Topik Thoughts

I still think about taking the topik again after my last attempt which now goes on over 4 years ago.  Time flies.  We only get one shot a year in the midwest here and I’ve of course think about it but it’s already past a week or so ago so should I put it on my calendar to try for next spring’s slot?

I need to learn how to plan things out better for the year instead of waiting for the thought to pop in my head and then look up and find everything is already past up.

I want to pass those 2 levels of topik (1 & 2).  This has gone on way to long and I should be able to at least past that.



Korean Typing

I was trying to type some koreanized words for some websites on my keyboard and had the hardest time.  The h sounding syllable in korean is the g key which is right next to the h key on the american english keyboard.  I was trying to type ‘hanguk’ and kept messing up.

I remember in high school where I actually had a class to teach you how to type.  I don’t know if they still have those type of classes but I remember mine.  The teacher said on day one not to look at the keyboard ever while learning to type.  Well maybe to find the key once but basically don’t look at the keyboard!  The teacher gave her reasons and it sounded logical and I followed it.  I learned home row and during any typing practice I never looked at the keyboard.  You kind of just always once you get your hands in the right position know subconsciously where the character is you are going to type.  Beautiful if you listened from day one.  Don’t look at the keyboard!

Now not everyone in my typing class followed those instructions.  There were times the teacher tried to put a sheet of paper over a student typing to force them not to look at the individual keys.  I see some of those same students today in the workplace who have learned to type rather quickly using a few fingers while still to this day glancing at the keyboard.

I learned korean typing the same way with a great program on junior naver website that is no longer there.  It was a computer game that taught you the korean letters and you learned where they were while playing the game.  But don’t look at the keyboard which I consider myself a rather fast typist in korean or at least very proficient.  The keyboards are seperate in my head.  I would actually have to stop and think about which character is where on the keyboard whether it’s english or korean characters.  You just know where it is once your fluent on the keyboard in either language.

But in trying to type english characters for korean words (which I never liked especially since learning korean alphabet is so easy) it’s a beast to combine those two.  ‘Han’ to start typing but thinking my head the korean sound I kept typing ‘한’ characters instead but then what comes out is ‘gks’.  It’s not a good practice to study korean using english representations for words and sentences in my opinion and then it doesn’t make much sense to try typing korean using english characters.  The two at least for me are two different keyboards : )

30+ days into the new year

So started off good this year.  I started before the new year to attack and memrise again.  It’s wierd going back to square 1 again but at the same time how many things I have either missed studying or forgot or never looked at.  I think in the past I tried to use this site more on different lessons and both anki when I created my own decks and then memrise where I would pick and choose which lessons I would cover.  What a mess.

The guy that did the talktomeinkorean deck in memrise deserves a big Thanks!  What a lot of work he put into it.  A deck like would be great if the team at talktomeinkorean would help out to fix some of the mistakes and add voice to alot of parts of it that don’t have audio.  But in either case I find it extremely helpful.  I always like the concept of SRS and would do decks myself.  The one thing I noticed after a time of doing it myself is I would spend more time on creating the deck than actually using it.

Bad huh?  But the reality.  So there’s an entire deck for the talktomeinkorean series and I’m going to take full advantage of it.

I have I think settled on 2 new teachers in italki.  It takes some time for them to get used to a person like me that is not a beginner and where I stand in terms of korean but they are very nice and hopefully I make using italki much more useful than 2017.  It also adds up to alot of money paying for weekly lessons so have to better results than my 1st full year of using italki in 2017.

Dramafever has a new serious ‘I am not a Robot’.  It’s turning out to be the 1st drama of


2018 that I’ll end up watching all the way through.  The male star was from ‘God of Study’ which was a great comedy drama that I loved watching.

Olympics in Korea starting soon.  I’ll have to see how and where they broadcast it here in the states.  The wife and I talked about whether we would go over a year ago but as usual money came into play and we decided not to plan a trip to go plus changing jobs at the end of 2017 made planning to go to korea pushed to the end of line for now.  But now we have to relook at possible time to visit korea.  We’ll see later what we decide.

Site Change for 2018

So thought need to go through the different themes available and pick a new one for 2018.  Must have went through 10 or 15 of them and picked this one.  Just new I guess.  It would probably help to spend a day on a weekend customizing it and finding some new pictures to put on this site.

But this theme is a start to the new year.  I’ll have to look for new korean pictures from my archives to put on this theme in a few weeks.

2018 – Starts

So we start off the year in what I think is good form.  Have switched to a couple of new teachers on italki.  I started memrise again.  Watching a new korean drama “I’m not a Robot”.  Going back and forth with podcasts and what I would use to play them with.  My  old itouch and itunes is what I ended up choosing.

Then it was looking at what podcasts I should put on there.  Still searching but think I may have a couple that are worthwhile.  One thing that I have been doing almost every morning before I go to work is to do my repetitions on memrise.  I get to work very early and to do memrise at 5:30 am in the morning is a experience when I never really considered myself a morning person.  But seeing how 2017 went I know I didn’t make anywhere close to the progress I wanted so for 2018 we seem to be off to a good start.  Here’s to another year of learning korean.

2018 – Plans

So 2018 is soon approaching and I have started to look back for this year.  I feel I have some things good and of course some things not so good.  It was almost a solid year of lessons on italki but the last quarter everything has been in a midst of change.

Due to various reasons I lost both my teachers that I was with all year.  One teacher was possibly classified as the formal korean type of teacher and the other did her classes in 100% korean.  I also made a major change in jobs in August and am still adjusting to this multi-billion dollar company I now work for but I feel it’s been a change well worth going through this.

I have been ‘testing’ out some new italki teachers and possibly have 2 ‘replacements’.  One italki teacher is from Seoul area and has been teaching for a long time on italki.  The other is a younger teacher of Korean who started early last year on italki and I am trying out a couple of more lessons with her to make sure we can make it all the way through 2018 together but have a feeling she is good.

During trial lessons I again went through finding some teachers who start at the very top of the ‘formal’ level of korean which I find quickly turns my brain to mush and had some teachers not show up for scheduled class.  I want to make 2018 better than 2017 and finding teachers who are both serious and effective no matter what medium of teaching you are talking about… hard.

I have noticed that one bench mark I have been using as I try out these teachers is always in the back of my mind while class is going on and that is my experience with  I find that this fantastic website is where I have learned so much and is such a standard when I compare other material against it.

I wish to make 2018 progress much more than I was able to in 2017.  Here’s to a new year of korean language learning!



Green Screens

It’s been what I’m probably calling a year of italki lessons.  It’s been good to keep me going through tough times.  I’ve switched jobs such a couple of month’s ago and I’m still ‘transitioning’ to the new stuff.

New insurance, new paperwork, new websites, etc…etc… But for the most part I’ve kept up the schedule of italki lessons.  I’m trying out some new italki teachers and reaching out to some that have fallen off with the schedule they provide(basically very little open slots from them) and planning for the next year of lessons.

One teacher I have tried with a few lessons and has exploded onto italki .  He started back in March of this year and is just a few lessons short of teaching already 1000 lessons.  Wow!  I finally had to try him out.  I’ve only had 3 lessons with him and should give him at least 10 lessons before saying anything but I needed to write something this month on my blog.  He uses a green screen and various pictures and videos to teach Korean.  Not earth shaking stuff but at the same time it’s something that really brighten’s up the lessons.  Using that type of green screen that is used in video production he’s trying to introduce that as a instruction tool while teaching korean.

In teaching a second language I think it helps activating the visual cortex inside your brain and trying to use a green screen and various pictures and videos while teaching helps out a lot.

He has built up a huge number of lessons taught and at this rate could surpass all the other teachers lessons in another years time.  I’ll personally see after another 10 lessons or so how it personally works for me but trying some new teacher’s is helping me get excited about another year of korean language lessons on italki.