Sarah’s Blog Post 18: January 29, 2016
There is a good way to use movies, TV, music, games, and comics to learn another language and a bad way to use them. For many years, I watched Japanese movies and TV shows with subtitles and wondered why it still seemed impossible for me to understand them. I think I was having a hard time understanding because my brain had to work too hard to process both languages at the same time. Since English grammar and sentence structure is so different from Japanese grammar and sentence structure, it is too hard to think about both at the same time. My brain automatically chooses to listen to the English. Without subtitles, I can focus on the Japanese and it becomes much easier. Of course, subtitles help you when you start learning, but after a while you should start turning the subtitles off. Today I was looking for cartoon clips to show in class. I saw an American cartoon called “Adventure Time” with Japanese audio and was surprised that I could understand it completely without English subtitles.
Recently I have started playing games in Japanese on my iPhone. It is much more fun than reading from a textbook. I play one called “Neko Atsume” and another one called “Bleach: Brave Souls”. Some people say that games, movies, songs, and comics aren’t the best learning materials. However, they help you recognize and review things that you learn in school so that you will remember information quicker, longer, and more easily.