I have been studying Japanese properly since September 2005. I used to mess around and read a little and I knew basic phrases and words like thank you, good morning, a few colours, food, animals, body parts etc. The first term or Step 1 was a very good term for me in which I surprisingly came out on top in my class with a written test score of 96% and a interview/oral score of 86%. Step 2 has been a lot more difficult but still enjoyable and I look forward to each class.
My sensei’s name is Tomoko Uemura and I could have never asked for a nicer or more competent teacher. She motivates me and my classmates to do our best and her teaching methods are tailor made for us Jamaicans as she jokes around to keep us relaxed and her knowledge of Jamaican personalities, news and current affairs help her to come across as a friend and not a cold foreign teacher.


Step 1 History

In the first term I learned quite a lot. I learnt the hiragana chart, How to ask for certain information and tell persons about myself (なまえ、しごと、しゅみ、うち、にほんご の べんきょう)

example
はじめまして わたし の なまえ は Jamaipanese です。
わたし は こおむいん です。
わたし の しゅみ は おんがく です。
わたし は はは と いもうと と Kingston に すんでいます。
きょうねん の 9月 から にほんごの べんきょう しています。
どうぞ よろしく おねがい します。

I also learned when to use これ、それ and あれ。I learnt how to ask someone’s nationality, I learnt about the different “particles” in Japanese language such as wa, de, to, ni etc and when to use which, I learnt the different members of the family, I learnt the months of the year, the days of the week and how to count. I learnt to ask and say the time, how to say whether I like our dislike things as well as ask if someone likes or dislikes things, I learnt about transitive and intransitive verbs, the difference between dictionary form verbs and their conversation forms, I learnt a few adjectives, how to describe living and non living things and a bit more that I am sure I’ve left out.

Step 2 History up to now

So far in step 2 things have gotten more difficult. I have learnt about habit/customs and how to describe them, I have learnt about desire sentences, dwelled deaper into adjective conjugation and how to describe when you give or receive something. I have been slowly learning Katakana which my sensei recommends I learn through words rather than each character, I have learnt quite a few kanji (about 5 ^^ 中 目 口 本 月 and a few more) I have learnt to use more verbs and how to describe my future dream and lots more.

I also spend a lot of time on Japanese learning sites and sites that provide general information about Japan such as Japan Online, Japan Zone and many more sites too numberous to mention. So far I have only gotten more excited about learning to speak Japanese and can already decify a bit with my limited knowledge which in term only intensifies my excitement.

Related posts you might find interesting: