You want to learn Japanese, right? …and you want it to be simple, fast and free!
So, what have you done? You’ve gone to Google and searched for “Free Japanese Course.” Maybe you even bought a book and tried to learn that way. I feel you. I did these things too.
And what did I get for my efforts? I got Frustration! …and a lot of wasted time!
Why? Am I stupid? How could I do all this and not learn anything? Well, as it turns out, no, I’m not stupid at all, and I’m not bad at learning languages. I was just learning the wrong way.
- I was frustrated.
- I felt stupid.
- I lost motivation.
- Eventually, I stopped studying all together.
Sound familiar? I bet it does. What caused all this suffering and frustration?
- We had no step-by-step system to guide us.
- We had no professional, human support.
- We had low-quality resources.
This doesn’t work! What does work? I’ll tell you exactly what works…
- A program that guides us to success one step at a time
- A program that offers help from real people
- A program that has quality resources
Does Rocket Japanese deliver the goods? I’ll give you a quick review, in case you’re in a hurry, and then I’ll walk you through the software as I learn with it. Or, you can just try the 6-day trial and see for yourself.
Rocket Japanese Quick Review
- Does the Rocket Japanese program guide us to success one step at a time?
Absolutely. And that is the main reason I recommend it. It’s a program that was clearly designed by professional linguists, covering the 4 core language learning components, reading, writing, listening and speaking in a way that made my learning seem effortless–even fun.
- Does the Rocket Japanese Course offer help from real people?
It sure does. And it’s great help that is available immediately and 24 hours a day. You can ask questions about grammar, vocab, course details…anything you want, any time you want! And guess what? It’s available to you forever! No monthly fees or service charges. You get lifetime access as soon as you buy the course. No other course I’ve seen offers lifetime human assistance for free.
- Does the Rocket Japanese program have quality resources?
Simply put, they are the best. No, I don’t say that all the time. I have been living and working in Asia since 2002, and I have been learning languages from day one. I have used countless numbers of books, online programs, private tutoring, and classroom courses, and I can say, without hesitation, that the Rocket Japanese resources are the best I have ever worked with. You don’t have to take my word for it, though. You can get your own free trial and see for yourself (you don’t need a credit card or anything ridiculous thing like that).
Launch Your Learning with Rocket Japanese
What’s the big deal with Rocket Japanese? Head on over and have a look for yourself!
- 800,000 satisfied customers!
- Amazing value–lifetime membership for one fee! (I haven’t seen this anywhere else)
- Live Help from a Japanese Native Speaker
- Personalized Learning With My Motivation Feature
- Perfectly Designed Step-By-Step Learning
- Highly Interactive–With Both Audio and Video!
- Beautifully Designed–Reminds Me of an Apple Product
- It’s Joining a Community, Not Just Buying Software
- Free 6-day Trial–Snatch up a free trial now
Bonus Gift Just For My Readers!
Buy any of the software programs listed on this site and I’ll give you an amazing FREE bonus gift that you can’t get anywhere else! What is it? It’s a foolproof system used to design laser-focused language learning strategies. Yours will be laser focused on YOUR own personal learning strengths–not somebody else’s! You can easily double, or even triple, the rate at which you learn Japanese using this system.
I’ve developed this system using a Harvard University theory called The Theory Of Multiple Intelligences, by Howard Gardner, and, as we speak, I’m having developers turn it into a software program that I’m going to sell for $49.95.
Act now, though, and I’ll give it to you for free! Just buy any of the language learning programs anywhere on this site and email me the receipt at email@example.com. When I get it, I’ll email you your FREE Bonus gift!
Don’t miss this great opportunity! Be one of the lucky ones who gets a fifty-dollar product for FREE!
Okay, with the quick review out of the way, let’s walk through the software. The Rocket Japanese program has 3 main components:
- Your Course
- Your Motivation
- Your Community
1. You’re Course
The Your Course section of the software is where I did most of my learning. It has 2 parts, the Interactive Audio Section and the Language and Culture section.
The Interactive Audio section is the bread and butter of the course. I am going to walk you through lesson 3.2, A Taste For Sake, as I learn it. When I opened up the software, the first thing I saw were the audio controls.
There are a few things to notice here. First, they are simple, clean, and modern–I like that. Second, on the right hand side you can see a Download Audio button. This was a feature I loved. I can only sit at the computer and learn for so long, but I can walk, listen and recite for hours on end. And that’s exactly what I did. I loaded the courses onto my MP3 player and learned on the fly! …and I liked it.
The third thing to notice is that there are two audio clips, the Listen to the Full Audio clip and the Listen to the Conversation Clip. This is a wonderful feature. The Listen to the Full Audio clip has 30 minutes of great interactive instruction, but sometimes I didn’t want all that instruction. I just wanted to practice pronouncing the words in the dialogue. Having the dialogue, which is just 26 seconds long, in a separate audio clip made it easy for me to do that.
Okay, let’s dive right into the lesson. I hit play and on came an English guy. He gave a short introduction and then jumped into a review of the previous lesson–each lesson begins with a review, which is great. It’s the step-by-step learning that I need.
After the review, at about the 4 minute mark, we started the new lesson. The lesson began with the full dialogue being spoken by a Japanese woman and the British guy (he speaks Japanese very well).
Note: Just under the audio controls are the dialogues, written in Japanese, English and in a Romanized version. As I was listening, I was also reading along in English, so I could understand the conversation.
Also, I mentioned earlier that I liked to take the downloadable MP3s with me to study. Well, I also liked to use the “Print Page” icon above the dialogues. It’s an easy way to print the dialogues and then hit the road.
Okay, back to the lesson. After the teachers read the whole dialogue, the British guy came on and pointed out that he said “O sake,” not just “sake.” This, he explained, is a polite way to speak. After that, the native Japanese speaker came on and modeled the pronunciation of the word. Then I was instructed to repeat, which I did. I said, “O sake” a couple of times. We repeated this twice.
When we were done, the English guy came back on and explained that the next word in the dialogue ,”O nanda,” was the past tense form of the verb “to drink.” After that, the native Japanese speaker came back on and modeled the pronunciation of the word and I repeated (just like before).
Then the English guy came back on and explained that, in Japanese, when you want to say that you have done something you say “Kota ga arimasu” (the next phrase in our dialogue). Then, just as before, the native speaker came on and modeled the pronunciation.
I followed, saying the whole phrase, “Nonda kota ga arimasu.” Finally, the English guy came on and told me that the last word in the dialogue “Ka” is a question marker.
In the end, we practiced speaking the entire sentence of our new dialogue, “O sake o nonda koto ga arimasu ka?” Of course, that wasn’t the end at all. It was just the end of the first sentence in the dialogue, as you can see in the screenshot above.
We repeated this learning process for each word, phrase and sentence in the dialogue. Then, when we finished, the teachers modeled the pronunciation of the entire dialogue. …and we were done!
Well, they were done. I still had one more thing to do–take a test! Each lesson of the Interactive Audio Course has a test for you to take, when you’re ready. I took mine for this chapter as I was learning and writing this review (it turned out that I was a little distraced). The test was very helpful, though, and all of the tests in the course turned out to be an important part of my learning process.
Interactive Audio Section Summary
The system used in the Interactive Dialogues section of the course is pretty straightforward. It’s Learn, Listen, Speak.
- an explanation of how to use each word in the sentence, then…
- the correct pronunciation modeled by a native Japanese, then…
- a chance to say the words yourself, then…
- the correct pronunciation of phrases in the sentence modeled by a native Japanese speaker, then…
- a chance to say the phrases yourself, then…
- the pronunciation of the entire sentence modeled by a native Japanese speaker, and finally…
- a chance for you to practice saying the whole sentence.
Is this system effective?
Yeah, it is. It’s perfect step-by-step learning. You start small and get bigger and bigger until you know the whole dialogue. In addition, the design of the audio courses are just amazing. Why? Because they are so interactive.
When I was studying, I felt like I was sitting there with my teachers. They would give information, then model pronunciation, and then instruct me to follow along. I felt like we were all sitting together and studying–even though I was just following a recording!
That being said, you wouldn’t want to use the audio course on it’s on. You need to use the second component of the Your Course section, called, if you remember from above, the Language and culture section.
Each Interactive Audio lesson has a corresponding Language and Culture Section, which has 4 parts: Language, Culture, Writing, and Quiz.
The Language Section
The language Section can best be described as the Grammar section of the program. It’s more than that, though. It also offers a lot of good, practical advice about how to use the Japanese language correctly; it’s not just a bunch of boring grammar rules. Let’s walk through the lesson that corresponds with the Audio Lesson I walked you through above.
In the Audio Lesson we learned to ask, “Have you ever tried sake?” In the corresponding language section, I learned more about the phrase “have you ever…”
The important thing we learned was verb conjugation. In a previous chapter, we had learned the “te” ending. In this chapter, we built upon that knowledge to learn the “ta” ending, as you can see in the chart below.
After that, we learned how to convert the following questions into Japanese.
And, finally, here are the sentences in Japanese with the correct verb conjugations.
There are a couple of things to notice in this lesson. First of all, and most importantly, we learned by doing. We didn’t study a bunch of theory, and we didn’t have to wade through a ton of grammar explanation. We got the information we needed, and then we went to work. We learned by actually using the language. This is a very effective way to learn!
The second thing to notice is that each Japanese sentence has a “Play” button next to it. When you hit the button, the Japanese speaker models the pronunciation of the sentence. This is a great feature, and it says a lot about the Rocket japanese program.
What does it say. It says that the focus of the program is on real communication. Sure, you learn grammar, but do you learn it, take a written test, and then move on. No, you stay in the lesson until you can use what you have learned to actually speak the language correctly! …which is exactly what we want to do!
The Language Section Summary
The Language Section is a compliment to the Interactive Audio Section. In the Interactive Audio Section you learn to speak a dialogue. In the Language Section, you broaden your knowledge by applying the grammar and sentence structures in the dialogue to other sentences and phrases.
This way, you don’t just learn words and phrases and mutter them back when you need them. Instead, you learn the core structure of the language and apply it to new language.
In short, it’s a great section, and it’s one that you need to spend some time in if you want to do more than just memorize dialogues.
The Writing Section
The writing section has both video and audio components. The videos show you exactly how to write Japanese characters, including proper stroke order and direction, which is important. Here is a screenshot of one of the many videos for this lesson.
The writing videos are great, but the lesson as a whole is even better. Why? Because, as it does with every other lesson, the Rocket Japanese program focuses on communication, so, even in the writing lessons, we get an audio component that teaches us proper pronunciation of the letters we are writing, as you can see in the screenshot here.
Writing Section Summary
The writing section is really fun, at least to me. It has great videos with step-by-step instructions, good written explanations, and, as I mentioned, an audio component that provides well-rounded learning. You can’t really ask for much more.
The Culture Section
The culture section was something I used when I needed to rest my mind a bit but still wanted to be learning something. Basically, as its title suggests, it provides interesting cultural information that is relevant to the topic of the lesson. In this lesson, we learned a lot about drinking sake, so the culture section taught us all sorts of interesting stuff about sake drinking culture.
Summary of the Culture Section
A good section not directly related to language learning, but interesting, fun and helpful, especially if you actually get the chance to go to Japan.
The last tab in the Language and Culture Section is the Quiz. This is pretty straight forward. After completing the Language, Writing, and Culture sections, you take a quiz to check your learning progress. I did better on this test than I did on the one in the Interactive Audio Lesson Quiz.
The My Motivation section is really cool. It has 8 chapters with a total of 23 lessons. There is so much amazing stuff in here that I rally can’t explain it all. Like I’ve said before, I really recommend that you get the free 6-day trial and check it out for yourself. That being said, there is one totally cool thing that I’d like to show you.
It’s a section called Your Unique Learning Style. This part of the course has tools, not to teach you Japanese, but to teach you how to learn. It’s a part of the program that I got into before taking the Japanese course, and you should too, if you use this program.
In this section, I took a short personality test. This test told me something that I kind of already knew, but that I had never really paid attention to. It told me that I was a strong “visual learner.”
I say that I kind of knew this already because I know, for example, that if you tell me your name I’ll forget it 2 minutes later, no matter how badly I want to remember it. But if I read a business card with your name and logo on it, I’ll remember you forever. So, I knew that seeing things helped me to remember them, but I had never really put 2 and 2 together and realized that I should develop a language learning strategy based around visual objects.
This test helped me to do that, and that is why I began focusing so much on the printed dialogues as I was also listening to the audio, which helped me learn much quicker when compared to focusing, primarily, on the audio component, as I have done in the past.
Later on, I also wound up making some flashcards. I made them in sets. For example, I made a “fruit set.” I actually took index cards and drew pieces of fruit on one side and the Japanese names on the other. This may seem silly, but it was very effective, and I developed the strategy by using what I learned in the Your Unique Learning Style Section.
…the bottom line
using the “Your Unique Learning Style” helped me develop a personal learning strategy that was perfect for me, and that helped me learn much faster (and with far less frustration).
When you get Rocket Korean, you get lifetime access to the Rocket Korean Community. This is a member’s only forum where you can go and ask questions about Korean grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, or anything else you like. You can talk with teachers, native Japanese speakers, and fellow students. Here is a screenshot of the main page.
When I studied this course, I spent a lot of time here. Not all of it was productive, in terms or learning Japanese, but it was certainly fun. It was nice, as well, to have access to real people who could help answer difficult questions. Plus, for me, it just felt good to be around a bunch of people who were in the same boat as me, people who had the same struggles and the same triumphs. It was motivating, fun and just nice to a part of the group.
Your Community Summary
This is a section that is both useful and fun, and it’s something that, in my opinion, really sets this program apart. So, if you do wind up buying this program, make sure to spend some time here.
There are many more features in this program than what I’ve covered here, like the cool Notes section and the even better My Vocabulary section. I was going to get to them all, but, in the end, I just didn’t have the time to cover everything. So, once again, if you are interested in this program just grab yourself a free 6-day trial and check it out for yourself.
What did I think about the program overall? As you can probably tell, if you’ve read much of this review, I liked the program a lot. It has great learning resources. It offers help from actual human beings. And, most importantly, at least to me, it has the step-by-step learning that I so desperately need. This is a program that was clearly developed by professional linguists, not by professional marketers or sales people.
So, for the very, very, very last time, get yourself a free 6-day trial and check out the course for yourself.
Have a great day, and if you have any questions, please feel free use the Contact Page to send me an email. I try to answer every email sent to me.
By for now.
The Live in Asia Blog