• Japanese

    Everything You Need to Know About Animals in Japanese

    Sometimes it helps to sit down and focus on learning (or at least get familiar with) a group of commonly used words in the language you’re learning. This article aims to do exactly that, and tell you everything you need to know about animals in Japanese. Not only are there going to be a lot of common words that you will benefit from right away, but I’ll also explain some things that are unique to Japanese when it comes to talking about animals. Things such as the correct verbs and counters to use. I’d also like to spend a little time going over the “sounds” that animals make in Japanese…

  • Japanese

    Understanding Dou Desu Ka in Japanese

    There are certain phrases that will, once you’ve learned them, appear in pretty much every Japanese book you read and every show you watch. We’re going to go over one such phrase today so that every time you run into dou desu ka in Japanese, you’ll know exactly what it means. First of all, let’s see how to spell it in Japanese: どうですか? There’s a couple of words contained in this phrase and we’ll break them down now. What Does 「どうですか」 Mean? The first word in the sentence is どう and it most often means “how” but it can change slightly to mean either “in what way” or “how about”…

  • Reviews

    The Pros and Cons of Learning Japanese From Anime

    I’ve talked before about the 5-step process of Learning Japanese from Anime (LjFA), and I’ve also done a case study showing you exactly how I do it. But what I haven’t talked about is “Should you use anime to learn the language?” Is it the really best way to improve your Japanese? Or is it actually a terrible way to study? I’ve identified four key aspects of anime as a source of language learning material, and I’m going to explain the advantages and disadvantages of each. If you haven’t read those other two articles yet, you can do so by clicking on the links below: The 5-Step Process to Learning Japanese…

  • Tools

    Case Study: Watch Me Go Through Each Step Of LjFA!

    If you read my last post that explains the five step process to learn Japanese from anime (LjFA), then you probably want to watch me do it so that you can see it for yourself. If you haven’t read that post yet, then click here to do so before continuing on in this post. In addition to showing you how I did it, I’ll also provide some alternative recommendations in case you have different resources available than what I do. Step 1: Which (Single) Anime Episode Did I Choose? I wanted to choose a slice of life anime for myself since they are typically easier to learn and understand than…

  • Culture

    The Best Japanese Music in 2018

    I have been listening to a lot of Japanese music this year, as I imagine most of you have as well. I wanted to share my own personal thoughts and opinions of the best Japanese music in 2018. I’ve compiled a list of seven Japanese bands, artists and musicians that are really freaking good! Check out the list below, learn a little bit about each one and their type of music, and then check out the YouTube video that I’ve selected of one of their songs. And as a final note before we begin, I wanted to let you know that I created a walk through on how to learn…

  • Japanese

    What Does ABUNAI Mean In Japanese? The Answer Revealed.

    The number one word used in Japanese anime, according to a study done by the Yale Anime Society, is abunai. But what does abunai mean in Japanese? And how is it often used differently from its dictionary definition? This one word gets thrown around a lot, and you’re definitely going to get a lot of value from learning it today. Let’s begin. What Is The Definition of Abunai? If you look up the word abunai in a dictionary, you’ll see that it is defined as “dangerous.” Knowing this, you can begin to use and understand it exactly like the English word that’s used in order to describe something: A dangerous…

  • Tactics

    How To Use Focused Immersion To Learn Japanese

    One of the oldest and best techniques for learning Japanese is through the use of immersion. But just because you’re completely surrounded by Japanese doesn’t mean that you have to put up with not understanding it. That’s where Focused Immersion (FI) comes into play. Today I’m going to explain exactly what FI is, how it is different from Regular Immersion (RI), and finally, how to use Focused Immersion to learn Japanese. First let’s start off with a small section on RI so that we’re all on the same page, and then let’s move on to FI. What Is Regular Immersion? Basically speaking, Regular Immersion is when you surround yourself completely…

  • Tactics

    Making The Transition to Japanese Only Flash Cards

    At some point in your journey, you will most likely need to use English less and less, and begin making the transition to Japanese only flash cards, TV shows, books and more. Even though you can take any part of your life and make it 100% Japanese, it’s probably the easiest to do with your flash cards (using things like Anki and SRS) which is exactly what I’m going to cover in this post. Let me show you exactly how I make a single Japanese-only flash card, and then once you’ve learned how to do it yourself, you can make as many of your own as you’d like. Step 1:…

  • Tools

    Japanese Pitch Accent Resources

    Many of you are working on improving your spoken Japanese by studying the four pitch accent patterns. But do you have a good way of looking up the correct one for each new word you learn? If not, then don’t worry as I will be sharing several Japanese pitch accent resources. Some of these are websites that are completely free to access and use, while others require you to invest some money to acquire and utilize. Regardless of which direction you decide to take, there are many options open to you. Let’s check them out now! Websites for Looking up Pitch Pattern There are a few different websites that you…

  • Sounds

    MSJ – Table of Contents

    Here is the Table of Contents (TOC) for the course Mastering the Sounds of Japanese (MSJ). If you’re about to take the course, then go ahead and start with lesson #1. You can also bookmark this page and refer back to it as you progress through the lessons. Part One of the Course: This part of the course focuses on the individual sounds of the language. In addition to all of the vowels and consonants, you will also learn how to read and write hiragana since it is a phonetic script that visually represents the sounds of Japanese. Lesson #1 – Mastering the Sounds of Japanese – A Free Online Course Lesson…