Independent Discovery: Korean Language, Hangul
Student(s): Venghour Than and Rika Chan
Progress in percentage: 50%
Round: 4 and 5
Overall time (including personal time): Approximately 8-9 hours
- Alphabets (consonants and vowels)
- Vowels (double vowels) Consonants (double consonants)
- Vocabulary (noun, adjective, and verb)
- Numbers (simplified numbers and traditional numbers)
- Grammar (articles, ending phrases, plurals vs. singular, etc.)
- Time (for example, today, tomorrow, year, day, hour, minute, etc.)
- Typing (learning how to type in Korean on the computer keyboard)
Over the courses of round four and five, we are the beginners of learning the Korean language, Hangul. It is our goal to be fluent in this language right after our mother tongue (Khmer) and second language (English). The main reason for starting this personal learning is that we are sharing the same personal interest in Korean culture, specifically, K-pop−a very trending music industry in South-Korea.
At the beginning, we started to gather all the resources that are accessible to our study. We were searching for available books, online courses, websites, and videos. As a result, we came up with a list of resources that are including:
- Korean 101 – Learning Korean online with Podcasts
- Duolingo – the world’s most popular way to learn languages. Their platforms exist in website and app. Furthermore, we also use Duolingo to learn other languages, for example, learning Spanish with Cara.
- Ewha Korean textbook – a series of textbooks for Korean young learners.
These are the main three resources we were mostly used for the study. These resources cover up all the lessons that are listed above. Both of us already knew the basics before we started this Independent discovery: alphabets, pronunciation, and some vocabulary. But we were still struggling with them. Right at the start, we had organized our system of learning by starting with the books, Ewha. We learned everything from the book, page by page, and simultaneously, having notebooks to jot down some notes. We had learned many new words and grammar from Ewha. We usually jotted down the rules of the grammar and new vocabulary. Here is an example:
(list of words at the left side)
(grammar rules at the right side)
Learning from Korean 101 is another alternative way to enhance our Hangul. This is an online course consists of many helpful lessons and activities. It mainly helps us with our diction. Korean 101 provides us “word of the day” that is very beneficial for daily living. In addition, it does not only provide words, it provides us with many example sentences by using the word of the day. Furthermore, it has many videos with pronunciation.
Last, we did use Duolingo to learn how to type, new basic grammar, and vocabulary. It was extremely difficult to learn how to type. It is actually the same as having a hard time, learning how to type Khmer for the first time. Duolingo is the perfect platform for learning Korean because it is very organized with its system of setting all the basics for the beginner. It gives us time to review all the basics including the alphabets, pronunciation of the letters, and of course, some spellings.
Here are some of the things we learned from Duolingo.
- 는, 가 = without consonant/은, 이 = with consonant
- 사과가 음식입니다. = An apple is a food.
- Noun (들) = plural
- 과, 와, or 하고 = and
Having only an hour each work was not enough to be fluent in Hangul, therefore, we were finding our own personal time to study. We did not limit ourselves to only these three main resources. We even further researched through many videos on Youtube. Listening to Korean songs and watching all the Korean dramas are not a bad idea at all. Personally, I actually can hear and able to define some words and phrases from the lyrics.
Besides watching movies and listening to music, I even have a Korean novel on my bookshelf. Of course, I do not understand everything, but sometimes, I just went through page by page to know if I see any familiar words or sentences.
Overall, learning Hangul is very similar to learning Khmer. It is just the difference in grammar. I discover that learning Hangul is also extremely challenging. By not having a native Korean speaker to communicate with, our progress is slow. Most of all, we could say that we are mastered in all the basics: alphabets (vowels and consonants), some words & phrases, and pronunciation. We know how to write and read; we actually on our way to master in speaking. We can have a basics conversation, but we are trying the complex conversation.
To demonstrate I have learned something in Korean, I will introduce myself in Korean by typing down on this document.
안녕하세요! 저는 뷔앵후어해요. 내가 열 다섯 살. 나는 라이거 리더십 아카데미에서 공부한다.
“Hello! My name is Venghour. I am 15 years old. I study at the Liger Leadership Academy.”