I’m posting a day late since I was out of town, but as of Saturday I was at 220,526 words. Didn’t read quite as much as I wanted to during the week, but made up for it on the weekend. Haven’t updated my book lists or sidebar either…. Well, that can wait.
I’m excited that this blog has been getting some attention recently! I think the most logical way to promote extensive reading among Japanese learners would be to try to reach Japanese teachers, since they’re in a better position to create libraries available to multiple students and those of us studying on our own have to fend for ourselves. Still, I get the sense that many of the people who have found this blog through Twitter should do even better with extensive reading than I have, provided they can find enough of the right kind of material. I wish I had discovered extensive reading earlier and spent less time puzzling out texts above my level, but that did mean I was exposed to a lot of words, and although most of them didn’t sink too deeply into my mind at the time, many of them were then later reinforced by extensive reading. My impression is that many other people studying on their own have also immersed themselves into listening, reading and so on, and I bet they have their own stores of latent vocabulary that will be brought to the forefront and strengthened through extensive reading.
I hope I’m doing a good job explaining what exactly I’m getting at… I was mostly writing this blog for my own reference, and it shows, so I should do more to make it useful to other people. I was rather enjoying having a blog that no one read, though. My paperdoll page gets about fifty times the traffic this one does… Not that I am complaining!
Update (June 28): Hey, they’re starting to confirm my theory! ^^ Check out Operation Subarashii: Read More and Extensive Reading meet Incremental Reading, or How to (多読)tadoku without a 日本語 library.
- Extensive reading is known as 多読, or tadoku in Japanese. To try it, start with very easy books (ones with no more than two or three unknown words per page), and follow these principles:
1. Don’t look up words in the dictionary while reading.
2. Skip over parts you don’t understand.
3. If you aren’t enjoying one book, toss it aside and get another.
Find something to read!
Hundreds of free books and stories online
Local bookstores and libraries
Buying new and used books online
For more information, read "What Is Extensive Reading?" and "Classification System."
To learn more about Kunihide Sakai, who developed the three principles of tadoku and has worked to popularize it in Japan for years, read this interview with him.
Finally, for more than you ever wanted to know about why I believe extensive reading is worth your time, read my tadoku manifesto.
Superfluous StatsBooks read: 303
Word count (since starting the blog): 380,500
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