This blog post was written as a guest blog post at twoChois.
안녕하세요. Hello, fellow learners!
I blog about my Korean learning journey at Korean Vitamin and this time I’ve been given the opportunity by twoChois to blog a review on a Korean textbook, 거침없이 한국어 1, for which I’m very grateful. 너무 영광입니다 (=It’s such an honor for me).
I had the pleasure of reviewing a textbook for twoChois once before, “Essential TOPIK Grammar 150 – Japanese version” which you can read on twoChois’ blog.
Now, here comes the book review! 거침없이 한국어 1.
First impression: I like the pink cover. The black hangul fonts look cool but I couldn’t read the book title at first. I probably wouldn’t pick the book myself without at least reading a good review about it because I couldn’t even read the title.
But maybe it’s a good idea to have the title written in such daunting fonts because beginners should stay away from it. The book is written entirely in Korean, and readers should at least be at intermediate level to use it as a learning material (TOPIK level 3 or 4).
The book got its title from the situation-comedy drama produced by MBC “거침없이 하이킥” (=high kick without reserve. Japanese title: 思いっきりハイキック). What you will find inside is Korean lessons based on drama skits of 거침없이 하이킥. So readers can learn real-life Korean and also Korean culture as experienced in daily life from the Korean family drama. Sounds like a wonderful idea for a textbook.
If you’re curious, this is what’s written on the back cover:
“한국인은 어떻게 하루하루를 살고, 무엇을 하며 즐겁게 놀까? 한국인이 사회와 소통하는 방식은 어떠할까? 한국인의 의식 속에 자리 잡은 것들은 무엇이고, 특별한 의미와 가치를 부여하는 일들은 어떤 것이 있을까?”
한국어를 배우는 외국인이 정말 궁금해하는 것과 진짜 하고 싶은 것이 무엇일지 고민하는 데서 이 책은 시작되었다. 그리고 ‘한국어를 할 줄 아는 외국인’에서 벗어나 진정으로 한국 사람들과 자연스럽게 어울리고 싶어 하는 그들의 마음을 대변하여 이 책을 완성하였다….. (etc. etc. because that’s what the publisher’s website provides and I don’t have the time or patience to type in full).
The book is not very thick, 160 pages, B5 size. It has colorful pages, which seems like a trend in Korean textbooks published in South Korea nowadays. Newer textbooks from Yonsei University, Ewha Women University, Ganada Korean, etc. have been now revised and given more colorful look. I notice this because I’ve been using Korean textbooks published in Japan; they’re all in black and white. Having this said, the most important thing of a book is still the contents, of course.
The book comes with a DVD so you can watch the skits for each lesson. No, not full episodes of the drama, just 3 to 9 minute skits used in the lessons in the textbook to teach you Korean expressions and cultural points. I kind of hoped for hangul or English subtitles, but there’s none. There are 10 chapters in the book so there are 10 skits in the DVD.
It is the 1st book of the series consist of 3 books.
The 1st book, the pink one, is about family and daily life (가족과 일상).
The 2nd book, the blue one, is about holiday and leisure time (놀이와 여가).
The 3rd book, the yellow one, is about society and social system (사회와 제도).
You will find foreword and structure of the book at the first pages. (See the picture above).
The authors state that this book is written to be used in Korean classrooms (“교육 현장”) so students can learn natural Korean expressions that are really used in daily life, not only the standard and correct Korean taught in formal textbooks. Using the sitcom drama, they hope to teach cultural background to students as experienced in daily life in Korea and students can use the jokes in the drama as a mean to understand the heart and mind of Korean people.
Now, keep in mind that this book series are meant to be used as supplement textbooks for Korean classes, not for self-learners without guidance of a teacher (but you can still use it for self-learning to some extent).
On the next pages you will find the list of chapters and the names of the characters in the drama, in cartoon.
목차 (List of contents)
1. 백일 기념사진 촬영
- 백일 기념사진 촬영
- 가족 간의 호칭
2 .소파와 밑반찬
- 쓰레기와 재활용
3. 해미의 간섭이 싫은 민용
- 가족 간의 관심과 간섭
4. 돈 없는 신지
- 데이트 비용
- 기념일 이벤트
5. 김치 대결
- 지역별 김치의 종류
- 김치의 효능
6. 순재에게 치료받는 민정
- 한방 치료법
7. 친할머니, 외할머니
- 친할머니와 외할머니
8. 어버이날 선물
- 어버이날과 기념일
- 아날로그와 디지털
9. 문희의 살림 은퇴 선언
- 가사 분담
- 가사 도우미
10. 제사 음식에 손댄 준하
- 조상님과 제사
- 제사 음식과 상차림
Now I will use chapter 1 to show you the structure of the book.
Every chapter begins with a page like this (see picture above).
First, on the top, you have the title of the chapter: 01. 백일 기념사진 촬영 (=taking a picture to celebrate 100-day-after-birth day. 응? Pardon my English. It’s much easier to understand Korean in Japanese: 百日祝いの記念写真撮影).
Next, you have ★영상을 보기전에★ (=before you watch the drama skit),
consists of 2 questions for discussion.
1. 한국인의 통과의례에는 어떤 것이 있는지 알고 있습니까? (Do you know the rites of passage for Korean people?)
2. 여러분의 나라와 한국의 가족 호칭은 어떻게 다릅니까? (How do you call members of the family in your country and how they’re different from Korean way?)
On the same page, you have 줄거리 (=outline or plot) of the drama skit you’re about to watch. Like this:
줄거리 | 순재 가족은 민용과 신지의 아들인 준이의 백일을 맞이하여 가족사진을 촬영한다. 문희는 아들 부부와 함께 앞에 앉지 못하고 뒤에 서서 사진을 찍는 것이 못마땅하다. 준하는 어머니와 아내 사이에서 갈등한다.
Below it, under the title of 영상 속으로(=inside the skit), you will find questions that you will have answered as you watch.
- 오늘은 무슨 날입니까?
- 가족들은 무엇을 합니까?
- 사진을 찍기 전에 무슨 일이 있었습니까?
- 문희와 해미 사이에는 어떤 갈등이 있었습니까?
On the next pages, you will find the drama script in dialog form. The drama script for chapter 1 is three-page long. You can see there are short explanations in the right column.
For example, the script says: 이놈이 지 백일인 걸 아나 보다. 좋아 죽네.
Righ next to it, you will find the explanation:
지: ‘자기’의 입말 표현.
-어 죽다: 앞 말이 뜻하는 상태나 느낌의 정도가 매우 심함을 나타낸다.
Turn over the page, next you’ll have: 한국사람처럼 말해요! (Let’s speak like a Korean!)
Here, you will learn 4-5 natural Korean expressions taken from the drama skit.
In the gray box, you will find the expression/idiom. For example:
순재 요놈이 아주 사정없이 오줌을 갈기네.
Next, comes the definition or meaning of the expression:
사정없이: 혼내다/나무라다, 내쫓다, 때리다 등의 단어와 함께 쓰여서 다른 사람의 상황이나 형편을 생각하지 않고 심하게, 지나치게’의 뜻을 나타낸다.
Next, the book gives you other examples where the expression is used.
가: 정훈 씨가 과장님한테 많이 혼났어요?
나: 과장님께서 그렇게 화내시는 모습 처음 봐요. 아주 사정없이 혼을 내시더라고요.
Last in the section, there a do-this-for-speaking-practice section:
연습: 다른 사람에게 아주 크게 혼이 나 본 적이 있습니까? 또는 다른 사람을 크게 혼내 본 적이 있습니까? 이야기해 봅시다.
On the next page, there’s another section for speaking practices: 거침없이 말해요!
It consists of questions so you can have more speaking practices. New vocabulary are introduced to help you answer the questions.
For example, for this question or ‘invitation’ to speak, 순재의 성격을 말해 봅시다, there’s a list of words, such as: 이기적, 자기중심적, etc, with definitions in Korean.
If you’re a motivated self-learner, I suppose you can write your answers and ask native Koreans on Lang-8 to correct you. I just skipped this part for now, realizing I still can’t speak Korean at the top of my head, even to myself.
On the next page, comes another section: 갈무리 (the finishing part).
This section is meant to give writing practices, such as: answer this question using these 3 words! Write the summary of the drama skit you’ve just watched!
This is the part, where as a self-learner, you should dash to Lang-8.com and ask native Koreans to correct your grammar and word choice. But I just do not feel like doing that right now. It reminds me I still have that TOPIK preparation book for writing section that I haven’t even touched yet.
I thought 갈무리 means “the last part”. But… no, the lesson isn’t over.
We’re having TV속 문화 이야기 1.
Or cultural talk inside the TV, part 1.
And part 2. Now, we finally finish the chapter.
In TV속 문화 이야기 1 and 2, you will read an 읽기 material about culture related to the drama skit. You will use it for reading practices and to get acquainted with Korean culture.
On the bottom of the page, there is a “잠깐, 질문 있어요” (=Wait! I have a question.) corner where you can find a tips for living in Korea in a form of Q&A.
Q: 한국인의 잔치에 초대 받으면 돈을 가져가야 하나요? (Do I have to bring money if I get invited to a Korean celebration?)
A: 네. 그렇습니다. (Yes, that’s right). … etc.
Finally, in the section “더 알아볼까요?” (Shall we learn a bit more?), you will find some more further explanation and many questions about Korean culture that you will have to find out on your own, because there are no answer keys.
I tried to answer the questions by searching the internet but I could only find half of the answers of chapter 1 so I skipped them. I can ask Lang-8 but don’t feel motivated right now. I wish that the book would just tell me the answers, because I don’t even have access to a library. How do you call 누나의 남편? 동생의 남편?
I assume this book is written for foreign students who live in South Korea so they have easy access for answers and experience Korean culture in daily life. The questions are also great for discussions in a classroom with the help of a Korean teacher.
The book is great for learning Korean because:
- You can learn Korean from a Korean drama, and you’ve always wanted to do that.
- You can learn about expressions used in real life (and Korean dramas) but not normally taught in textbooks for formal lessons.
- You can learn about cultural points related to the drama skit so you will expand your knowledge about Korean culture and lifestyle.
- It’s written entirely in Korean. No distracting translation.
- Well-balanced exercises for developing reading, listening, writing, and speaking skills.
But you might not like it because:
- No answer keys or model answers. Not designed for self learning.
- You will need help from other people, other books, or other sources of information to do the exercises and answer the questions in this book.
- It’s written entirely in Korean. No helpful translation.
To recap, this is the structure of each chapter in the book:
- 영상을 보기 전에
- 영상 속으로
- 어휘 및 표현
- 한국 사람처럼 말해요
- 거침없이 말해요
- TV 속 문화 이야기 1, 2
- 잠깐, 질문 있어요
- 더 알아볼까요?
This was a review for:
거침없이 한국어 1: 가족과 일상
거침없이 하이킥 DVD included
저자: 천성옥 , 최진옥 , 정미진 지음
160 pages | B5
ISBN-10 : 8976999169 | ISBN-13 : 9788976999160
정가 17,000 won
I hope you find it helpful to decide the next textbook you’ll use in your learning journey.
Thank you for the owners of twoChois store who have sent me the book for me to review.
twoChois offers plethora of books and excellent service for learners of Korean language and fans/shoppers of Korean goods around the world. If you haven’t, you really should check out the online store at http://www.twochois.com.
Thank you for reading. ###