I’ve always been interested in Japanese language and culture (but less the history). So, when the opportunity presented itself to me some 3 years ago, I took up a structured Japanese language courses at my school.
In all, I took 4 modules in Japanese language over a span of 2 years. It was 7 hours of lessons per week for 13 weeks per semester over 4 semesters. So that meant I’ve had 364 hours of formal training in Japanese. The textbook that we covered in class was the Minna no Nihongo series 1-1, 1-2, 2-1 and 2-2.
It was also a great opportunity in the sense that I didn’t have to include the results of these Japanese modules towards my modular credits at school. Essentially, they were considered extra-curricular modules. And that was great because I really dun foresee myself scoring A’s in a language module. And I was right, I scored mostly B’s.
I decided that I should sit for the JLPT exams to get myself accredited. I also decided that I should skip the JLPT4 exams as it was just going to be a waste of money. Level 3 will supercede level 4 anyway. And the exams are held once a year so it made sense to skip a level and save 1 year.
However, the date of the JLPT exams did pose a problem. JLPT is traditional held on the first Sunday of every December in Singapore. Unfortunately, StanChart Marathon is also always held on the first Sunday of every December. It will clash every single year.
I did contemplate about taking JLPT as early as in 2007 (after 1 yr of formal lessons), but I finally decided to attempt the full marathon with Dear2 instead. In 2008 (after 2 yr of formal lessons), I again thought about taking JLPT, but still decided to stick with our half marathon. This year however, Dear2 is expecting our first child so all our running plans are cancelled for the rest of the year, and so I decided that I will go ahead and sit for my JLPT3. :D
Now comes the tough part, I have not been studying Japanese for the past 14 months. The only chance I have to practice was during our Japan honeymoon, regularly watching anime and interpreting the product descriptions at Daiso.
There is roughly about 7 weeks to the exams and I have not started revising yet. I need to study all 4 Minna no Nihongo books to prepare for this exam. In effect, I need to revise everything I had learnt over my 2 years of study. And I haven’t started yet… oh no…
My goal is to attain JLPT2. Anything above that would be a bonus to me and would only be attempted if I have the time (and motivation). But first, I need to get past the hurdle of JLPT3 this year. Time to pull up my socks!