Ex.1) Translation Exercise

1. バスていがあそこあります。

 There is a bus stop over there.

2. 木曜日でクラスがありませんでした。

 There will be no class on Thursday.

3. じしょがありません。

 I do not have a dictionary.

4. あそこやましたせんせいがいます。

 There is Professor Yamashita over there.

5. こどもがいます。

 I have a child.

Ex. 2) Answering questions

1. あした、アルバイトがありますか。

いいえ、アルバイトがありません。

2. いつ日本ごのクラスがありますか。

日本ごのクラスがありばせん。でも、まいにち日本ごをべんきょうします。

3. 日本にともだちがいます。

はい、はるとかおりがいます。

4. きょうだいがいます。

はい、おにいさんいます。

Japanese-Language Proficiency TestGreetings,

Before I started this blog, I already had a first goal in mind: passing this years JLPT N5 in december. For those who are unfamiliar with the JLPT, it stands for Japanese Language Proficiency Test. The test is held twice every year across the world, organised by the Japan Foundation and Japan Educational Exchanges and Services, better known as the JEES. Today, it is held in over 60 countries and over 600 000 examines participate every year. The JLPT has become one of the best known standardized exam that measures the Japanese proficiency of non-native speakers.

Now what does N5 mean? The JLPT is divided in 5 levels, every level corresponds with a certain degree of proficiency. The N5 level is at the bottom of the difficulty spectrum and, logically, N1 is the most difficult level. N5 is the proficiency to be expected of one who has learned the elementary aspects of the Japanese language, a small amount of vocabulary and knows around over a 100 kanji. The JLPT organizers describe it this way:

  • One is able to read and understand typical expressions and sentences written in hiraganakatakana, and basic kanji.
  • One is able to listen and comprehend conversations about topics regularly encountered in daily life and classroom situations, and is able to pick up necessary information from short conversations spoken slowly.

This immediately brings us to the one weakness of the JLPT. The exam limits itself to only testing the reading and listening skills of students, ignoring writing and speaking. It is really a shame, but I can understand that organising oral exams for speaking, and correcting writing might be a logistical nightmare. This weakness by no means diminishes the importance of this exam! This exam is accepted by many universities and employers, both Japanese and otherwise, as proof of Japanese proficiency. Besides, don’t we all love to get a certificate proving that all our hard work amounted to something?

I really have a lot to do still, before I can even hope to pass that exam, but I still have 5 months to go before the exam is held!

Wish me luck!

オレンテス

Countries/areas where JLPT is administered(2011 test figures)

火曜日

From this post on, to practice the weekdays, I will write them on every post in the upper right corner of the post.

Ex.1) Weekdays

1. 日曜日

 Sunday

2. 月曜日

Monday

3. 火曜日

Tuesday

4. 水曜日

Wednesday

5. 木曜日

Thursday

6. 金曜日

Friday

7. 土曜日

Saturday

Ex. 2) Write Kanji

1. 日本ごの本はかばんの中です。

2. 水をのみます。

3. いま、六時半です。

4. あの人はだれですか。

5. エレベーターは上にいきますか。下にいきますか。

6. わたしのともだちは日本人です。

Ex. 3) Translation exercise

1. 金曜日でわたしはともだちとレストランにいきました。

I went to a restaurant with a Japanese friend on Friday.

2. 土曜日でわたしは十時半におきました。

I got up at about ten thirty on Saturday.

3. 月曜日でわたしは一人でおてらにいきました。

I went to a temple alone on Monday.

4. 本はつくえの上です。しんぶんは本の下です。

The book is on the desk. The newspaper is under the book.

Genki: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese” is an internationally highly acclaimed series of study materials for learning Japanese. The first part consists of a textbook and a workbook, which can be complemented by the answer key; excellent for those who study on their own. The books focus on the four main skills: writing, reading, speaking and listening and its structured around this focus.

Grammar is explained in well written texts with plenty of examples to illustrate what is meant, followed by enough exercises to give you enough practice so that in the end of the lesson you will have the feeling that you really know what you have been doing.

However, the structure is probably one of the most annoying aspects of the entire series. The textbook and workbook are divided into 2 major segments; each dedicated to 2 of the 4 skills. This makes using the books sometimes a rather inconvenient and difficult for first time users. The answer key is structured even worse and my greatest annoyance.

One of its greatest assets must be the CDs that accompanies the books. It consists of over 6 hours of audio material. Not only does this include readings of the dialogues and listening exercises, but also most of the exercises in the textbook and the vocabulary lists.

Another great feature of this series is its abundance in exercises. Nearly each lesson has over 10 exercises in the textbook and another 10 in the workbook. You will have enough practice to learn all grammar points, words and kanji you have learned in one lesson.

Some peolpe wonder whether “Genki: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese” is a study material suited to their needs. To be honest, for some the Genki series will be frightening because only in the first two lessons romanji is found and after those lessons all dialogues are written completely in Kana with Kanji (accompanied by furigana for Kanji you have yet to learn). Besides that point, you will clearly notice that the targeted audience for the series are college students. The amount of things each lesson discuss is more than some casual learners can cope with. However, this style suits me and this is why Genki are the books I mainly use myself.

If you are looking for a great book to teach you elementary Japanese; Genki is the way to go. However, be prepared to be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff that will be taught in just one lesson.

For people who do not enjoy this kind of method, other materials are out there that will suit your needs!

I give “Genki: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese” 4.5 stars out of 5.

Greetings,

Sometimes it is rather hard to get the materials you want to learn Japanese. However, thanks to the internet everything has become a lot easier. Though, while easier to find materials, there are some things you will have to watch out for. That is why I decided to make this little post handing out some hints I thought up myself.

Reminder: Downloading content illegally is…illegal, so do not do it.

  • A lot of the larger bookstores will import on demand. Check if the price for a textbook is lower there, than the total cost would be were you to buy it from an online shop (price + shipping costs + import taxes).
  • Remember if it comes from outside your country you may have to pay taxes. This is not included in the shipping costs.
  • Try to find a seller who is close to your own country if you need to import it via the internet. The closer the shop, the faster and less expensive the shipment will be.
  • Inform yourself well before purchasing an item. On a lot Japanese learner communities there are ample reviews for a lot of materials out there. Use this information, before buying things.

These are the tips I could think off. If you have any other tips, do share it with us.

オレンテス

まいにち

わたしはまいにち八時におきます。うちでごはんをたべます。九時ごろわたしのしごとへいきます。しごとばで十二時にひるごはんをたべます。一時ごろとしょかんにいきます。としょかんでにほんごをべんきょうします。ここコーヒーをのみます。三時にうちへかえります。テレビをみます。ざっしとほんとしんぶんをよみます。うちで六時にばんごはんをたべます。にほんごをべんきょうします。七時はんにテレビとえいがをみます。十二時ごろねます。

オレンテス

1. よくスポーツをしますか。
いいえ、あまりしません。
2. よくえいがをみますか。
はい、よくええいがをみます。
3. よくなにをのみますか。
コーラとコーヒーをよくのみます。
4. おんがくはよくなにをききますか。
あまりおんがくをききません。でも、ちょっとにほんのおんがくをききます。
5. どこでべんきょうしますか。
うちでたいていべんきょうします。としょかんでときどきべんきょうします。
6. じゅうまつはよくどこにいきますか。
よくともだちのいえにいきます。
7. じゅうまつはよくなにをしますか。
たいていえいがをみます。
8. なん時ごろおきますか。
たいてい九時におきます。
9. なん時ごろねますか。
よくごぜん一時にねます。

Of course, nothing prevents you from answering these questions yourself? Just copy and paste and send it as a comment.

1. よくスポーツをしますか。 
2. よくえいがをみますか。 
3. よくなにをのみんすか。 
4. おんがくはよくなにをききますか。 
5. どこでべんきょうしますか。 
6. じゅうまつはよくどこにいきますか。 
7. じゅうまつはよくなにをしますか。 
8. なん時ごろおきますか。 
9. なん時ごろねますか。
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