Posted in Korean Learning Log, Weekly/Daily Goals

Language Goals for 2017

It’s several days into the New Year, and I’ve been thinking about just what exactly I want to accomplish in my language learning this year.  It’ surprisingly difficult to set goals for such a long period of time, but I did end up deciding on several specific things that I do want to accomplish.

Finish my 재미있는 한국어 3 (Fun Fun Korean 3) textbook/workbook

I wrote a post back in August (here) where I talked about this textbook and a few of the reasons that I hated it.  However, since I paid good money for it, I’ve been studying it on and off throughout winter break, and it’s actually growing on me.  I still have 11 chapters left to finish of this book.

Decide on a new textbook series and buy a textbook

Despite the fact that the 재미있는 한국어 textbook is growing on me, I still probably won’t continue with that series, so I plan to research some of the other options and purchase a new textbook at the next level.  This, of course, will depend on whether I accomplish my first goal and finish my current book.

Renew my 이야기 (Iyagi) studying on a regular basis

Last summer I started studying with Talk to Me in Korean’s 이야기/Iyagi series.  The Iyagis are conversations between two people speaking solely in Korean, with PDF transcripts provided.  I studied about 20 of these Iyagis thoroughly last summer, and I found them a great way to boost both my listening skills (which can be pretty weak) and my vocabulary (which is also weak).  I’m hoping to study at least one Iyagi every 1-2 weeks this year.

Read through 3 Korean children’s books

When I was in Korea, I bought 3 children’s books at Kyobo Bookstore, but I’ve only read a third of one of the books so far.  I’d like to finish reading through all 3 books this year and study all of the new vocabulary I come across.

Study at least 12 News in Korean articles

news in korean feature image

On the other end of the spectrum, I’d also like to build my more formal vocabulary.  I’ve studied about 3-4 of the articles so far, but I haven’t been studying much with this book lately.  My goal is to simply study at least one article per month this year.

Study Korean Grammar in Use – Intermediate


I haven’t done much with this book since I received it a year and a half ago, so I really want to make an effort to study more with this book this year.  I don’t really have a specific goal for this one – I guess at least one grammar point per week would be nice.

Write more with Lang-8


Being a self-studier, I often focus a lot on listening and reading rather than speaking and writing.  Aside from sending the occasional text in Korean, I don’t have many occasions that require writing in Korean.  Thus my goal is to write at least 1 lang-8 post per month this year.

Occasionally review Mandarin and Japanese

Obviously most of my goals are Korean-centered, since that’s my primary focus of language learning, but I also don’t want to lose my Mandarin and Japanese knowledge.  I most likely won’t be taking any Mandarin/Japanese courses this year, so I’d like to occasionally review vocabulary and the old dialogues in my textbooks to make sure my language skills don’t fade.  Heck, maybe I’ll even review some Spanish from my high school days.  Lord knows I’m rusty.

So those are my primary 8 goals for the coming year.  It’ll be interesting to check back at the next New Year and see how I performed.  Hopefully I’ll be impressed!


22 thoughts on “Language Goals for 2017

  1. That reminds me of how much I hate the 재미있는 한국어 texbooks.We are using them as textbooks in class and I feel like I haven’t learned much from them.No speaking,no listening practice – but that’s maybe because of the teacher.But like you said,you bought them you have to use them.I self-study most of the time so I highly recommend using the Integrated Korean textbooks which I now just started to use as well and I feel like I am studying Korean at a much higher level somehow – but in a good way!

    Good luck with your language resolutions for this year ! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks!
      The lack of listening and speaking probably has a lot to do with your teacher. When I self study, I get listening practice by listening to the dialogues several times before reading them and then with the listening section and exercises. I don’t really practice speaking beyond reading everything out loud haha.
      I hated them mostly because of the way they set up the lessons (why is the grammar at the very end? It’s so weird to me), the dull designs, and how boring the exercises were.
      I bought the Integrated Korean Beginning 1 book about 6 years ago and used it when I was first learning Korean. While it had a dull color scheme, I did like the way the lessons were organized. I’m considering that series as well as Sogang and Ewha series. I’ll probably read a bunch of reviews before I pick one.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I also use Lang-8 as a self-learner and, to boost my writing skills, I try to write at least once per week about all that I’ve done throughout the week regarding studying Korean and other trivials things. I think it’s a good way to practice and it feels good to have a dashboard about my Korean learning journey. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve always loved picking up new languages, and Korean is by far my favorite out of all the languages I’ve learned. I had a lot of Korean friends in high school, and they got me started learning the language.
      I also listen to a lot of Korean music and watch a lot of Korean TV, so that motivates me to learn more so I can understand more and more without subtitles.


      1. Then why don’t you learn Korean from song lyrics and tv shows ? Is it too difficult for you? I can’t tell what your level of Korean is because all you mention is text books.


      2. I do occasionally study through songs, since there’s a lot of new vocab to learn there. I don’t usually study through tv shows because I watch those to relax rather than to study.

        Honestly, I just really enjoy textbooks and podcasts. I’ve always been kind of nerd haha. They have a lot of structure, which I prefer.


      3. Dude, nothing is too difficult for this girl (Someday Korean). She’s legitimately a genius (but is too humble to say so, but I will). Languages (English, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, and Spanish) are just her hobby. You should see the other stuff she studies in college. lol 🙂


  3. But you gotta learn from the tv show if you want to understand the tv show. You can’t wait for some podcast to use words they use frequently on the tv show. Clearly it makes sense to learn from what you want to understand .


    1. I do agree with you that most TV shows use vocabulary that I probably won’t find in the podcasts that I listen to. And I have studied some vocab from TV shows like Running Man, since they often flash Korean subtitles and descriptive words on the screen.

      However, my primary goal is to become fluent in Korean, not just to understand TV shows, so I’m working from the ground up, which is where the grammar podcasts and the textbooks come in. There is still some specialized vocabulary in the shows that I watch that I probably won’t see in the textbook series, but for now I’m more focused on building vocabulary that is more mainstream.


      1. I think understanding tv shows is fluency. I think it’s fluency you can understand korean tv 100% or 99% or whatever high percentage to account for mumbling and whatnot. I have the opposite philosophy as you. i have no motivation to learn vocab that’s useless as in i want to learn in an order that’s logical which is common useful stuff first which is daily conversation which is korean tv. Also knowing that a word or phrase came out of a korean person’s mouth makes that word that much more useful to me versus some textbook that’s telling me it’s useful. only way to understand korean tv is to watch it a lot and obviously engage with it and look up stuff since we’re learners.


      2. I totally agree that understanding TV shows comes along with fluency. Plus, I totally agree that learning useless vocabulary is a waste of time. I think you might be misunderstanding the way I study Korean.
        I’m planning on moving to Korea, hopefully within the next couple of years, and so the vocab that I’m interested in is daily conversation material, like you mentioned. I’m not too interested in learning specialized vocab for crime shows or medical dramas, when I could be studying much more useful vocabulary.
        That’s why I like textbooks, because they usually organize their content based on situations that the readers would encounter in real life – going to the doctor, going shopping, transportation, etc. I don’t mindlessly memorize every vocab word the books have; I pick and choose the vocabulary that I think will be helpful to me and that will be applicable in my life. I do watch Korean tv shows a lot, and I find myself noticing a lot of content from my podcasts and textbooks appearing in the shows.
        I think we actually agree on a fundamental language learning philosophy – learning useless vocabulary is a waste of time. We just disagree on which methods are useless.
        Also, I don’t only study via textbooks. Like I mentioned before, I also study vocab from songs sometimes, and you might have seen in my post that I’m working on reading children’s books. Again, not every word in the songs or in the books will be super applicable, but I pick and choose the vocab that I think will be helpful for building up my fluency and preparing to live in Korea. I like to study via a variety of sources, and textbooks aren’t usually my primary source. They just happen to appear a lot in my blog posts since they are one of the more tangible ways to keep track of my progress.


      3. also, i find audio to be invaluable for remembering stuff. if you’re going for fluency what’s it matter if you learn specialized vocab now versues later. you’re still gonna have to learn it anyway… all the matters is whether you remember itor not

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I also like using audio to learn languages. I really, really love the grammar podcasts at Talk to Me in Korean because I can listen to them on the way to work or when I’m driving home to see my family. I usually listen to them to get a general idea of the concept and to hear the pronunciation and intonation of native speakers, which I think is incredibly valuable. I’d say that audio comprises probably 60+% of my daily studying. Right now I’m re-listening to some of the advanced Talk to Me in Korean grammar podcasts, and I’m in love with the Iyagi series they provide.


  4. I personally find it to be extremely admirable that you’re continuing to study Korean, or any language, for that matter. I’ve been taking French for the past seven years, and it isn’t easy. But really, I’m Korean and there are times when it gets annoying and difficult, so I really respect you. Anyways, this is just my friendly tip that I use when I want to practice listening or something, I watch dramas and TV shows to try and understand the culture and the flow of things. But again, that’s just me. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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