Is anyone here Bilingual?

So for context, I am from America. I just moved to Japan without knowing any Japanese beforehand. I’ve been learning for about 2 months, but I feel lost.

My question is, do you know more than one language? Is English your first or second language, and what other language do you speak? How long will it take to learn Japanese? My Japanese friends all laugh at Duolingo. Is there a better way to learn?

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Like why does “七” (shichi) sound like “なな” (nana) and they both mean seven :sob::sob:

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sounds weird, the part of my brain that can’t process numbers and dimensional concepts can’t process different language structures very well either. I can read French and Italian but I can’t form a sentence from my own memory. But for some reason I don’t have trouble translating patterns in other languages, as long as I can see a picture.

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Yeah I’m not that way with Japanese. Reading is not the same as reading with the alphabet. There are 50 hiragana, 50 katakana, and thousands of kanji. Some of my friends here didn’t know all of the kanji until later in life. I know some words and phrases, but I panic and just use English. Which is terrible because I’m not practicing Japanese at all. Also the sounds are completely different than English so I sound weird when I talk. My friends are teaching me. I don’t think I’m ever going to be fluent though.

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I think I read somewhere that there is actually a high percentage of Japanese that are illiterate

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Wow really!? Maybe the older population. Everyone I’ve met knows how to read.

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like functionally illiterate, I’m going to look that up now

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My husband lived in Japan and speaks Japanese and I just started learning. I asked him and showed him the comment above. He gave me a look and just said, well she’s right. It is not an easy language but he learned 40 years ago, lived there for 2 years and never forgot. He still have friends there he communicate with sometimes but not often. He is teaching me very slowly the spoken part. I’m using the series JFZ (Japanese From Zero) from Amazon. There is a lot of help from the author in video, group support, you may check it out first. It is a slow, easy one though but reliable. You may need something faster but Duolingo is not really reliable.

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ok, the article I had read was that they can usually read enough to get by, like signs and manga and such, but they wouldn’t be able to get through a novel easily and they are losing the ability to write formally

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Duolingo isn’t the best. My mom is getting Rosetta Stone too. I’ve been using Duolingo every day.

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Don’t give up. I think one thing that can help and I just thought of is to watch how children learn. Look for tv shows, picture books and songs for for very little children. They can help with how to move the mouth and form the sounds, learn basic words, etc.

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Yeah writing in Japanese is so hard :sob: there’s too many small lines to fit on notebook paper. I don’t know how they do it.

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That’s a good idea!

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Have you tried using the kanji notebooks?

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I haven’t heard of that before. Maybe my mom can order one from Amazon Japan.

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Some are around 5$ or so. I just got this that is actually written in reverse.

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I practiced hiragana on this note book. Not sure if it’s good or not, but I spent like 2 hours on it :smiling_face_with_tear:

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These you probably can find there because they came from there. They are Kana books and come with a water pen, which means they are rewritable. You write, it dries and you use again. Practice books.

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Where do you buy those!? Those look perfect.

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