Table of Contents
What is Japanese
Japanese, also known as Nihongo, is the national language of Japan. The Japanese language is a member of the Japonic language family. During the Heian period from year 794 to 1185, there was strong Chinese influence on the vocabulary, and phonology of Old Japanese. The Japanese writing system is primarily made up of Chinese characters (Kanji), and the vocabulary is also borrowed from Chinese. The Japanese writing system also consists of hiragana and katakana.
Why learn Japanese
The Japanese language is a gateway language to other Asian languages such as Mandarin (due to kanji) and Korean (due to grammatical similarities). Learning Japanese also opens up a whole new world of literature, manga, anime, music, movies, and other forms of media and entertainment. Often, the less popular animes do not have English translation. Even if there are English translations, they are not official translations and of poor quality. By learning Japanese, you get to discover a side of Japan that only the language can bring you to.
More business opportunities
If you are a budding entrepreneur who plans to set foot in Japan in the future, there will be more business opportunities presented to you if you speak Japanese. Japan was once the second-largest economy and ranked third by GDP; there are billions of dollars spent by the Japanese on consumer goods and services. The imports and exports of the Japanese are healthy. There are also Japanese multinational corporations (MNCs) branches across the globe. Communication is critical when it comes to growing businesses.
Here are some Japanese Language Schools to consider:
|Address||[Near Orchard Road] 190 Clemenceau Ave Singapore Shopping Centre, #03-24 Singapore 239924|
|Contact||Click Here to contact Tomo Japanese Language School|
|Operating Hours||Monday to Friday: 3 PM to 10 PM |
Saturday and Sunday: 10 AM to 8 PM
|Reviews||“Unlike the usual style of learning from textbooks and memorizing the contents, I also got to learn through Japanese music, drama, and movies. That raised my interest in studying the language and deepened my knowledge of Japanese culture. It also played a big role in training my listening skills. On top of that, Moriyama sensei is a very dedicated teacher. He spends lots of time preparing for his classes seriously. Thanks to Moriyama sensei, I was able to find a job in Japan and fulfill my dream of living there! I also managed to pass N1 thereafter. I am thankful to Moriyama sensei for his teachings. To everyone who is interested in picking up the language, do try out his lessons! ” – Lim Shi Hui|
|Pricing||Click here to enquire about the various Language Classes|
350, #12-07 Orchard Rd, Shaw House, 238868
|Contact||(65) 6238 0288|
|Operating Hours||Monday to Friday: 9 AM to 10 PM |
Saturday and Sunday: 10 AM to 8 PM
|Review 1||The teachers are great, but the lessons here are pretty costly. Be that as it may, this is probably the best place in Singapore for Japanese lessons. |
By Zi Xin Lee
|Review 2||Teachers are native speakers and will converse in English only if it is too difficult to be explained using what has been taught. |
Available for part-time & full-time classes.
With no prior knowledge of the language.
The material used: Minna no Nihongo
By Clement Koh
|Review 3||I have been taking beginner classes at this school for the past few months and I have found the classes of high quality, and particularly enjoyed the twice-weekly sessions as they were of good pace for learning a new language. |
I am particularly impressed by how accommodating the front counter staff have been with booking replacement lessons (without any limit), and I’ve had no difficulty rejoining a different class when I had to defer my course midway due to work commitments. This is really important when you hold a full-time job and it made learning Jap less stressful.
Due to the replacement classes that I’ve booked into, I’ve encountered a few different teachers, all of whom have been professional, follow a set lesson plan, and have been patient if you were slow to follow. There is also homework for each lesson so you need to allocate time for that during the week but it aids learning a new language. They also do teach grammar alongside the vocabulary that you learn each session. Certainly my school of choice for learning Japanese in Singapore!
By Yiwen Loh
|Address||14 Robinson Road, #04-01, Far East Finance Building, Singapore 048545|
|Contact||(65) 6327 1377|
|Operating Hours||Daily: 10 AM to 10 PM|
|Reviews||“Dear Mr Haga, |
I would like to express my sincere gratitude to you and all the teachers and staff at the Pyaess Japanese Language School. A few years ago I visited the beautiful Hokkaido during the winter season and it was a wonderful experience. The only regret was I couldn’t speak Japanese at that time. So, I started looking for a Japanese school that has a flexible system, conveniently located, and would fit into my work life. I am really happy to have found Pyaess. For the past 3 years at Pyaess, I have successfully passed JLPT Level 3, Level 2, and Level N2. I am looking forward to passing N1 one day. Thank you, Pyaess!” – Casey Wong
|Pricing||Click here for Pricing and Schedule Details|
|Address||402 Orchard Rd, #05-15/16 Delfi Orchard, Singapore 238876|
|Contact||+65 6737 3601|
|Operating Hours||Monday to Friday: 10 AM to 5 PM |
Saturday and Sunday: 10 AM to 7 PM
|Review 1||I totally enjoyed and learned although I need more practice ongoing online class for elementary 1. Umeda san is a very patient teacher and helpful to students. We hope to have more online classes on weekdays but maybe you put an option of 5 pm onwards as some of us are working from home. |
By Grace Flores
|Review 2||I really enjoyed the class a lot and Umeda Sensei is a very good teacher. I can’t wait to learn from him again. |
By Shanice Elizabeth Kwok
|Review 3||Bunka is a good school for people who focus on learning conversation which is really what I am looking for. |
It does not have homework which is a pro and cons depending on people. I do not think we can really rely on once a week class to master a language which the school can give tips on how to study outside class.
By Telly H Santika
|Address||137 Cecil St, level 7, Singapore 069537|
|Contact||(65) 6528 7918|
|Operating Hours|| |
|Review 1||I attended online classes for Conversational Japanese Beginner Level 1 Course conducted by Japanese Explorer School. In all it was 24 hours of online classes conducted by Sensei Tan Teong Hoo. It was a wonderful experience of learning due to the dedication, commitment, and care by the Sensei. For someone like me who did not know anything about the language, he made it look interesting and simple. He ensured the learning process was enjoyable and I always looked forward to his classes. I am now going to take up Level 2 course and looking forward to a similar experience. I strongly recommend Japanese Explorer School for anyone looking to learn the Japanese language in an enjoyable way. Wishing Japanese Explorer more and more success!! |
By V Radhakrishnan
|Review 2||Goh Sensei is a very patient teacher. There was once lesson the class kept tripping cos of the Internet but he calmly just went on with it. I love that he teaches us beyond the basic syllabus through the WhatsApp, exposing us to new things. It’s even better that he worked in Japan for a good amt of time so he embodies the Japanese vibe and literacy of the language. Overall I really enjoyed the class. A very good teacher indeed. |
|Review 3||Learning Japanese was overall fun, enriching and really enjoyable! Because of this, I was able to learn and further improve my Japanese with their courses and lessons. There are many explanations, examples and ways to help understand Japanese, and overall it was great! |
By Benny Ong
|Address||19 Tanglin Rd, Singapore 247909|
(65) 6734 3254
|Review 1||Well organized and my children look forward to attending the classes. The grandparents in Japan are impressed by their Japanese speaking ability especially since they never lived in Japan before. |
By Marc Hrabak
|Pricing||Click here for the Price and Schedule of Classes|
112 Middle Rd, Singapore 188970
|Contact||Telephone: (65) 6338 3428 |
Email: [email protected]
|Operating Hours||Monday to Friday and Sunday: 12 PM to 6:30 PM|
131 Jurong Gateway Road 04-257/263, 600131 (Jurong)
123 Bukit Merah Lane 1 #04-82 Singapore 150123 (Alexandra)
Blk 204 #04-113/119 Hougang Street 21 (Hougang)
|Operating Hours||Hougang |
Alexandra and Jurong
|Pricing||Click here for the class and price Details|
|Address||1 Coleman St, #02 – 25, Singapore 179803|
|Contact||(65) 9236 3055|
|Operating Hours||Daily from 10 AM to 5 PM|
|Reviews||Click here for the Student’s Testimonials|
51 Cuppage Rd, #10-12, Singapore 229469
|Contact||(65) 6737 6666|
|Operating Hours|| |
|Review 1||My experience study in Inlingua is very satisfying, I have been attending my Japanese class as a beginner and I really enjoy study here. My teachers are native speakers who have professional skill and very patient. they help me a lot and also encouraging me to confidently speak. All staff are very friendly too, I would highly recommend it. |
By Kookkik Soudachanh
|Review 2||I have been studying at Inlingua for 18 weeks and I could improve my Japanese a lot. Once a week they organize an event during the break where all the students of the school can come together end enjoy coffee and cake. The staff is very friendly and professional. Once you have chosen to study at Inlingua you can prepare yourself for a difficult farewell. |
|Review 3||Overall my class and teacher (Fumi) was a very encouraging environment for me to learn. It was not stiff and focused only on just academic but on the practicality of learning the language as well. my teacher was also very kind to provide supplemental materials to further enhance our learning such that we can learn in a functional manner. |
By Felicia T.
|Address||153B Thomson Rd, Level 3 Goldhill Centre, Singapore 307607|
|Contact||(65) 6222 2331|
|Operating Hours||Daily: 10 AM to 10 PM|
|Reviews||Click here to see the student’s testimonials|
|Address||86 Marine Parade Central, #03-213, Singapore 440086|
|Contact||(65) 9001 4816|
|Operating Hours|| |
|Address||87 Beach Road, Chye Sing Building #03-01 (opposite Shaw Tower), Singapore 189695|
|Contact||(65) 6253 3320|
|Operating Hours|| |
|Review 1|| |
Kind of true for most of the experiences I heard. Teachers here are passionate, motivated, qualified:)
By Lin Yu Cheng
|Review 2||The staff was very helpful and attentive. |
I had a lot of queries but they assisted me throughout, without showing any sign of frustration. I took up Thai and Japanese courses here. The teachers were well-trained and I learned a lot. Will definitely recommend this place to pick up languages.By Lee Shirley
|Review 3||I have been taking Japanese classes for about a year now, here. The staff was very helpful for arranging a make-up lesson as I was asked to work overseas for a week. The teacher is very professional and reviews our homework in great detail. He also helped to arrange our JLPT exams and I am very happy that I passed it. |
By Siyu Fang
|Address||20 Maxwell Rd, #03-14 Maxwell House, Singapore 069113|
|Contact||(65) 8721 9151|
|Operating Hours|| |
|Review 1||Love the teachers at Alpha Language School! They are always patient, approachable and friendly. Especially towards beginners like us, Alpha Language School makes it easy and fun for learning! Thank you! |
By Jason Toh
|Address||No. 391B, Orchard Road, #16-01/02, Ngee Ann City Tower B, 238874, 238874|
|Contact||(65) 6733 7472|
|Operating Hours|| |
|Review 1||From the administration to the two teachers I worked with, I found great professionalism and quality. The two courses I had improved my knowledge from basic to a very good level. |
|Review 2||The one-on-one Berlitz course was perfectly suited for my needs. I will be signing up for it again soon. |
|Review 3||Berlitz is not just a language school. You may make global connections and learn from native speakers, but it doesn’t conform to the unidirectional mode of learning known as “school”. Its approach to teaching captures the multifaceted nature of a language, which is what draws me back, to learn 3 languages over 15 years. Berlitz has given me more than just linguistic proficiency – it’s given me a passion to explore international cultures, which will last a lifetime. |
Tsubasa Language Services
|Address||808 French Road Singapore 200808|
|Contact||Email : [email protected]|
|Review 1||All in all, I must say that Can-sensei is a very dedicated, exceptional and caring teacher that one should have. His care and attentiveness is one to yearn for and you will find that studying under him is definitely a magnificent choice. |
Student in Pre-Advanced class
|Review 2||Can-sensei at Tsubasa Language Services is the most committed and passionate language teacher I have ever come across over the years. Despite the small setting of his classes, the syllabus and learning environment that Can-sensei provides will not pale in comparison to those big schools in the market. Can-sensei focuses strongly on building a solid foundation and as such, his class is relatively small with not more than 8 persons per session. Can-sensei is a totally selfless Japanese language educator. He provides free learning materials and notes on his official website, which are accessible to anyone and, as I know, is always on the search path to writing study notes and simplifying Japanese language to all keen learners. This is the greatest contribution that a passionate educator can make to the learning society, which is an admirable trait! |
|Review 3||Can-sensei at Tsubasa Language Services is hyper-aware of students’ pronunciation and he always corrects his students on pitch accent. In fact, probably one of the first things that you would notice upon meeting Can-sensei is that his Japanese sounds very natural, something people usually achieve only if they have been living in Japan for a long time or if they actively work on improving it. |
Passed N1 in July 2019
Taiyo Japanese language school
|Address||20 Kramat Lane #05-05, United House Singapore 228773|
|Contact||Telephone: +6565898674 |
Email: [email protected]
1 Percent Collective Pte Ltd
|Contact||Email: [email protected]|
|Review||The class was very engaging! Azusa explanation of Japanese greetings and the hiragana was very clear. She was also very patient when it comes to answering our questions. The one percent method really helped as homework and tasks were fun, quick and easy to access.As classes were conducted over zoom, it was fuss free and convenient for me as I am able to attend it comfortably from home.|
Why learn another language
Learning another language is time-consuming, yet the learning journey is a fulfilling one.
Connect with more people
Bilinguals and multilingual can communicate with more people in their personal and professional lives. Knowing another language makes you local regardless of the language. It opens up your mind both literally and figuratively.
Advance in career
Being able to speak another language, it sets you apart from your monolingual peers. Being bilingual is among the top 8 skills that required in all careers, regardless of your skill levels or industry. Employers are always on the lookout for bilingual and multilingual individuals to help the organisation expand to overseas market.
Strengthen your brain
Learning another language brings numerous cognitive benefits which include improved memory, problem-solving, critical thinking skills. Most multilingual individuals have the ability of multi-tasking and can switch between tasks quickly. They are also able to adapt and monitor changes in the environment quickly as compared to their monolingual counterparts. Multilingual have greater flexibility and creativity. As if the benefits are not enough, as we age, learning another language also enables us to fight off mental ageing.
When learning another language, we are exposed to the culture of the language we are learning. More often than not, we compare the culture to the most familiar and similarities of our own culture. The new language sheds light on aspects of our own culture, which can be positive or negative. As a result, we can have a greater appreciation of our own culture or shake certain aspects of or even choose to integrate some parts of the new culture in our lives.
Is Japanese a difficult language to learn?
Japanese is one of the five hardest languages for English speakers to learn, together with Korean, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Arabic. In the English world, the sentence structures follow Subject-Verb-Object. However, when it comes to the Japanese language, sentence structures become Subject-Object-Verb, which makes it even difficult to do direct translations from English to Japanese.
Japanese is a lexical system which comprises of hiragana, katakana, and kanji. The Japanese language is highly contextual with subtle hints rather than direct communication.
Tips and tricks when learning Japanese
Although Japanese is among the most challenging languages for English speakers to pick up, don’t worry as here are some tips and tricks to help you to master Japanese quicker.
When it comes to learning Japanese, you need to pay special attention to the stroke order of the Japanese characters. Unlike English, where you do not need to write the letters in a specific way, and you can be creative about them, you need to be precise when writing Japanese. In Japan, it is assumed that you can’t be bothered to learn the language correctly if you ignore the stroke order of Japanese characters. There is a difference between finishing with pen stroke with a sudden stop. To conclude: it is essential to learn the basics of kanji if you want to master Japanese.
Get yourself a conversation partner
Learning languages is so much more than simply watching videos and reading from the textbook; it requires conversation practice. The conversations that are found in textbooks are often predictable, and too formal that is not even close to conversations in real life. There are meetup groups online or community centres to find yourself a conversation partner to practice with. Practising with a Japanese-speaking person or even better, a native Japanese allows you to learn about the language that the textbook can’t teach.
Learning Japanese from a language school vs self-learning
There are two main modes to learn a new language, either from a language school or through self-learning through watching teaching videos online or through a language app. The most obvious difference between the two would be the cost. Learning Japanese from a language school would mean spending extra money on the school and material fees. For those learning on a budget, self-learning would seem like the perfect choice.
Opportunity to practice with native speakers and peers
One of the biggest perks of learning from a language school is the teachers available. Most language school teachers are native speakers, which would benefit the learners as they can learn outside of the textbook, catching the nuances of the language, and practice with their teachers and classmates.
How long does it take to learn Japanese?
An average learner takes about 3 years to be fluent in the Japanese language and takes another 3 to 4 years to reach the advanced level. However, ultimately it still boils down to the individual’s ability when learning a new language.
The final verdict: Is learning Japanese worth your time?
Learning a new language might seem like a waste of time since it is so time-consuming, and it requires years of practice and speaking the language to become fluent in it. Bilinguals and multilingual have the edge over their monolinguals peers when it comes to finding a job, career advancements and even their health and wellbeing in general.
If you have some extra time to spare and you would like to spend your time on something meaningful, then you might want to try learning a new language and immerse yourself in a brand new world and culture. Picking up a new language is not an easy journey, but it is worthwhile when you become fluent, and the door to new opportunities opens for you.
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