Monday, November 29, 2010

Book Review: Part 1

Here are some of the books I use (: Bought most of them off gmarket as it's way cheaper, and also they hard to find/can't be bought in Singapore
From top to bottom:
-Complete Guide to the TOPIK Basic and Intermediate
-Sogang Text and Workbooks 1A and 1B
-Kyunghee Beginner's Books I and II

Kyunghee Beginner's Books
I've been using the Kyung Hee text in school for lessons so here are my thoughts on it. Basically it's not a book meant for self-learners. You really got to be there for the lessons to fully understand the grammar points, especially for beginners. There are no explanations given for grammar points, be it in Korean or English. Only a sample statement was given and you would have to infer its meaning just from that. Also if I didn't remember wrongly, the instructions were all in Korean too, and the examples given aren't really that helpful. However with some additional notes provided by my teacher in school, it was still a functional textbook I suppose. Definitely not recommended for self-learners though.

Sogang Text and Workbooks
I bought this series from gmarket as I read good reviews about it. But as it is a textbook meant for in-class learning, it is difficult to get maximum benefits out of it for self-learners as many of the activities require a partner for conversation practice. Also, it skips teaching Hangeul totally, which is not something a beginner would expect. My tutor also commented that the dialogues seem a little odd. Not too sure why though. My other gripe with this series is that they do not teach irregular verbs, as in those that end with ㅂ or 으, such as 춥다 or 예쁘다 and so on. I had a very hard time trying to understand what the stars beside these verbs meant at first. After some time I figured out that they either indicated irregular or honorific verbs. Other than that, I quite like the workbook as it gives ample practice for grammar and vocab (: Oh and see the two thin little books on the very top of the stack? They came with the textbooks and is a summary of all the grammar and vocabulary. Very handy for bringing out for a read on the bus/train! (:

Complete Guide to the TOPIK
Useful book for practising for TOPIK! They separate the questions into the 4 different sections, and also give 2 mock papers at the back for practice. However, comparing the questions here to the actual TOPIK papers, they seem a little more difficult. The essay questions are definitely tougher for one. Plus answers are provided at the back which is good (:

Will continue with the rest next time! (:

Friday, November 26, 2010

piano sheets galore!

I think I might have just found my haven for korean piano sheets! Click here for it (:

I always hear nice songs while watching korean dramas and want to find piano sheets for them, but it's so difficult as the titles are usually in korean. Now that I've found this website, I have endless supply of piano scores to play! Plus it has Yiruma scores too. YAY =)

I remember listening to Yiruma all the time just a year back, when I was on exchange at Seoul National University. It's good music for reflections at the end of a day, when I'm back in the dormitory with only my books and laptop as companions. More on that next time (:

15 hours till end of exams,
아자 아자 화이팅! ^^

Thursday, November 25, 2010

the humble beginnings..


After reading Korean language learning blogs, especially Equinox and Hangukdrama for the past few months and getting really inspired by them, I finally decided to get down to it and set up one of my own! (: It'll be somewhere where I can pen down my thoughts about Korean and Korea, and maybe look back in a year's time to see how much I've progressed (: As I'm only just starting out, I'm bound to make mistakes in my korean, please do correct me so I can learn! 감사합니다!

Have got school exams in 2 days' time so will do a review of the Korean resources I have used so far, and also an update on my first TOPIK results once it's finished (:

till then,
starxblinded ^^