Monthly Archives: February 2015

食べられる (taberareru) vs 食べれる (tabereru)? The phenomenon of ら抜き (ra-nuki) in Japanese

The way I learned Japanese conjugations for the potential form of “eru/iru” verbs was to remove the stem and add ~られる。All other verbs involve removing only the last character and then adding a character with the same consonant, but with a え sound, (for example く would change to け )  followed by a る. Potential (可能)… Read More »

Japanese Particle combination では (de wa) and じゃ (ja)

In this post I’d like to look at the particle combination で+は = では (pronounced ‘de wa’) and the related word じゃ (ja). To a certain extent, the various usages of “では”can be understood by taking a sum of the usages of で and は when used separately, but in some cases thinking in this… Read More »

Japanese Drama Recommendation: ありふれた奇跡 (“Everyday Miracle”)

As I’ve said in several other posts, Japanese dramas are a great source for learning conversation skills, including common expressions and vocabulary. However, depending on the drama, there will be more or less coverage of stuff that you would actually be able to use yourself. For example, a drama where the main character is a… Read More »

Discussion of a tricky で vs に question (mini quiz 2: で and に)

In my second mini quiz (Japanese particles で and に), there was one question which was answered incorrectly more than half the time, so I’d like to review it in this post. (If you haven’t taken the quiz yet, you can do so here: testmoz.com/450945) The problem goes like this:   今晩、床「 」寝る 今晩:こんばん tonight 床:ゆか floor… Read More »

Mini Japanese Quiz: Particles で vs に

I got feedback from one of my readers that sometimes differentiating between で and に can be difficult, so I made a mini 8-question quiz to test everyone’s knowledge in this area. You can take it here: testmoz.com/450945 If you’d like to review before the test, you can see this post of mine which goes over the… Read More »

What’s with the Japanese “〜まして” form? (~mashite)

In Japanese, using polite speech properly is an important part of becoming fluent, and many textbooks or classes introduce the です/ます forms (ex: たべます)from day one.  This is especially important because many of the people you speak Japanese with might be people you have met for the first time, for example if you stop people on the… Read More »

Short Particle Quiz: Explanation of a tricky question (に vs を)

For my short quiz on Japanese particles, there was one question which was not answered correctly nearly half the time. In this article I’d like to go over that problem which appeared as #3 in the quiz. (For those who want to take the quiz before reading the answer and explanation, you can do so here: testmoz.com/449328)… Read More »

The Japanese volitional form (~しよう、〜しましょう): much more than just “Let’s”

This time I’d like to focus on the volitional form in Japanese which an important pattern often used in both written and spoken speech. Many times I have seen this form introduced to beginner students of Japanese as meaning “Let’s …”, and while this is one of the common usages there are several more. I first… Read More »

Short quiz on basic Japanese particle usage

(You can take the test here:  testmoz.com/449328) Writing posts about Japanese is fun and all, but one of the reasons I started this blog was because I like teaching, and have had some experience myself teaching a different topic at the College level. Teaching includes not only pushing material to the student, but also feedback from… Read More »