A Beginner’s Guide To Mastering The Korean Language
When one learns a new language, there is a level of proficiency and fluency that one wants to reach. Proficiency deals with your skill level and how well you can utilise what you know. Fluency refers to the speed or smoothness at which the language is spoken. When you’ve reached native levels at both proficiency and fluency levels, that is when you’ve truly mastered the foreign language.
On that note, several things go into the mastering of a language. In particular, you’d need to at least cover the fundamentals, that being reading, writing, speaking and listening. This can be daunting, especially to beginners, but don’t be scared!
If you’re interested in picking up the Korean language, here are a few beginner-friendly steps you would want to take to take to master the language completely.
Start With Hangeul (Korean Alphabets)
Seeing as how the Korean writing script is vastly different from the English alphabet, the first step to mastering the language is to first learn Hangul, the Korean alphabet. It may seem somewhat intimidating at first, but rest assured for Hangul is considered as one of the simplest alphabet systems in the world. With 24 letters – 14 of which are consonants and 10 are vowels – you’d be able to pick it up fairly quickly.
Hangul sets the foundation of the Korean language, and luckily for you, the pronunciation of each character remains the same; thus you’d be able to at least vocalise a word even if you may not know the meaning. When reading a book or any other material, you may want to also recite it out loud as it significantly improve your pronunciation skills. Thus, secure your foundations before moving to the next step.
Learn Words And Phrases
After learning the Korean alphabet system, the next step is to naturally start building your vocabulary. A great way to go about it is by picking the commonly used English words and study their Korean counterparts. You can then progress into common phrases once you’re comfortable enough to do so.
Practising at least an hour a day consistently is guaranteed to go a long way. After all, repetition is key and you’d help your brain transcribe the new information into your long-term memory. With constant practise, you’d realise that learning will be more manageable – a sign that you’re improving and ready for the next level.
Find Others Who Are Also Brushing Up Their Korean
Fluency is highly dependent on how well you communicate in the language and for you to be relatively fluent in Korean, you’d have to practise speaking Korean! This poses an opportunity to engage with others who wants to learn Korean online. If you’re not in an environment wherein you’re surrounded with people interested to learn Korean, you can always find a community on the Internet.
Start by joining forums with a community of people learning Korean; you can also connect with native Koreans who are looking to improve their English proficiency and fluency! You will converse and share ideas with those within the community, and learn the Korean culture from the natives! It is vital that you make an effort to speak fluently as mastery of a language isn’t complete without adequate speaking skills.
Download Helpful eBooks
As one of your language learning materials, eBooks are highly helpful. Since you can easily get them from the Internet, they give greater accessibility for an in-depth explanation. A few eBooks can put you on the right track in mastering Korean and some recommended ones to start with are Korean Grammar eBooks (a site with many free Korean grammar eBooks), Talk to Me in Korean (a detailed textbook for those wanting to learn Korean from scratch containing all you need to know) and Quick and Easy Hangul – Learn the Basics of the Korean Alphabet in Just a Few Hours.
Take Korean Classes
Whilst learning on your own is a viable option, its effectiveness cannot be compared to a traditional Korean classroom. With a teacher to guide you through the lesson and correct your mistakes, and peers to discuss matters with, this constant engagement is not something that’s readily available unless you enrol in a Korean class.
Nothing beats a traditional classroom setting, but COVID19 has made learning rather difficult. To curb the spread of the coronavirus whilst safeguarding your health, you may want to consider enrolling in online Korean classes. The model is similar to the traditional lessons, albeit now you’re doing in a digital space and in the comforts of your own home.
At Korean Explorer, we are determined to give you the set of tools to help master the Korean language. With a straightforward curriculum that’ll ease your learning, these online classes taught by native Korean teachers are designed to be the entry points to the language. It’s your make or break it moment in your pursuit to master the Korean language, so don’t let it pass you by!