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Old 02-23-2006, 01:17 PM   #20
Josh Reyer
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Location: Aichi-ken, Nagoya-shi
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 644
Re: Perfection of waza

Mathew McDowell wrote:
Josh, you learned katakana first?
Yup. Since it was only a couple weeks into the course, we didn't have a very huge vocabulary of Japanese words. So the first things we learned were a) our names, b) place names, and c) loan words.

And on perfectionism katakana and hiragana being a solid foundation, before you move on don`t you agree you should perfect and comprehend these foundations before attempting to tackle more advanced stages? Just an opinion?
To be frank, I don't agree. As I tried to explain in my post, we didn't perfect our foundations by the time we moved on. We thought we barely had a handle on each particular syllabary. And yet, it worked. I read hiragana and katakana (and a good deal of kanji) without conscious thought now. Our breakneck pace still allowed me to gain fluency. And indeed, some of the things I learned in school never really gelled until I placed myself in the much more demanding environment of living and working in Japan itself.

You improve by challenging yourself. You want to activate as much of the brain as possible, stretch it, take it to the limit. Then, when you come back to the foundation, you find yourself more capable than you thought. The neurological pathways are opened up.

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
- Chaucer
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