LANGUAGE

A Fun Guide to Mastering Japanese Numbers in Kanji!

Numbers are one of the most important things to learn when living abroad. Without them, how could you shop, understand your salary, or most important, exchange phone numbers with a new friend (or potential date)? kanji.jitenon.jp/ As simple as can be. Simply stroke your pen across the paper in a straight, horizontal line. Extra points…

How To Study Japanese On The Cheap?

Studying Japanese can be quite a daunting process, but help is never far away. Japan’s ageing population has many retired teachers among their ranks who are happy to take a Japanese language student under their wing and give weekly lessons for next to nothing. Usually, these community type lessons will carry a nominal fee of…

Goroawase: Wordplay to Remember Dates the Japanese Way!

It is amazing how helpful rhymes can be when trying to recall dates. For instance the English mnemonic rhyme, “thirty days hath September, April, June and November…” allows us to recall easily how many months within a year have fewer days. In Japan, children also use the phrase nishi muku samurai (the samurai looking west)…

5 Essential Words to Help Your Order Food and Drinks in Japan

Ordering food can be a pain if you don’t speak the local lingo. Sure, you can point and click, but in the end you just may find yourself with something undesirable on your plate. Worse yet, be whisked away to the ER due to an emergency allergic reaction. These 5 words and phrases will help…

“An”, The 2015 Kanji of the Year

Do you know that every year the Japanese Proficiency Society chooses a kanji to be the “Kanji of the Year”? They choose 10 characters which represent the event of the current year best and then do a poll through a national ballot where the kanji with the most votes wins the award of kotoshi no…

Japan’s Word of the Year 2015 Nominees: the 10 Most Interesting Words!

As we head towards the end of 2015 it is time for the announcement of the 50 nominees for the Word of the Year, done by large Japanese publisher Juyu Kokumin Sha. Every year during November, the publisher selects a set of terms which have made an impact on the Japanese popular culture over recent…

The Ultimate Test For Language Enthusiasts – Kanji Kentei

It is no surprise that Japan has a very deep affection for problem solving and quizzes. Two of the most famous Japanese puzzles–the Sudoku and Kakuro–has even made other countries’ people hooked as well. Quiz shows are also ubiquitous among TV shows. Many tests have been designed also in order to test your knowledges of…

5 Basic Key Words to Help You on Your Japan Adventures

Before you travel to Japan, you should know that most Japanese people do not use English often. It may not because they aren’t any good at speaking English, but because they aren’t confident enough to communicate with tourists in English. bbc.com/ Therefore, you might struggle to communicate with restaurant waiters or shop assistants who only…

6 Useful Words to Really Impress the Yamagata Locals

Have you started learning any Japanese yet? How’s your hiragana, katakana, and kanji? Once you’ve mastered those, maybe you would like to start learning the dialects (ho-ben方便) of the different areas across Japan. Various areas have their own unique dialect and it’s quite interesting to listen to the differences. For me, Kansai-ben sounds like Chinese,…

Japanese 101: No Better Place to Start Your Mission to Fluency!

Are you interested in learning Japanese? Have you been dreaming of speaking Japanese fluently one day or watching anime without referring to the subtitles? Guess what? We have something in common! Learning a new language can be challenging sometimes but if you have the passion, speaking in Japanese will be a piece of cake for…
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