The format of the books are pretty consistent across levels, although the level 1 – 2 books do contain slightly more pictures. In this review, I’ll be reviewing the books in terms of how well they can fit a total beginner in Korean and a self-studier. ^^
Ewha Korean 1 – 1
Some books give off that ‘omg it’s going to be so difficult’ vibe but I think that the Ewha book gives people the sense of assurance that one won’t be thrown into the deep end of the pool and that things will go step by step. A friendly feel?
Book 1 – 1 is totally structured to give you a good foundation of Korean. It really touches the basics of basics, with no particular fancy grammar structures. It deals with the basic sentence endings, major particles, tenses, time, weather and other basic conjugation rules. Looking at it makes me feel like a self studier and total beginner can actually understand and learn the language from this series, instead of taking a beginners class.
I love how there are a lot parts that have accompanied audio files – even more so than the upper levels. This shows that the book and its authors know the importance of input, especially at the beginners stage
Another awesome thing is that the book uses IPA only for the beginning part of introducing Hangeul and Chapter 1 starts without any romanization. 😀
And I like that they acknowledge that ㄱ can be pronounced as both [k] and [g] at different places, instead of just assuming that it’s [k] like some textbooks do.
Ewha Korean 1-2
Noticeably thicker, the book jumps into the grammar structures. To give you an idea, here are some of the grammar structures covered
- 에게 / 한테
- (으)러 가다
- 기 전에
- 아/어도 되다
Just so that you know what level to get! A wide variety of vocabulary is introduced and the reading passages get a little more substantial. Around 200-300 words. Unlike certain beginners textbook, the Ewha series is less focused on culture and more focused on the modern life. The dialogues are usually modern and normal situations and the culture bits are in a separate section. It’s a good thing. Sometimes I get annoyed with dialogues that is soo… culture-based. -___- Like every other dialogue is about some important festival in Korea or that the conversations take place in the palaces or something. I’m glad the Ewha books have a good balance!
Ewha Korean 2 -1
If the level 1 books are just play pool, book 2 is like a real size pool -.- Okay bad analogy. Around 5 – 6 grammar points are covered in each chapter and there seems to be a slightly larger jump from the level 1 -2 book. Nevertheless, nothing too challenging. A lot of new vocabulary are introduced. Okay, I admit that I even saw a word or two that I didn’t know. in LEVEL 2. FML
If you are curious to know, they are 충치 (decayed tooth) and 덧나다 (to worsen). I feel like a failure now…. ㅎ
In any case, you guys should know by now that I’m a fan of the Ewha Series. So… BUY BUY BUY!!!
Level 1 -3 consists of two books in each level and they are available in a few languages. So.. remember to look carefully which versions you are buying!! You won’t want to end up with the Japanese version or something… ^^
16,000 won per book, CD included
I am very happy with my Level 6 book and have been studying from it every now and then!
For those who own the books too (no matter which level), leave a comment and let the others know what you think!