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Free Japanese language classes and easy Katakana

Free Japanese language classes and easy Katakana

Today we went to a volunteer language class – which is led by Japanese native speakers – to improve our meager Japanese. Despite two teachers missing, one sweet sensei took us in and adjusted the level of rather advanced students, so that we could participate. The hospitality and eagerness to help in Japan always amazes me.

The best thing is that there are many places like these in the city and they are mostly free, or you pay a truly symbolic monthly fee. Japanese classes are usually once a week and based on professional Japanese teaching materials, some offer conversation classes.

You can pick up a free brochure (‘Japanese Language Classes by Volunteers in Fukuoka- Class Map‘) which lists ALL available language classes/times/contacts in Fukuoka.

Booklets are available at Kansen Nihongo Kyoshitsu, 1-1-1 Tenjin, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka, across Fukuoka 3F Kokusaihiroba (5 min walk from Tenjin subway station). This booklet is a real money saver!

If you are going to Japan for just few weeks, it is worthwhile to be able to read Katakana, the Japanese script for mainly foreign (English) terms. So let me show you some cute examples. Katakana is a lot of fun to decipher because you can readily understand Japanese!

Let’s do it.

Ro-shi-a-re-su-to-ra-n? Yes, it means Russian restaurant!

Fukuoka, Japan


Do-ri-n-ku-yo-gu-ru-to? Yes, drink joghurt! Bu-ru-be-ri? Blueberry!

Fukuoka, Japan


Mi-ru-ku-ka-fu-e-o-re? That is milk café au lait!

Fukuoka, Japan


(Reading the bottom line on both sweets.) Su-i-to-po-te-to? Yes, sweet potato! Ku-ri-mu-chi-zu? Cream cheese! Yummy!

Fukuoka, Japan


The left katakana (this time read top to bottom!) is for you to guess:  Ze Pu-re-mi-a-mu Mo-ru-tsu?

Fukuoka, Japan


Yes, ‘The Premium Malt’s’ it is! Well done! Japanese is easy, right ;)

Fukuoka, Japan

We had such a great time and felt immensely motivated to learn more – 先生ありがとうございました! (Sensei arigatōgozaimasu – Thank you teacher!)

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  1. Swietnie! Moze bedziemy umiec po japonsku tez!!

    • やぽにすきいえすてぽろすて :)

  2. You are ALWAYS welcome here in Fukuoka and my Japanese class;)

    Good job! You are showing fantastic KATAKANA world!

    • We will gladly attend more lessons! Is there a beginner class coming up? :)
      I can see how phrases like ‘Do you have those shoes in my size’ and ‘Does this skirt come in another colour’ will come in handy during my stay in shopping heaven Fukuoka ;)

  3. Japonski jest porosty? lol Albo, moze Japonski jest prosty?

    • Sadly, Japanese Hiragana serves the Polish language in a limited way phonetically. Needed to improvise :)

  4. Good to hear your improvement of Japanese!

    Did you find any beginner class?
    I know a volunteer teacher who could teach you from 1:30~3:30 on Saturdays near Tenjin.
    I teach some foreigners in the volunteer group with her, but she’s not come recently because her students would’nt come in this month. So I think I could ask her.
    Also, I can teach you on Sundays and Monday the 14th;)

    • That is fantastic! We will gladly attend at 1.30, if this is still possible to arrange :)

  5. こんにちは!

    I’ve just read your replay now, and I can’t get a hold of the teacher at the moment.
    It may be difficult to arrange today. When are you gonna move to Tokyo? Are you still in Fukuoka next Saturday?

    I know another teacher and she used to join in the Saturday 4:30 Japanese class you came last week.
    Now she quit the volunteer group but she can teach on weekdays. I will arrange her if you have a time.

    I think your Japanese improvment in Fukuoka will make your Tokyo days more enjoyable and fantastic.
    I just hope you can get more lessons.


    • Okay, there is no rush. We will study by ourselves in the meantime, since we have so much more to catch up :) Yes, we are still in Fukuoka. We leave on the 15th. Have a nice weekend!

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