them: eg. How much are the apples? How much are the bears? How much are the jewels?

Let's Learn Japanese Picture Dictionary

Basically, children's picture dictionary, but very useful if you want to challenge yourself against any kindergartner in Japan who already knows all of these words front and back. (gotta start somewhere right?)

Anyways, 1st Thousand Words covers just about all of the basics - big/small, red/ ... read more

Plimseur Audio CD

Pretty much audio tapes only, but they do work decently well in getting you to remember quick answers to various things they introduce. Good for the commute or whenever you've got a free ear.

Works decently for me - been listening to them in the car off my MP3 player, so they do work. Let's you ... read more

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