Components Of A Japanese Language Course

>> Saturday, January 22, 2011

You need to go through a Japanese language course regardless of whether you're going to Japan for business or for pleasure. Understanding and knowing how to speak and read the local language is essential to enhancing your positive experience while in Japan. You shouldn't just settle for any learning program though. You need to settle for one that contains five essential components.

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Verb Conjugation
It's fairly easy to get your head around basic words and terms. Bear in mind though that communication is not as effective without complete sentences. Hence, you need to study how to conjugate verbs. In Japan, verbs come at the tail end of sentences and are very important because subjects are often left unstated. They do not have singular and plural forms and are organized in groups. Those starting to learn to speak Japanese need to study verbs ending in "u" or "iru" and irregular verbs.
Basic Counters
In English, counting is a breeze. In Japan, learning how to count isn't as straightforward. Of course, you can learn to count up to 10 but actual counting involves specific counters. You'd have to memorize hundreds of counters for inanimate objects, animals and other things.
Cultural Context
Any Japanese language course that does not include an introduction to Japan's culture is almost useless. The culture of the country is not just different from western cultures. Take for instance the general local trait of politeness. This is aptly demonstrated in the use of various degrees of honorific terms and titles. You will have to go through learning keigo and its categories, sonkeigo, kenjogo and teineigo to differentiate how you speak to business associates and social acquaintances.
Reading Characters
You may be able to breeze through a Japanese language course for speaking. Learning to read however is an entirely different story. You will have to learn hundreds of characters in three categories, kanji, katakana and hiragana. This is an essential part of a learning program because you'll need to understand what certain characters mean when you're out in the city looking for a specific place.
Proper Pronunciation
The aspect of pronunciation is another necessary component if you don't want to suffer the embarrassment of mispronouncing words in public. The good news is that Japan's native tongue is not as complicated to speak as the English tongue. The sound "l" and "r" for instance are omitted from it and words are often pronounced in syllables. Certain sounds at the end of syllables are also seemingly omitted such as the sound of "u" in "desu".
You'll have a lot to choose from when you go look for a Japanese language course. To truly ensure that you learn the most important aspects of the local tongue, you need to go for a program that has all the essential components and elements. These can help you communicate effectively and efficiently.

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