222 Hanzi, Lesson 10 and Heisig’s message about forgetting..part 1

Hanzig is what I almost wrote in the title there. So i’ve reached the end of Lesson 10 and by my 15 Hanzi per day rule I should be at 225. But, i’m at 222 (end of lesson 10) I stopped because  :

1) I’ve been looking for some time to go through the stories again. Because even though I’ve been doing at least 10 mins worth of SRS reps everyday, I find myself forgetting the stories and relying on visual memory. Heisig says thats a crutch I should avoid and its true, it does tax you more. It is a matter of practicality, effort expended per Hanzi is less with stories than trying to construct an image in your head. I am not gifted that way, if you are, great!

2) I’ve also been looking for a chance to practice my stroke order. You might think stroke order is not important, but, combined with the stories and if you do it right, it just FITS better. I can’t explain it, but its just better to write using the correct stroke order. And I’ll admit it, sometimes I just enjoy it. The feeling of those characters flowing out of my fingers, feels great. I’m sure i’ll get bored of it sometime but in the meanwhile, I’m enjoying it. That’s majorly the reason why I write each Hanzi 5 times when i’m studying it first. Once IS truly enough if you focus right. I was afraid it wasn’t but in the past week, I was really surprised. Point : Focus on the story.

I’ve also changed up my studying technique by just reading the stories of 15 characters, sometimes upto a couple of hours before I practice with pen and paper to get a feel of things. Takes 20 mins and really helps. Splits my study session into two connected parts. Less effort, better retention.

3) I began Lesson 11 and there’s a note about stopping and reviewing the earlier charachters for many reasons(more later). I think they are logical and so have decided to take a break from learning new Hanzi just to fine tune my methods and be confident about the 222 characters. Also,this allows me to end at Lesson 10, which bodes well for my Anki deck order. Because its annoying when because you’re doing 15, you stop in the middle of the lesson but the deck allows you to choose the whole lesson so you end up seeing new Hanzi. i’m sure you can manipulate that, but i’m slowly learning using Anki better.

4) Also, currently my Anki cards have meaning and pinyin on one side (thats a bonus, because even if 1 out of 15 Hanzi pinyins stick, thats 14 pinyin learnt without effort! just exposure). On the other side there’s the charachter but also the simplified version, the meaning again, sometimes a random story and different references. Although that’s really great, I need to change them to have only the charachter only on the other side so I can test myself going from charachter to meaning and also add a story/keyword of my own. I also need to add keywords to the deck.

Go ahead, make my day..

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