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Re: [tlug] Remembering the Kanji wrote:
> wrote:
>> The Japanese have a significant advantage in learning to write Kanji
>> over us -- several actually.  The first is that they already know the
>> language before they start learning to write.
> I don't see how that helps with *writing* kanji. But there is no denyin
> they *do* have an advantage :)
They are only learning to write the language -- they already know the
words and syntax.  We are trying to learn words, syntax, and writing all
at the same time.  Imagine having to learn "See Spot run.  Run Spot, run."
if you had to learn the words and what the words mean and how to spell
them all at the same time.  I still remember parts of the books we learned
from here in the U.S. when I was growing up.

>> I can't learn Japanese like they do -- I already have a context in
>> which I'm trying to put a new language. They start with a blank slate.
> But still, they start with simple texts which introduce bacis kanji, and
> then more advanced texts which introduce more kanji. The difference
> being that you have to learn the word and the kanji that make it up,
> while they already know the word. A similar approach is
> effective for gaijin as well. Remembering the word+kanji in a
> certain context is easier than studying it in isolation.
Essentially this is what Remembering_Kanji is trying to do, but
Heisig is breaking the kanji up by radicals and primitives and presenting
them in an order where you build on what you know -- at least that is how
it's being explained.  And as each is presented, there is a story
that goes with it.  For instance the character for old is presented
as a gravestone with a cross on it, if I remember correctly.

What is different here and makes me a bit nervous is that there is no
Japanese presented with the learning process.  Reading -- or at least
learning the Kanji is independent of learning the language.

The woman who suggested the book to me was my Japanese teacher for the
short period I was last in Tokyo.  We're still in touch, and I trust her
skills.  I'm going to do this along with the more traditional classroom
approach (I'm enrolled at the local J.C. as well) and see where it leads. 
So far, the results look promising.

Now it's to the shower and start my homework.

Steve S.

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