Been wanting to get my hands on this and thanks to Amber, I can finally review this!! 😀
It’s a site that all Korean learners, no matter your level, should know. I know the team personally and I’m very very very happy that they have consolidated their lessons into actual books. 😀
The TTMIK books is a series of 10 books (1 for each level) and it’s basically a physical book of their online content and also supplemental materials.
As usual, scroll down to the end of the post for a summary if you are lazy to read through!
First impressions? Lightweight, compact and comprehensive. No one likes to bring bulky textbooks around and yet commuting time is one of the times that most of us have some free time to learn some Korean.
The size and weight makes the textbook easy to bring around and with all the mp3 files from the CD loaded into iTunes, you are good to go!
Each chapter in book 1 is also well structured.
1. Phrase / grammar point
Each chapter starts out with the explanations for a certain phrase or grammar point and I like how the beginning chapters start out with familiar phrases like 안녕하세요 and 감사합니다 to ease the beginner learner into the language, instead of bombarding them with the elaborate structure of Korean or the different politeness levels.
2. Sample Dialogue
After ample explanations given in the earlier section, there is a simple (few liner) dialogue to put everything together. Transcripts are also provided on the same page.
Useful, simple exercises that reinforce what you have learnt in the chapter. Each question is easy to answer and you don’t have to think too much or get too frustrated over them. I’m one of those people that tend to skip over most textbook exercises but I like what I see in theTTMIK book. For level 1, all the questions are in English.
hehe I spot a mistake on pg 75. The romanizations are inaccurate for the front part of the dialogue XD
One thing that I’m not sure how I feel about is the romanizations. On one hand, I can see how they can be helpful to the beginner learner, but on the other hand, I still do not agree on having romanizations at all after introducing the alphabets. With mp3 files and the TTMIK team giving ample explanations for both section 1 & 2 in each chapter, I find that it is more than enough to help the learners for pronunciation. Romanizations serve minimal purpose, other than to make the learner more reliant on them and for them to get a very weird Korean accent. Will elaborate more in a separate post!
If you are using the book, ignore the romanizations. USE YOUR EARS. Listen to the team and the mp3 files and try to follow their pronunciation. Active listening is the only way to help you sound more natural. Romanizations will just impede your progress.
Overall, I really like the book! 😀 Well structured, easy to use. Complemented with the mp3 files and the online site, this is a comprehensive book for all beginners! Looking forward to the whole series.
- small and compact
- ease new learners into the language
- easy to understand explanations
- well paced, no information overload at any point of time
- ample sample sentences
- interesting exercises
To be improved
- add a hangeul chart in front for the first book (:
- avoid using romanizations or stop using them after a few ‘intro’ lessons
Overall, worth the purchase!
You can purchase the book at their official store here. The team is awesomeeee. Thank you TTMIK!