The Basics of the Japanese Language What’s Tough and What’s Not
Which Would You Like to Learn…
Sounds and Word Structure <ul><li>Compared to English, the number of vowels used in any given word is usually higher </li>...
<ul><li>The basic vowels are /a/, /i/, /u/, /e/, and /o/. </li></ul><ul><li>These are pronounced a bit differently than in...
Quiz Time! <ul><li>What kind of syllable pattern does Japanese follow? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the basic vowels, and ho...
Grammar and Word Order <ul><li>Languages are normally classified by the order of their parts, namely the subject, verb, an...
Particles <ul><li>Particles are the pieces of grammar that show the relationships between subjects objects and verbs. </li...
Quiz Time! <ul><li>What is the basic order of a typical Japanese sentence? How does this differ from English? </li></ul><u...
Writing in Japanese <ul><li>The Japanese Language is split into two syllaberic “alphabets” known as Hiragana and Katakana,...
<ul><li>Kanji were brought to Japan about 1,500 years ago from China. </li></ul><ul><li>Before this time, Japanese was str...
Quiz Time! <ul><li>What are the two syllaberic alphabets called in Japanese? What do they represent? </li></ul><ul><li>Wha...
Moving Forward <ul><li>The key to learning any language is to get the fundamentals of speaking, reading, and grammar down....
日本語のすごい世界へようこそ! <ul><li>Welcome to the wonderful world of Japanese! </li></ul>
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Nonline japan

  1. 1. The Basics of the Japanese Language What’s Tough and What’s Not
  2. 2. Which Would You Like to Learn…
  3. 3. Sounds and Word Structure <ul><li>Compared to English, the number of vowels used in any given word is usually higher </li></ul><ul><li>This means that Japanese is an “open” language, or that it has an “open-syllable pattern” </li></ul><ul><li>Most syllables end in a vowel, meaning that the pattern of most words is an alternation between a consonant and vowel </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>The basic vowels are /a/, /i/, /u/, /e/, and /o/. </li></ul><ul><li>These are pronounced a bit differently than in English, /ah/, /ee/, /ooh/, /eh/, and /oh/. </li></ul><ul><li>The basic consonants are /k/, /s/, /t/, /n/, /h/, /m/, /y/, /r/, and /w/. There is also an /N/ that stands alone from vowels and has a nasal sound. </li></ul><ul><li>The combinations of these consonants and vowels provide all sounds needed to speak the language. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Quiz Time! <ul><li>What kind of syllable pattern does Japanese follow? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the basic vowels, and how do they sound? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the basic consonants, and which does not pair with a vowel? </li></ul>
  6. 6. Grammar and Word Order <ul><li>Languages are normally classified by the order of their parts, namely the subject, verb, and Object of a sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>While English’s structure is S-V-O, a subject does a verb to an object, Japanese follows the order of S-O-V. </li></ul><ul><li>While direct translation isn’t the clearest, this means that in Japanese a subject does to an object a verb. That’s how the sentence is formed. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Particles <ul><li>Particles are the pieces of grammar that show the relationships between subjects objects and verbs. </li></ul><ul><li>For example, the particle /ha/ clearly shows what the subject of a sentence is. The particle /wo/ shows what the direct object is. </li></ul><ul><li>For example, “John /ha/ gohan /wo/ tabeta.” John ate rice. (Gohan is rice, tabeta is “ate”) </li></ul>
  8. 8. Quiz Time! <ul><li>What is the basic order of a typical Japanese sentence? How does this differ from English? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the name for a part of a sentence that denotes the relationship between subjects, objects, and verbs? Which were the two discussed earlier, and what do they show us? (Subject, object, or verb?) </li></ul>
  9. 9. Writing in Japanese <ul><li>The Japanese Language is split into two syllaberic “alphabets” known as Hiragana and Katakana, along with borrowed Chinese characters known as Kanji that represent words. </li></ul><ul><li>Kanji often gives the idea of a particular meaning, while Kana offer us a specific sound. </li></ul><ul><li>This gives each type of writing distinct advantages, which is why both are used. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Kanji were brought to Japan about 1,500 years ago from China. </li></ul><ul><li>Before this time, Japanese was strictly a written language </li></ul><ul><li>500 years later, the kana were made from particular pieces of different Kanji. </li></ul><ul><li>Kana let us sound out a word, while Kanji give learners clues as to the meaning of a word, as long as they know the Kanji of course. </li></ul><ul><li>While Hiragana denote the sound of Japanese words, Katakana is used to borrow words from other languages, such as コンピュータ、 or “konpyuuta.” Computer in English. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Quiz Time! <ul><li>What are the two syllaberic alphabets called in Japanese? What do they represent? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the system of more complex symbols called, where did it come from, and when? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the benefits to both styles of writing? Are they used together? </li></ul>
  12. 12. Moving Forward <ul><li>The key to learning any language is to get the fundamentals of speaking, reading, and grammar down. </li></ul><ul><li>Using what we have learned as a basis, we can move forward on each of those fronts. </li></ul><ul><li>The Japanese language is one rooted in history and steeped in culture. Remember, it takes time to learn a different way of speaking. </li></ul>
  13. 13. 日本語のすごい世界へようこそ! <ul><li>Welcome to the wonderful world of Japanese! </li></ul>
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