Korean Learning Journey

2016: Starting My 6th Year of Learning Korean

I was looking through my Timehop the other day and realised that I actually accomplished my Korean language goal for 2013 in 2014!

Unfortunately, there wasn’t much progress in 2015. Or rather, none that I can see anyway. Though one good thing is that my Korean friends have been telling me that my proficiency is still the same as before. Phew! :)

I guess I’m just never satisfied with whatever level of proficiency I’m at. One thing evident of all my TOPIK results is that whilst my listening is my strongest point, my writing is the worst. I hope to do something about that this year.

Whether or not my work would allow for that is another matter. T_T I had planned to read more last year so that my writing would improve, but work took up so much of my time that I only read 1.5 books! D: I really don’t want to waste anymore of my remaining youth working out of office hours; I need to do more things that make me happy! We’ll see how that works out too. :)

I hope everyone has a great year ahead and accomplishes all of their language goals!

Korean Learning Journey, Korean Textbooks

LEARNING JOURNEY; TOPIK D-20 열공

D265 220914; 토픽 D-20 나와 함께 재밌는 한국어 공부 시간 보내는 것들! 한국에 있었을 때보다 내 한국어 실력이 너무 많이 나빠져서 이번에 진짜 6급을 따려면 미친듯이 열공해야겠다 ㅠ

Korean Books, Korean Learning Journey, Korean Learning Resources

LEARNING JOURNEY; 34th TOPIK Results – I Got Level 5!

So the 34th TOPIK results were released at 3PM (KST) this afternoon. I checked my results on the dot and saw that I got Level 5! Whilst I expected just as much, it was still disappointing. I guess I always set my aims too high and get upset over not being able to achieve them. It could be a good and bad thing, I guess. Then again, it’s hard to judge one’s true language ability based on tests such as this. They are merely a rough gauge of one’s grasp of the language.

This is the first time I’m revealing my results in full, lol.

TOPIK 34

VOCABULARY/GRAMMAR
I’ve always been weak at vocabulary, and I don’t like memorising lists. They don’t help much either, only temporarily and I end up forgetting them. Most of the vocabulary I know are from coming across them often enough for me to memorise naturally. I also forgot quite a few new grammar that I learnt during my preparation, so that probably pulled me down.

WRITING
The open ended questions were like WTH. -_- I can never get the right answers for those (can anyone?!) and they’re worth 10 marks each! >_> The topic for the essay section was difficult, and I didn’t know what to write about, so I was pretty much writing crap. I didn’t even fill up half the page, lol. At this point, I immediately knew that I would only get a Level 5.

LISTENING
I’m surprised I did that well for Listening (thanks to watching too many dramas/variety shows), though I did feel that it wasn’t as difficult as the past papers that I practiced on.

READING
Since I don’t read much (lengthy texts scare me still), my reading speed is pretty slow, and I had trouble completing the Reading section on time. I ended up just randomly picking answers for 4 questions in the last few minutes. :x Even when I was practicing, time constraint was my biggest problem.

So there you have it. My breakdown of why my results are the way they are. I know my weaknesses and I’m working on changing that. In fact, instead of just listening to music when I travel around, I now read Korean books! I need to read more, since reading will help improve my reading speed, as well as vocabulary and grammar, which will in turn help with my writing. Chain reaction, really.

  

Since heavy texts scare me, I find it best to find something I’m interested in to start from, and it’s going well so far. I’m currently reading 낢이 사는 이야기 1 [시즌 2], a Korean comic book that initially started as a webcomic (what, I still learn words from it and it’s funny, lol), as well as BIGBANG’s 세상에 너를 소리쳐!. There are a lot of unknown words that come up, but I’ve decided not to focus too much on them for now, and to just comprehend as much as I can. I’m planning to slowly move on to other books, most probably novels first. If anyone has any recommendations, please let me know!

I’ll be working hard to get Level 6 in the next TOPIK. Everyone else planning to take the next TOPIK too, 화이팅!! ^^

Korean Dramas

K-DRAMA; I Love Lee Tae Ri, Queen In Hyeon's Man, The Rooftop Prince

After TOPIK, I decided to take a break and I’ve been catching up on dramas by drama marathoning. I have this system whereby I watch all the dramas year by year starting with the oldest, and I usually go down the list alphabetically unless another drama catches my eye first.

I’m currently on year 2012 and completed 아이러브 이태리 (I Love Lee Tae Ri) and 인현왕후의 남자 (Queen In Hyeon’s Man). I’m almost done with 옥탑방 왕세자 (The Rooftop Prince). It’s the third time travelling drama in a row; why were there so many in 2012?! -_-;; Fortunately, they were all light, cute and funny. tvN usually produces good dramas too. It was good to finally see Kibum’s face after so long, I stayed up to finish 인현왕후의 남자 because it was just that good although some parts were draggy and I cried way too much, and 옥탑방 왕세자 has Yoochun~ ♡ I’m not being biased but his acting is pretty good. :3 The 3 supporting actors are also really cute together. ^^

However, as much as I’m a drama mania, I really need to start reading more Korean books instead. Thanks to watching way too many dramas, my listening isn’t too bad, but my reading speed is still pretty slow after 3 years. One of the reasons I find it hard to complete the TOPIK Reading section in the given time. I have much to improve and it’s going to take more effort to do so. Oops, I digress. Anyway, those dramas were fun to watch. ^^