Do you know what the most important Japanese word to say is when you meet someone for the first time? Well... you might think...
Nice to meet you?
No no no. Most definitely not! So what is it?
OK, I'll tell you what that is. The most important word to say when you meet someone for the first time in Japanese is;
(watashi to kekkon shite kudasai!)
It means "Will you marry me?" In Japan, when you meet someone for the first time, we all say this. So this is a very important phrase to remember.
No. I'm just kidding. Right, I know that it's an important phrase to remember. That's for sure, but probably not the most.
When you meet someone for the first time, it's very important to make a good first impression, right? So today, let's master how to introduce yourself in Japanese! Let's make a good first impression and make life-long friends or partners!
The structure "A = B" in Japanese
・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 will be:
A (wa) B (desu).
N.B. In Japanese, we don't use personal pronouns (I, you, he, she, we, they) so much apart from "私(watashi) = I" and "私たち(watashi tachi) we"
To see more details, please visit the article on the Japanese pronouns on Wikipedia.
Additional Grammar & Phrases
Lesson summery Part 1
Lesson summery Part 2
Let's Try! (If you highlight the part next to "→" with your cursor, you'll see example answers.)
Let's practice introducing yourself in Japanese. How do you say the following expressions in Japanese?
2. Nice to meet you.
3. I'm Shepherd.
(In Japanese, it will be "Shepādo")
4. I'm from Germany.
5. I like cats.
6. I don't like dogs.
7. I like to sleep.
8. I don't like to go for a walk.
(go for a walk=sanpo suru)
9. I'm looking forward to a long-lasting relationship.
3→ わたし は しぇぱーど です。
4→ (わたし は) どいつ しゅっしん です。
5→ (わたし は) ねこ が すき です。
6→ (わたし は) いぬ は すき ではありません。
7→ (わたし は) ねる の が すき です。
8→ (わたし は) さんぽ を する の は すき では ありません。
9→ よろしく おねがい します。
Romanized character version:
1→ kon nichi wa
3→watashi wa shepādo desu.
4→(watashi wa) doitsu shusshin desu
5→(watashi wa) neko ga suki desu
6→(watashi wa) inu wa suki dewa arimasen
7→(watashi wa) neru no ga suki desu
8→(watashi wa) sanpo o suru no wa suki dewa arimasen
9→yoroshiku onegai shimasu
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.
As far as I know, international airports are the only places where you can buy prepaid SIM cards without hassles in Japan. So if you are planning to use your phone in Japan, make sure to get a prepaid SIM card at the airport.
Renting a mobile WiFi router is, however, not that difficult or expensive. So if you use chat apps like Skype or FaceTime to communicate with people more often than regular cellphone service, it might be to cheaper and more convenient to arrange a rental WiFi router; you can watch your favourite Netflix shows anywhere, do video chats with your friends, you can get your tablet PC, laptop, smartphone and the all the WiFi-equipped devices connected to the Internet, share the WiFi with multiple people...
So 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↓
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.
And 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"
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