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So What's Your Story?

Posted: April 9th, 2008 10:22 pm
by rooraa
I thought it would be fun if we posted just why we are here, at Koreanclass101.

Like do you just like learning new languages, it's your native language that you need brushing up on, or your spose is korean, etc

And what's your level currently? Are you a totol newbie, or can you carry on a conversation pretty well, fluent....etc

As for me, I started out wanting to learn korean becuase I really like korean boy bands and korean dramas, so I wanted to understand the songs and dramas, but now it's starting to be more like a goal now, I want to see if I could actually teach myself a new language without having a real personal teacher (though i would very much like one XD )

Oh yeah, and I'm a total and complete newbie! :wink:
but hopefully not for long....^^

So what's your story?

Posted: April 10th, 2008 4:32 am
by Bouks
Thanks for telling your story, Rooraa!

I started watching Korean dramas a few years back. It was my first exposure to hearing lots of Korean, and I discovered that it's a beautiful-sounding language that sparked my curiosity. I have studied many languages in the past, so I decided to just add this one on for fun. I learned about KoreanClass from having participated in

I'm almost finished with the first season of the Newbie and Beginner levels. I have a Korean-American friend who thinks I'm more advanced than that, but that's only because I can imitate accents well, so I give the impression I know more than I actually do. But I can't hold a real conversation yet, just snippets of one. So...I'm a newbie 8)

Posted: April 10th, 2008 9:49 am
by Keith
I'll chime in here :)

Although I grew up Korean in America, I didn't actually know how to speak very well. I didn't take Korean very seriously, but I always knew what it meant. It was just difficult for me to speak. But after getting a bit older, and spending some more time with my mom, I became extremely interested in learning Korean. We would watch dramas together, hold conversations about our family history, and it sparked my interest ;)

And it all came pretty natural for me after I put in a little effort :) I guess I'm lucky. hehe.

Posted: April 10th, 2008 10:55 am
by holdfast
i literally woke up one day and thought, "I HAVE TO LEARN KOREAN!!!!" i don't know why. i really didn't have any exposure to korean lanugage or culture before that moment. but that day i went online and looked up korean writing script and taught myself to read/write/type in about 3 hours, and just continued studying from there. i watch waaaay too much korean tv on the internet (mostly variety shows - i don't really get into dramas) and i listen to a lot of kpop (which admittedly, i only listened to at first because it was the only korean music that i could find - but now i legitimately like it even though i am not a pop fan).

i would say i am somewhere in the intermediate range. i can hold a civilized conversation with adults, and children (which is sometimes more difficult!), and i can watch tv without subtitles and usually understand what is going on and quite a bit of the dialogue. i've also been going to a korean church where i live and i don't understand every word, but i understand enough to be able to participate in the group discussion and even read out loud when we take turns (but that is still scary!!). i'm still better at reading and understanding than i am at speaking and forming my own sentences, but i think that's mostly because i don't understand all of the subtleties of the language and i don't want to say something in a way that would suggest a different meaning than i am trying to portray. i overthink myself out of talking most of the time!

all of that being said, i do like languages in general, but this is the first time i have studied this much. seriously, i can't do or think about anything else. i still don't know why, but i love it!

some people call me obsessed, but at least i'm passionate about something, right?

and i am here at kclass because i really like the way things are explained in a very natural way (sometimes textbooks teach things in a way that normal people don't speak) and the podcasts are good for listening practice for sure! i only wish there were more advanced lessons (hint.. hint..) (:

Posted: April 10th, 2008 2:19 pm
by Bouks
Holdfast: languages are fantastic things to be obsessed about 8) There is something enchanting about Korean, isn't there? When I was living in France, we had satellite TV and I watched Korean channels...I forget what network, but I used to love watching "Happy Sunday", even though I didn't understand anything they were saying. What a hilarious show! Do you know it? Is it available on the Internet?

Keith: how fortunate that you have so much connection with your heritage. Mine is lost these past few one around anymore who can teach me Gaelic or Hungarian. But that's ok...I just adopt other people's cultures 8) You speak Korean so naturally that I thought you at least spent your childhood there.

Rooraa: I forgot to say that I am sure you can learn Korean very well without a teacher physically present. I studied many languages, but all of them before sites like this were developed. I am amazed at how effective KoreanClass is at language teaching, and wish I'd had something like it when I started studying languages. *Hwei-ting* 8)

Posted: April 10th, 2008 8:52 pm
by maxiewawa
My girlfriend and I are both very interested in languages, and Korean was the only language that I didn't understand. She lived in Seoul for 2 years, and speaks pretty well.

Also, I did a semester of Chinese last year, and knew that almost half the students would be Korean. On top of that, everyone's favourite Korean language podcast started around when classes began, so it seemed like fate.

My semester finished in January, but I promised everyone that the next time we met we'd be speaking in Korean, not Chinese. :D

Posted: April 11th, 2008 2:41 am
by John
My story is practically a zerox copy of a couple already told....I found "Autumn In My Heart" or whichever title you want to use, and watched it with sub-titles, and I was hooked. I started looking for resources online, found some things that were started but never continued and then found a skype buddy in Seoul who became a good friend while teaching me some Korean....I bought several books and audio lessons, and eventually found K-Class.

Posted: April 11th, 2008 4:52 am
by _petiteclaire_
I have been studying japanese for more than 10 years now, in parallel with my other "real life" studies and work. After I took the french national examination for medical specialties almost 4 years ago, I found myself with 4 months of (almost-)vacation, after working non-stop for the exam for 3 years. So I decided to add another language to japanese and Korean seemed obvious. I bought the only self-learning Korean course available in French, but it was so bad I couldn't get much out of it, and as I became a surgery resident I had much less free time. Being a Jpod listener from day 1, when Kclass was launched last summer I had the perfect excuse to go back to studying Korean... especially since this year I have a little more free time (I'm on leave from the hospital for 1 year, studying for a Master's Degree in transplantation immunology).

I love my job as a surgeon and wouldn't change for the world, but I always found I needed some radically different study (ie languages; I'm considering starting on russian too) to balance out the time I spend at the hospital.

Posted: April 11th, 2008 5:26 am
by John
I used to love watching "Happy Sunday", even though I didn't understand anything they were saying. What a hilarious show! Do you know it? Is it available on the Internet?

It's a little piece anyway....

Posted: April 11th, 2008 11:21 am
by Keith
_petiteclaire_ wrote:I'm considering starting on russian too) to balance out the time I spend at the hospital.

You're lucky ;) We're working to bring out a right now! But I hope they don't steal you from!! :D

Posted: April 11th, 2008 4:14 pm
by _petiteclaire_
No chance of that !!! I just wish there were more french people learning Korean....

Posted: April 12th, 2008 12:00 am
by Bouks
I lived in Marseille for a long time and speak French fluently...does that count? 8) I wish more francophones were learning Korean as well. I will be spending the summer back in Marseille, and I can't recall ever meeting any Korean people there to practice with. Most Asian people there are Vietnamese or Thai.

Posted: April 12th, 2008 1:09 am
by _petiteclaire_
There are more and more korean tourists in Paris, korean cuisine and restaurants are gaining popularity, but I don't think there is a korean bookshop (there are 2 japanese bookshops, and a handful of chinese ones) and when I last went looking for a korean grammar at my favourite specialist bookshop they gave me a weird look. Learning Japanese was all the rage 2 or 3 years ago (a lot of "Japanese through manga" were published then), and now every body seems to study Chinese (which is currently the fourth most-studied language in France after English, Spanish and German), so I'm hoping that Korean will be next...

Posted: April 12th, 2008 7:49 am
by rooraa
:D!! So many people replied! Or "told their story" ^^

Wow, I wish I could comment on each one, but it's really fasinating how all the reasons are so different =]

Bouks, thanks for the support! I'm gonna try my best!

Really, I should be trying to learn my native tongue (I'm at an ultra newbie levelin Vietnamese) but Korea and its language just interests me so much more >_<

holdfast, I completely understand your liking for korean variety shows! They are so entertainging and hilarious! I can't get enough of them.

_petiteclaire_, I never heard of "Japanese through manga" but a few years ago I used to be so addicted to manga....
I wish they had "korean through manhwa"!

I wish more American people were learning Korean!

You know what, they really should offer korean classes in high school. :?

Posted: April 12th, 2008 12:16 pm
by holdfast
rooraa wrote:I wish more American people were learning Korean!

You know what, they really should offer korean classes in high school. :?

i completely agree! i have yet to meet another american (who does not come from korean descent) that speaks korean. well, at least not face to face - i know there are a couple of us floating around here. i have met one guy who wants to learn, and i keep offering to help him, but i'm not sure how interested he actually is.

and as far as offering it in high school, heck i'd be happy if they even offered it in college! there is not a college in my area that offers korean. there aren't any other korean classes anywhere near me either. but, i teach preschool, and i've been teaching the kids in my class some korean words just for fun. the parents like it. i'm teaching them the 3 little bears song right now.