Slang Expressions in Korean (Talk To Me In Korean) Review

안녕하세요!

I can say without a doubt that Talk To Me In Korean is my favorite Korean study resource. It has constant updates to add to its existing lessons and it uses really fun and informative videos, audio, PDFs, physical textbooks, pictures, and more (ie social media like Twitter and Facebook) to teach Korean. Since I love TTMIK, I was excited to try their Slang Expressions in Korean lessons (they’re available online at My Korean Store). This great product allows the purchaser to choose which price to pay based on their funds or what they personally think the product is worth and is inexpensively priced at $2.99, $4.99 or $9.99.

The Slang Expressions lessons are well worth any price. The package comes as an online download; after purchasing, I waited a few minutes for a confirmation email and then an email with a link to a temporary download. The lesson package can be downloaded a couple times (if you have multiple computers, you can download it to each one rather than spending time transferring with a USB), and the download link expires after about a week (so if you decide to get this, don’t sit around for a month not checking your email and wondering where on earth your Korean slang lessons have gone).

The Slang Expressions download came as a zipped folder that unzipped to show four audio files (I copied them to iTunes and added them to my ‘TTMIK Extras’ playlist) and a PDF (if you have an iPhone, download the iBooks app for free, add the PDF to your iTunes books library by dragging it or copying it, then sync that PDF to your phone to study Korean on the go). The four audio files included three lessons – Chapters 1, 2, and 3 – and a great Mini Dialogue Audio Track to practice with at the end of the lessons.

iBooks PDFs

The audio

  • each lesson is 16-17 minutes
  • the mini dialogue is about 8 minutes
  • each lesson corresponds to a chapter in the PDF and includes 10 slang expressions
  • a slang expression is given, its meaning is explained, and different forms (ie noun, adjective, adverb, etc.) are also given
  • the origin of the slang expression is also explained
  • mini conversations between native Korean speakers (mainly in 반말 or informal language because this is slang Korean) help clarify usage at the end of the explanation: the first speaker talks, 선현우선생님 translates, the second speaker talks, 선현우선생님 translates, etc. until the conversations ends; then the conversation is repeated but without translation in between speakers
  • though the PDF is a great tool for reading Korean and reinforcing the slang expressions, the audio allows you to multitask by listening to the slang lessons while you’re busy folding laundry, working out, or getting from A to B

The PDF

  • the PDF is efficiently organized into three chapters that correspond to the audio
  • everything spoken in the audio is included in the PDF
  • Korean words and dialogues are written in hangul without romanization pronunciation guides, so it’s best to listen to the audio alongside reading the PDF (at least for the first time)
  • dialogues and examples of the word in other usages are on the left side; translations are on the right (the following picture is zoomed in on the examples and dialogue)

Slang Expressions screenshotOverall…

One big reason why I love TTMIK is that their lessons, while being extremely relevant, helpful, and informative, are never boring, and just about every sample dialogue is funny (I often find myself laughing while I’m studying). Each useful phrase is either a common real-life example or a conversation that sounds like it’s straight out of a funny and romantic Korean drama. These Slang Expressions in Korean lessons include some of my favorite funny dialogues.

Slang Expressions dialogue

Beyond being funny and memorable, the phrases are surprisingly relevant. I hesitated to buy this at first because the phrases that the product description mentioned seemed irrelevant to most regular conversations – yet the lessons’ examples showed me that these phrases are a great asset to my vocabulary; I can’t wait to begin using them naturally in conversations and understanding their use in music, shows, and real life.

I definitely recommend that you check out the sample audio and PDF and then purchase these lessons to add to your Korean study resources. If your Korean isn’t high enough to understand complex grammar and all the ins and outs of how a sentence is put together, don’t worry; these lessons are very simple and easy to follow, and you can always begin by memorizing terms. Save the sentence dissection for when you get to that level. Speaking a language is all about sounding natural, and these Slang Expressions can set you on the right path.

NOTE: The majority of the Slang Expressions lessons are in informal language or 반말, which means just because you’re feeling high and mighty and like a G-Dragon perty boy (Crayon? Anyone, anyone?) you can’t just casually use slang to an older person or someone you’re supposed to be polite to. If you’re not sure, don’t use it – in case it’ll offend the other person. You might seem more rude and stupid than fluent and intelligent.

감사합니다!

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Talk To Me In Korean Review

안녕하세요! This is a review of the language-learning website called Talk To Me In Korean. TTMIK uses a variety of materials, from audio to PDFs, videos to textbooks. Native Korean teachers constantly update the website with new lessons and are extremely interactive with their students, both online and in person. They’re very good teachers and they know what they’re talking about – and they’re never boring.

The break down:

  • 9 Levels, average 25+ lessons per level (exception for Level 9 which currently has only 1)
    • Explore Levels 1-7 curriculum here
    • Lesson length ranges from 1-30 minute(s)
    • Covers Hangeul, vocabulary, grammar, common phrases, verb conjugation, pronunciation, and more, for students anywhere from beginner to advanced
  • Free workbooks, quizzes, reviews
  • Everything is free or very cheap (with different pricing options)
  • iPhone Apps available for free – access all these materials on an easy-to-use App that allows you to listen while you look at the PDF on your smartphone screen
  • TTMIK teachers and materials accessible through smartphones, Twitter, YouTube, their own extensive website, Facebook, Google+
  • Created by native speakers living and working in South Korea
  • A whole lot of extra material available via TTMIK’s store and through their connected website, HaruKorean, where students pay about $6 a month for daily new lessons, 24-hour feedback, and more practice, practice, practice

Overall, Talk To Me In Korean is definitely my favorite language learning website. I would make a list of the pros, but those are already listed above because everything TTMIK does is a pro. The teachers are fun and interesting, making each lesson dynamic, and TTMIK just keeps coming up with more material in new and exciting ways! For example, if you like TTMIK on Facebook, you’ll find vocabulary pictures while scrolling through your newsfeed-they post pictures tagged in Korean to teach vocab. You’ll also hear about new materials that they create and events that they hold. You can subscribe to them on YouTube to enter contests, learn native pronunciation, and review vocab. The teachers Tweet, too. You can’t help but learn Korean from this amazing language resource!

However, I would still recommend signing up for a free Livemocha account even if you use everything that TTMIK offers and none of Livemocha’s lessons. Livemocha is an excellent supplement because it provides a platform for you to meet native Korean speakers who are learning English and chat with them in real-time. I talk more about Livemocha here, as well as explain how to utilize TTMIK.

You want to learn Korean? You can do it. Be brave. Don’t shy away. Start learning right now.

Language is the blood of the soul into which thoughts run and out of which they grow.
‒Oliver Wendell Holmes