Why Watching Anime Can Help You Learn Japanese Faster

2015 December 7
by SWIRLsite

Anime has been successful in bringing the understanding of Japanese people to many people all over the world that would have not gotten to hear it anywhere else. It is estimated that the world has nearly 122 million people who can speak Japanese; sadly most of these people are found in Japan. This is because the Japanese language lacks the reach that the other many Asian languages as well as other languages have gotten. However, the advent of Anime has provided a lot of people with an easier access to the Japanese language and also the much needed motivation to learn the language. A distinctive advantage that these animated movies and productions have is that they form an industry that is huge and they aim at satisfying different interests as well as age groups. How can Anime help improve your Japanese language? Below are some 5 reasons on how anime can help you learn and improve your Japanese.

 

It Develops Your Japanese Listening Skills

 

In order for this to be possible, ensure that you turn off the English subtitles that the anime comes with from the producers. It would be of help that the individual wishing to improve their Japanese language to have made themselves familiar with the language itself as well as watching some anime. You could cut the line by not starting from scratch by switching on the subtitles in Japanese language (jimaku). You will then try as much as possible to link the sounds to their respective words. Another way could be by using some romaji subtitles, which refer to the Japanese language written using Latin letters. After getting comfortable, you can switch to a syllabic Japanese system of writing known as kana. You can check out an instructional video here on how you will be able to navigate from English to find the meaning of words in kana and romaji.

 

Using Repetition as a way of practicing Pronunciation

 

The Japanese language is a language that has a rhythm that is very specific and anime presents a medium that is great to enable one to learn the rhythm. The language is quite repetitive in the way it uses its words and hence it allows one to hear same patterns in a repeatedly manner. In order to ensure that you improve your Japanese language, you should stop the anime episode you are watching and make an effort to repeat these sounds. Ensure that you imitate the pronunciation and rhythm first without paying too much attention to the meaning of the sounds. Even though you could not be actively involved in the pronunciation practice, watching the anime gives you an opportunity to familiarize yourself with the speech melody. This will in turn help improve your Japanese language.

 

Taking Advantage of the Animations

 

It’s important to understand that you will not be able to absorb all the words you learn by just watching anime. You should ensure that you are an active participant during the learning process. This means that you should really pay attention and even write the new words you hear in order to remember them later. You should take note of all the grammar, speech patterns and vocabulary used in the anime to make the concept stronger inside your mind. Any new word you hear ought to be jotted down and looked up later. Animations help you understand the language better as one is able to infer the meaning of words depending on the facial expressions of the characters. You can proceed to learn Japanese by watching actively as opposed to passively.

 

Mimicking the Informal Conversational Style of the Anime

 

After learning some Japanese, you will be able to pick the huge difference between the formal conversational style and the informal style used in anime. Japanese is usually an honorific language hence it is spoken in different ways depending on the social hierarchy, age and intimacy. It is therefore imperative to note that the conversational style used in the anime fits that context and should not be used when speaking to other people. Learning to mimic the informal conversational style used in the anime is great as it is simple and helps one build up a repertoire that will be useful in conversational Japanese.

 

Reading Words Out Loudly

 

Another great way of learning and improving your Japanese is by reading out loudly all the subtitles. Reading them out loud would be more telling than reading them in your head. You can read them out at a moderate pace before getting the pace to read them fast.

 

In order to start learning using the anime, start from the most basic to the more complex. Examples of Japanese favorite anime include; Chi’s Sweet Home, Okaasan no Uchi, Chobits, Sazae-san and Daraemon.

 

Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Bureau Translations a leading company that provide translation services for businesses.

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