Learn New Words FAST with this Lesson’s Vocab Review List

Get this lesson’s key vocab, their translations and pronunciations. Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Notes

Unlock In-Depth Explanations & Exclusive Takeaways with Printable Lesson Notes

Unlock Lesson Notes and Transcripts for every single lesson. Sign Up for a Free Lifetime Account and Get 7 Days of Premium Access.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Transcript

Peter: Basic Bootcamp lesson 4: Counting 1 to 10
Welcome back to Basic Bootcamp. This five-part series will help you ease your way into Japanese. We’ll go over all the basics that will really help you understand Japanese more quickly and effortlessly.
Naomi: Yes, it’s fun.
Peter: We promise. In this lesson, you will learn one of the essentials in Japanese or in any language for that matter.
Naomi: Numbers. In this lesson, we’ll teach you the numbers from one to one hundred.
Peter: That’s a lot. Numbers always sound scary because there’s just so many of them. However…
Naomi: You don’t need to worry. Japanese numbers are very simple. Is all about the patterns.
Peter: That’s right. Once you know the numbers from one to ten, and twenty, you can count all the way up to ninety-nine.
Naomi: How easy is that?
Peter: Very. And we’ll teach you how to do that. Let’s start with the basics. We’re going to listen to a conversation.
Naomi: Where does our conversation take place?
Peter: At the gym. It’s quite bootcamp-like, isn’t it?
Naomi: It is.
Peter: It looks like Kazuki is working out at the gym and is counting to keep track of his progress.
Naomi: Sounds great. Let’s give it a listen.
Kazuki: 1 (ichi), 2 (ni), 3 (san), 4 (yon), 5 (go), 6, (roku) 7 (nana), 8 (hachi), 9 (kyū), 10 (jū)
Naomi: Oh. That sounded pretty tough.
Peter: That definitely sound tough. So, as we mentioned earlier, learning Japanese numbers is all about pattern. As we listen, you might recognize some of them.
Naomi: And if not, don’t worry, we’ll explain them all to you here.
Peter: You’ll have them down in no time. First, let’s take a look at the vocabulary. Again, we’ll give you the word at natural native speed, English translation, break it down by syllable. And one more time, natural native speed. Naomi-sensei, onegai shimasu.
Peter: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is...
Naomi: 一 (ichi) [natural native speed]
Peter: 1
Naomi: 一 (ichi) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 一 (ichi) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 二 (ni) [natural native speed]
Peter: 2
Naomi: 二 (ni) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 二 (ni) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 三 (san) [natural native speed]
Peter: 3
Naomi: 三 (san) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 三 (san) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 四 (yon or shi) [natural native speed]
Peter: 4; for today, we’ll stick with yon
Naomi: 四 (yon) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 四 (yon) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 五 (go) [natural native speed]
Peter: 5
Naomi: 五 (go) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 五 (go) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 六 (roku) [natural native speed]
Peter: 6
Naomi: 六 (roku) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 六 (roku) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 七 (nana or shichi) [natural native speed]
Peter: 7; let’s stick with nana for this lesson
Naomi: 七 (nana) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 七 (nana) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 八 (hachi) [natural native speed]
Peter: 8
Naomi: 八 (hachi) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 八 (hachi) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 九 (kyū or ku) [natural native speed]
Peter: 9; for this lesson, we’ll stick with kyū
Naomi: 九 (kyū) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 九 (kyū) [natural native speed]
Peter: Next
Naomi: 十 (jū) [natural native speed]
Peter: 10
Naomi: 十 (jū) [slowly - broken down by syllable] 十 (jū) [natural native speed]

Lesson focus

Peter: Ok, listeners. It’s time to shine. So here’s what we want you to do, no matter whether you’re at home, on the subway, in your car, wherever you are, we want you to talk to yourself out loud. You might get some weird look, but don’t worry. It’s for a good cause. You’re going to repeat the numbers that Naomi-sensei says. That’s going to be the quickest way for you to learn.
Naomi: Ok. Here we go. I’ll read the number out loud and give you time to repeat each one after me. Ready?
1 (ichi), 2 (ni), 3 (san), 4 (yon), 5 (go), 6, (roku) 7 (nana), 8 (hachi), 9 (kyū), 10 (jū)
Peter: Let’s do that one more time.
Naomi: Mō ichi-do onegai shimasu.
1 (ichi), 2 (ni), 3 (san), 4 (yon), 5 (go), 6, (roku) 7 (nana), 8 (hachi), 9 (kyū), 10 (jū)
Peter: Now we’re going to take a look at how to put those numbers together.
Naomi: So, from one to ten are something that you have to memorize. As we get past ten, you will notice a pattern developing.
Peter: That’s right. Everything between ten and ninety-nine is basically just a multiplication equation in words.
Naomi: To say “eleven”, you say ten-one. So, that would be?
Peter: “Ten” is?
Naomi: 十 (jū)
Peter: And the two is?
Naomi: 一 (ichi)
Peter: So, if we line them up?
Naomi: 十一 (jū-ichi)
Peter: “Ten-one” is “eleven,” that’s it! One to ten are your building blocks. Now, you just have to arrange them and you can count all the way up to ninety-nine. Shall we try another?
Naomi: Sure. How about “twelve”?
Peter: Ten and two, right?
Naomi: Yes.
Peter: So, ten is 十 (jū) and two is 二 (ni).
Naomi: So, that would be 十二 (jū-ni).
Peter: “Ten-two”. “Thirteen” would be?
Naomi: 十三 (jū-san)
Peter: “Ten-three”. “Fourteen” – “ten-four” is?
Naomi: 十四 (jū-yon)
Peter: “Fifteen” – “ten-five” is?
Naomi: 十五 (jū-go)
Peter: “Sixteen” is?
Naomi: 十六 (jū-roku)
Peter: “Seventeen”?
Naomi: 十七 (jū-nana)
Peter: “Eighteen”?
Naomi: 十八 (jū-hachi)
Peter: “Nineteen”?
Naomi: 十九 (jū-kyū)
Peter: Now, question for you. For this one, again, you’re arranging the basic building blocks. Ten is 十 (jū). “Eleven,” 十一 (jū-ichi), “ten-one.”
Ten-two, ten-three, ten-four, that’s how the system is going. Can you guess “twenty”?
Naomi-sensei, what’s “twenty”?
Naomi: 二十 (ni-jū)
Peter: Slide the “two” before the “ten”.
Naomi: Yes, “twenty” is two tens, right?
Peter: So think of it as two times ten, that’s twenty. Naomi-sensei, how about “thirty”?
Naomi: “three tens,” 三十 (san-jū). 三十 (san-jū)
Peter: “Forty” is?
Naomi: 四十 (yon-jū)
Peter: “Fifty” is?
Naomi: 五十 (go-jū)
Peter: “Sixty”?
Naomi: 六十 (roku-jū)
Peter: What’s “seventy”?
Naomi: 七十 (nana-jū)
Peter: “Eighty” is?
Naomi: 八十 (hachi-jū)
Peter: “Ninety”?
Naomi: 九十 (kyū-jū)
Peter: So, remember, the word for “ten” is 十 (jū). To make numbers that are multiples of ten, simply put the amount in front of the ten. For example, “twenty” is?
Naomi: 二十 (ni-jū)
Peter: That’s it. All they do is repeat. Counting by tens to ninety is actually a really good way for you to practice one through ten, right?
Naomi: はい (hai), right.
Peter: So, Naomi-sensei, we covered “one” through “ten” and “eleven” through “twenty”, then we counted by tens all the way to “ninety”. What if we’re somewhere in the middle? What do we use? For example, if we’re talking about shoe sizes, we’re getting all types of numbers, right? Especially because Japanese uses the metric system. So, we’re counting in centimeters. So, it’s not “one” to “ten,” if you’re coming from America.
Naomi: So, Peter, what is your shoe size in American size?
Peter: 十です (jū desu), it’s “ten”. Since the topic, my shoe size, was already established, I didn’t need to put that in the sentence. I just need the number and です(desu), 十です (jū desu).
Naomi: So, which is about what size in Japanese size?
Peter: That’s about “twenty-eight” in Japanese.
Naomi: Ok. So, we start with “twenty” - 二十 (ni-jū), and then add “eight” - 八 (hachi). 二十八 (ni-jū hachi)
Peter: And, Naomi-sensei, how about you? What size are you?
Naomi: I am a size “twenty-three” in Japanese size.
Peter: “Twenty-three”. So, 二十三 (ni-jū san).
Naomi: Right. “Twenty” - 二十 (ni-jū) plus “three” - 三 (san). 二十三 (ni-jū san).
Peter: All right. I think we’re starting to get the hang of it. Now, inside the lesson notes, there’s a chart on forming numbers. So, you can find everything you need inside the lesson notes. Now, for the big question, Naomi-sensei?
Naomi: はい? (Hai?)
Peter: The title was “Counting from One to One Hundred” but we only have the tools to get up to “ninety-nine”. What is “one hundred”?
Naomi: It’s not 十十 (jū-jū).
Peter: “Ten-tens”, no.
Naomi: It’s 百 (hyaku). It’s a new word. 百 (hyaku).
Peter: Mō ichi-do onegai shimasu.
Naomi: 百 (hyaku).
Peter: Yukkuri onegai shimasu.
Naomi: 百 (hyaku).
Peter: 百 (hyaku). “one hundred”. So there you have it. Now you can say all the numbers from one to one hundred.


Naomi: Yeah. Like we mentioned before, once you know the number from one to ten, you’ll be able to say all the number up to ninety-nine.
Peter: Now that you’ve learned some numbers again, focus on application. Practicing any number you see around you in Japanese and watch how quickly you remember them.
Naomi: Practice makes perfect.
Peter: Now, in the next lesson, we’re going to count from “one hundred and one” all the way up to “one hundred thousand”. But, here’s a little hint. You have all the tools already to count almost all the way up to “nine hundred ninety-nine”. That’s right. They are a couple of surprises in there, but basically, if you think about it, the way we went from “nineteen” to “twenty”. Think about that and you can properly count all the way up to “nine hundred ninety-nine”, with the tool we gave you today. But we will cover that in the next lesson.
Naomi: See you next time.
Kazuki: 1 (ichi), 2 (ni), 3 (san), 4 (yon), 5 (go), 6, (roku) 7 (nana), 8 (hachi), 9 (kyū), 10 (jū)


Review & Remember All Kanji from this Lesson

Get complete breakdowns, review with quizzes and download printable practice sheets! Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?