Japanese I-4

Kanjis: 1st grade + JLPT N5; Additional kanjis for lessons 1-8:

わたし – I/me きみ – you えい – Britain, British
ぼく – I/me さけ – sake 欲しい ほしい – wanted

Sample Conversation

This is not a transcript of the dialog in the recording.

A woman is asks a man for help locating Ueno station on a map. He finds it and then turns around and points to the station, which is visible from where they are standing.


English
1: man; 2: woman

2: err… sorry to bother.
1: Yes? What is it?
2: Is this here Ueno station?
1: err… Ah!
    That? It’s not Ueno station.
    That? It’s Ueno park.
    Here! Here is Ueno station.
    err… It’s over there.
2: Ah. I see. Thank you.
1: No problem.


romaji
1: otoko; 2: onna

1: eeto… sumimasen.
2: hai. nani?
1: koko wa ueno eki desu ka?
2: eeto… aa!
    soko wa ueno eki ja ari-masen.
    soko wa ueno kouen desu.
    koko ga ueno eki desu.
    eeto… asoko desu.
1: aa. sou desu ka. doumo arigatou.
2: iie.



kana
1: おとこ; 2: おんな

1: ええと… すみません.
2: はい。なに?
1: ここは うえの えき ですか。
2: ええと… ああ!
    そこは うえの えき じゃ ありません。
    そこは うえの こうえん です。
    ここが うえの えき です。
    ええと… あそこ です。
1: ああ。そうですか。どうも ありがとう。
2: いいえ。


kanji (show me)
1: 男; 2: 女

1: ええと… すみません.
2: はい。何?
1: ここは うえの駅ですか。
2: ええと… ああ!
    そこは うえの駅じゃありません。
    そこは うえの公園です。
    ここが うえの駅です。
    ええと… あそこです。
1: ああ。そうですか。どうもありがとう。
2: いいえ。


Vocabulary


English
yeah (informal ‘yes’)

station
public
park
public park

Shinjiku
Ueno
what

place
here, by me
there, by you
way over there
where?

to talk/speak
masu (formal)
dict (casual)


romaji
ee

eki
kou
en
kou-en

shinjuku
ueno
nani

tokoro
koko
soko
asoko
doko?

 
hanashi-masu
hanasu


kana
ええ

えき
こう
えん
こうえん

しんじゅく
うえの
なに

ところ
ここ
そこ
あそこ
どこ

 
はなします
はなす


kanji
 




公園

 
 

 
 
 
 
 

 
話します
話す


  • ‘soko’ (there, near you) is not in lesson 4, but it’s part of the [ko/so/a/do]-ko family, so it makes sense to bring it up because the other words of the family are used in this lesson.
  • ‘nani’ (what) is from lesson 5, but its kanji (何) appears in many [ko/so/a/do]-ko families.
  • There are two kanjis for ‘tokoro’

Sample sentences

Eng: You speak well.

lit: You? You speak with skill.


formal
anata wa jouzu-ni hanashi-masu.

あなたは じょうずに はなします。

あなたは上手に話します。


casual
kimi wa jouzu-ni hanasu.

きみは じょうずに はなす。

君は上手に話す。


‘kimi’ is a casual form of ‘anata’.


Comments

The following comments explain some of the grammar in more detail.

Prefixes and suffixes

na-adjectives -na/-ni

To turn na-adjectives into adverbs, we replace the -na with -ni:


romaji
use alone
modify noun
modify verb

use alone
modify noun
modify verb


romaji
jouzu desu
jouzu-na hito
jouzu-ni hanasu

genki desu
genki-na hito
genki-ni naru


English
is skilled
person with skill
to speak with skill

is energetic
person with energy
to become with energy


‘to become with energy’ (genki-ni naru) is the verb we would use to wish a Japanese person a prompt recovery from an illness or accident; in English we’d use ‘to get better’.

In summary, both the na-adjective terminations ‘-na’ and ‘-ni’ mean ‘with’; we use ‘-na’ when we modify a noun, and ‘-ni’ when we modify a verb.

ko/so/a/do

We use these prefixes to describe the distances among the speaker, the listener, and the subject of the conversation. In English, ‘there’ is a location away from the speaker, but we do not distinguish whether it is close to the listener or not; Japanese makes this distinction: the prefix ‘so-‘ indicates that the location is away from the speaker but close to the listener, while the prefix ‘a-‘ indicates that the location is away from both the speaker and the listener.


English
this, near me
that, near you
that, far away
?


romaji
ko-
so-
a-
do-


kana




Pronouns

[ko/so/a/do]-ko

‘koko’, ‘soko’, ‘asoko’, and ‘doko’ is a ko/so/a/do family of words that refers to locations.


English
here, near me
there, near you
way over there
where?


romaji
koko
soko
asoko
doko


kana
ここ
そこ
あそこ
どこ