Vocabulary (Review)

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

Alisha: Hi everyone! アリッシャです! Alisha here!
Natsuko こんにちは!ナツコです!Hi everyone, I'm Natsuko.
Alisha: Welcome to Lower Beginner, Season 1, lesson 13 – “Have you Been to a Japanese Festival Before?”
Natsuko: Alisha, what are we going to learn in this lesson?
Alisha: In this lesson, we’re going to learn how to ask “what does [something] mean in English?” in Japanese.
Natsuko: That’s very useful, isn’t it?
Alisha: It is! We will also learn expressions for when we experience something for the first time.
Natsuko: So, where does this lesson’s dialogue take place?
Alisha: Ken and his colleague come across the festival crowd.
Natsuko: では、聞きましょう!
Alisha: Let’s listen to the conversation!
Natsuko: So, Alisha, have you been to Japanese festival yet?
Alisha: Yes.
Natsuko: Japanese festivals, Matsuri, were originally ritual ceremonies, but the religious connotations are fading out now. These days, it’s more for local community bonding.
Alisha: In the dialogue, Ken asked what Mikoshi was, but his colleague didn’t answer. So what is Mikoshi?
Natsuko: Mikoshi is often translated as “portable Shinto shrine”, and its shape is a miniature version of a shrine building. Many men, and sometimes women too, carry Mikoshi on their shoulders and parade shouting “Wasshoi! Wasshoi!”, but this word varies depending on the area.
Alisha: Is there any special food for Matsuri?
Natsuko: There are usually food and game stalls alongside the street.
Alisha: That sounds fun! Kids must love Matsuri! Ok, let’s move on to the vocabulary.
Alisha: Let's have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson. The first phrase we’ll look at is....
Natsuko: [something]は、英語で何ですか。For example, まつりは、英語で何ですか。Meaning “what’s Matsuri in English?”
Alisha: This is really useful, because we always come across things we don’t know. Whenever you hear an unfamiliar word, you can ask “[something] は英語で何ですか”.
Natsuko: You can use this phrase just by adding “…は何ですか” just after the word or phrase that you would like to know.
Alisha: Please note that it’s なんですか, not なにですか.
Natsuko: Good point, Alisha. You can also find this information in the Absolute Beginner series, Season 1 Lesson 24.
Alisha: Can you give us more examples using this phrase, please?
Natsuko: Of course! I’m sure you know what the Carnival is, but do you know how to say Carnival in Japanese?
Alisha: カーナヴァル・・・I’m not too sure.
Natsuko: Okay, to ask me this using today’s phrase, you can say Carnivalは日本語で何ですか。
Alisha: Replacing 英語 with 日本語 because I want to know how to say Carnival in Japanese.
Natsuko: That’s right!
Alisha: Natsuko, Carnivalは、日本語で何ですか。
Natsuko: カーニバルです。
Alisha: “Carnival” in Japanese is カーニバル. Good! Okay, let’s move on; what’s the next word?
Natsuko: たくさん
Alisha: たくさん means “a lot” in English. You can use this to describe the amount of things.
Natsuko: Right; pretty much anything.
Alisha: But you have to remember that we don’t have to put any particle after たくさん。Like…
Natsuko: 私は、生ダコをたくさん、食べます
Alisha: Have you got it? No particle after たくさん. Okay, let’s move onto the grammar.

Lesson focus

Alisha: In this lesson you’re going to learn about how to say “first time [to experience]”, right?
Natsuko: Yes, that’s right! It’s はじめて meaning “for the first time”.
Alisha: I think I know that, like はじめまして?
Natsuko: That’s right! When we express it’s the first experience, we use はじめて and then express what you experienced.
Alisha: Like Ken said in the dialog はじめて見ました?
Natsuko: Exactly! By the way, Alisha, do you like sushi?
Alisha: Yes, I do!
Natsuko: Good, because I have some sushi for you here.
Alisha: Really? Wow! But….what’s this?
Natsuko: Oh, that’s raw octopus. 生ダコです。
Alisha: Raw octopus?? I thought octopus should be served boiled…
Natsuko: So, 生ダコは、初めてですか。
Alisha: はい、生ダコは初めてです。Listeners, as you heard, 初めて can be used as 初めてです and you can simply add a noun before the particle は.
Natsuko: That’s right! In the dialog, Ken’s colleague asked Ken 祭りは、初めてですか。That’s the easy way to use 初めて, but now let’s see better how Ken used this word 初めて。
Alisha: In the dialog, Ken said みこし?初めて見ました。So, 初めて can come before a verb?
Natsuko: Exactly! 初めて + verb means that you did something for the first time.
Alisha: I had raw octopus sushi for the first time…
Natsuko: (笑) Really? 初めてですか。
Alisha: はい、生ダコは、初めて食べました。
Both (laugh)
Alisha: Well, listeners, I think you now know how to use this expression! Natsuko, how can I say I came to Japan for the first time?
Natsuko: That’d be 初めて日本に来ました。
Alisha: I believe that’s useful! Listeners, let’s practice. Repeat after Natsuko.
Natsuko: 初めて日本に来ました。[wait 5 seconds]
Alisha: Now listeners, say “I came to Japan for the first time”, in Japanese.
Natsuko: [wait 5 seconds] 初めて日本に来ました。
Alisha: Did you get it everyone? For more examples, please check out the lesson notes. But unfortunately, that’s about all we have time for today! How did you find the lesson?
Natsuko: どうでしたか?
Alisha: Please leave us your comments, questions, and any feedback you have on the lesson page.


Alisha: Okay, that’s it for this lesson. See you next time!
Natsuko: じゃ、また!


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