Best learn Japanese materials for absolute beginner?

Q: I am absolute beginner and would like to learn basic japanese myself before I take up intermediate japanese class.  At least I could save money on beginner class. Could you please help me and suggest me what materials I should prepare?  Thanks a lots  –  Eva

A:  Hi Eva,

That’s actually quite a good idea, learn the basics yourself and then save money by skipping the basic Japanese class and jumping straight to an intermediate class.  Very clever!

Materials wise, of course I’m going to say “Get the GenkiJapan pack!” 😉

But there is something much more important than that.  If you are thinking of taking lessons then the best way to save money, by  far, is to first plan exactly what you want to learn.

Do you want to learn to read manga?

Or understand anime?

Visit Japan?

Work in Japan?

Or chat with friends in Japanese?

Once you know exactly what your aim is (and take a bit of time to think about it!) you can then start to think about exactly what things you’d like to be able to say in Japanese and make lists.  Lots and lots of lists!

If you have a good teacher then they’ll be very grateful to a) see such a motivated student and b) have someone who has taken the time to make a curriculum for them!  Then rather than the teacher guessing at what might be useful for you, which is what many teachers have to do,  they’ll know exactly what to teach and should be much more motivated for you!

Of course if you have a stodgy old teacher who won’t change their materials to suit you then you don’t want to be learning from then in the first place – fire them and get a new one!

So that’s my tip, get the GenkiJapan pack ; ),  read my “Get fluent” book that’s inside it (or at the end of the any of the posts if you subscribe by email)  and then take some time to think about exactly what type of Japanese you want to learn!

Be genki,


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