Memrise – One solid month

So using memrise all month…no breaks…every day has been interesting.  The app on the phone is useless and I wish they would take feedback I see in their forums seriously.  They want you to pay for this product which I would do no problem but they doing the opposite and I see so many users in their forum wishing another company would come in and replace them.

I wake up at approximately 4:30 am everyday now.  Even on my days off I tend to wake up still around 5 am.  Before I leave for work I make sure to hit the streaks of each of the memrise courses I’m going through including the main one for Talk to me in korean.  Since I’m in deep now I have hundreds of ‘reps’ as I call them for the memrise courses.  It’s not uncommon to see 60-70 waiting for me for the TTMIK memrise course alone.  I do not want any excuses though so I spend at least an hour in the morning doing them before I leave for work.

It doesn’t stop there.  There’s alot more rep’s waiting for me when I get home and I’ll do them at various times before I go to bed.  I also do the ‘make sure it shows 0 rep’s beofore you go to sleep’ thing.

  1.  I could come up with some other alternatives to do ‘reps’ since I don’t like their phone app but basically I just do them on my main computer at home.
  2. One person created TTMIK memrise course so there are mistakes and some wishes I had for the courses in memrise.  He should get a medal for doing all this work which he said took 2 years !!!!!!
  3. If there was a easy way to add a meme for when the question showed alot of problems could be solved that I have encountered.  Things like mistakes or places where you might have to make sure ‘우리’ is in your answer otherwise you get it wrong would be so helpful!!!  Object marks are needed in some answers but not others, sometimes you should be using a specific verb form but you use a different one,  sometimes you have to put it in the format the author of the course created it and other answers you have the flexibility of not putting ‘저는’ to start your answer off when your going to refer to yourself.
  4. Oh how it would be great TTMIK crew worked with this gentleman that created the memrise course or created another one.
  5. I find SRS training extremely helpful in getting the knowledge to go deeper and deeper into your brain.  It’s a lot of work though going through a course like this because when you don’t get the ‘answer’ just right sometimes …it’s wrong so that means you get it again much sooner and those items start to pile up waiting for you.

I made it through one whole month so here’s to Sept and another month of memrise reps.  Just in terms of making me do ‘something’ everyday with korean though it’s been great.  I’m addicted to all the orange checks on the courses and the streaks that I have kept going all month.


I even added a picture from a korean movie I like to my profile on memrise.  Whatever you can do to keep the studying going …..keep it up!



Korean Studying – 5

5 – ‘I don’t really think about a structure when I post on this blog’

Ok last of this series of posts.  I simply put what I feel or did at any particular time on this blog to simply record what I did.  It’s been going on since 2010 and I still keep going with it.  I could probably think better and plan better blog posts but it’s really just for me as a form to record my progress for myself and if anybody finds anything useful than even better.

I can see from stats that people visit my blog on a regular basis and I could probably structure things better or make posts more interesting but this blog is really just a moment in time for me to write down my journey so one day when I’m fluent in Korean I can look back at my own posts and the many steps I have taken to get there.

I’ve seen so many blogs of other korean language learners disappear through the years but even though it’s not at the level I would like to be at in 2018 this blog continues on with my record of my own korean language learning journey.

Maybe one day a youtube channel….lol

Korean Studying – 4

4 – ‘Unsure of what levels would be considered beginner, intermidate or advanced’

Sure there’s stuff out there to tell you that but again that doesn’t mean I really looked at it or maybe even find it.  Now that I’m going to settle on ‘korean grammar in use’ series of textbooks I can see the exact grammar points for each TOPIK level.  I’ve had the beginner book for years but barely got past the first few chapters.

Now with one of my italki teachers we have the list of grammar points that are considered TOPIK 1 and starting to go over the ones I’m weak in or could not even remember (maybe I studied them in the past but don’t remember).  We went through each one and rated if I knew them or weak in them.  There’s alot.

Again there are a host of techniques and methods but I’m looking at if I don’t know all the grammar points for say TOPIK level 1 why am I studying levels that are in the intermediate or advanced levels.  When we would go over some points or exercises at the beginner level that I couldn’t handle it’s like wait.  I need a strong foundation before I get into the deeper part of the pool.  I have yet to really develop that foundation and I have to be self critical in reality when it comes to what I have done up to this point and the actual level where I am at today.

Solid beginner level foundation is my goal with this point.

Korean Studying – 3

3 – ‘Limited Accountability’

Ok so I made the investment to finding tutors back I think in fall of 2016.  italki is great to find different tutors and a godsend in terms of other methods which someone may not have available in their geographic area.  I can go on about trying to find ‘official’ course to attend and I probably wrote about some in past posts but italki and skype (or google handouts, zoom, whatever app the tutor takes) have been fantastic!

I’ve tried out a number of the teachers on italki and settled on 2 that I felt would be helpful to me.  Of course as I was worried about I ended up losing both teachers due to different reasons and now I once again have settled on 2 others.  I’m a working adult so it’s basically a investment that I look at as.  But again you start off with 2 different people and I’m a unique student for them to figure out exactly where I am in my korean language learning journey.

They have been super nice and I shared to them my new goal and have been it known that I need to hit this basic level and get that under my belt.  Looking at another resource that I have revisited is the Korean Grammar in Use book series.  They break the levels of the TOPIK with grammar points covered in each level.  I went through it with my one italki teacher and found I was very weak still on a number of grammar points and without a plan seemed to be jumping around all over the place learning things when I couldn’t even do so many grammar points at what is considered the ‘beginner’ level.

So we are going to focus on these lessons from this series till I have it down for next year.  I am very good at showing up for class and always on time for class but one of the problems is the study after class that I have not been so diligent on doing.  Well I shared my thoughts and actually spent one whole class talking with each teacher on my progress and goals.  It was an eye opener to myself personally after all these years that was so weak on grammar points I should have done by now!  I think you have to spend some class time (even though you end up paying for it) giving your teacher enough background to let them know what you’ve been through in your language learning journey especially when your an adult like myself that have taken, tried and done so many things along this korean language learning journey.

I show up for classes 3 times a week, I have to invest this money in myself and try to make sure I use this as a one important source of accountability for what I’m trying to do.


Korean Studying – 2

2 – ‘ I’ve not really ever created any goals’.

Sure yes I have at times said this or that and did this or that but sticking with it for the long term has been a problem of mine.  Ok so looking at the TOPIK again is my new goal.  Why?  Well I’m looking at it like I do for a certification test for computers that I did this year with a friend of mine and you plan on the test and then study like crazy to pass.  Same thing here but on a larger scale of course.  In Chicago there’s only 1 time a year to take the TOPIK and that’s every April.

Back in 2013 I on a whim decided to sign up that year for the TOPIK.  It was for level’s one and two and I didn’t pass but I wanted to see what it was like.  As more and more resources are available on the internet you can actually see what tests are like and find past tests for study help out there.  I did none of that in 2013 but I can at least say I tried it and have the experience of taking it one time all ready.  Sign up is in beginning of next year and that is going to be my new major milestone goal.  Pass at least TOPIK 1 which has now changed since the last time I took it.  TOPIK 1 is level’s 1 and 2 and from what I can read does not include any writing portion on the test.  If I can keep this plan going I should be able to pass this level I would think without a problem.  Again we’ll see how the next 7-8 months go.

Korean Studying

So for the second half of the year I had to step back and look at what I was doing for the first half of the year with study and make changes.  I’ve been on and off for years and it shows.  But I will not give up but at the same time have fallen into probably all the traps of many language learners.  Study hard for awhile and life pops up with other things good and bad.  Don’t study then for awhile and forget alot.  You name it I’ve probably experienced it on this journey.  My blog here has been going on since 2010 and I have yet to make it out of the beginner level.  What the heck am I doing wrong.  Well lots of things for sure!

Some thoughts that I’ve had in the last couple of months.

  1. I’m not very organized when it comes to any plan for study.
  2. I’ve not really ever created any goals.
  3. Limited Accountability.
  4. Unsure of what levels would be considered beginner , intermediate or advanced.
  5. I don’t really think about a structure when I post on this blog.  I just write down what I’m thinking at the moment and hope spell check catches alot of errors.

So some high level points in the problems above I’m working on.

  1. SRS, memrise, quizlet….all these tools out there for memory yet I never really effectively used it.  I can go back in my own posts on anki and things but I feel I have not been consistent enough for a long enough period with any toolset.  So right now I’m focusing hard with utilizing memrise.  Are there other tools and techniques but for this point I’m trying to make best use of SRS algorithms.  I’ve been around korean language now for so many years I know ALOT about korean and know probably a couple thousand words but in the last year with bad study habits seemed to be forgetting alot and have the word at the tip of my tongue but struggle to remember it.  For this point I’m making a plan to use some of the courses in memrise.  They use SRS algorithms and I have seen improvement in the last couple of months that I started back up with this.

2.      Memrise phone app ‘is really really really horrible’.  I was looking on their forums             and nothing but complaints on it that I can see.  I agree but want to utilize what’s               already available out there and TTMIK course on memrise is one of the best                         available.  So even though I can really only use my pc for memrise study that’s ok.             It would be great to have a great mobile app on my phone but it’s useless from my             point of view.



These are the backbone for the second half of the year for my SRS study method.  I’m going through all TTMIK lessons from the 1st one on up and for the last couple of months have been able to do almost one a day.  I had a miss of one day and lost my streak.  It’s been 35 days as of this post and I’m addicted now to keep my streaks going.  I put just 5 minutes a day as a goal but it turns out I have to spend way more than 5 minutes both keeping the streaks going and keeping up with all the repetitions for each.

In my daily routine I have been working on my attempts to improve sleep, exercising, eating better….alot of biohacking of my daily life.  One thing I do is try to stick to a consistent sleep schedule even on the weekends.  I’ve never in my whole life have been a morning person but now I wake up usually at 4:30 am to 5:00 am and before work I make sure I get TTMIK rep’s done even before I leave for work.  I want to keep this streak going till the end of the TTMIK lessons.  Let’s see if I can do that.

I picked the memrise courses as follow.  TTMIK course is one of the best out there and it includes alot of the audio from the lessons themselves.  Mistakes yes but the guy that created put in alot of hard work and deserves a huge thanks for the effort.  It would be nice TTMIK actually worked on creating some of their own memrise courses but who knows.  The others are ‘2000 Essential Korean Words for Beginners’.  I have this book and the course is hit or miss with audio being there or not.  But I’m going to go through it for vocabulary.  I also picked 2 other vocabulary ones because they put the vocabulary for both Topik 1 and 2 into some courses.  Again audio may be there for some and mistakes are there but I’m trying to utilize them.

One of my korean teachers on italki had created a memrise course for her classes but hadn’t published it because of technical difficulties with adding audio.  I figured out how to fix that for her and now she is starting to use her course she created and I’ll work that into my routine as well.



TTMIK Website Redesign

Finally they’re redesigning their website.  So much great content but needs to be organized to find all this great content though.
Oh please actually continue with more grammar lessons!  Why did you stop so long ago?
More lessons to take the content level up into the advanced stages.  They stopped at level 10 with 2 lessons and haven’t continued in some time.
Fingers crossed!
Check out this link for beta testing –
Talk To Me In Korean@ttmik

We are in the process of completely redesigning and rebuilding our website! Would you help us with some beta testing?