mycelial technology

Japanese | 日本語

27 November, 2021

I've been learning Japanese on-and-off for approximately three years. While I've had a lifelong fascination with Japan, my desire to learn the language really blossomed in the wake of my travels in South America. Having felt the frustration of being unable to communicate with the wonderful people I met along the way, I decided I simply couldn't allow this to happen on my future trip(s) to Japan. I'm far from fluent (like...farrr) but I am making good progress.

Here I share some of the resources and approaches I've found useful for self-study.


I began by learning hiragana and katakana using Memrise. These days I stay sharp with RealKana and practice handwriting with downloaded sheets (important for learning the stroke order of each kana).

My approach focuses heavily on input, and especially comprehensible input, so I spend a lot of time doing passive and active listening. Look up Stephen Krashen's work on language acquisition if you want to know more about input-driven approaches.

I've only just really started to learn kanji (using WaniKani). I started reading manga a few months ago and I find it offers a great way to reinforce learning of kana, kanji and vocabulary. It's a thrill when I recognise kanji I've just learned. All the manga I'm currently reading include furigana alongside the kanji.

I'm nearing the point where I'd like to start taking private lessons to practice speaking. For now, my only output comes in the form of shadowing (repeating words or sentences after I hear them) and chatting to myself.


Hiragana and Katakana



Language Channels / Podcasts

Special Interest Channels