Free Japanese Lessons | Introduction | Episode 1

When we introduce Japan, Japanese language cannot be ignored. I am planning to release a series of Free Japanese Lessons in my YouTube channel. And here is the first episode. This episode introduces Japanese language in Malayalam. Lets learn Japanese together.

Japan Foundation and Japan Educational Exchanges and Services, together conoduct JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test) examinations, worldwide, to evaluate and recognize Japanese Language Proficiency of foreigners. JLPT official site is given below:-

Content in this channel can be used as a guide for those who prepare for JLPT examinations.

Tests are conducted in 5 levels as N1, N2, N3, N4 and N5. One who passes N1 level exam, is supposed to be as proficient as a native Japanese, in Japanese language. N5 is the entry level examination and those who pass N5 are assumed to have some familiarization with Japanese language and is thought to be capable of using basic greetings in Japanese.

Japanese immigration department recognizes JLPT certification as one of the factors for the eligibility of Highly Skilles VISA, Premanent Residence etc.

Around 125 million people speak Japanese language globally and majority being in Japan. Lets start learning from characters.

There are mainly 4 scripts in Japanese.
1) Hiragana
2) Katakana
3) Kanji
4) Romaji

Hiragana contains 46 characters and any word in Japanese can be written using Hiragana. Please see Hiragana characters below:-

Hiragana chart

hiragana chart

Katakana can be treated as another representation for Hiragana characters. Katakana also contain 46 characters. Although all words in Japanese can be written using Katakana, mostly these characters are used only to write words from foreign languages, names of foreigners and foreign places. For example, when I write my name in Japanese, I shall use Katakana. Please see Katakana characters below:-

Katakana chart

katakana chart

Kanji is set of Chinese characters adopted from Chinese language. Kanji characters are supposed to be more than 50,000. An average Japanese student who sucessfully completes school education, learns more than 2,000 Kanji characters.

Reading of Kanji characters differ based on context, as on-yomi and kun-yomi. Thus, in many ways, learning Kanji is highly challenging and complex.

Romaji is nothing but writing Japanese words using English alphabets. This is mainly used for assisting foreigners who visit Japan by letting them read the Japanese words in sign boards, traffic signs etc. From next episode, we will learn each character series.

Lets close this episode by familiarizing very simple and basic Japanese words for greetings.

ohayou gozaimasu - Good morning
konnichiwa - Good afternoon/Hello; this is a very common greeting which can be used to wish all Japanese people at any place and any time.
konbanwa - Good evening

Thank you all.
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