Just the thought of ‘New’ had me so happy when I learned that the newer version of 가나다 books started to be distributed to students at my school since early this year. It was so sad though because my old Elementary 1 classmates who retook the term, took them last year when the older books were still used. So that’s why I haven’t had a chance to get a glimpse of the book, not until I borrowed the book from my current classmate. I’ve learned about the newer books since last year since I’m searching for the follow up book, and found out that the newer versions are super.
The older 가나다 Ganada Korean for Foreigners Elementary 1 is still a good book, though. But like what I’ve said… ‘the thought of ‘New” is a big thing to consider. The book was published on 1997, so even if some of the things inside are somewhat universal, there are things that are so outdated, that Koreans barely use them anymore. ‘다방’ is already not in use, but ‘커피숍’.
If you *might* still be waiting for the ‘New 가나다 Ganada Korean for Foreigners | Elementary 1’ book, I don’t think I’m gonna review it solo-ly anymore. This book is the follow up, and it looks exactly just like the Elementary 1 book, same format, only different content.
New 가나다 Ganada Korean for Foreigners | Elementary 2 (초급2)
★★★★/ (4 and a half stars)
The yellowness of the book makes me happy, lol. As always, 가나다 Korean for Foreigners books are also offered in Chinese and Japanese, and since I don’t know how to speak neither, this is the English version. And this comes from the school so even if I do know Japanese, I don’t have a choice. In regards with TOPIK, it is good to take the beginner TOPIK after this book since this covers the second half of 초급, WHICH… the other half is obviously inside the first book *dumb*.
The book includes 1 MP3 CD *thank God* since the older book contains 4 audio CDs, and it’s just hassling *not really, since I ripped them through my laptop*. Korean native speakers converse and read the contents of the book for proper pronunciation and listening.
Like new and fancier Korean language books, 가나다 finally added a structure to their books. Well, the older one also have a structure, but not as solid and intuitive as the newer books. Actually, the structure of the newer books don’t help much. Unlike ‘재미있는 한국어’ books *which I will review some other time*, it poses a specific goal to achieve every unit. What’s not good about those books though are lesson division complexities, that I will discuss through that review.
There are eight (8) main parts per lesson, and two (2) additional parts:
As far as I can feel, all Korean language books for foreigners start with a conversation, this book is not in any way different. Good thing about this though versus the older 가나다 books, is that the English translations are not exactly below every line. It can be found through the next page. I actually don’t remember any instance where I checked the translation.
The conversation is always in 6 lines. Vocabulary is included in this part since new words that were introduced through the conversations are what’s listed in it.
The important part of the book. New grammar points that appeared from the conversations can be found here. Aside from the short English explanation, it includes three examples. I have always had problems with the explanations because it’s not extensive enough. Without the help of my 선생님, I don’t see myself understanding some of them. For a fact, I HAD MY FIRST ABSENT yesterday, and I can’t exactly learn how to use -(으)ㄴ 지 and –아/어 가다/오다.
Of course, it’s always vital for students to get the feel of the new grammar points by using already learned words, and mixing some newer ones. It is achieved through here. There are exercises for every grammar pattern. Some answers only require correct conjugation, basically copying the format from the example, and some requires legit answers from students… and that is where the supplementary workbook comes.
Words that are newly introduced through 유형연습 are also listed after the last question item.
4. 듣기 – this is probably the thing I most loathed. Not because the book presented it badly, but this is just too confusing and hard for me. HIGHLY NECESSARY, though. This is usually presented in ‘맞으면 O, 틀리면 X‘ format, but there are also exceptions when you have to get dates, or time, etc. But usually, a conversation is read to you through the CD and you have to mark O for correct ideas and X out the wrong ones.
According to the book, this is to give students a more ‘real-life’ grasp on the use of the grammar, but I don’t find it very successful in doing so. Well, maybe, unconsciously, but students are just pressured to take down memo of things they hear, and sometimes, just base from it, without actually realizing the grammar used.
5. 읽기 – this is the ‘funner’ part of the book. The topics are interesting to read, and easy to understand even in full Korean. There are topics like a trip to the amusement park, something about Itaewon, the four seasons, etc. After reading, there are questions to test the students if they understood it. Answers are usually ‘ready-to-copy’ though. You just have to skim through the whole text again to look for the question, and copy the sentence through there and tada! But there are also questions where you are asked to share your own, like there’s this topic about what Koreans eat during every season, and the question asks the student about what their country’s food are like during the said seasons.
6. 활동 – this is the fun activity session, but since we almost always skip this part, I’m guessing that this part is somehow complex for current leveling. There are different games like, crossword puzzle (that we fortunately didn’t skip), etc.
*I only remembered adding this here because I’m currently listening to 버스커 버스커 and remembered one of their songs titled as ‘이상형’* ANDDD!! It’s also funny because when our 선생님 asked us what 이상형 meant, me and one of my classmates answered ‘weird brother’ LOOOOL. Anyway, in this activity we had to find out about our ideal type. First question goes like this ‘데이트 할 때 식사비는 반반씩 나누어서 냈으면 좋겠어요.’ ‘It would be great if I divide payment for the food half-half when I’m on a date.’, and you may choose to answer ‘네’ or ‘아니요’ which will direct you to forward to another number where another question will be asked again.
Eventually there would be 4 ideal types, the A ideal type is the stylish and good looking type (like 이영애 or 장동건), with B (I got this type) first impressions matter, if a person turned out to be not cool or not suitable to one’s liking, it can be changed to another one easily. C ideal type is the money and brains type, which is funny because one of my classmates was redirected to this type. Finally with D, it’s more of a confident partner and someone you have same interests with.
7. 확장단어 + 8. 한국문화엿보기
This is the extensive word section. There’s a section like family members, weather, kinds of clothes, colors, Korean teas, among others. Below, it includes interesting topics regarding Korean culture. Some topics that appeared includes 김장, Korean age, transportation cards, etc.
The ninth part is the index of words and grammar which is attached at the back of the book, and tenth part is the CD. The book also includes conjugations.
Unlike the older book, the newer ones include 30 lessons (vs. 25). This book is at 275 pages and the lessons don’t have any starters anymore, since this is already a second book. Some grammar patterns that can be found through the older Elementary 2 book can be found on the newer Elementary 1 book, among other changes.
New 가나다 Ganada Korean for Foreigners Workbook | Elementary 2 (초급2)
It is wise if you also get this book. This is in pure Korean so even if you have the Japanese or the Chinese textbook counterpart, it won’t matter. Through here you’ll find some grammar patterns that are not discussed fully through the 문법 part of the textbook like -중에서 -제일/가장, -(으)ㄹ 생각이다, etc. Questions inside are somewhat similar with the 유형연습 part of the textbook, but so much more. You are more required to think and construct sentences through this workbook, and not just format and conjugate.
Through this workbook, our class had more framework in dividing the lessons, after 5 lessons, there’s 1 review part, so lessons are equally divided three lessons per week (1 lesson per class meeting), and two lessons and a review day for the subsequent week. *I hope I explained it clearly*.
Will I recommend this book for first time learners?
Well definitely not. This is for continuing learners who got hold of the first book. Good thing though, they finally included a better index of lessons, since older books only include titles of the conversations which didn’t make any sense. Way way back when I was still using the older book, I already knew of this newer version because I searched 가나다 books through the internet. I never knew I’ll continue my Elementary 2, so just in case, I was planning to buy this. I believe it’s best to learn from a book series rather than learning from 가나다 first, then moving to 이화 the second, and 서강 the third… etc. If you’re planning to study that way, it would be very confusing, and grammar patterns may be lost. A certain grammar pattern may appear on the first book of 가나다, but since you used 서강 as first book and 가나다 as second… you feel me? It’s highly better if you study two different textbooks at the same time, same level, but that’s just impractical.
- The book is more colorful and enjoyable to study.
- It has 1 MP3 CD, better than 4, which is hassling.
- Verb conjugations and word/grammar indexes at the back.
- The book is lacking important and beginner grammar patterns like -(으)ㄴ가요/나요, -는지, -(으)ㄹ게요, -(으)ㄹ래요, etc.
- There are no specific goals to attain per lesson.
- Some grammar patterns that appear on the workbook and exercises were not discussed through the grammar section.
I’ve used 가나다 since my Elementary 1 and so far, I am proficient in the level that I am currently in. The lessons in the book are not so good for self-studying, but with a teacher it is a good material.
Grammar Points (자모):
- -고 있다
- -는 데
- -는 동안
- -는 중
- ‘ㄹ’ 불규칙 동사 + 형용사
- – 만에
- ‘ㅂ’ 불규칙 형용사
- -아/어 가다/오다
- -아/어도 되다
- -아/어 보다
- -아/어서 ① ②
- -아/어야 하다/되다
- -아/어 주다
- -았/었으면 좋겠다
- -(으)ㄴ ① ②
- -(으)ㄴ 것 같다
- -(으)ㄴ 일이/적이 있다/없다
- -(으)ㄴ 지
- -(으)니까 ① ②
- -(으)ㄹ 것 같다
- -(으)ㄹ 것이다 ① ②
- -(으)ㄹ 때
- -(으)ㄹ 테니까
- -(으)ㄹ 줄 알다/모르다
- -(으)로 ① ② ③
- -(으)면 안 되다
- -(이)나 ① ② ③
- ‘ㅎ’ 불규칙 형용사
Technical facts about the book:
가나다 Ganada Korean for Foreigners | Elementary 2 (초급2)
Copyright © 2011 by GANADA Korean Language Institute
Price: 25,000 원
Price (Workbook): 11,000 원
GANADA is the first three basic consonants, ‘ㄱ, ㄴ, ㄷ’ joined with the vowel ‘ㅏ’ which represents 한글.
As always, I hope this review helps.