A Brief Guide to Learn Korean Beyond Memorising the Alphabets  

A Brief Guide to Learn Korean Beyond Memorising the Alphabets   

One of the first things you will encounter when you learn the Korean language is their unique alphabets or writing system. Most people often regard the Korean alphabets as one of the most rational and simple-to-learn writing systems. King Sejong, the Great of the Joseon dynasty, created the writing system to provide equality among his subjects.

4 Fun Facts About the Korean Language

Most individuals want to learn Korean for several reasons, from wanting to understand shows and artists better to just being able to speak another language. Korean is one of the ideal languages to learn due to the abundance of learning materials and opportunities. Here are some facts about the language you can share with other people in your Korean classes in Singapore.

#1 It takes heavy influence from the Chinese language.

You will learn from your Korean classes in Singapore that the language takes heavy influence from the Chinese. Nevertheless, it is a separate language with distinctive grammar. Due to historical ties between Chinese and Koreans, up to 60% of Korean terms are of Chinese origin. About 35% are entirely Korean, with the remaining 5% being loanwords from other languages.

#2 Verbs are at the end.

Sentence structure is one of the most fundamental topics discussed in basic Korean language lessons for beginners. Taking the course long enough will let you know that its sentence structure is drastically different from English. The word order for the English language is always Subject, Verb, Object. In contrast, Korean is an SOV language. It means that the verb is always the last element in the sentence and comes after the object.

#3 It uses two counting systems.

You also discover their counting system after you learn the unique Korean alphabets. Korean numbers employ distinct terminology. One counting system uses native Korean words to describe your age, count items, and express the hour while telling time. This system has a maximum capacity of 99. The other method is of Chinese origin. Koreans use it to indicate minutes when stating time, distance, money, and dates. They also use it for integers above 99.

#4 The language has seven levels of respect.

Korean has a complicated system of honorifics, much like the Japanese language. They are namely: Hasoseo-che (하소서체), Hasibsio-che (하십시오체), Hao-che (하오체), Hage-che(하게체), Haera-che (해라체), Haeyo-che(해요체) and Hae-che(해체). Each level demonstrates a particular amount of formality and civility.

However, most Korean classes in and out of Singapore only focus on the four most used degrees of honorifics: Hasibsio-che (하십시오체), Haeyo-che (해요체), Haera-che (해라체), Hae-che (해체). Hasibsio-che and Haeyo-che are most commonly known as Jondaemal (존댓말). On the other hand, Koreans refer to Haera-che and Haeyo-che as Banmal (반말).

5 Tips to Improve Your Korean Writing Skills

Everyone knows that the four fundamental language abilities are listening, reading, speaking, and writing. Since each language skill is significant, you must devote effort to developing each skill. You must first understand the writing system to study Korean. Here are a few pointers to help you learn the unique Korean alphabets.


#1 List Vocabularies

You cannot improve your Korean writing abilities until you have a vocabulary. Exert effort to acquire new vocabulary daily and keep the list up-to-date with what you learn. When studying a character language, remember that you do not want to rely too heavily on transliterations.

#2 Define Your Goals

Develop a list of your objectives before attending a Korean writing course in Singapore. Not everyone has the time to devote to just learning a language. However, it is understandable if you only have one hour every day to practise, that is also acceptable. Distinguish between what you desire and what is realistic.

#3 Constant Writing Practice

It is critical to maintaining writing when learning a new language, especially one with a complicated writing system like Korean. It is crucial to master the characters in Korean beyond your Korean online or offline class. Moreover, it is also critical to perform each character stroke in a specific order. It might take some time if you’re not used to dealing with characters.

#4 Concentrate on Each Character

Try to be innovative in your language study whenever possible. Practise at every opportunity after you learn the distinctive Korean alphabets and writing system. If you want to have even more fun, look up the lyrics to your favourite K-Pop song and practise writing the words.

#5 Have Fun Experimenting with Korean

Don’t be frightened to make errors after attending your Korean classes in Singapore. No one will judge you. It should be enjoyable to learn a new language, not stressful. Learning a language should be a tremendously rewarding experience. Always keep your final objective in mind and have fun along the way. Moreover, making mistakes in class will provide more opportunities to improve your skills faster.

Studying the Korean Language on Your Own

Most individuals will look for more ways to study the Korean language. Fortunately, there are a few ways you can improve your Korean communication skills beyond your Korean language classes in Singapore. You can explore websites and apps that offer tips and fun activities to help you exercise your language skills. Visit a bookstore near you and search for materials like flashcards and workbooks that will help you become more familiar with words and proper writing methods. Watch videos by Korean speakers online. Listen to how they enunciate letters and syllables to help you improve your pronunciation. Take advantage of these many resources for more efficient learning. If you want to test your communication skills, join a language exchange program. Moreover, immerse yourself in their language and culture by visiting the country.

Learn with Passionate Individuals

ONLYOU is a Korean language centre run by a small group of volunteers who desire to help others. They are a close-knit community of Korean language enthusiasts. Their classroom activities rely heavily on verbal interaction, such as role-playing, team-building, group debates, and presentations. They hope to help students use the language outside the classroom and share their linguistic abilities through teaching. Visit their website to learn more about them and their Korean language course for interested Singapore individuals.


Kate Lee