Do not skip your N4 and N5



Today`s post is on not skipping your N4 and N5.

I saw this post by a guy on the forum:

I went for XXX’s prep course for both N2 and N1. For the other grades, I think it’s possible to self study them, but I never took those exams because I felt it was a waste of money.

Kindly allow me to add something that a lot of Japanese learners don`t know, not even most teachers in the schools. I got to know this as i have been doing research on JLPT since 2010, take exams with my students (毎年生徒とSMUを”散歩”しましょう. (笑) ) and also attend teacher conferences with teachers from other countries.

Every level of JLPT tests you on different areas of the language.


N5: Ability to use correct particles in sentences, basic vocabulary, basic usage of forms, usage of time, date, usage of adverbs, Japanese greetings

N4: Ability to identify usage of transitive/intransitive verbs, potential/passive/volitional forms sentence structures, usage of similar vocabulary (e.g ごはんをたべる vs 食事), basic usage of Keigo (not in recent years), usage of time, date, usage of adverbs

N3: Intermediate level vocabulary, Ability to read composition on people, simple official notices, Keigo, causative passive form, ~そうです, conversational sentences

N2: Understanding of N3, N4 and N5 grammar, Ability to read newspaper articles, official notices, understand simple business conversations, usage of Keigo, causative passive form
usage of particles in sentences.

N1: Understanding of N1-N5 grammar. Ability to read abstract articles, newspaper articles, understand complex business conversations, advanced Keigo, usage of particles in difficult sentences.Depending which year you took JLPT, you might have missed out the important stuff that you need to know.

We also see a trend that N1 vocabulary is tested in N3 (Dec 2016), N4,N5 stuff tested in N1 (Dec 2016)

So students who are taking N1 or N2, please, please make sure that you revise your foundation stuff.


New Beginner Class (Alternate Sat)

Dear all,

I will be having a new beginner class. This class is running on alternate Saturdays.

Its a 3 hour class (2 sessions put into 1 session).

Starting Date: Feb 2017
Time: 10am-1pm
Fees: $200 for 1 term (subsequent term: $230 per term) or $400 for 2 terms.
Textbook: $15

For those weeks where we don`t have lesson, you can choose to come and a senior will be around to answer your questions.

If you are interested, drop me an email via the Contact Us form.


Difference between やっと、かなり、必ず、絶対に


おはようございます。It`s the last day of 2016. Before i start, let me wish all of you a happy and blessed 2017 ahead.

Like to share the difference between やっと、かなり、必ず、絶対に today.

(Express feelings of relief when things that you wished for/waited for come into realization)

(Express expectations are exceeded)

Difference between 必ず and ぜひ:

ぜひ: 望む気持ち、勧める気持ちを強めるときに使います。
(When emphasizing on things you wish/recommend)

(When emphasizing sense of obligation)

(Mainly use in negative sentences)

Will revise the post later on to add more info. Meanwhile, おやすみなさい。


How did I become a Japanese teacher?

If you haven`t read part 1 of the story, i suggest you to read it here

Part 2 starts from the point where i wasn`t borne from a well to do family.
i don`t really like to share my personal stuff with people but i feel that my students and those who are reading my blog can learn from this.

My family was a DV family. If you know what i mean. Now my dad has his own family. If not for my teachers in my school, i might have died long ago. Don`t really wanna go into much details, but i was really grateful to my teachers back in school. I hope that by being a Japanese teacher, i can share not just my love for Japan, the language, but also experiences about life.

I was grateful to 1 teacher back in my secondary school, now my god-father, who really took care of me spiritually and mentally. I would never have come this far without him.
When i was doing my polytechnic studies, i started to share and counsel juniors who experience difficulties in life, like quarrel with parents, BGR problems, etc, etc. I was also doing peer tutoring in programming and found out i really like teaching. Good things like how the lecturers plan their modules in the polytechnic, having a lesson plan, informing the students what is the goal at the end of the module. In my classes now, i apply bits and pieces of what i learned in polytechnic to my lessons.

I was also grateful to my aunt who took care of me after my mum passed away for 13 years.

To me, you may find me being a very serious teacher, but if you have been in my shoes and came so far to be able to learn Japanese, seeing students who just study Japanese for interest, but not taking effort to persevere to do well, you might feel like very sad for them. That is also why i always interview students before they come and learn the language.

Of course, as time goes by, i see many of these students who are just learning for short-term interest and don`t continue on. Just feel very sad for them. I also changed my attitude and not be too serious with them…

For students who have their parents` pay for them and don`t study in my class, i will just ask them to leave my class.

For students who always OT and yet still make an effort to come for my classes, stay back after class to revise with the classmates, i really respect them from my heart.

I guess this is the real reason why my students remain as a family. Because i teach all of them like they are my own family.

Like to end this part 2 with a song from Uta-Prince…

I hope to be my students` Nanami, to make an good impact and to be everyone`s guiding light on my students life.


Updated schedule from 16th Jan onwards


Below is the proposed updated schedule w.e.f 16th Jan onwards.
Each class will have about maximum 8 students.

I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience for those who are thinking of taking up my classes, but currently this is what i have.

3.30pm-5pm Beginner 2 class will end in Feb 2017


Important Notice: Job at a Travel Agency


こんばんは。I have a piece of sad news to announce. I have found a job at a travel agency and will be starting in mid Jan/end Jan next month.

This job allows me to travel to Japan and bring tour groups to Japan every now and then.

I am thankful that the company still allows me to teach on Sundays.

Lessons will strictly be on Suns from next month onwards. Feel a bit sad that i have to let go of some students. Also, there will be some changes to the existing schedule.

A lot of students who have been to schools to learn and then after learning under me, they find that i tend to be able to explain grammar better and JLPT scoring tactics than the teachers in the schools.

I also want to thank my current students for being so supportive and being flexible to allow me to make some changes to the existing schedule.

Having said that, i hope to be able to get committed students who really wish to learn, as my time will be limited to Suns only. There might be a time where i might just have to stop teaching permanently, so while you still have the chance, do contact me for further discussions.

Meanwhile, enjoy your stay on this website.