Tag Archives: vocabulary

Japanese Vocabulary List: Card and board games

This list is about words related to board (Catan, etc.) or card games (poker, etc.). I hope you find  these useful! If you are interested in Chess specifically, I have a vocabulary list for that here. ルール (ruuru): rule / rules 解説 (kaisetsu): explanation 初心者 (shoshinsha): beginner ボードゲーム (boodo geemu): board game 遊ぶ (asobu): to… Read More »

Japanese word comparison: yaru (やる) vs suru (する), two ways of ‘doing it’.

The Japanese verbs する (suru) and やる(yaru) are used quite frequently in the Japanese language, and while both of these mean “to do”, they have different usage. Let’s start with two general rules to help distinguish between these two verbs. First, する is more often used together with a noun to describe some action: 今晩、一緒に練習しましょう… Read More »

和風月名: Alternate names for the months of the year in Japanese: (睦月, 如月, 彌生, 卯月, 皋月, 水無月, 文月, 葉月, 長月, 神無月, 霜月, 師走)

With a country like Japan that has tens of thousands of years of history, I guess it’s not much of a surprise that there is always more to learn. This includes cultural stuff, but also words and expressions that you may not have had exposure to on a daily basis (especially if are studying Japanese… Read More »

Some thoughts on effective learning of foreign language vocabulary

(The other day a friend casually asked me about how I learn vocabulary words in Japanese, and at the time I could only give a fairly simple answer. So I thought about it some more and decided to write an article about effective learning of foreign language vocabulary.) Regardless of what foreign language you are… Read More »

Japanese vocabulary list: School and Educational Institution Terms

This is a list of Japanese words related to school and educational institutions. I’ve always enjoyed school and If you are staring to use these terms either for yourself, or for a loved one, I wish you the best luck! While I haven’t attended a school in Japan personally, I hear that they are much more difficult… Read More »

Japanese vocabulary list: Math and number terms

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted a Japanese vocabulary list, so I thought I would make one about mathematics and numbers (数学用語). I’ve purposefully left shapes out of this list and may make another list later just focusing on those. (Interesting fact: In the 2015 PISA average scores, Japan scored #5 in math and #2 in… Read More »

Japanese Children’s Book Review: 「言葉図鑑」(Visual Word Encyclopedia) by Taro Gomi (五味 太郎)

Sometime back, I mentioned that I recommend reading children’s books in a foreign language as a good way to experience native-level content that isn’t too difficult. For Japanese, this is especially useful since you will have very little, if any, kanji to worry about, which is one stumbling block when reading Japanese books. I’ve read a great… Read More »

Ways to describe style in Japanese

When studying a foreign language, just because you can understand something doesn’t mean you have the requisite vocabulary and grammar knowledge in order to summarize it and talk about it’s content critically. In my Japanese studies, I’ve found that it can be frustrating to describe in any amount of detail something I’ve just read (novel,… Read More »

Japanese Vocabulary list: Trains (電車) and related terms

Who doesn’t love trains, especially children? Even if you don’t love them, living in Japan (or other big cities) pretty much forces them to use them, so this list of train-related words is sure to be of use. 電車 (densha): train   [this word is written with the Kanji for “electricity” and “car”, and thus… Read More »

Japanese vocabulary list: airplane related terms

I’ve created a vocabulary list of Japanese words related to airplanes and air travel in general. This is one area I’ve found I have some weaknesses in, and I thought if I was going to review these words myself I might has well write it up for others to learn from. 飛行機 (hikouki): airplane 空港 (kuukou):… Read More »