Tag - nihongo



In many cases, the return gift that shows your appreciation should be worth half of what was originally given to you.
Mar 1, 2024
Japan's return-a-gift culture isn't just for White Day
If you received a gift on Valentine's Day, White Day is your chance to return the kindness. Learn the verbs for giving with grace.
What would you do if you received a juicy piece of gossip at work, do you know the Japanese for how you'd respond?
Feb 23, 2024
Rumor, gossip and misinformation with neither roots nor leaves
Areas hit by the New Year's Day earthquake find themselves subject to damaging misinformation as they try to focus on reconstruction.
Food industry researchers and academics are hard at work formulating a new dictionary aiming to refine Japan's discourse over rice.
LIFE / Language
Feb 21, 2024
New dictionary to clear up sticking points over Japanese rice
By setting standards for common expressions that are often ambiguous, researchers hope to convey the "individuality" of products to consumers.
Anastasiia Pelykh (left) and Daria Datsenko talk about their lives in Japan after evacuating from Ukraine during an interview in Kyoto earlier this month.
JAPAN / Society
Feb 19, 2024
Two years after invasion, Ukrainians in Japan forge their own paths
A pair of women have taken different paths, but echoed the same refrain: They want the war to end as soon as possible so they can see their families.
Japanese author Banana Yoshimoto came onto the scene in 1987 with “Kitchin.” In it, her main character talks about the comfort she finds in her kitchen.
Feb 16, 2024
Take your first dive into Japanese literature from the comfort of your kitchen
There are levels to understanding Japanese literature. First there's basic comprehension, but after that you can take time to appreciate the wordplay.
The “dogeza” position is used for the sincerest of apologies and it was deployed by the man who mistakenly ruined an attempt at a Guinness world record on live television.
Feb 9, 2024
The year so far has been marked by some good and bad apologies
A social norm seems to persist in Japan that one should apologize first and explain later. That goes for companies as well.
Valentine's Day in Japan is one way when it comes to chocolate, but the sweets are reciprocated on White Day in March.
Feb 2, 2024
Prepare for date night by practicing reservations in Japanese
Whether its chocolates or a full-course meal, food is the language for Valentine's Day.
Unfortunately, statistics are not favorable when it comes to mixed marriages. With the proper communication, however, no challenge is insurmountable.
Jan 26, 2024
Know how to talk about divorce in case your relationship goes south
It's a sad fact that more than a few international relationships don't work out in Japan. Be armed with the proper vocabulary just in case.
Daisuke Hironaka, deputy head of Ikuno Komorebi Hoikuen, teaches Japanese to children at the day care in Osaka's Ikuno Ward.
COMMUNITY / Issues / The Foreign Element
Jan 22, 2024
An Osaka nursery is going the extra mile to stop Vietnamese kids falling behind
Getting children new to the country familiar with the Japanese language before heading to elementary school is crucial.
The Japanese term "yarinuku" means to do something to completion and implies there were difficulties along the way. It may feel like climbing a mountain, but it's often used in the boardroom.
Jan 19, 2024
Persevere with your Japanese grammar using these compound verbs
By mixing and matching certain verbs, your vocabulary will expand immensely.
The onomatopaeic term "poka-poka" can be used to describe the cozy feeling of relaxing under the kotatsu in the winter.
Jan 12, 2024
Warming words for this chilly season
The temperatures may be colder but that doesn’t mean we need to cool down our vocabulary.
One Japanese idiom goes, "the drawn dragon is missing an eye." It means that something lacks that crucial finishing touch.
Jan 4, 2024
The Year of the Dragon has arrived along with a slew of idioms
Japanese sayings that involve dragons tend to invoke the powerful characteristics of the mythical creature.
A Japanese monk rings the bell at his temple. The bell is rung 108 times on New Year's Eve, a way to cleanse ourselves of the worldly desires.
Dec 29, 2023
The year’s end provides us a chance to consider the passage of time
There are plenty of Japanese words that express the passage of time, whether it's a matter of years or the blink of an eye.
While harsh comments from older generations can sometimes be seen as rude, consider instead that they’re often trying to teach us something they hold on to.
LIFE / Lifestyle
Dec 26, 2023
A survival guide for your first Japanese-style at-home New Year’s
Meeting your partner’s Japanese family for the New Year’s holidays? Here are some do’s and don’ts for an ‘oshōgatsu’ success story.
If you're having a Christmas potluck with your friends, you'll want to make sure your dishes look as good as they taste.
Dec 21, 2023
A few linguistic palate cleansers for your holiday potlucks
With the pandemic-era norms subsiding, it looks like home parties may be back and bigger than ever.
A participant writes during a New Year calligraphy contest in Tokyo on Jan. 5, 2023.
Dec 19, 2023
Japan to propose nation's calligraphy for UNESCO heritage list
In response to a Cultural Affairs Council recommendation, the government will submit a proposal to the U.N. body by next March.
Children learn Japanese in Chicago in May 2017, with a Japanese language teacher in the background.
Dec 15, 2023
Japan and U.S. craft measures to step up cooperation in education
The measures include those aimed at promoting exchange programs and developing people in Japan to work in the technology industry.
Seihan Mori, the chief Buddhist priest of Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto, writes the kanji character "zei," meaning "tax," with a calligraphy brush to announce the Kanji of the Year.
Dec 15, 2023
Despite a taxing year, 2023's top kanji still draws questions
In a year of major crises around the world, Japanese voters pick the kanji for "zei," meaning "tax," based on a plan yet to be implemented.
Seihan Mori, chief priest of Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto, writes "zei" (taxes), which was chosen on Tuesday as the kanji of the year.
Dec 12, 2023
Talk of taxes spurs choice for Japan’s kanji of the year
The choice came as tax hikes and cuts were heavily covered in the news and discussed among policymakers.
The end-of-year company party has been pretty much on hold for the past few years due to the pandemic. Will people embrace the tradition in bigger numbers as a result?
Dec 8, 2023
Should we forget the year or forget the party?
After a few years without proper yearend work parties, are Japanese workers ready for a big bash? Or, has the tradition come to an end?


Things may look perfect to the outside world, but today's mom is fine with some imperfection at home.
How 'Reiwa moms' are reshaping motherhood in Japan