Have you learned Japanese for good enough time and still find it difficult to understand what a native speaker says? Do you feel totally lost when a native speaker speaks to you in Japanese at a pace that you find faster? Well, these are all different phases of learning and you can overcome them as you practice and work towards improving Japanese listening comprehension. Let us know what you can do to actually achieve this.
Many times we are so engrossed in learning Japanese that we focus on learning the correct pronunciation, the script, and how to enhance our reading, writing, and speaking ability that we forget to give time to listen.
Important things to know
Listening to Japanese is not a passive activity where the audio is playing in the background and you are busy with other things. This can help you get used to how the language sounds, but may not help you improve your comprehension skills.
To be able to improve your Japanese listening comprehension, you need to ensure that you make listening an active activity where you are completely involved with all your senses. For this, assign a particular time every day to listen to Japanese audio which could be in the form of podcasts, audiobooks or even watching movies without any subtitles.
Listen to audio repeatedly preferably with a written transcript. To begin with, you can listen to the audio and write or translate the sentences as per your understanding. This you can compare with the written transcript and see how much is correct and what are areas of improvement.
Keep a pen and paper handy. If you are watching a movie or an interesting program, you can write down the words that are new to you and see how they are used in sentences. This helps you understand based on the context. You can further move a step ahead and use those words in your own sentences.
Try to catch up to the speed. As a learner of the Japanese language, you probably take your own time and learn at your own pace. Also, the focus is more on learning vocabulary and grammar. Usually, it takes a considerable amount of time for anybody to start speaking in a new language and even longer to be able to hold a conversation at a speed of a native speaker. To catch up with the speed, you can start reading along with the audio. Listening to watching programs of different speakers can help you get used to the pace at which native speakers speak and help you in better comprehension.
Find someone to speak to. Speaking and listening go hand in hand. You can find a native speaker online through a language exchange program where you are able to hear how a native speaker speaks. This can be a great opportunity to improve your comprehension because you are able to talk in a more real-life scenario and can pick up diverse topics of your interest.
Joining a course and working with a tutor is also a very good option. This allows you to learn Japanese in a very organized way and at the same time gives you an opportunity to listen to your teacher. Many online classes are offered in a one-to-one session which also helps you to discuss your questions and doubts comfortably.
Just try to immerse yourself actively in Japanese and you will be able to comprehend Japanese in a short span of time.