Tag Archives: study

Japanese Kids Games

22 Aug

When my daughters were younger, there were a couple of Japanese games that I used to play with them that help improve my Japanese language ability.

「しりとり」 (“Shiritori“) and 「カルタ」 (“Karuta“).

Do you know these games? Have you ever played them?

▲ 「しりとり」 (Shiritori):

This is a word game that two or more people can play.
The first person says any Japanese noun. It can be any word as long as it doesn’t end with the 「ん」 (“n“) character.
– The next person says any Japanese word that begins with the same character that the previous word ended with.
– And the next player does likewise.
– The game ends when a player loses by either saying a word that has already been used or saying a word that ends with the 「ん」 (“n“) character (because no word in the Japanese language begins with 「ん」).
– When a word end with a character with 濁点 (「゛」) or 半濁点 (「゜」), the next player can use the character with or without it (ie: If a player’s word ends with 「ば」 or 「ぱ」, the next player’s word can start with either that character or simply 「は」).

An example of how the game would go:
「ネ」(“Neko“)→「」(“Koala)→「イオ」(Laion (lion)) (The  player who said 「ライオン」 (lion) would lose because you can’t choose a word that ends with 「ん」(「ン」).)

▲ 「カルタ」 (Karuta):

This is a Japanese card game that can be played by three or more players. It’s often played at New Years time in Japan (I still play this game every New Years with my daughters).

Karuta has two decks of cards. One deck is called 読み札 (Reading deck), and the other is 取り札 (Taking deck).

Each card in the 取り札 (Taking deck) has a picture illustrating a phrase and the first character from that phrase…the 読み札 (Reading deck) have the phrases.

– The 取り札 (Taking deck) is spread out on the floor and all players, except the one player who will be the “reader”, sit around the cards.
– The reader shuffles the 読み札 (Reading deck) and reads the top card.
– The other players have to find and hit the card on the floor that corresponds with the one just read before another player gets it.
– Whoever has the most cards at the end wins.

A couple of cards from a Karuta game

A couple of cards from a Karuta game

Wanna play 「しりとり」 (Shiritori) against me in the comments section?
I’ll write a word here and you can write the next one in the comments section of this post and we can go back and forth until someone loses.

My word is:
「ゴリラ」 (Gorira (gorilla))…(you have to write a word that starts with 「ら」 (“ra“).

Counter Suffixes

30 Dec

In about four hours (from when I wrote this), it’ll be New Years Eve (in JST (Japan Standard Time)).
Soon it’ll be 2009! Time flies!

I was just reviewing one of my Japanese language books and decided to add another lesson here (click here for another one I wrote last month).

If you study Japanese, please leave a comment and let me know if this is helpful, too easy, or too difficult. (As with all of the 漢字 (kanji) on my blog, if you hold you mouse over it…you’ll see the ふりがな pop-up.)

The examples written in red are exceptions to the rule.

物の数え方 (Counter Suffixes)

  • People: ~ (一人, 二人, 三人)
  • Small item: ~ (一個, 二個, 十個)
  • Books, magazines: ~ (一冊, 二冊, 八冊)
  • Paper money (bills): ~ (千円札, 一ドル札)
  • Pairs of shoes or socks: ~ (一足, 三足, 四足, 何足)
  • Glass, cup, spoonful: ~ (一杯, 二杯, 何杯)
  • Dog, cat, insect: ~ (一匹, 二匹, 十匹)
  • Cylindrical items: ~ (一本, 二本, 八本)
  • Birds: ~ (一羽, 三羽, 十羽)
    (ie: 千羽鶴 (1000 origami Cranes))
  • Cars, phones, TVs: ~ (一台, 何台)
  • Flat items (sheets of papers, etc): ~ (一枚, 何枚)
  • Age: ~ (二歳, 二十歳, 何歳)
  • Place, Rank: ~ (三位)
  • Number of times: ~ (一回)
  • Pieces of mail: ~ (三通)

日本語を勉強

9 Nov

Do you study 日本語 (Japanese)?
Can you understand the following passage? Is it too easy? Too difficult?

(It was taken from the book A Course In Modern Japanese, vol.2).
I transcribed the first lesson of the book here (as always, I added ふりがな to the 漢字 (Japanese Kanji characters)…but only the first time each one appears.

+++

落し物

ルイン: 山田さん、ちょっと教えて下さい
山田: ああ、ルインさん。ですか。
ルイン: あのう、財布落としたんですが、どこに連絡すればいいでしょうか。
山田: えっ、どこで。
ルイン: それはよく分からないんです。地下鉄乗る電話したときはあったんですけど。
山田: じゃあ、たぶん駅か地下鉄のですね。
ルイン: ええ。
山田: じゃ、駅に連絡すればいいと思います
ルイン: ああ、駅ですか。
山田: ええ。だれかが拾って届けてるかもしれませんから。
ルイン: あ、そうですね。
山田: が電話しましょうか。
ルイン: あ、いいです。私がしますから。
山田: そうですか。
ルイン: はい。ありがとうございました。

Rainy weekend

10 May

I had planned to go to the 神田祭り (Kanda Festival) today…but it was a rainy day today, and my two oldest daughters have First Semester Exams at school next week—so they need to stay home and study this weekend.

So we just stayed at home today and my daughters studied. I helped them with their Math and their English lessons.

If their math assignments get much more difficult, I won’t be able to help them with it anymore! The math they’re studying is hard!

Tomorrow, my youngest daughter’s school is having a Kids Sumo Tournament. My kids aren’t gonna participate, but I’m on the school’s PTA so I’m going there to help set up and clean up when it’s over.

Then my kids and I are gonna take my wife out for Mother’s Day dinner.