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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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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JLPT BC 160 | BSing in Japan, Honne vs. Tatemae

May 13, 2015
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A few years back, I was working at a school and we were trying to arrange a farewell party for one of our fellow teachers.  One teacher found a great Indian restaurant that wasn’t too far away from the school.  It seemed like a great place.  It had a big room to accommodate everyone and […]

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Japanese Drilling Done Right

May 6, 2015
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Japanese is a bit of a difficult language to learn for native English speakers. First of all, the sentence order is different, which can make organizing your thoughts a little trickier at times. Also, some things that are expressed as adjectives or sometimes expressed as verbs. And there are a ton of other more difficult […]

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JLPT BC 159 | Analog vs. Digital

April 29, 2015
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I’ve been taking it pretty easy with my studies recently due to some re-prioritizing of my time. I’m chugging away on Hirugao and Harry Potter but I’m giving myself a little more time to digest things. I felt a bit rushed of late trying to get through study sessions and I’m finding that is not […]

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JLPT N4 Grammar: Using yasui, nikui, and kata

April 22, 2015
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This month, I’m starting on N4 Grammar points. We are first going to start work with some grammar that you can use with masu stems – yasui, nikui, and kata. With these you can talk about something that is difficult or easy to do as well as talk about how to do something. Do you […]

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JLPT BC 158 | Divorce in Japan

April 15, 2015
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I should start off by saying that I’m not getting divorced.  I’m still happily married and probably will be for the foreseeable future.  Some of my fellow expatriates and Japanese friends haven’t been so lucky though. Which, to my naive self, seems a little surprising.  Don’t get me wrong, I come from a divorced family […]

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