Tag Archives: lessons

Say What? Snakes and Prawns

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Ebi and Hebi, prawn and snake

Introducing a new segment on Nihongo Manabu! Say What? aims to discuss words and phrases that are easily confused. In this first post, let’s talk about two fairly similar sounding words, へび (hebi) and えび (ebi). The two words might sound similar, and they do indeed both refer to a type of animal, they couldn’t have more different meanings. While you… Read more »

Vocabs: Travel

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This week we’ll explore some travel related vocabulary! Modes of transportation will not be covered in this post, please refer to my Types of Transport post instead. 旅行 (りょこう, ryokou) – travel; trip 旅 (たび, tabi) – travel; trip; journey ツアー (tsuaa) – tour 観光旅行 (かんこうりょこう, kankouryokou) – (sightseeing) tour ガイド (gaito) – guide; tour guide; conductor; guiding; leading ツアーガイド (tsuaagaito) – tour… Read more »

Vocabs: Occupations 3

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This week, we’ll continue our exploration of various occupations in Japanese. 料理人 (りょうりにん, ryouriin) – cook; chef 給仕 (きゅうじ, kyuuji) 1. waiting on a table; serving (at dinner) 2. waiter; waitress; waitperson; server; cabin boy; bellboy; page; pageboy 3. office boy; office girl ウェイター (ueitaa) – waiter ベルボーイ (berubooi) – bellboy ポーター (pootaa) – porter 弁護士 (べんごし, bengoshi) – lawyer;… Read more »

Vocabs: Occupations Part 2

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We’ll continue our exploration of how various occupations are called in Japanese. 写真家 (しゃしんか, shashinka) – Photographer カメラマン (kameraman) – cameraman; photographer; cinematographer 画家 (がか, gaka) – painter; artist 運転士 (うんてんし, untenshi) – driver; train driver; train engineer; motorman; taxi driver 歌手 (かしゅ, kashuu) – singer 作曲家 (さっきょくか, sakkyokuka) – composer プログラマー (puroguramaa) – programmer 技術者 (ぎじゅつしゃ, gijutsusha) – engineer;… Read more »

Vocabs: Occupations Part 1

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What’s your occupation? In this vocabulary list, we’ll learn the names of some occupations in Japanese. 仕事 (しごと, shigotou) – work; job; business; occupation; employment; vocation; task 職業 (しょくぎょう, shokugyou) – occupation; business Of course, we have to start off by learning what the word ‘occupation’ is in Japanese. As you might be able to tell from the word definitions, 仕事 is a more general… Read more »

Kanji Spotlight: Sing Your Song

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Today’s kanji spotlight is on the word 歌! You may have seen this kanji around recently… Yup. It’s the kanji for song, and it appeared in the previous post as the Kouhaku theme for this year, “夢を歌おう”, or Sing the dream. Sing? Song? I’ll explain in a bit! But first, let’s look at how the kanji is written! Now back… Read more »

Kanji Spotlight – Water

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Water - the kanji and it's meaning

This entry of kanji spotlight is dedicated to the universal solvent – water. Learners of the Japanese language will encounter this word (水) pretty early on. It’s classified as an N5 vocab.  After all, who could live without water? Not me. Good thing the word is easy to write, with just a total of four strokes, you can express this… Read more »

Gummy Grandma Christmas!

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A friend shared this really hilarious meme to me, and I just had to share it here. Oh the things that can happen when you don’t know the language! Gummies? Grandma? In Tokyo? During Christmas? It’s funny that I see a number of people asking about this sentence, because apparently it never gets subbed in animes. Or TV shows. Because…… Read more »

The curious case of the Potato Starch

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A while back, someone asked in a group chat what ‘katakuriko’ meant. Of course, I turned to my favorite Japanese dictionary site, jisho.org, to find out. Turns out that katakuriko, or 片栗粉, means potato starch. Eh? Potato starch? But potato is じゃが芋 (jagaimo)… How did potato starch become 片栗粉? So I did my research. Not that I have to look far though, because… Read more »