Damn duo, slow down.
I dont know the first thing about speaking japanese, how it works etc.. Yet here I am on the intro and you're throwing complete sentences at me.. short sentences, but complete.
how about starting me off with just learning some words, or concepts. the first few lessons taught me to translate sounds to a handful of completely alien symbols to me which is good and fine, but im having a hard time following all the sounds you're throwing at me with small but complete sentences. Try slowing down bit and just give me some vocabulary to work with word by word or something.
There are a couple of reasons you're struggling.
If you're a native English speaker, FSI estimates it is the hardest language in the hardest subset of languages English speakers find most difficult to learn. It's structure is very very different from English and not likely to feel intuitive to beginners.
The current course is only in limited beta release. That means it is still basically being tested for bugs, errors, skill placement, pacing, and other things like that.
So, first of all congrats on getting as far as you have!
Japanese is not only a super hard language for many people, but Duolingo's Japanese course in it's current beta stage is one of the shortest courses on Duolingo. This means, not a lot of time to explore the language and warm up to it. I don't know if V.1 of the full release course will add more content or not. But, over the next few years, it is likely that the tree (course) will be expanded with more lessons, vocabulary, and a tips and notes section (crosses fingers on that last part.) This is what some of the other courses have experienced, a slow evolution and continuous improvement.
Meanwhile, I encourage you to branch out in the resources you're using to study Japanese. It is very common for people to use more than learning resource, regardless of which course they are taking on Duolingo.
The forums are a bit glitchy right now. So, it might take some time to load or they might fail to load. Outside of those, you can create a discussion post asking for Japanese study resource suggestions.
Good luck! :)
thanks.. Yeah I figured it was still early (I've already noticed changes within a day or twos time). Just wanted to give my feedback. Its going well so far, they just need to slow it down a bit.. If its considered one of the hardest to learn, they should definitely add more lessons early on for better understanding. I'll be coming back and looking at other things to help with it as well, i've got a few other android apps and some games and I'll probably need to find some books at the library as well.
The primary question when learning Japanese is motivation. If you actually want to learn Japanese to get around in Japan, be able to do some basic reading and some basic conversational skills then the Duolingo approach makes sense, sort of. The pace is fast though, and I've only done a very few lessons in Duolingo so far. However, it's a good thing to dive into the deep and not bother wasting your time learning an aspect of the Japanese language natives wouldn't really use. I must say though, I do have some prior experience with Japanese already, making the symbols not as alien.
If, like is common for those learning Japanese as well, is merely to understand anime / Japanese movies without subtitles then it might be worth it to look into a Romaji course instead. It can greatly accelerate your ability to understand Japanese, however you'll not be able to read nor properly write Japanese.
Ahhhh !! Always use other resources !! I use Duolingo as a side sort of thing. I focus on learning from textbooks first, such as Genki. I've realized that, especially since there's no online version of Japanese yet, you literally have to figure out everything by yourself, that includes continuously researching various grammar rules. Also, read JLPT N5 level news articles and stories. I recommend using TangoRisto (its free, don't worry). Also, not spon but like I really love the website tofugu.com. It's all about Japanese culture, and they own WaniKani (kanji learning course) and Textfugu (Japanese Textbook). They also have lots of articles on grammar rules and when to use what. It also doesn't hurt that their website is extremely aesthetically pleasing in a way that it doesn't look like it's from 2005.
Agreed. As many others have said, it is important to use other resources. I use Genki for grammar, occasionally Memrise and an app called "Drops" for vocab. Duo really needs a tips & notes section for Japanese - I've almost given up on the app (I'm waiting desperately for the online version to be released).