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  • I've had a lot of requests recently for a new video about the shadowing technique.

  • So, here we are. Today, I'm going to talk a little bit about

  • how I used the shadowing technique to learn Japanese, to the level of fluency that I did.

  • First of all, a little bit of background. Like everybody else, I started learning Japanese

  • by using text books. I studied grammar rules, I memorized words

  • and I answered the questions on the text books and that was about it.

  • After a while I could understand a bit of Japanese, I could read a little bit of Japanese,

  • but I couldn't speak any Japanese at all, I couldn't speak, and I couldn't hear Japanese,

  • my listening was terrible.

  • The way natives speak Japanese, it was impossible. Now, the CD attached to the text book, I could

  • understand that, no problems, because it was so slow and the language was so plain and

  • dry. I could understand that, but not real Japanese.

  • Complete waste of time. I heard of the shadowing technique.

  • I tried following along to Japanese TV shows, I kept that up for a while and it worked for

  • a little bit. But, to be honest, it was too much.

  • It was too much all in one go. A TV show is pretty long, it was hard to choose

  • a part to shadow and it was hard to keep it up

  • and it was hard to review or keep on practicing. So I gave up that pretty quick to be honest

  • And eventually I came across a website called www.japanesepod101.com

  • Japanese Pod is basically a website full of "Learn Japanese Audio Lesson"

  • The best thing about them is that each lesson has a dialogue and you can download the

  • dialogues and I used those dialogues for shadowing. When I started doing that, I really started

  • to notice an improvement in my Japanese. Let's take a look to what I actually did with

  • this website and shadowing. Let's take a look over here.

  • I'm going to demonstrate today with English Class 101.

  • It's exactly the same, this is the English language version, I used the Japanese Language

  • version, but just to make it easier for you guys to follow, I'm going to use the English

  • version. I'm going to came up here and sign in.

  • This is the learning centre, this is the main website.

  • you've got these different types of lessons. You've got a lot of tools and things at the

  • top. There are a lot of useful things in here,

  • I'm not going to talk about them today, though. Let's pick a lesson.

  • Let's go to Intermediate Season 1. Let's just wait for this to come up - my internet

  • connection has been very slow recently. Here we go, we've got all these lessons. There

  • are thousands of lessons in here. Let's pick one at random.

  • This is the lesson, this is one lesson that you get, it's got all this stuff on here.

  • ~background noise~ Some stuff falling down from the wind, don't

  • worry about that If we take a look down here, this is the main

  • audio lesson I didn't listen to this on the website, what

  • I did was, I used this tool here, called "My Feed".

  • This is a very useful tool. Basically, "My Feed" let's you download whatever

  • lessons you want onto your iPod, so I downloaded about a week's worth at a time.

  • I downloaded those and listened to them on the train in the morning, on my way to work.

  • It's only about 13 minutes long; my commute to work was about 15-20 minutes depending

  • on the day, on the train.

  • So I could listen to that easily on my way to work.

  • I'd listened to that on the train, and then after I listened to the lesson, I'd go to

  • this track here, which is the dialogue. This is the same dialogue

  • as you hear in the lesson. It's just in a separate track, so you don't

  • have to listen to the other stuff, it's very useful.

  • I would listen to that a few times and then that's it.

  • By now, this is stuck in my head for the rest of the day.

  • Then I'd finish my working day, I'd get back on the train going back home, and then I'd

  • go back to this and I'd listen to this track here,

  • the "Review Track" and I'd review all the vocabulary and

  • everything from the lesson. I'd listen that a few times, usually around

  • 4 times and then I'd listen to the dialogue a few

  • more times. So by now I've listened to the dialogue a

  • few more times, I've listened to the lessons and I've

  • listened to the review. Now I understand this, no problem.

  • This is all easy for me now. I would get home and the later in the evening

  • I'd use this tool here: "Line By Line Audio Transcript"

  • This is the best thing about this website, this is a really amazing tool, because...

  • - My internet connection is very slow- Okay, as you can see here, we've got a transcript

  • of all the audio track. It's not so long, it's about the right length,

  • I think. You've got a transcript of the audio track

  • here and you've got all these buttons, so you can

  • listen to this line by line. For example:

  • So, it looks like you're feeling better. So, it looks like you're feeling better.

  • Next track. Yes, thanks for coming to visit me the other

  • day by the way. What I would do is, I'd shadow this line by

  • line, and I'd do each line several times, until it was

  • easy for me. For example, let's do the first line:

  • So, it looks like you're feeling better. So, it looks like you're feeling better.

  • I think that was okay, but I feel like I need more practice, let's do that again.

  • So, it looks like you're feeling better. So, it looks like you're feeling better.

  • I think that's okay now, let's go to the next line.

  • Yes, thanks for coming to visit me the other day by the way.

  • Yes, thanks for coming to visit me the other day by the way.

  • I think that one's fine. Next line.

  • Don't mention it. We were just a little worried about you after the party.

  • Don't mention it. We were just a little worried about you after the party.

  • I need more practice with that one, so let's give that one another go.

  • Don't mention it. We were just a little worried about you after the party.

  • Sometimes, I would look up this lines and I'd read as I'm saying it.

  • As I was practicing, I will not to look at them, I'll try just to listen and shadow just

  • from the audio as much as possible.

  • I'd go through all of this lines and I'd practice all of them just a few times.

  • It doesn't take long, just a couple of minutes to get through these, as I said it's not very

  • long. Next, I'd came back up to here, to the dialogue

  • and I'd load the whole dialogue. So we click here on the pop-up.

  • Let's let that come up. I would shadow the whole thing through.

  • Here we are, hear the dialogue start up. So, it looks like you're feeling better.

  • Yeah, thanks for coming to visit me the other day by the way.

  • Don't mention it. We were just a little worried about you after the party.

  • And you want to check out the pool? That too.

  • Ok, so you get the idea. I'd go through the conversation and anything

  • difficult, anything which I thought "that was a

  • little bit too difficult", I'd go back to the line-by-line transcript and I'd practice

  • those again and I'd keep at it until it all felt natural and

  • easy. Next, I would go to the My Voice Recorder,

  • click on that and, basically, what you get is an on-

  • screen voice recorder. Let that load.

  • This used to be much faster at my old house, I moved recently and my internet connection

  • here is terrible. It takes so long for anything to load.

  • We get this Voice Recorder here. I'm not going to use the audio; I'm just going

  • to read this through. Sometimes, if was feeling really enthusiastic,

  • I'd try to memorize this conversation, but I

  • haven't done that today, so I'm just going to read it.

  • Click on Record. So, it looks like you're feeling better.

  • Yeah, thanks for coming to visit me the other day by the way

  • Don't mention it. We were just a little worried about you after the party.

  • And now I'm going to listen back to my own pronunciation.

  • So, it looks like you're feeling better. Yeah, thanks for coming to visit me the other

  • day by the way. Don't mention it. We were just a little worried

  • about you after the party. I think that's mostly okay, but I think my

  • pronunciation of this first part "Don't mention it", I'm

  • not happy with that, so I'm going to practice that a few more times.

  • Don't mention it. We were just a little worried about you after the party.

  • I'm going to practice that again, then I'll re-record myself and listen to it again.

  • Basically, I'm shadowing line-by-line, I'm trying to match my pronunciation, the speed

  • and the rhythm to the speak on the audio, I do that

  • for each line and then I do the whole conversation from the dialogue, again trying to match the

  • speed and the rhythm of the native speakers and

  • the pronunciation. Sometimes I'd even just choose one character

  • from the story, I wouldn't do the whole thing. I'd just do, for example, Drew or Teddy or

  • whomever the characters are in that conversation. I'm going to go through that, I'm going to

  • get good at it and then I'm going to record myself,

  • listen back to that and see how it sounds. If it sounds good, great; if it doesn't, I'm

  • going to practice again. That sounds like a lot, but actually, it only

  • took about 10 minutes a day, I think. I'd get through a lesson very quickly.

  • I'm listening on the train on my way to work, home, anyway, that's commute time so it's

  • not wasted time, and then I'd come home and about

  • 10 minutes of this, I'd shadow the material. That was it, that was my day's learning of

  • Japanese. Really, we're talking 30-40 minutes a day,

  • most of that on the train and 10 minutes at home.

  • Doing this, I found that I could improve my listening and my speaking very quickly and

  • it wasn't much time before found that I could start

  • to understand what people were saying in conversations and I could start to join in

  • the conversations by myself. That was really great motivation, and I kept

  • up this system, this pattern up for more than 2

  • years until I finished everything on the Japanese Pod site and we're talking more than a

  • thousand lessons at least, so you can see just how quickly I was able to just absorb

  • all this Japanese, in your case, all this English,

  • this material, just very easily. Of course, you don't have to use English Class

  • 101 or Japanese Pod for shadowing, you can use

  • anything, and now I use TV shows and audio books, as I demonstrated in my other video.

  • Now I have a lot more time than I did when I first came to Japan about 5 years ago.

  • The best thing about this is that each lesson is very short and self-contained.

  • Self-contained means that you can listen to any lesson you want at any time, you don't

  • have to start from 1, then 2, 3, 4.

  • You can basically just choose what you're interested in, or what is useful for you at

  • that time. Because they're short, it's very easy to finish

  • one lesson in a day so it's very easy to make the

  • goal of 1 day/1 lesson, next day 1 new lesson. You're always using new material, it doesn't

  • get boring.

  • The lessons are quite funny and interesting, anyway.

  • So it's very easy to keep it up. Occasionally I'd go back and review all the

  • lessons and I'd listen to all the dialogues, but,

  • mostly, I'd just keep on doing a new lesson a day.

  • As I said, I kept that up for 2 years until I got to the level of Japanese that I am at

  • now and I found everything on the website too easy and

  • I finished everything. Recently, I don't use it so much, as I said,

  • I use audio books and TV shows instead. That's it. I highly recommend using this site

  • for the shadowing technique. Something else that I want to point out is

  • that this is not free, well, you can get a free account

  • and you can get a certain amount free, if you sign up for a free account, you get a

  • free premium account for 2-3 weeks, I don't remember.

  • So you can get a premium account for a while, but then you have to pay for it.

  • It's a little bit on the pricey side, but for the 2 years or so that I kept this up,

  • I didn't spend money on anything else learning Japanese.

  • I never felt like I needed to take classes so there was no class fee to pay, I didn't

  • buy any other CDs, there was nothing like that.

  • I didn't really buy any text books. This was a very cost effective way for me

  • to learn Japanese. And I saved a lot o time by using this, like

  • I said it was just 10 minutes a day, literally, for 2

  • years and that was it. Money and time, I saved a lot of it using

  • this. That's it.

  • As always, if you've got any questions, leave a comment.

  • If you've got any requests for something you need me to talk about more, leave it in the

  • comments, if you've something you need to ask, leave a comment.

  • That's it for today. Until next time! See you then!

I've had a lot of requests recently for a new video about the shadowing technique.

Subtitles and vocabulary

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A2 BEG US japanese shadowing lesson audio dialogue listen

English speaking practice by yourself: shadowing with Englishclass101 | how to improve english

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    aliang posted on 2015/02/01
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