CD-ROM programs for learning Japanese
Triple Play Plus!Japanese!
Triple Play Plus, on the other hand, is one of those programs that for some reason makes the assumption that you already know the language. Given that, it is an excellent program for practicing your kana, for learning about the kana spelling of Japanese words, for learning what certain words stand for, and for learning some about conversations in Japanese. I find that I use both of them, learning the basic kana from Power Japanese and then doing more extensive testing of myself using Triple Play Plus.
The main strength, in my mind, of Triple Play Plus is the kana review. You can take from 5 to 25 different symbols at one time and, using the Bingo game feature, practice your memorization of what each symbol means. Triple Play has the easiest used system of any programs I've seen and for that single feature alone I would recommend this product.
Power Japanese is organized in an extremely excellent fashion, starting with the hiragana, then the katakana, and then sentence structure. There are numerous drills, even ones in which you can mix up the characters to make sure you really learn them well.
Power Japanese has something generally missing from other programs and that is information on the construction of Japanese sentences. I've noted one book on the subject, but it helps to have a computer program to aid you in learning the sentence structures.
Japanese to Go
This is another really good learning tool. It has a narrator who will help you learn how to pronounce the words and give you information about the proper use of the words and information on Japanese culture. There are over 60 minutes of video tutorials, dialog skits, and various games along with a talking dictionary. There is also a record-and-playback pronunciation feature. I have not had this one very long but from what I've used so far it seems to be very good.
Games in Japanese
Made by the same people who did Triple Play Plus! Japanese, this one is supposedly aimed more at kids with the use of games to help the child learn about colors, objects, shapes and sizes, boy's clothes, girl's clothes, face parts, farm animals, wild animals and verbs.
And that's just Menu 1. Menu 2 includes material on words dealing with transportation, the bathroom, school, fruits, vegetables, tableware, food & drink, numbers, and a review-and-challenge section on all objects.
Menu 3 has a game to teach numbers using concrete objects; Simon Says; Concentration, a game for words used at home, and a game to learn the proper use of prepositions with nouns covered in the At Home game.
O.k. This is aimed at young kids, but for people like me who have some difficulty picking up a foreign language this is the perfect type of program. Again, it covers some areas that other programs do, but it also has its own unique features.
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