3 Must Know Things When You Learn Korean
Many students learning Korean think that the language is more difficult to learn than other languages. However, that might not be true. I may say that they have not been accustomed to the system of the grammar yet. It will be much easier if they understand how the language works before learning. In this article, I would like to share three tips that Korean learners must know.
1. Get used to the word order.
The first tip is to get used to the word order. Normally in English, the word order goes as subject, verb, and object: S+V+O. On the contrary, Korean has different ones. The order typically goes as subject, object, and verb: S+O+V. The orders also can be changed depending on what part of speech the speaker want to empathize or how he or she wants to express. Nonetheless, the verb stays at the end of sentences mostly. If the learners become comfortable with the orders, the learning will be much easier.
I eat pizza
subject verb object
저는 피자를 먹어요.
subject object verb
2. Study the functions of the particles and the endings of the verbs.
Particles are the markers of the parts of speech. In other words, the learners can figure out how the parts are working in sentences. The particles are always located next to the nouns. Although the word order of a sentence is changed, learners can understand the sentence looking at the particles. Equally, the ending of the verbs decide many things: manner, tense, character of the sentence (declarative, interrogative, imperative, etc.) It is always good to check the last syllables of each part of speech.
저는 햄버거를 좋아해요.
스티븐은 내일 미국에 가요.
3. Keep in mind that subjects are often omitted.
In Korean conversation, the speakers often omit the subject in their sentences. If someone joins the talk midway, it takes time for them find out what or who is the topic or the subject of the dialogue. Regularly, the speakers mention the subject in the first sentence and continue the conversation without it unless they need to clarify. Moreover, they can start talking without it when the topic is themselves. For the learners, practicing the omission of the subject eventually leads to high fluency of Korean language.
ex) (빌은) 밥 먹었어요?
Bill meal ate?
아니요. (저는) 안 먹었어요.
no, I no ate
Korean language seems to have its specific grammar that gives learners some difficulties. Nevertheless, the structure includes simpler and more scientific laws to understand rather than it looks. If learners are still struggling to achieve their goals, these three tips might help the learners study easily and motivate themselves better: getting used to the order, studying the functions of the particles and the endings of verbs, and not minding to produce sentences without subject.
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