First and foremost, I would like to thank Twochois.com for the 초등한자쓰기노트 Level 3 book they sent last January. I’m the 33rd winner of Twochois.com’s Lucky Book Review Draw. Supposedly, I should have posted a book review a month after receiving the book but I failed to do so. I’m very sorry Twochois.com I didn’t make it up to the deadline.
Before I start my book review, I would like to explain why it took few months to post this review. First, I kept on procrastinating for the first two weeks after receving the book. I also didn’t keep the study time schedule that I set for studying this hanja book.
Second, I actually used and studied the whole book because I want to give an honest and good book review. I wanted to share to others on my experience on using this book. I just didn’t like to open the book, flip the pages, look at the print and paper quality, scan the contents, and then boom! make a book review. Hehehe.
Lastly, I had never studied hanja before so it was quite difficult for me to start with elementary hanja level 3 book. And also, my Korean vocabulary is still low. Many of the words in the book are new to me. So it was like I’m studying hanja and Korean at the same time.^^
Receiving the package.
I received the package a week after I won the draw. So fast right!? It’s because I just live here in Seoul. 😛
I’m so sorry Twochois, I know that it is quite unfair to the Lucky Book Review Draw participants who are living outside Korea. I’m still feeling guilty about it. But isn’t good that you didn’t have to spend much for the delivery fee since I’m just here in Seoul, right Twochois? 😛 Just Kidding!
I highly commend Twochois for their packaging! It’s so neat! The box’s sides were secured with packaging tape, while the book and the free celebrity newspaper were neatly tucked in a plastic bubble wrap.
And a handwritten note from Twochois:
Now let’s start with the book review!
초등한자쓰기노트 Level 3 (Elementary Hanja Writing Note Level 3)
Book info. from twochois.com:
- Language: Korean | around 40 Pages | Size: 210x275mm | Supplement: 1 VCD
- This is the book series made for elementary school students in South Korea.
- The context is written based on Hanja words used in the real textbooks of elementary school.
- This book contains 60 Hanja words and the whole series contains 400 essential Hanja words.
- This book also contains VCD teaching the order of writing each Hanja word.
- All written in Korean but really good for increasing your Hanja vocabulary skill!
- Suitable for intermediate level to advanced level learners.
- Some of the contents need instructor. (Please find someone could help you with it.)
- Book Series : 초등 한자 쓰기 노트 Level 1~6
Disclaimer: No copyright infringement intended. The photos taken are for book review purpose only.
Front and back book cover:
The book cover is made of thick, smooth, and good quality paperboard. The print on the front cover is glossy and smooth
This book is quite thin.
The quality of the paper used for the pages of this book is thick, smooth but not glossy, good quality. I think the publishing company intentionally made this since the target users of this book are young children. Children has a little control when it comes to flipping, writing, making erasure on the pages.
Table of Contents
배울 한자 (Hanja words/characters to learn)
이 잭에서 배울 한자입니다. 그림을 보고 뜻을 한번 생각해 보세요. [(You) will learn Hanja in this book. Please look at the picture and think about the meaning.] Sorry about my translation, I’m not even sure if I translated it correctly.^^’
These are the 60 Hanja words that you are going to study in this book.
First day. Monday
The goal of this book is to teach the students 3 Hanja characters every day. The first day(1 일째) starts in Monday( 월요일). Every Haja has a corresponding picture, the Korean meaning, how it is read(read print), and the how it is written step-by-step. The first for boxes are for guided writing practice. After the guided practice, there are 7 blank boxes where you have to write the Hanja character again without the guide pattern. Use the VCD provided in this book to know how the character is written, the meaning in Korean, and how it is read/pronounced.
There is a weekly evaluation test after the 5 weekday lessons.
In the first part, click and listen to the audio file, you will hear the Korean meaning then the hanja word, then you should with the correct Hanja character in the box provided.
In part 2, you have to write the meaning and pronunciation of the following hanja characters.
Final exercise. This is the last exercise in the book. The coverage of the test is from lesson 1 up to 20.
Here is a short video clip of VCD’s contents.
Hanja in GaNaDa order
Here is a checklist of all the Hanja words in this book. You can put a check mark in the boxes the hanja characters that you already know/studied.
Practice test answer key.
Book Rating: 4/5 (Very good)
- The book is made of good quality paper. No need to worry about tearing or ruining the pages due to erasures or flipping of the pages.(But you should be also careful though :P)
- Instructions are simple and easy to follow.
- Colorful images and fine print.
- The video and audio files are clear.
- The design and illustrations are colorful and cute.
- Can’t playback the video/audio track. Instead of just clicking the play button, I have to click the track file again just to play the track again.
- The track files for the every hanja characters are not indicated in the book. It is not indicated in the book what track file to click for particular hanja so I had to do some simple arithmetic to be able to know what file I should click.
- No illustration or simple explanation how the hanja characters were formed.
This is an old hanja book of my husband. Using simple illustrations, it shows where the hanja was based, and how it was formed. For me, I find it easier to remember the hanja characters this way.
Q & A
1. Why study Hanja?
- According to Wikipedia, Korean was written with adapted Chinese characters called hanja¹.
Sino-Korean or Hanja-eo (Korean: 한자어, Hanja: 漢字語) refers to the set of words in the Korean language vocabulary that originated from or were influenced by hanja. The Sino-Korean lexicon consists of both words loaned from Chinese and words coined in the Korean language using hanja. Sino-Korean words are one of the three main types of vocabulary in Korean. The other two are native Korean words and foreign words imported from other languages, mostly from English. Sino-Korean words today make up about 60% of the Korean vocabulary, though in actual speech (especially informally) native words are more common.²
So basically, having a little background knowledge in hanja will give you clearer understanding about the Korean lexicon. Since many Korean words are derived from hanja, if you would learn some basic hanjas you be able to know the meaning of some Korean words.
父/bu/ : 아버지/aboji/ : father + /mo/ : 어머니 :mother = 父 /bumo/: 부모 : parents
In addition, I noticed that some hanja characters are used in tv news, newspapers, books, and documents. So it will give you some advantage if you now some hanjas.
2. I’m a foreigner learning Korean, is it necessary to learn hanja too?
Not necessarily. And it also depends on your purpose.
In my case, the reasons why I want to learn hanja are: 1. learn Korean(yes, you can learn Korean and hanja at the same time), 2. I want to be my son and future children’s first hanja, Korean(um,.. i’n not sure about this hehehe), and English teacher.
3. My Korean language proficiency is still low, can I still use this book to study hanja?
Yes. In my case, my Korean proficiency level is still low(upper beginner perhaps) but I was able use the book and learn some hanjas. My Korean vocabulary aslo improved at the same time with the help of this book. But don’t stress yourself too much trying to learn two things at the same time. Just enjoy learning. 🙂
4. I live outside Korea, where and how can I buy this book?
You can buy this book and other Korean learning materials or resources in twochois.com.
Located in Seoul
What is twoChois.com?
– twoChois.com is an e-commerce selling Korean products to people living outside of South Korea.
a. two Chois (1 choi, 2 choi)
b. two Choices
The latter means that we sell products with our selection (1st choice), and customers buy with their own choices “Special order” (2nd choice).
What we sell?
- Goods you can buy directly from our store (1st Choice)
– Books especially Korean learning books, Stationary, Accessories, etc…
– Customers can request to add products here.
- Goods you can order via “Special Order”(2nd Choice)
– Basically anything you want except some limitation; copycats, foods, electronic goods, etc.
– Name the product or give us link. We will order and send it to your home for you.