This month, I’m continuing on with N4 grammar points by talking about how to use the simple past with some new handy N4 expressions.  This month, I’ll go over how to use mama, which can be used to describe a state that hasn’t changed.  I’ll also talk about using kotogaaru, which is used to talk […]

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I’ve always found summer to be a more active time. Despite the oppressive heat and humidity we have here in Japan, I still think the increased sunlight and ability to walk around the house in a lot less clothes just makes me do something more than keeping my nose in a book. People always ask […]

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N4 Grammar: Using temiru, teoku, and teshimau

July 22, 2015

This month, I’m continuing on with N4 grammar points by talking about how to use the te-form in Japanese. We are going to talk about how to talk about trying something, preparing for something, or doing something accidentally that could be embarrassing. These can be used with the te-form in Japanese to talk about trying […]

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JLPT BC 164 | You’ll always be an Outsider in Japan

July 15, 2015
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I grew up in white bread America where the corn grows high and hills don’t. I spent most of my time in a city of a mere 10,000 where everybody knew each other (and who was doing what to who). It was not uncommon to go downtown to run some errands and run into a […]

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Kicking your SRS Habit

July 8, 2015
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A SRS or Spaced Repetition System, is an ingenious way of memorizing new information.  Essentially, they remind you of something, like vocabulary, the moment you are about to forget it.  They are a key tool in rapidly learning and remembering new information.  If you have been learning a language for any length of time, you […]

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5 Things to do Before the July JLPT

July 1, 2015
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Okay so the test is just a few small days away. Hopefully you have worked your way through all your major drill books and have worked your way through all the necessary materials. If you haven’t, don’t stress out too much, as long as you have covered a good chunk of it well, you should […]

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JLPT BC 163 | Chatting it Up

June 24, 2015
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It’s a story you’ve heard several times – we don’t talk to each other like we used to. Because ya know, back in the good ole days we used to chat it up with our neighbors and everybody knew everybody right? It was always better back then. But these days, we tend to ignore each […]

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N4 Grammar: Using temoii, temokamawanai

June 17, 2015
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This month, I’m continuing on with N4 grammar points by talking about how to use the te-form in Japanese. We are going to talk about how to ask for and give permission in Japanese. Do you know what the difference is between てもいい and てもかまわない? Do you know how to form sentences using these points? […]

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JLPT BC 162 | 5 Things to Know to Become an Ukiyo-e master

June 10, 2015
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Ukiyo-e, if you are not familiar,  is a Japanese art form that was popular from 17th century  to 19th century Japan.  It basically consists of woodblocks used for mass production of pictures.  Ukiyo means floating world, and e means picture, so they were literally “pictures of the floating world.”  They generally depicted daily life, landscapes, […]

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Learning Japanese Grammar Naturally

June 3, 2015
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I’m a native speaker of English, but when I first started teaching English.   I ran into some problems.  Students would ask about English grammar rules – when do I use this?  Why is this incorrect? And I didn’t really know what to tell them, because, well, I didn’t know English grammar rules. This is a […]

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JLPT BC 161 | Doing it the Hard Way

May 27, 2015
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In school, I always had a hard time paying attention in class.  The teacher would lecture away and we were suppose to be taking notes, but to be honest I could never proper filter out what was important and what wasn’t.  Half the time I left the class knowing that I had listened to something […]

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JLPT N4 Grammar: Using hajimeru, dasu, tudukeru, and owaru

May 20, 2015
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This month, I’m continuing on with N4 grammar points and how to use the masu stem effectively. We are going to talk about how to start, continue and finish something using 始める, 出す, 続ける, and 終わる. Do you know what the difference is between 始める and 出す? Do you know how to form sentences using […]

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