Creating A Japanese Language Learning Log

“The greatest worth is self-mastery.” – Buddhist Quote

You know how in school they’re always telling you to take notes for the test? Well, this is kind of like that, but now you’re taking notes only for yourself and your own self-mastery (no tests here… just real knowledge). One really great way to keep track of your studies and figure out where you need to focus (as well as figure out what you’re really good at) is by creating a Japanese language log. Every time you study, you should post things like…

  • What you learned.
  • How you felt about what you learned (was it frustrating? Easy? etc) so you can figure out what causes you trouble and focus on fixing that.
  • What you need to work on.
  • What you want to learn next.
  • etc.

I’ll give you prompts for a little while when it comes to your learning log, but eventually it’ll be up to you.

Now, there’s several ways to keep a log, and several things you can use, but here are my suggestions. It’s up to you, though.

  • Create A Blog: Blogs are really easy to create now-a-days. Services like WordPress (my fave) and Blogger are super simple to create (not like you need anything fancy, either) and will allow you to post things up daily. Plus, it’s out there on the interwebs, meaning you might spend a little more time on it (which means you get a little extra study from it as well).
  • Evernote: I think this is probably the best choice (but really, it comes down to your own style). Evernote lets you take notes, tag those notes, and search for them later (best search function of all the options here by far). It really is an amazing study resource, and if I was in school Evernote is probably the only thing I’d ever use. If you use Evernote, I’d recommend titling each note with “[DATE] [SUBJECT]” so it’s easy to find later. Then, just make sure you tag things really well (tags will be your friend later on, as you have more notes in there).
  • gDocs, MS Word, Notebook: Then there’s also Google Docs, Microsoft Word, and a regular old pen and paper notebook. There’s something nice about writing things with your hand, for sure, though it does take a bit longer. I still recommend Evernote as #1 (you don’t even have to get the premium version of Evernote…free is good enough) because of it’s awesome search abilities.

Pick one of these note-taking devices and head over to the next page. You can even add your “excuses list” and “reason(s) list” here, just to solidify them a little bit more. When you’re ready, it’s time to get started! You’re all prepared for the worst (though I think you’ll find that the worst isn’t all that bad, when it comes down to it).

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