20

What is the learning curve like for learning Japanese writing? About the same as English. Chances are you didn't start learning to read English by pedaling your five-speed Schwinn (with the baseball card in the back tire) to the local library and checking out Pride and Prejudice with your shiny new card. You had to start with the Easy Readers, wherein you ...


19

The difference is in the pitch accent. 桃 (peach):「もも{LH}」 (Low-High) 腿 (thigh):「もも{HL}」 (High-Low) That is a huge difference to us native speakers because it changes the meanings of the words completely. If there is a musical instrument around you, try doing the following. Hit 'do-mi' as you say 「桃」 and hit 'mi-do' as you try to say 「腿」. Other ...


17

I've heard sound like: Haru na kimasu. So why is that? I'm going to be very frank here. I think it's because you're not yet able to distinguish intervocalic [ŋ] from [n] and [m]. Incidentally, listening to the passage you link to, I hear [ŋ] in the first, [ɡ] in the second ocurrence of しごと. Do the Japanese not like the g sound (g as in gorilla)? It's not ...


14

To the extent that studying linguistics helps you understand some of the more complex patterns, you will probably find it useful. But a great deal of linguistics is dedicated to finding common systems to describe all languages, which (by necessity) isn't terribly useful for using a particular language. Some texts are written somewhat 'in the middle' for ...


13

The main issue you're going to run into is explained in this answer, specifically: Avoid learning from manga until you're at a level where you can make the difference between what you hear and what you can say. In spite of this, there is a rough guideline you can use to determine which anime you might be able to use to learn even basic pronunciation.......


13

行書 & 草書 (semi-cursive and cursive writings) 行書【ぎょうしょ】 (semi-cursive script) is similar to English 'handwriting' style, and this is the most orthodox way of writing Japanese sentences fast. This is what Japanese students learn at middle school, although that does not necessarily mean all students master beautiful 行書. You can compare 楷書【かいしょ】 (regular ...


12

~てください comes from the appending the verb くださる in imperative form. But because くださる is considered a polite verb (meaning "give to me"), its imperative is not felt as a direct command but a request. It is used when the speaker feels socially lower than the listener. (Asking for someone to do something for you especially if it's not expected of him places you "...


12

The equivalent of "alphabetical order" for kana that hangs on the wall of classrooms is as follows: あかさたなはまやらわん いきしちにひみ り うくすつぬふむゆる えけせてねへめ れ おこそとのほもよろを I believe children are introduced to them based on this, probably vertically (i.e. あいうえお、かきくけこ and so on). [Thanks to Jamie Taylor in the comments.] I can't really give specific advice ...


11

I'd like to add to Derek and Lukman's excellent answers my usual plug for young adult manga as a learning resource. Since all but the most basic kanji have furigana next to them, you don't have to know hundreds of kanji to read them, and it's easy to look up the meanings of new words and learn the readings of new kanji. While the content of most young ...


11

Learning to read and write the kana on your own is fine, if your book is decent. But here are some small caveats: For reasons unknown to me, most books I've come across (rather infuriatingly) seem to write the kana in brush or printed form, where they look slightly different to handwritten. For example, き (ki) tends to be handwritten as four strokes: two ...


11

I think if you watch this video for 24 hours straight, you will have learned basic hiragana and katakana without much effort. My apologies for any ill effects on your mental health. Complete Japanese Alphabet Song - Katakana - Hiragana - 日本語


11

This question is generally not something we consider on-topic, but I'll give you my honest advise anyway. The Short Answer: A long time. A really really long time. Your mileage may vary, but expect it to take several years. The Long Answer: "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step" I would say in my own opinion that you're going to want ...


9

I do not know the anime, but 家を is never read as “yo,” and Japanese does not have “ye” sound at all. What you heard as “yo” is probably “ie o” and what you heard as “ye” is probably “ie,” both just spoken fast.


9

It is simply the 〜た form of 済ませる, which basically means the same as 済ます. Quoted from 大辞泉: すま・せる【済ませる】 「済ます」に同じ。 And 大辞林: すま・せる 【済ませる】 「すます(済)」に同じ。


9

I have some opposing opinions from what Flaw said, so I'll just give it here as a separate answer and let the voters decide if it's justified. There's hopefully some truth in both answers. First, it is my understanding that ~ろ is simply not used unless you essentially want to bark at someone. ~なさい would be used not when you're "socially higher", but when ...


9

I think it would be like a musician studying acoustics, or avid dog owner/trainer studying canine anatomy. It probably all depends on what your future goals are with Japanese. If you're planning to move to Japan, or just keeping that option open, and working and perhaps marrying a Japanese, then you should just remain as a JSL (Japanese as a Second Language) ...


9

A ほおかむり (頬被り) (also ほっかむり or ほおかぶり) from 頬っぺを被る "to cover the cheeks" is a cloth that is tied around the head to cover the head (or the face) and usually tied under the chin. The infamous ほおかむり wearer is the Japanese thief (泥棒さん) (another picture) (source: hukumusume.com) who wraps his head with a cloth and ties it under his nose, supposedly to conceal ...


8

First of all, note that attend is not equivalent to enroll. A quick Google search on "define: attend" reveals the following meanings (emphasis mine). Be present at (an event, meeting, or function). Go regularly to: "all children are required to attend school". "Attend" emphasizes the act of going somewhere regularly, as does 通{かよ}う. In other words, I would ...


8

The curriculum guidelines for grade one (see 言語事項 section イ) only state that children should be able to read and write hiragana and katakana, and use words that are written in katakana in sentences (e.g. know to write ペン not ぺん), and to read and to start to use the level-appropriate kanji. As I understand it, instead of memorising individual readings, the ...


8

It almost doesn't matter, because you're going to be learning them both quickly enough that it won't make much of a difference which one you start with. And you'll be using them both extensively every day, just as you use both lower case and upper case every day in English. But still, it's a sensible question. Which one should you choose? You can make ...


8

I'm not 100% sure what you're asking here, but ゛ when used by itself actually has a number of different usages. Generally, ゛ (Dakuten) are not written separately. For example, "か" "ka" becomes "が" "ga". If you didn't know this, you should probably consult a reference on hiragana (and maybe also katakana) as snailboat says. However, there are a number ...


7

Simple pictorial information is sufficient for describing the strokes used in kana, for most uses. If you were to want to use them in calligraphy however, then there would be merit in training under someone else.


7

The order of learning words and kanji for Japanese schools and JLPT are completely uncorrelated. Which is to say that the JLPT doesn't attempt to emulate learning as Japanese people do. So while there is some overlap in the sense that both groups generally follow a principle of going more simple to more complex, what a non-native learning Japanese will find ...


7

For someone who has studied standard Japanese, how hard is it to learn Kansai dialect? Many people who spent years studying a language something not being able to learn anything. Your question's logic is not well formed. Is there a lot to learn, or not much? Re-learn bits of grammar, vocabulary, and change completely your intonation. What are the ...


7

I've softened significantly from my beginner-level "all romaji should be purged from the earth" fanaticism. There are two related questions here, "Should I avoid a roomaji-based textbook like the plague?" and "Can I get away with learning Japanese without studying kanji?" The TLDR version is "No" and "Yes, but you obviously will be illiterate". "Should I ...


7

That is actually a valid question. I did some reading and here's what I found (from Wikipedia): Moraic Nasal Neutralisation, Archiphoneme and Underspecification: Some analyses of Japanese treat the moraic nasal as an archiphoneme /N/. However, other, less abstract approaches take its uvular citation pronunciation as basic, or treat it as a regular ...


7

@JesseGood's answer is correct, but just to add to it: Not only will other people refer to kids by their name, they will often also refer to themselves by title when speaking to them. I.e. their mother/father will likely refer to themselves as "お母さん/お父さん" or "ママ/パパ" and their teacher to him/herself as "先生" when speaking to them. They might not hear personal ...


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