Using a Highlighter in Learning Japanese — 13 Comments

  1. I don’t have the option of highlighting in games, and prefer physical books to digital, so I’ve had to get a little more creative.

    What I do instead is keep a running notepad on my phone of unknown words I want to add, as well as their sentences for context. I used to enter them manually with the phone keyboard, but that was kind of awful. Nowadays I use a voice input app called 音声入力まっしゅ and it makes taking notes pretty effortless. I even get extra speaking practice as a bonus!

    • I like playing games too, and a method that has worked well for me has been taking screenshots when words come up that I want to learn for later (easy to do on PC but also PS4 and Vita). Then when I sit down to do ANKI I can just go through the images and copy the sentences, and even use text capture to help if I run into an unknown Kanji. That lets me play without having to be interrupted while saving lots of words for later, same idea that Adam is getting at I think.

      I prefer physical books as well though, so I’m in the same boat as you on that one!

  2. I could never bring myself to permanently mark any of my physical novels or manga, but I have taken to highlighting entries in a J-J dictionary I purchased recently. I highlight words that I’ve added or am going to add to Anki so that they stand out for quick reference, if needed.

    • I’m with you on this one… I never could bring myself to use a highlighter in a book. One approach I have tried is to use small see-through post-it notes. It is almost like highlighting except you can remove them when you are done with it.

    • I know a lot of people that feel similar to you in regards to marking up their books.

      Silwing provides a great alternative though!

  3. I don’t use a highlighter pen for pretty much the same reasons Adam outlined above. Instead, I use thin Post-It notes about the same width as a line in a book. Every time I find a sentence I want to add to Anki, I pop out a little sticker and place it so there’s a sliver of color just poking out at the top of the page. This means there’s no chance of me overlooking anything I found interesting when it comes to creating new cards, and I don’t lose momentum when reading.

    When I do sit down to make new cards, I can find the sentences I want quickly, and when I’m done, I just remove the sticker and stick it back in one of the early pages of the book to use again. I keep using them like this until the glue looses its stickiness.

  4. I bought novelizations of shoujo manga I’ve read and I just read and highlight all the words I don’t know.

    The story is easy to follow since its pretty much line-by-line of the manga, but I’m still highlighting 3-7 words a page.

    I felt bad at first, but once I realized I’m probably never going to read this again, and that a novelization of a manga aimed at 13 year olds isn’t high literature, I got over it. And the eraseable highlighters smudge the ink on the page.

    • I found even with highlights, you can still sell manga/books without a problem once you are finished with them (it doesn’t bother some people seeing it).

  5. Another great idea, eventually when I get over my slump (which will hopefully be soon) I can actually use some of these lol.

    • Yes, please do!

      And sorry to hear about your slump. I’ve seen the way you’ve studied and progressed. You’ll overcome it.

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