How I Started Learning Korean and Recommendations for Language Learning

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Ever since I was a little girl, I loved the idea of visiting new places and learning about the world and its wonders. I didn’t only want to visit the place, I wanted to learn the language to the point that I wasn’t just only getting by, that I could truly experience everything about that place without any limitations. One of the places I became interested in from a young age was South Korea because I loved and keep loving K-Dramas and K-Pop. I wanted to visit all of those places that were showcased in dramas and more. So I decided to start my Korean learning journey and in this post, I will tell you how I started learning Korean and recommendations for language learning filled with free tools, resources and tips.

Personal Tips

These are my recommendations from my personal experience learning Korean and learning English because for the ones who don’t know, English is my second language which I’ve been taking in school ever since kindergarten and all of these things helped learn it to a whole other level.

All of these tips are based on how I’m studying and the languages I’ve been studying. Each language has its own characteristics and some of these tips may not apply for all of them so I recommend you do your research on your preferred language.

Learn the Alphabet

This is obviously only applicable to those languages that have an alphabet. In my case, Korean has an alphabet (thankfully). The reason why I found this really helpful from the beginning is that once you learn the alphabet, you can read and write in the language (with practice).

If you listen to a random word out and about that you don’t understand, you can easily jot it down to check it up.

And if you learn the alphabet and the pronunciation of each letter you can start practicing your dictation and your knowledge base.

Get Familiar with the Language

The best way I have found to get familiar with languages and actually when learning English this was crucial, is by watching TV shows, K-dramas (I have watched most of mine in Viki and Netflix and TV when they have put them up), music and books.

Dedicate a Journal to your Language Learning

I am a planner girl, this depends on the type of student you are but I am super extra when organizing and tracking this type of stuff. I have a couple of journals dedicated to Korean studies. If you are interested in me making a post about them, let me know in the comments.

Learn as much Vocabulary as you can

While studying, watching dramas, and listening to music, try to learn as much vocabulary as you can. There is always a certain type of words that are recurrent in dramas: ‘I love you’, ‘Hello’, and ‘Sorry’.

Free Tools and Resources for Learning Korean

Talk to Me in Korean

I love TTMIK! They offer so many resources for learning Korean. I use the app (android, apple) because I have everything I use in there. They have the alphabet broken down beautifully with explanations and such.

They also have the amazing grammar lessons that they offer in both PDF and podcast-style in the app and I believe in their website.

They also have a YouTube channel for everyone who might be interested. I recommend that you check it out if you want to learn Korean for real to its fullest.

Memrise

There’s another amazing app called Memrise. They offer courses on a bunch of languages and they offer a paid version to access all the apps features. I use the free version because it is enough for me.

I started using it a few years back and recently got back into it as these past few months I’ve been focusing solely on grammar lessons.

Memrise is super great for learning new vocabulary with daily short lessons with 5 new words each day. It creates the habit of learning how to read, write, speak, and understand the language.

Viki and other Streaming Services

Like I said, I watch most K-Dramas in Viki. I used the free version that even though it doesn’t offer everything for free, it has a great variety of dramas for free with ads running.

YouTube

On YouTube, you can find new music and videos teaching you the language. Like I said, Talk to Me in Korean has a really helpful YouTube channel.

That’s basically it for this blog post, I hope you found it helpful and resourceful. If you have any other tips and resource recommendations feel free to leave them in the comments to help each other out. Also, let me know if you are studying Korean or any other language in particular.

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Be Yourself, Be Happy, Be Human.
Lots of Love, Patrick.

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