Study Night 140

  Hello everyone. This is Bob. In  southern Japan the rainy season has started. We call the rainy season “tsuyu(梅雨つゆ)”. It normally starts in May and ends July. However it depends on region. In southern Japan it starts earlier and in northern Japan it starts later. Hydrangeas bloom in “梅雨つゆ“. Hydrangeas in the rain are […]

Study Night 139

Hello everyone! It’s me, Akiko reporting on this week’s benkyoukai. Let’s get started!    Before reporting this week’s event, let me tell you about “benkyoukai(勉強会)/ study night.”  Benkyoukai is a language exchange gathering for Japanese learners and English learners. It is held at the JP Canada’s office (#320-890 West Pender) from 5:45pm to 7:00pm every Wednesday. […]

Study Night 137

Hello everyone! It’s me, Akiko. It’s finally getting warm and sunny these days. Do you have any plans for the summer?  Before reporting this week’s event, let me tell you about “benkyoukai(勉強会)/ study night.”  Benkyoukai is a language exchange gathering for Japanese learners and English learners. It is held at the JP Canada’s office (#320-890 […]

Study Night 135

  Hello everyone. This is Bob. I’m a new volunteer for Study night (Benkyokai). First of all let me introduce myself and Benkyokai. I’m from Fukushima Japan. I’m really enjoying Vancouver life because spring has finally arrived this week. Benkyokai is a language exchange event between English and Japanese speakers.  It is held at JP […]

Study Night 133

This time, Japanese-English words(“和製英語/わせいえいご”) were the focus of the activity. When English words get around Japan, their meaning frequently changes. These false friends can cause miscommunication. In order to prevent this, let’s study how Japanese-English word depart from their original meaning. In the first part, we translated Japanese-English words. Here are some examples we looked […]

Study Night 131

〜になる is often translated as “become” but how it’s actually used is usually one of the following verbs: To be/get/come/go/make/turn/grow/learn.  Using “become” in most situations sounds unnatural or sometimes even incorrect. Conjugation: い-adj → change the い to く and add なる な-adj → drop the な and add になる Noun → simply add になる […]

Study Night 130

This time, school rules(“校則こうそく”) was the activity of choice. Did your school have strict or strange school rules? Having school rules is obviously important for students to make them disciplined and to maintain order. However, there are a lot of weird, strict or funny school rules all over the world. In the first part, we […]

Study Night 129

We at Yokoso gave out cookies, small cupcakes, and doughnuts as White Day gifts. Also, one of the participates brought delicious croissants for everyone. He actually did so on Valentine’s Day as well! Thank you so much for your generosity. Let me tell you about White Day. You might have heard about it before. White Day […]

Study Night 128

Everyone had a childhood. Growing up, doing fun child stuff, learning new things everyday. In order to help child’s growth or maybe to protect them or for some other reasons, parents create rules or create extracurricular activities that children would never think of doing. This connects to this week’s activity. “Were you forced to do […]

Study Night 127

This time, compliments (褒める) were the activity of choice. Are you good at complimenting? In Japan, we don’t usually compliment in conversation whereas often Canadians do. We (Japanese people) are not good at it. But it is very important to compliment during a conversation in order to make it smooth, positive and happy, right? In […]

Study Night 126

First, what we did yesterday was あいうえお作文 さくぶんand かるた.  So I’m going to show you what あいうえお作文 is. Here’s one example.  お題だい「おかあさん」The topic「mother」 あ ありがとう  Thank you い いつも  always う 美うつくしい beautiful え 笑顔えがおの smiling お お母かあさん mother It’s a message for mother’s day showing appreciation to mothers. Usually we make あいうえお作文 related to one topic and  it should […]

Study Night 124

Today, we talked about our future using the subjunctive form (called 仮定法かていほう in Japanese) and made sentences. I will explain a little bit about that grammar first. The subjunctive is used to explore conditional or imaginary situations that don’t actually exist. Here is an example: “If I were you, I would go there”. Here are […]

Study Night 123

First of all, let me tell you about what we learned this session (yesterday). We focused on one grammar point: “Something that has happened previously“, we say “したことがある。” in Japanese (done something). do verb(simple past, affirmative)した+ことがある ある can be conjugated into a negative form as well. Either polite or casual. (ありません・ない) Use the simple past […]

Study Night 122

  Time, cooking(料理) is the activity of choice. Do you like cooking? I chose this topic because of two objectives. One is to learn how to describe cooking in English and Japanese such as ingredients(onion, beef, carrot .etc) and ways to cook(shimmer, stir fry, boil .etc). When you go to live abroad, you might need […]

Benkyokai 121

“Self-introduction”. Apparently this is very Japanese thing, but in Japan when group of people get together they are highly likely to present a “self-introduction” consisting of your name and some relevant (or irrelevant) information about yourself to each other. In Vancouver, this kind of activity could happen in an ESL class, but outside of that it […]

Study Night 120

Yesterday, we persuaded each other of our opinions. We have 6 statements below. In the Study Night, there were some awesome suggestions.   I like dogs better than cats. Agree (like cats):  don’t require me to work, cute Objection (like dogs): loyal, friendly, cute, lovely   日本(にほん)に行(い)くなら東京(とうきょう)より大阪(おおさか)に行(い)きたい Agree (go to Osaka): Naoki (one of the […]

Study Night 119

Firstly, I would like to introduce about the Japanese new year. Actually this picture (right) my brother took on January 2nd in Kyoto. It is the shrine 北野天満宮きたのてんまんぐう. As you can see, we go to shrines to pray for the new year and show appreciation for the last year between January 1st and 3rd. These […]

Study Night 118

This time, the quiz for “大晦日”(the end of the year) and “お正月”(the beginning of the new year) was the activity of choice. The attendees filled in the blank and translated into the other language. The quiz we had is below. Take a look. ————————————————————————————————————————————— e.g. E: The greeting of the new year is       […]

Study Night 116

Yesterday, we made funny sentences that imitate Siri (the A.I. hiding inside the iPhone). To do that, we have to use polite language or 敬語(けいご)in Japanese. That is a little bit difficult even for Japanese people. In Japanese, we have 3 types of 敬語(けいご). We have to use the appropriate type depending on the situation. […]

Study Night 115

  Yesterday, the activity was about metaphors (隠喩). Metaphors are a really fun way to make a conversation interesting. You often see tons of various metaphors around you. Like books, TV and even just in daily conversation. Some of them are easy to understand but some seemingly don’t make sense at all. I’m pretty sure […]

Study Night 114

For this week’s activity, I picked some “words/sayings with colors in them”. Yes it sounds weird so why don’t we move on to the questions we had, which shall explain it self more than anything else. Out of the        : unexpected         with envy: jealous or envious Caught        -handed: clearly guilty         noise: static noise […]

Study Night 113

For this week’s activity, I prepped a trivia quiz. But it’s not a usual trivia quiz, you get to make your own funny answers! In Japan it is called “大喜利”(おおぎり/Oogiri), or in English it might be called “Balderdash”, “Fibbage”, “Quiplash”, “Madlib”… any of those word games sound familiar to you? I had questions in both […]

Study Night 110

Yesterday, the topic of our activity was superstition. We compared North American and Japanese superstition. Actually I picked some superstitions from folktales relating to Halloween so even some Canadians had no idea what the answers were. They were a bit tricky. I hope they got you ready and excited for Halloween! Usually, people believe in atleast a […]