Recharge with Billy and KoreanWiki Project

I’ve been meaning to write a follow up post about taking my first italki lesson, but instead I’m typing on the bus and want to share about my newfound excitement about Billy GO ! Korean and the discovery of the Korean Wiki Project.

After wrapping up a community tutor lesson last night, it felt like the conversation had quite a few repeating patterns such as 에서 (in), which can be used in the context “After living in Korea…” (I need to pull up my lesson notes so I can supply the translation), which I might have seem time and time again but have been unable to grasp.

Slightly disheartened after the lesson, I turned to the web to search for Billy GO! Korean for other web content he produces and skim through his blog and website.

I was able to find accompanying audio for his “Korean Made Simple” series, which was a godsend since previously I felt a lot of friction trying to learn because it was hard to pronounce the words. Unlike Mandarin, which I have also studied in the past, it seems that the concensus among Korean educators is the discouragement of using romanization to learn Hangul (Korean Alphabet), and since there is no romanization in the book Ive been turning to google translate and previously had asked the Korean Exchange meetup members how to say words. The process of performing a google translate or asking someone on a pronunciation can be cumbersome. Writing this now, I also remembered that the Naver dictionary also allows one to search text by writing with pencil/finger strokes than typing the words to search out.

Navigation to search by stroke page (2 different ways)
Search by Audio, Stroke, or Typing.

Another discovery, which was rather sobering, is that Billy also mentioned that, in a coffee-side chat with his friend, that there is no definitive answer to how long it takes to become fluent in Korean and that quantity and quality of learning is important in the grand scheme of things. Furthermore, the self-belief that one can acquire 한극말 can go a long way.

I went on later to look at his youtube videos in search of more listening content and was surprised to find approximately 100 instructional videos on Korean broken into bite size chunks with accompanying pdf (the pdf links in the youtube videos are broken but a quick google search by video title will five you the pdf link). In his video Learn Korean Ep. 1: How to say "Have to~" in Korean you can already sense the contagious passion for Korean learning and I wanted to dissect the audio in his video (I had trouble understanding the portions where he was speaking Korean with English subs but no Korean subs. Some words were unclear to my untrained ear even after using youtube’s 0.5x playback speed).

This led me to turn to the italki community for listening help and I was able to get responses within 24 hours. One response came in after 15min after posting at 8am local time!

The first video also had assumed knowledge about some grammar points such as the conjugation of verbs to present tense in the case of “I need to eat”저는묵거요(need). I’m really pleased I was able to find out within a couple minutes without scrambling through my Korean book. I found the Korean wiki project after looking through the podcast notes on TTMIK. Seems like the project has been inactive since 2015 but I hope it stays around.

Onwards and upwards!


5/19/2017 I should be updating this article with links soon.

5/25/2017 Add gif demonstrating how to navigate to search by stroke page.