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19 March 2016

Practicing Japanese

I really don't prefer learning from a textbook (they're so dry!), but Hero wants to use my old college text for Japanese-- and it's been working. We go very slowly. The strange dialogs don't bother him. To my surprise, it's working nicely in spite of the fact it's not a living book at all. And it's way more fun to do with kids in the living room than it ever was in a college classroom.

Today's activity was to practice これ and それ -- this and that. They're part of a set of ko-so-a-do words, and it takes practice to get the hang of them. So the book has a drill for doing that. 

In college, probably because I had no clue how to make study groups, these seemed really pointless. But using them with the kids is actually really effective. And often even fun. We didn't talk about bags; the kids are little enough that I wanted something concrete. We used vehicles instead. 

"This car is blue." この車はおいです。
"That airplane is white." その飛行機は白いです。

Then we mixed it up: sometimes we said things that were not true and the kids had to try to catch it. The bigger the kid, the better their comprehension and the more independently they were able to do the conversation. But everybody practiced vehicle names, colors, and ko-so-a-do words pretty successfully, AND they're getting more comfortable with me babbling at them.

The activity came from a textbook. It was fun and effective anyway.

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