Tag Archives: learn

Three great Japanese verbs about the mind: 覚える(oboeru), 思い出す(omoidasu), and 思いつく(omoitsuku)

For this post I’ve chosen three Japanese verbs which I think will be very useful for the beginner Japanese student. All of them relate to thought and/or memory in some way. 覚える (おぼえる)is a verb which can be used to mean  ‘to learn’, or ‘to remember’, depending on the context. One of the most common ways… Read More »

ちょっと (chotto): a little word with a big set of meanings

If I had to make a list of the top ten most useful words in Japanese, I might very well pick ちょっと as one of them. Not only is it short and easy to say, but it’s meanings are easy to learn and use in everyday conversation. ちょっと’s basic, most fundamental meaning is “a little”, and it’s… Read More »

Podcastle, a great way to search and listen to Japanese podcasts

Once in awhile comes along a study resource thats so good, you revel in the treasure you’ve found and for a moment the thought of keeping it to  yourself flashes through your mind. Podcastle is one such site, and when I first discovered it I thought it was too good to be true. It’s a… Read More »

More uses and notes on ‘そう’ (Sou) and usage of ‘だ’ (da)

I recently wrote a post on usages of ‘そう’ coupled with a few particles, and I decided to write a second article with a few other things I thought of on this subject. In that post I mentioned the phrases そうだね and そうだよ, but what if you remove the だ from these? Well, the word… Read More »

Plurality in Japanese

(Update: Six years later I’ve written another post on this topic, reviewing some of the same areas and adding new content as well. You can find it here.) It’s well known to anyone who has studied Japanese seriously that the language lacks a general concept of plurality, like English’s “-s”. However, there are some cases… Read More »

Say “yes” to a better understanding of the Japanese particle “no” (の)

Just like the particle は, it can take some time to get the hang of understanding and using the Japanese particle の。I’ll use what I’ve learned from textbooks, from experience, and from dictionary.goo.ne.jp to illustrate the many uses of this important element of the language. 1)  Possessive or descriptive This is by far the easiest… Read More »

A closer look at Japanese particles wa (は) and ga (が)

As I mentioned in a previous article, in my initial years of studying Japanese I made a huge emphasis on learning as much grammar as I could. For me, one of the most difficult elements of Japanese grammar is distinguishing between the particles は and が. There are surely hundreds of books and websites that describe… Read More »

Get a pen pal to help your foreign language learning [Beginner/Intermediate]

For those who are serious about learning a foreign language, reading online sites and blogs only gets you so far. To really understand how the language is used by native speakers, you have to have two-way conversations with them. Of course its great to travel to Japan, and some of us are fortunate enough to… Read More »