Posted in books, Selfstudy, TOPIK, Uncategorized

Preparing for TOPIK

Lately I have been thinking more and more about TOPIK and I have been trying to figure out how i can prepare myself in the best possible way, without boring myself by working to much with the same materials, and I think I have found a decent balance.

Basically I have decided that the best way to prepare is to expose myself to as much Korean as possible. Reading, writing, speaking, listening – you name it. At the same time I’ll be studying with a variety of books.
I finished my last two TOPIK 1 mock tests with a decent result, and I’m currently in the process of deciding whether or not to take both TOPIK 1 and 2, in April. I know I won’t be able to make a decision any time soon, but I also know that even if I decide to only take TOPIK 1, then my TOPIK 2 preparations will never go to waste. I WILL take TOPIK 2 eventually, and preparing for TOPIK 2 will only make TOPIK 1 seem easier, right?

Anyhow, this is how I have been studying for the last few days!
I go through 2 grammar points from my Intermediate book, as well as review the two previous grammar points. At some point all this grammar will hopefully stick to my brain! This book has a quiz after each chapter, in the same format as the TOPIK test, so that is definitely a plus in my book! (I’m working on a few reviews, so more on that later!)
After that I go through 1 article from the TTMIK news in Korean book, which also has a quiz after each article, in the TOPIK format!
The next book I work with is my TOPIK 쓰기 book. Here I make sure to make at least one assignment every day, and I get my answers checked by my language partners, through the native speakers on italki, or by my italki teacher.
Lastly I continue reading 어린왕자 and articles on naver. All these things are improving my reading skills, my vocabulary and my grammar skills as well.
When it comes to listening, I’m using a variety of materials as usual. Most of the time I listen to kpop, watch tv shows, dramas, movies and listen to different podcasts. Whenever I travel or exercise, there will be something Korean in my ears.
When writing with my language partners I make sure to challenge myself over and over again. That’s the best way to make the grammar and vocabulary stick properly.
My weekly italki sessions are continuing as usual.

This is how I am studying right now, but as soon as I feel a bit more comfortable with TOPIK 2, I’ll start using my other two preparation books for 쓰기 and 읽기. Also, I have ordered 7 books so far this month, and since only two have arrived, there will probably be some changes. I ordered the PASS NEW TOPIK books through TTMIK, and I’m currently trying to decide if I should buy the Video Course as well. I mean I WILL end up buying it, but I think I will wait till January, since I have plenty to work with right now. We’ll see.

Here’s all the books I’m using or is about to use, featuring 토끼 because he follows me everywhere.. And yes I named him 토끼.

24 november 1

Posted in books, Selfstudy, Uncategorized

Making myself feel better

So yesterday I ended my toughest week in a very long time. I had to finish my exam report and then attend my schools open house, where I had to present our project a billion times for different judges and guests. It was a ton of fun, but around noon I started to feel unwell and when I reached the end of my 12 hour school day, I was feeling really sick. I was hoping that I was just feeling sick as a result of a really long and stressful week, with no sleep, so I went home and straight to bed.
Sadly that wasn’t the case so there I was: sick, tired and really in need of something to cheer me up. So how is the best way to make myself feel better? Well if you know me just a little, then you probably already know that I immediately turned to my Korean books!

Today I started my day by opening up my TTMIK Level 1 grammar book. I ordered it when the pre-orders started, simply because I wanted to support the people who made my Korean journey possible, and because I really wanted to have a signed copy of the book! To be honest I didn’t buy it because I thought it would be useful to me, since I’m currently about to start Level 8 of the TTMIK podcast, and I have listened to the Level 1 podcast several times as well as read through the PDF and finished the workbook.
However when reading through the book, I immediately started to feel better, because I realized that I was actually right. The book didn’t teach my anything that TTMIK hadn’t already tought me back when I started. I already knew it all, and it seemed so easy and logical, unlike when I went through the Level 1 curriculum the first time!
This experience is more than enough to make me feel better about everything!

After reading through the Level 1 book, I decided to continue reading  어린왕자, and I then realized that I am already more than halfway through chapter 3, which means that when I finish this chapter (I’ll read the last two pages as soon as I finish this post), then I will have doubled my weekly goal, despite having an awfully stressful week! I don’t think I need to explain how happy that makes me feel!
I also realized that the 인디고 books are placed in the ‘advanced’ category at twochois, and even though that doesn’t really mean anything (let’s be honest here. A persons ‘language level’ is an extremely individual thing and we all have different ideas of when someone is a beginner, intermediate and so on.) then it still made me feel really good, because I am doing surprisingly well. I just recently started to think of myself as an intermediate learner and this my first try with a book that isn’t made for learning purposes, so that makes me feel even better. Even though it takes quite a while to read (compared to anything I read in Danish or English) and I sometimes have to look up many words, I actually CAN read it. I do NOT feel lost.

These two things aren’t big accomplishments in any way, but they made me feel so much better, and they really made me realize that you should never underestimate yourself or your small accomplishments for that matter.

Anyway.. It looks like this post turned out to be more like a rant, than an update, haha! Now I’m going to make myself a cup of 유자차 and lay down on the couch with my book. Since I recently ordered ‘크리스마스 캐럴’, it would awesome if I could finish 어린왕자 before the middle of December as the latest!
여러분 화이팅!