Elementary Korean

Spread the love

A book review of Elementary Korean (Text and Workbook) by Insun Lee

Elementary Korean Text and Workbook Review

Stars: ****

Tuttle (2014)
Language Learning> Korean
352 pages (text) 224 pages (workbook)

Disclosure: I received a copy of these book in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Summary: Korean is now the 11th most popular language taught at American universities. This new edition of Elementary Korean, the most comprehensive and detailed introductory Korean textbook available, offers beginning learners of Korean everything they need to learn the language effectively. Perfect for a first-year university-level course use or the independent language learner. No prior knowledge of the language is necessary.

The new format, now with dozens of illustrations, presents Korean vocabulary and Korean grammar in an accessible and understandable manner while extensive conversations and exercises help to reinforce the Korean language and build reading and listening comprehension.

This edition includes:

  • Rich and highly nuanced examples with brand new illustrations.
  • Downloadable companion MP3 audio with native speaker recordings and a dedicated website.
  • Grammar notes
  • Ample writing exercises with an accompanying answer key.
  • Detailed examples of authentic dialogue.
  • Plenty of writing practice.
Elementary Korean Text and Workbook Review

Dialogues, reading texts, and written exercises are in Hangul, the Korean alphabet, so students are quickly able to read and write authentic Korean. Layered lessons are designed to build on each other, making Korean easy to learn from the most popular introductory Korean language textbook available.

Included is downloadable revised audio that helps learners to speak like a native and a web-based practice component through the University of British Columbia that can help students to learn Korean even beyond the pages of this book. According to the Modern Language Association, enrollment in Korean in American universities is increasing rapidly.

Available separately is the companion Elementary Korean Workbook, which assists learners in practicing and polishing their Korean language skills. Each lesson supplements the corresponding lesson in the textbook. There are ten activities per lesson, offering a range of exercises and practice opportunities to enable you to achieve proficiency in everyday, conversational Korean.

Elementary Korean

My grade 7 decided he wanted to try Korean out this year so he could see if he would want Korean to be his second language in high school or not. We picked out this series because it looks complete and there isn’t as much to choose from for learning Korean as other languages.


I have to be honest, my son is struggling to learn Korean but it may not be the text and workbook itself. My son has learning disabilities and Korean is hard to learn in general as it has it’s own alphabet. We took a break from the books for a bit and will be trying again after the new year. He is unable to follow along the text and workbook all on his own because of his limits so I will have to go through it with him to help him learn.

Recommended For

As such, I recommend the series more for older learners who are committed to working hard everyday at learning a new language and not so much for those who are younger, have disabilities and/or don’t have as much drive to learn in general. Korean is HARD.

However if you are a teen or adult, who loves learning and you have the motivation and drive to work hard, I think the books by Tuttle Publishing are perfect. They are very thorough and teach both the alphabet and reading comprehension as well as listening comprehension. This is available through their website and mp3 recordings.

Although the name says Elementary, don’t be fooled into thinking it’s for elementary age children. It means elementary in the original definition of the word which means relating to the basic elements of a subject.

Buy Elementary Korean text or workbook from Amazon.com

About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.