About 126 million people speak Japanese words. Some of them are native, and some people are from different parts of the world. The high number of Japanese speakers in Japan and the rest of the countries make it a useful language to learn. For those who wish to learn Japanese, there are several mediums that teach reading, writing, speaking, and grammar courses.
You can start from the basic Japanese lessons level and learn Kanji, Kana, Katakana, Marugoto, and other Japanese writing styles as you progress further. If you are wondering how to learn the Japanese language and how hard it may be to learn, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll discuss various Japanese language learning sources that you may use to get to a speaking, sentence construction, and right pronunciation level.
The purpose of learning Japanese may be studying or working in Japan, which will affect the way you learn from the course lessons. If you are visiting Japan, you will need to learn how to speak and converse with the right pronunciation of the words. But if you wish to study or work in Japan, you may need to cover all the skills, including writing, reading, and speaking. These skills will also help you in clearing the Japanese language proficiency test.
How to Learn Japanese Online for Beginners
The beginner Japanese language lessons will involve a basic level of the marugoto, katsudoo, kanji, katakana, and grammar. These lessons will focus on awareness around the right pronunciation, basic writing style, and learning new phrases. For beginner learners, it is recommended to learn a few phrases such as hello, how are you, goodnight, welcome, asking for directions, and thank you.
These may not be enough from the conversational point of view; however, a person will feel confident to make basic contact with the native people. One other thing for new learners is to learn about the rich Japanese culture and heritage. Moreover, the Japanese native culture has rules on socially acceptable things and ones that are considered rude. For instance, it is not ideal to speak on the phone on the trains.
In the basic Japanese lessons, one may also focus on Nihongo to have a basic understanding of the language. You may choose an offline or online Japanese course depending upon the time you can devote to it. Look for course lessons that focus on vocabulary, greetings, and grammar structures.
The right grammatical knowledge is necessary to learn how to frame sentences and answer questions in a correct form. You may refer to websites such as Easyjapanese, Tofugo, and an English to Japanese dictionary to work on your vocabulary. The English translations will help you learn the relationship between different words and how they are written.
Start with kana, logographic kanji, two syllabaries hiragana and katakana. Pick a course that has comprehensive paragraphs, exercises, and audio lessons for you to have enough resources to learn. With some practice and the right learning mediums, you will be able to read, write, and speak the language like native people.
How to Find a Japanese Tutor
You will find different Japanese language course teachers online and offline. When looking for a teacher, consider things such as the experience of the teacher speaking and translating Japanese. Moreover, look for someone who can work at your pace and level. You may find a good teacher in an institute or a language learning school.
Apart from this, you may choose a native speaker to get authentic Japanese lessons. However, note that they will charge you higher. To find affordable Japanese lessons, you may search for a teacher who is fluent in English as well as Japanese. This will help you understand better and ask questions in case you have any doubts.
Find a tutor on Superprof
Superprof website is one such platform where you will find a community of experienced Japanese tutors. You have to register yourself on the Superprof website and contact the tutor via inbox. Here you can discuss your lesson goals and course duration. The first demo class on the platform is free for the students to understand the teaching method and get familiar with the teacher.
Moreover, you pay for one hour of class at a time, so you don’t need to pay upfront for months in advance. Just ensure that your home has a high-speed internet connection and a good webcam to start the course lessons. Within a few months of these lessons, you will go from a beginner to intermediate learner level.
How to Learn Japanese From Films and YouTube
Watching movies and shows can give you a great insight into learning the language. You may remember a lot from observing the characters speaking rich vocabulary sentences on the screen. Moreover, you use it as a guide to understanding the expressions for different sentences and words. You can use the audio and visual cues to relate to the English translations.
After some months, you may use the Japanese subtitles so that you can understand the different kana, katakana, kanji, and marugoto characters of the language. Moreover, watching movies, shows, and anime in the Japanese language will teach you vocabulary without the need to study from books. This way, you can learn while getting entertained.
Learn Japanese from YouTube
YouTube is an excellent medium to learn Japanese if you follow the right channels. The platform has video tutorials that are informative with infographics and audio tutorials to work on the pronunciation of different words. Besides, you may learn a lot about the Japanese culture from vlogs, native festivals, and news on YouTube.
Follow channels like Rachel and Jun, Digischool, and TalkInJapan to get an idea of the language, basic lessons on characters calligraphy, and grammar of the language. Besides, look for videos on kanji and kana writing skills to practice along with the videos.
How to Learn Japanese on Your Phone
We all have tablets and phones that can be used for learning, improving, listening, and speaking skills. Learning from an app, pdf, or online tutorial is convenient from the phone as you can have all-time access. You may begin your class at any time of the day without needing any other study material for self-study. Internet will give you access to different study materials to learn Japanese on your phone from anywhere globally.
Using the phone to study will give you the freedom to download a guide or apps that have quizzes and exercises. These will help you know more in-depth about the new languages that you may learn. Moreover, you may download manga comics, audio listening courses, and interactive apps on your phone to speak, write, and listen at a native level of the languages.
Learn Japanese Through Apps on Your Phone
Even after learning from a video tutorial and a tutor, you may want to learn from an interactive medium. This will help you be better in writing, listening, and speaking skills. For this type of interactive study session, apps from the play store come in handy. There are several apps that are customized for different levels of learning and can be used by people around the world.
These apps contain courses, quizzes and questions to improve your skills. Moreover, you may find some translation apps to help you with English to Japanese translations for each word. This will be useful if you are visiting the country for a short duration. Some apps also translate from Hindi to Japanese for a better understanding.
You can download apps such as JA Sensei, PhrasePack, Kanji Recognizer and Japan Goggles. The apps have different courses on verbs, adjectives, writing, kana alphabets, and vocabulary. For instance, the Japan Goggles app is excellent to translate any word from a high definition picture. This will come in handy to read signs, menus, bills, and package instructions in Japanese.
Best Way to Learn Japanese Through Textbooks
The old school way to learn Japanese is to refer to books for courses, exercises, and practice papers. There are several guide books that come with integrated chapters to learn quickly. Moreover, some of the books contain basic lessons split into different segments that are easy to grasp. These books are easy to understand and come with basic translations. Some of the books have answers to the questions in the back so that you can cross-check.
The textbooks contain detailed information when it comes to learning and understanding the language in depth. Moreover, the books cater to all levels of learners and contain information on the culture and heritage of the country. This way, one can learn more than just the language. Some of the best beginner books are Nihongo Active Talk, Genki, Minna no Nihongo, Japanese for Dummies, Perfect Your Japanese in 40 Lessons and Guide to Japanese Grammar.
The Guide to Japanese Grammar book is written by an English speaker, so it contains easy concepts. Furthermore, it has a different approach in teaching than other books. The reader learns the grammar first instead of learning phrases that they may not even understand. Therefore, the book assists in forming sentences and the grammar rules for accurate speaking and reading skills.