TOPIK 2017 Prep

If you are reading this because you’re going to get some tips to help you study TOPIK, skip my schedule rant and find the second occurrence of the word KOREAN in this post.

I was telling my best friend that 2017 is going to be my exam year. I listed all the exams I am qualified to take on a mini notebook I received as a gift from my boss. Thanks Super! But then, there’s work, which I have a love- hate relationship with. I cannot squeeze in reviewing for the Philippine Civil Service Exam and HSK at the same time till March.

Well, why have I not taken them before when I had all the time in the world?
When I was younger so much younger than today professional, I did not know then what its worth was, I wasn’t aware of such language classes because it poked my interest in my late teen years.

Civil Service Exam is recommended for fresh college graduates because of the scope of the exam right? Why after 6 years from graduation?
Again, I was not aware because maybe I was too obsessed with my thesis. Then now, I was thinking that being a passer would be a proof that I will be returning to the Philippines and prove my identity as a Filipino. I thought of a different document proof and that my plan in the coming years changed that is why I did not pursue anymore. Imagine studying Philippine History and Mathematics all over again.

Gee. TOPIK and HSK? What are you thinking?
Japanese was an option but the sensei is not a native speaker back in college. I took basic Mandarin classes (Romanization and speaking only) as an elective under Rico Yan. His English name! Xiexie Bin Yan laoshi! Then I took Experimental Basic Chinese 1 at the Confucius Institute at the Ateneo de Manila University. This time, with script because it was a  customized class where all four fundamentals: reading, writing, speaking, and listening are taught. It was dissolved because there should be at least five who will enroll next. Only the nine of us are allowed to take Experimental Basic 2. I was not able to continue because of my work schedule. I thought maybe I could just review lightly since I have intensely studied it before.

laoshi asked for my Chinese name. Haha

If you are geared towards TOPIK, why did you enroll in a Chinese Language class?
I haven’t studied Korean history. By the K-dramas (recent completed was  장용실, ’twas 짱! I became interested with astronomy and weather forecasting because of it) I watched, their language is deeply rooted in Chinese. Heck, if I’m going to learn Korean, then why don’t I study like a scholar of the 조선 period under King 세종? To better understand how they communicate is to find their origin.

We received it with our class picture. It was a term dear to me 🙂

We received it with our class picture. I was a term dear to me 🙂

When I find free time, I self-study 한국어 (yes, not 한국말, because 말 means, speech). Firstly, I studied reading with the most helpful and concise infographic. Back in the days when 9gag was the serious hype, the graphic is also a cheat sheet. With a combination of listening to KPop everyday and watching dramas frequently, what I prioritized to learn next was the Korean keyboard. I wrote a mapper before and lost it. Here’s what my mnemonic looks like:

Q ㅂ  – Cuba or Quebec
W ㅈ – oui ja
E ㄷ  – EtuDe or edit
R ㄱ  – ROK or Republic of Korea
T ㅅ  – T 🙂
Y ㅛ  – 요 🙂
Uㅕ   – eo or uh
Iㅑ    – ya, when slowed down, ‘eeeya’
Oㅐ   – 애교 – aegyO
Pㅔ    – Peso

The skill stuck with me. Came 2016, I was not able to continue my term Elementary 1 in 한국문화원 because of another work schedule. (!!!) I was three weeks away from completing the course. What I missed was that my 선생님 was the best at the institute. She was very funny and is very good at teaching even at that time when she strained her voice. They had to provide a microphone for her! That term was also dear to me 🙂 Teachers sure do not know how much they are appreciated. I’ll work harder 선생님 and 老师!

I have set myself a calendar. This afternoon, I collected a variety from my book shelf. Read short articles, took a nap in between, and ate chips.

freed from somebody’s garage
I don’t get why IN THE GRID
Peanut brittle found me a new bookmark.

I thought, why don’t I make something like this from my Chinese drills? I scanned my textbook (student on the link is not my classmate) and created my own Korean word search. I copied the group of words that are related. Studying words under one concept or classification will help you remember them better because of the context behind it. I’ll answer it after three days.

Let’s exchange answer sheets!

Why word search? It will force you to read the blocks fast. My eyes will get accustomed to the writing so that I can better adjust when reading heavy Korean texts. I recommend for us serious reviewers to set a timer. I’m making sets and will place them on my work table when my eyes get tired from staring at the computer. More on my study plans next week. 안녕하세요!


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