Lesson 1 "Self Introduction in Japanese"

I am ___.

    1. こんにちは。kon nichi wa 
        — Hello.
    2. はじめまして。hajime mashite 
        — Nice to meet you.
    3. 私はミッチです。watashi wa micchi desu 
        — I’m Mitch.  
    4私は日本出身です。watashi wa nihon shusshin desu
        —I’m from Japan.
    5私は好きです。watashi wa neko ga suki desu 
        — I like cats.
           which literally means "As for me, cats are favourite."
    6私は蜘蛛好きではありません。watashi wa kumo wa suki dewa arimasen 
        — I don’t like spiders.
           which literally means "As for me, spiders are not favourite."
    7よろしくお願いします。yoroshiku onegai shimasu 
        — Nice to meet you. 
         (literally; Please be kind.)
Particle "は(wa)" v.s "が(ga)"
Basic rule is:
-particle "は(wa)" is more like "It is about __" or "Regarding __" "As for __"
-particle "が(ga)" marks the subject of the sentence.
Don't worry. We will talk about the differences in later lessons. And as we keep practicing, you will instinctively know when and which one to use.

The structure "A = B" in Japanese

    such as 

     ・I am ___.

     ・You are ___.

     ・He is ___.

     ・She is ___.

     ・Michael is ___.

If the "___" part above is a noun such as "a teacher," "Japanese," "a pig" etc, the structure is:


A (wa) B (desu).

※In Japanese, we don't use personal pronouns (I, you, he, she, he, we, they) so much except "私(watashi) = I" and "私たち(watashi tachi) we"

To see more details, please visit the article on the Japanese pronoun in wikipedia.

Additional Grammar & Phrases

    8___をお願いします。__o onegai shimasu. 
        — ___, please!
eg 1. ビールをお願いします。(bīru o onegai shimasu.)
      Beer, please!
eg 2. ビールを3つお願いします。(bīru o mittsu onegai shimasu)
     Three beers, please!
※ Japanese-origin numbers
hitotsu (1), hutatsu (2), mittsu (3), yottsu (4), itsutsu (5),
muttsu (6), nanatsu (7), yattsu (8), kokonotsu (9), too (10)


    9. 私はテニスをするが好きです。watashi wa tenisu o suru no ga sukidesu. 
        — I like to play tennis.

Other Words & Phrases
-アメリカ(amerika)---the U.S.
-イギリス(igirisu)---the U.K.
-スポーツ選手(supōtsu senshu)---athlete
-テニスをする(tenisu o suru)---to play tennis
-ジョギングをする(jogingu o suru)---to jog
-サッカーをする(sakkā o suru)---to play soccer
-バスケットボールをする(basuketto bōru o suru)---to play basketball
-ゲームをする(gēmu o suru)---to play games
-バーベキューをする(bābekyū o suru)---to have a BBQ

Lesson summery Part 1

Lesson summery Part 2

雑談(zatsudan) small talk "English Education in Japan"


 When I was growing up, English was not mandatory until after 7th grade or 中学1年生(chuu gaku ichi nen sei; first grade in junior high school) in Japan. So I, myself, also did not learn English until after when I became 13 years old.


 Right now (the year 2018), many elementary schools in Japan offer English class called "English activity hour," or something alike, one class period a week or less depending on the grades. During this hour, kids practice English while singing songs and playing games in English. Yes, just sing songs and play games unless your school is a private school, an international school, or the teacher is not following the guidelines of The Ministry of Education's of Japan.


 But from the year 2020, English class in elementary school will be mandatory, and 3rd and 4th graders will be required to take, annually, 35 class periods of English, and 5th and 6th graders, 70 class periods. Yes, compared to many other countries, we are a bit behind in terms of English education.


 On top of that, in Japan, English is taught more for the purpose of university entrance exams and not for the purpose of communication. So a lot of Japanese people are hesitant to speak English because many of us think that "If I make a mistake, that's failure, and I won't be understood. That's so embarrassing." 

 When you come to Japan, and if you talk to a Japanese person in English, he or she might run away or pretend that they don't notice, especially people from older generations.


 The Japanese will really appreciate your effort to try to speak Japanese because many of us don't expect foreigners to speak Japanese. Japanese people think that Japan is rather a small country and the Japanese language is spoken only in Japan. To many Japanese, it is very surprising to see or hear foreigners speak Japanese.

 So let's keep on learning Japanese and impress Japanese people!

Travel Tips: "SIM free mobile phones and free WiFi in Japan"

 In Japan, SIM free mobile phones and public WiFi are not very common although these days the number of cafés and restaurants offering free WiFi access is increasing.

 So if you are traveling in Japan for a couple of weeks or so, you might want to arrange a prepaid SIM before you come to Japan. For security purpose, in Japan, you can NOT simply go to a store and purchase a prepaid SIM. And without a SIM card, you cannot really use your phone to make or receive phone calls, surf the Internet, or use your map app to find out locations. I know it will be a lot of trouble. So I will find out how to get a prepaid SIM in Japan as soon as possible and give you the update here.

 But another option is to rent a mobile WiFi router. I found a site where you can rent a mobile WiFi router for a really reasonable price. You order online, pick up the device at the airport when you arrive, and return it at the airport when you leave. The site is in English, Korean, Chinese, and Japanese. It's this site↓

Cheap Unlimited Internet in Japan!【NINJA WiFi】

 If you want to be sure that you get the Internet connection with your mobile phone, tablet PC, or with your laptop while traveling in Japan, this might be a good option.

 During the high seasons, they might rent out all the devices that they have, so you might want to order one as soon as you booked a flight.

 If you are planning to live in Japan for a longer time, I would definitely recommend you "【WiMAX2+】 " for your mobile and Internet services. This is one of the cheapest mobile phone service providers in Japan and you can also get a WiFi router, too.


1. Please introduce yourself using all the language structures that we learnt in class today. We will check your homework during the next lesson.

※Please do not reveal too much of yourself in your post as anyone can visit this page and see your post.

2. If you are not quite familiar with the Japanese scripts, please watch the following two videos to practice 10 Hiragana, Japanese phonetic scripts. 

In Japanese, we use two sets of phonetic scripts (Hiragana and Katakana) and approximately 2,000 Chinese characters. So it will take some time to learn all those characters. But as the saying『千里の道も一歩から(sen ri no michi mo ip po kara)』or in English "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step" or "Slow and steady wins the race" says, you will notice how much you have learnt when you look back in the future.

Please turn in your homework in the comment section below↓. We will go over it during the next lesson.

Hiragana [pronunciation] "keyboard"

あ [a] "a"

い [i] "i"

う [u] "u"

え [e] "e"

お [o] "o"

Hiragana [pronunciation] "keyboard"

か [ka] "ka"

き [ki] "ki"

く [ku] "ku"

け [ke] "ke"

こ [ko] "ko"


Anyone can feel free to leave a comment as long as you;


1. 批判はしない。

do not criticize other people or other people's comments

2. 特定の個人やグループを非難・攻撃しない。

do not defame or attack a particular person or group of people

3. 語学学習に関係ないことは書かない。

do not leave comments which have nothing to do with language-learning

4. 個人を特定できる情報(メールアドレス、住所、電話番号など)は書かない。

do not write personal information such as e-mail addresses, home addresses, or telephone numbers.

コメント: 2
  • #2

    ジーナ (金曜日, 18 5月 2018 20:30)


  • #1

    BW (月曜日, 14 5月 2018 14:20)