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Morning Mini Lesson

Days of the week:

月曜日 げつようび getsuyoubi = Monday
火曜日 かようび kayoubi = Tuesday
水曜日 すいようび suiyoubi = Wednesday
木曜日 もくように mokuyoubi = Thursady
金曜日 きんようび kinyoubi = Friday
土曜日 どようび doyoubi = Saturday
日曜日 にちようび nichiyoubi = Sunday


I was hoping to have 1,000 followers by the New Year, and then I would buy a domain and make this whole thing a lot more official (but still free and linked to tumblr, don’t worry).

With only 20 days left until the end of the year, it’s still a bit short of the target.

To my amazing followers, who made this thing so much more than I ever thought it would be, more successful than ever. My followers who without coming here, I would have probably stopped doing this a long time ago. 

So I ask you all this, to help me reach the 1,000 goal, I ask all of you to promote me in every way you can. Shout outs, tell your friends, link me on every site you go to. Even re-blogging helps to spread the word further.

Please, help ICanSpeakJapanese become truly great, a well-known name within the Japanese-tumblr-blogging community. Help me, help you.


Daily JLPT Kanji #4

友(だち) とも(だち) tomo(dachi) friend also 友(人) ゆう(じん) yuu(jin) friend

女 おんな onna woman also 女 じょ jo girl

男 おとこ otoko man also 男 だん dan boy

人 じん/にん jin/nin person also 人 ひと hito person

子 こ ko child also 子 し shi child

Morning Mini Lesson: Emergency Services


警察 けいさつ keisatsu police

消防 しょうぼう shoubou fire department

救急車 きゅうきゅうしゃ kyuukyuusha ambulance

交番 こうばん kouban police box

消防署 しょうぼうしょ shoubousho fire station

病院 びょういん byouin hospital

Lesson 82: something, anything and nothing

In Japanese, there are two words used to say “something”, “anything”, and “nothing”; 何か/なにか/nanika and 何も/なにも/nanimo

何か/なにか/nanika using in a positive statement means “something”, while 何か/なにか/nanika used in a question means “anything?”. 何も/なにも/nanimo is used in negative questions, and means “not anything”, or “nothing”.

These two words are used in place of the particles は/ha, が/ga, and を/wo, and thus can be used alone without particles. Later, we will learn what we need to do when other particles would be used.

And some examples:

猫(ねこ)が何か(なにか)持ってきました(もってきました)。neko ga nanika mottekimashita. - The cat has brought something

猫(ねこ)は何か(なにか)食べましたか(たべました)。neko ha nanika tabemashitaka. Has the cat eaten anything?

いいえ、猫(ねこ)は何も食べませんでしたiie, neko ha nanimo tabemasendeshitaNo, he cat has not eaten anything.

久しぶり Long Time No See

Hi guys. I’ve been regrettably inactive on this blog for quite a while now. Living in Japan has given me much less free time than I expected. And yet everyday, I’m happy to see that this blog gain more and more new followers. Thank you for sticking with me.

As we are about to hit 2,000 followers, I intend to get back into making lessons again.

I want to make more lessons, better lessons and more diverse lessons than ever before.

So in the lead up, while I prepare for the next round of Jumpstart Japanese lessons, I would like you all to start sharing this blog like crazy, send your asks about any aspect of learning Japanese or living in Japan. I want to see this community grow into something where you can share your questions with each other, not simply with me.

Thank you for staying with me this far, and together, let’s make this blog bigger and better than ever before!

As many of you know, comes Autumn/Fall, I’ll be jetting off to Japan for a year to study there (though I don’t know where yet). And I want to make a blog about that.

I don’t want to use my normal blog (gakuseiseikatsu) because there’s so much rubbish stuffed in there, so maybe I will start a new blog. Or maybe I will just archive everything from my regular blog, then clear it out. I don’t want it on here either because I want this to focus on lessons.

What do you all think? Would you all be interested in my Japanese student life blog?

Top 10 Posts of 2012 (and ever)

So here are the top ten most liked and reblogged posts from last year, in ascending order. Why don’t you all like them some more?

  1. Learning Katakana/Hiragana? Here’s a fun game to try
  2. Super Basic Bonus Lesson!
  3. Lesson 13 (late): Basic but essential verbs
  4. How many of you are looking for a Japanese speaking partner?
  5. Lesson 26: And
  6. Lesson 9: time
  7. Lesson 37: Let’s go!
  8. Lesson 27: nothing, nowhere & no-one
  9. Lesson 64: plain form pt.2 (present negative)
  10. Lesson 40: te-form pt. 2
Lesson 64: plain form pt.2 (present negative)


So we’ve learnt how to use present positive tenses in plain form, which is the same as dictionary form. In today’s lesson we’ll be learning how to use negative in the plain form. Again, this lesson will be really easy as we’ve already done it before.

Negative tense in the plain form is the same as the ない/nai-form that we did in Lesson 47:

To conjugate words into the ない/nai form, it depends on what kind of verb it is, depending on it’s ending. There are う/u-verbs, る/ru-verbs and irregular verbs. Here are some examples of each, and hopefully you will be able to see the pattern for each. 


To write

かきます > かく > かかない

kakimasu > kaku > kakanai

To talk

はなします > はなす > はなさない

hanashimasu > hanasu > hanasanai

To wait

まちます > まつ > またない

machimasu > matsu > matanai

To die

しにます > しぬ > しなない

shinimasu > shinu > shinanai

To call out

よびます > よぶ > よばない

yobimasu > yobu > yobanai

To read

よみます > よむ > よまない

yomimasu > yomu > yomanai

To return

かえります > かえる > かえらない

kaerimasu > kaeru > kaeranai

To meet

あいます > あう > あわない

aimasu > au > awanai

Can you see the pattern for う/u-verbs?


To eat

たべます > たべる > たべない

tabemasu > taberu > tabenai

To sleep

ねます > ねる > ねない

nemasu > neru > nenai

To open

あけます > あける > あけない

akemasu > akeru > akenai

To get up

おきます > おきる > おきない

okimasu > okiru > okinai

To see

みます > みる > みない

mimasu > miru > minai

Can you see the pattern for る/ru-verbs?

Irregular verbs

These verbs are irregular in that they do not conjugate in the normal patterns as shown above. 

To do

します > する > しない

shimasu > suru > shinai

To come

きます > くる > こない

kimasu > kuru > konai

So that’s how you conjugate verbs into the plain, negative form, so look out for the end of the dictionary form, and watch out for those irregulars!

One Piece Manga Lesson 2:



Kanji: 第一話 ROMANCE DAWN - 冒険の夜明け 

Hiragana: だい・いち・わ ROMANCE DAWN - ぼうけん の よあけ

Romaji: Dai ichi wa ROMANCE DAWN – bouken no yoake

English: Part One Romance Dawn – The Dawn of Adventure



Kanji: 富・名声・力。かつてこの世の全てを手に入れた男“海賊王” ゴールド・ロジャー

Hiragana:とみ・めいせい・ちから・かつて この よ の すべて を て に いれた おとか“かいぞくおう” ゴールド・ロジャー

Romaji: Tomi meisei chikara katsute kono yo no subete wo te ni ireta otoko. “kaizoku ou” Gorudo・Rojya-

English: Once a man held all the wealth, fame and power in the world in his hand. “Pirate King” Gold Roger



Kanji: 彼の死に際に放つたに一言は全世界の人々を海へ駆り立てた

Hiragana: かれ の し に きわ はなつた に ひとこと は せんせかい の ひとびと を うみ へ かり たてた

Romaji: Kare no shi kiwa hanatsuta ni hitokoto ha sensekai no hitobito wo umi he kari tateta

English: His words on the verge of his death drove people from all over the world to the sea.



Kanji: おれの財宝か?欲しけりゃくれてやるぜ・・・

Hiragana: おれ の ざいほう か? ほしけりゃ くれてやる ぜ・・・

Romaji: Ore no zaihou ka? Hoshikerya kureteyaru ze…

English: My treasure? You want me to give it to you…



Kanji: 探してみろこの世の全てをそこに置いてきた

Hiragana: さがしてみろこのよすべてをそこにおいてきた

Romaji: Sagashite miro no yo no subete wo soko ni oite kita

English: I’ve hidden it in this world to find,



Kanji: 世は大海賊時代を迎える

Hiragana: よはだい かいぞく じだい を むかえる

Romaji:  Yo ha dai kaizoku jidai wo mukaeru

English: The world approaches the great age of pirates!

Why are you interested in Japan and learning Japanese?

I’m interested in Japan’s history and culture, and it’s underworld too. I’m learning Japanese because one day, I plan to live there. Probably not all my life, but for a few years at least.

Please answer this in English, not Japanese

Free hiragana e-book

Morning everyone. So today before work (like, just now), I was rolling around the tofogu store, seeing what they have. When I noticed an item there fore $0 called “Hiragana42: ‘The Answer’ To Learning Hiragana”. 

Well I can already read hiragana, but I know a lot of you out there can’t, so I’d pass on the word to you. Here’s the link:

It’s completely free (though will ask for a billing address), so if you want some help learning hiragana, go check it out!

Lesson 76: comparisons


Good morning sports fans. Wait, what?

Okay, today we’re moving onto another grammar structure, and that is how to make some comparisons.

So we’ll start off with learning a question, meaning “Out of A and B, which is X”, with A and B being nouns and X being an adjective. Here’s the sentence pattern:

NounとNounと、どちらがAdj.ですか。Noun to noun to, dochira ga Adj. desu ka. と/to is similar to “and”, and どちら/dochira is similar to which.

Here’s an example:
肉(にく) と 魚(さかな) と どちら が 好き(すき) ですか。 niku to sakana to dochira ga suki desu ka. Out of meat and fish, which do you like better?

中国(ちゅうごく) と 日本(にほん) と、 どちら が 大きい(おおきい) ですか。chuugoku to nihon to, dochira ga ookii desu ka. Out of China and Japan, which is bigger?

Now how about answering those questions? You could simply say something like 魚(さかな)です/sakana desu. Or we could use ほうが/houga to express a preferred option with more emphasis. For example:

肉(にく)の ほうが 好き(すき)です。 niku no houga suki desu. I like meat better.

中国(ちゅうごく)の ほうが 大きい(おおきい)です。chuugoku no houga ookii desu. China is bigger.

We’ll carry on with lessons on preferences and comparisons on Wednesday. Send in any examples you can think of!