Learn to Speak Japanese Quickly - A fast-track guide with common phrases for busy tourists

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You might as well squeeze a little bit of learning out of it. If you're having trouble blocking out study time at home, you may have all the time you need at work. ALTs and Japanese teachers are not assigned to a class for every period of the day. This is because Japanese teachers need time to prepare lesson plans, attend meetings, and chip away at other work duties. As an ALT, however, you don't have quite as much to prepare.

More than likely, you'll be able to finish preparing for classes with time to spare. Most JETs bemoan this part of the job as I did , wishing there was more work to do or some other way to be useful. If you get your sit-down study time done at work, then the after work study time you have blocked out can be used for going out and using Japanese for even more gains.

If work is getting you down and you're missing chances to connect with staff at your school, stay in the office after the students leave. Though you're probably allowed to go home at 4: After work hours, the teachers let down their hair and break out the snacks. The teachers' room becomes a lot more lively and a little less stuffy.

You'll build all-important work bonds and get some Japanese practice. Increase your vocabulary and camaraderie at the same time. After school is the perfect chance to get out and use your Japanese. No job titles restricting you to English now! Of course, real life rarely goes as planned.

Your energy after work is bound to be sapped. It will be incredibly easy to arrive home, collapse and stay there. Don't get me wrong. Collapsing and relaxing in a Japanese-free zone is necessary. But just like going to the gym, there are times when you have to force yourself. Here are a few things you can do to practice Japanese in the community.

Chances are, you'll get good at some survival Japanese right away because you'll be put in situations where you have to communicate. But life is full of situations, with caveats, exceptions, and branching consequences.

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So drill some vocabulary and then get into situations where you think you'll be likely to use it. Then get into them again. Each time you'll get better at using the grammar and vocab you learned, as well as getting fuel for future study. This future study fuel can be most easily remembered with a handy pocket notebook.

This is something I did out of necessity and it ended up being one of my best teachers. When trying to communicate in a new situation, if you hit a wall, take note. This reveals gaps in your knowledge, which you should write down and add to you study regimen. Not only will you boost your ability level, but you'll practically smooth out bumps in the road of your Japanese life. It can be tempting to have a supervisor or a friend do everything for you. That's fine at the start, especially for things like setting up a bank account, but don't let it become a habit. If you don't try it for yourself, you'll never get better.

Nothing bad will happen if you say something weird at the postoffice or the garage or the combini. And sometimes you can get a much better deal by doing things yourself. For example, I asked my supervisor for advice about getting my winter tires changed. His way cost me yen.

The next season I went to a garage myself and through a combination of Japanese and gestures, I got my tyres changed for yen. Not only that, but I knew I could do it myself. It's great to get in casual chit chat with coworkers and students, but sometimes you need a lengthy, focused conversation to cement language concepts and force you to listen and talk longer. This is your "language power lifting" in comparison to usual "language aerobics.

Chances are, your town has community groups that offer conversation meet-ups or some kind of language exchange. Ask your supervisor if they know of any opportunities. Look for volunteer activities. Part of your job is to serve your town anyway, so might as well get some language practice and connect with Japanese people while doing so.

Top 10 Most Common Tourist Vocabulary

The great part about volunteer work is that it's a nice break from routine of teaching and you'll have more opportunities to use Japanese than you will at school. Or the event may involve interacting with Japanese people. At the very least they're fun and stress relieving.

Vocabulary

learn japanese faster 4 useful hacks You want to speak Japanese now. . Here's the thing: if you're bent on learning to speak fast, you've got to bite off one piece at a time. found suggestions like Japanese for Busy People, Genki Japanese, and the like. These are great resources for vocabulary, grammar, and phrases. Japanese Books at Discount Prices. Travel Books/Maps . Learn 20 words in Japanese! The Complete Japanese Adjective Guide is a simple approach to Useful features of the dictionary include the following: over 18, entries both . For quick mastery of hiragana and katakana, this concise text provides grids for.

At best you'll get some Japanese practice in as well. This app will appeal to two kinds of students: Hands up who has craved a good old-fashioned explanation in their native language? It is packed with logically organised lessons, beautifully clear explanations, and conjugation tables, and there are even some exercises for the first chapters on basic grammar.

A list of vocabulary used in examples is given for every lesson, with the kanji, readings and English meanings, allowing you to pick up new words whilst also seeing the grammar work in context. Even without referring to this list, all kanji are clickable and so you should never have to refer to a dictionary. Have you ever opened an app and immediately fell in love? No confusion over how to use it but swiping through screens as if you and it had been born together? Start from the basics of katakana and hiragana and advance through to kanji and vocabulary as it throws various ways to test you, from multiple choice to touch-screen writing, with English to Japanese or vice versa as answer options.

Kanji lists can be displayed according to JLPT levels, making this the ultimate tool for helping your prepare for the exam. Perhaps the star feature is the handwriting recogniser — it corrects not only your form but also your stroke order. If it makes a mistake in recognising your writing, you can easily tell it so, and your score will be adjusted accordingly. All kanji can be clicked to reveal their reading.

The Bare Minimum (What You Should Do Before You Arrive)

My only gripe would be that the multiple choice quizzes are often little silly — the question will demand a verb and then give several nouns and adjectives as answer options, making it very easy to guess which word is right! Popular with gaijin iPhone users across Japan, imiwa? The other fantastic feature is an automatic look-up of any text that you have copied to clipboard. Copy it, open imiwa? It does not have a handwriting look-up function for searching unknown kanji. Finally, users might be frustrated by the inability to pause the stroke order when viewing demonstration animations.

Akebi is a huge dictionary, with a vast array of examples. It has a clear handwriting and radical search function, with the option to mix a variety of methods to find words composed of several kanji, making it a very flexible tool.

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Its stroke order animations are particularly useful, allowing you to toggle numbers on and off, pause and repeat easily. That said, the user interface is hardly an aesthetic feat and its not immediately intuitive. Furthermore, a large database can be a more of a hindrance than a help because it often lists the same word with different kanji without giving any indication of which is the most common usage.

Some really old-fashioned and archaic Japanese contained within it so watch out!

Table of Contents

Out of the three dictionaries, Japanese takes first prize for design, with a beautiful, clear interface. It understands how a user thinks: It contains an audio clip for all entries and has the clearest layout for examples with hiragana above the kanji used and each kanji displayed underneath with their meanings. Kanji Recognizer is made just for those moments, enabling you to swiftly handwrite the kanji and obtain its readings, radicals, strokes, and basic meanings. You can then export to Anki or immediately look it up in your dictionary for compounds and examples of its use.

Its simple interface and layout also make it very quick to use. So this may not be a Japanese-specific app, but for translating longer texts and getting the general gist, Google Translate is invaluable. It also has some really interesting experimental search options. In addition to handwriting, you can use your phone camera to scan words to translate and you can also test out its audio recognition software, in which it will then speak its translation back to you in your chosen language.

Both Human Japanese and Japanese Sensei are popular apps that contain lessons as well as quizzes and learning activities. For more dictionary options for iOS, try Midori. Skritter is an excellent kanji learning tool that improves your writing as well as your reading ability. Choose from lists or make your own and then let it test you on meaning, reading and, importantly, writing. There are significant differences between the Android and iOS versions. Android has an extra feature, which allows you to preview the entire kanji or get a hint for the next stroke — this is incredibly useful when faced with a completely unknown kanji.

However, its interface for adding words to a custom list is clunky and best done through the desktop version.

Lesson Transcript

By comparison, kanji can be easily added in the iOS version, which automatically searches for the reading and English translation. You could try this application https: For studying kana, includes mnemonics, strokes, tips and flash cards game: Quite a good quiz app. Could you please send me the link? Thank you very much. JA Sensei is my number 1 above all these. Having trouble staying on track? The Basic Lesson Checklist will help you stay organized and committed to your Japanese language goals! The Premium Lesson Checklist will help you stay organized and committed to your Japanese language goals!

Listen and repeat with the Review Track. Hear the lesson vocabulary and main phrases and repeat after the native speaker — it's the best way to perfect your pronunciation! Don't have enough time for an entire lesson today? Listen to the Dialogue Only Track to hear the native Dialogue. Listening to a little bit of Japanese everyday, no matter how much, will greatly improve your listening comprehension.

Track your learning progress one lesson at a time! As you work your way through our lesson archives, we'll track your progress so you can see just how fast you're learning. Want to listen again later? Mark this lesson as a favorite and create a handy shortcut in your Favorite Lesson list! You'll learn the meaning, readings, and stroke order of each character.

Plus, improve your writing with kanji stroke order practice sheets! These easy to print notes take a closer look at the grammar point and vocabulary words presented in the audio lesson. Plus, read more about Japanese cultural topics related to the lesson. Like to multitask while you study? Pop out the Audio Player to play in the background while you work, play or follow along with our Premium Tools. My Notes allows you to take notes while listening to our lessons. Come across an important verb conjugation breakthrough? Learn a handy mnemonic device? Make a note of it on the lessons pages and refer back to My Notes for quick reference!

Didn't catch that last word? Want to slow down the audio so you catch every single syllable?