Korean From Zero! 1: Master the Korean Language and Hangul Writing System with Integrated Workbook and Online Course (Volume 1), by
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One of my new year’s Resolution is to learn a new foreign language. After I put myself to the test learning Spanish and Russian, I am ready to raise the bar giving Asian languages a good try and ,this year, I’m ready to commit myself to learning Korean.
When it comes to foreign language studies, most students choose to learn Spanish, French, or even Italian before they consider an Asian language, and when they do think about it, they usually choose Chinese or Japanese first, leaving Korean for last.
So, how did I end up choosing Korean?
Korean is the sixteenth most widely spoken language in the world, spoken by more than 78 million people. The number of Korean language learners has remarkably grown in the past several decades, a growth due partly to South Korea’s increasingly visible roles in the world economy, technological innovation, and global popular culture.
There are so many reason to learn a new language just in general, but in this economy it could be a few more that might interest you.
#1 To better understand Korean Culture and Society
History, art, food, fashion and beauty, k-pop and all the most popular dramas, whatever it is that piqued your interest in Korean culture, learning the Korean language can help you gain more than a superficial understanding of one of the most fascinating country.
#2 To Boost your Brain Power
Early language studies based on brain research have shown that people who speak two or more languages have significantly better overall cognitive abilities than those who speak just one.
Learning another language is one of the most effective and practical ways to increase intelligence, keep your mind sharp, and buffer your brain against aging. Not to mention the lowered risks of dementia and Alzheimer’s.
#3 To Improve Personal and Business Relationships
Korean has the 13th largest economy in the world. Companies such as Samsung, LG, Hyundai, Kia Motors and POSCO make Korea a major player among the world’s top exporting nations.
Learning Korean will put you at the forefront in an incredibly competitive and challenging market, definitely making you an extraordinary valuable asset to any company.
#4 For a better Travel Experience
Walking through the hanok (traditional Korean houses) districts in Seoul and Jeonju, buying kimchi at the evening street food market in Seoul, shopping the most stylish boutiques in the trendiest Gangnam neighborhoods…visiting South Korea and actually being able to connect and communicate with locals will make your travel experience unique.
#5 To New Opportunities
Truth is, you’ll never know when opportunity might knock to your door; it could be a business opportunity or even the chance for traveling. Adding an extra language skills to your CV can really open up the doorway to new and exciting possibilities!
Now that you have clear in mind why you decided to embarck on this adventure, it’s time to find resources: books, workbooks, classes, tutors, apps.. the choice is yours to make. But -with such an extensive selection- finding the right starting-material could be quite tricky. I have spent almost an entire week surfing the net and watching YouTube videos looking for the right book, the most efficient workbook and the most useful app.
After many researches I finally found what -in my opinion- is one of the best book on the market: KoreanFromZero!
Authors George Trombley, Reed Bullen, Sunhee Bong and Myunghee Ham put toghether a solid 358 pages book made of 17 lessons, an integrated workbook complete with answer key, a verb reference guide and a basic glossary that is simple and easy to work with. Easy-to-understand grammar, important Korean phrases and downloadable audio for pronunciation, make this book perfect for the self-studier.
The most appreciated feature I found on KoreanFromZero is there’s no Romanization (which, I understand, is like the devil whispering in your ear… a big no-no, if you really want to learn Hangul the right way!). Simply by asking around you’ll find out the deceivable nature of “romanization” whilst learning non-latin languages; Korean has an incredibly simple writing system that can be learned in less than 90 minutes and the advantages of learning Hangul without romanization are huge: once for all, it will help you pronounce words properly (so when you speak Korean you can actually be understood!!).
Another great reason to pick KoreanFromZero is that the full Korean From Zero PDF and online course is 100% free on KoreanFromZero website!! You can also buy the official printed book at Amazon.com or BookDepository (which I highly recommend if you, like me, are an old style book-lover).
If you’re up for a new challenge and ready to learn a new language, then go visit www.KoreanFromZero.com and 행운을 빌어요 (good luck).