Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Matt: Hi everyone, and welcome back to JapanesePod101.com. This is Lower Beginner, Season 2, Lesson 4 - Talking About Your Family in Japanese. I’m Matt.
Natsuko: こんにちは。 I'm Natsuko.
Matt: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to ask or talk about how many family members you have. The conversation takes place at lunch time with a co-worker.
Natsuko: The conversation is between Lucy and her co-worker, Mr. Tanaka.
Matt: The speakers are co-workers, so they’ll be using formal Japanese. Okay. Let’s listen to the conversation.

Lesson conversation

ルーシー: たなかさんは、何人かぞくですか。
たなか: わたしは、5人かぞくです。りょうしんと、兄と妹がいます。
ルーシー: お兄さんと妹さんですか。いいですね。
たなか: ケリーさんは、きょうだいはいますか。
ルーシー: わたしは、ひとりっこです。5人かぞくは、たのしいですね。
たなか: でも、今、兄と妹は、アメリカにいます。
Matt: Listen to the conversation one time slowly.
ルーシー: たなかさんは、何人かぞくですか。
たなか: わたしは、5人かぞくです。りょうしんと、兄と妹がいます。
ルーシー: お兄さんと妹さんですか。いいですね。
たなか: ケリーさんは、きょうだいはいますか。
ルーシー: わたしは、ひとりっこです。5人かぞくは、たのしいですね。
たなか: でも、今、兄と妹は、アメリカにいます。
Matt: Listen to the conversation with the English translation
Lucy: How many people are in your family?
Tanaka: We are a family of five. I have parents, a big brother, and a younger sister.
Lucy: You have a big brother and a younger sister. Good for you.
Tanaka: Do you have any siblings, Lucy?
Lucy: No, I don't have any siblings. A family of five must be fun!
Tanaka: But my brother and sister are in the United States now.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Matt: Natsuko, how big are Japanese families usually?
Natsuko: In Japan, most people have just one sibling so it’s getting smaller than in the past. In the past, let’s say about 50 years ago, many people had several siblings, such as four or five.
Matt: So things really have changed very quickly!
Natsuko: That’s very true. For example, my parents’ friends usually have five or six brothers or sisters. But, most of my friends have only one sibling, and some of them don't have any brothers or sisters.
Matt: Okay, now onto the vocab.
VOCAB LIST
Matt: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary from this lesson. The first word is..
Natsuko: 何人 [natural native speed]
Matt: how many people?
Natsuko: 何人[slowly - broken down by syllable]
Natsuko: 何人 [natural native speed]
Matt: Next we have..
Natsuko: 一人っ子 [natural native speed]
Matt: only child
Natsuko: 一人っ子[slowly - broken down by syllable]
Natsuko: 一人っ子 [natural native speed]
Matt: Next we have..
Natsuko: たのしい [natural native speed]
Matt: fun, amusing
Natsuko: たのしい[slowly - broken down by syllable]
Natsuko: たのしい [natural native speed]
Matt: Next we have..
Natsuko: 妹 [natural native speed]
Matt: younger sister
Natsuko: 妹[slowly - broken down by syllable]
Natsuko: 妹 [natural native speed]
Matt: And last we have..
Natsuko: でも [natural native speed]
Matt: but, however
Natsuko: でも[slowly - broken down by syllable]
Natsuko: でも [natural native speed]
KEY VOCAB AND PHRASES
Matt: Let's have a closer look at the usage of some of the words and phrases from this lesson. The first word is..
Natsuko: いいですね。
Matt: meaning "It's good, isn't it?" Natsuko, can you break down this expression?
Natsuko: Sure. First, いいです (Ii desu) means, "It's good." And we have ね (ne) which is a sentence ending particle that acts as a question tag. It’s usually used to confirm or agree with the previous statement.
Matt: When you agree with an idea or you think that something is good, you can use this expression.
Natsuko: “いいですね (Ii desu ne)”, means "That's good."
Matt: Please note that you say this expression in a falling tone.
Natsuko: Also, remember to always add the ね (ne) particle at the end because いいです (ii desu) usually means, "No, thank you (I don't need it)."
Matt: When can you use this expression?
Natsuko: Well.. for example, when you are invited to do something, you can say ii desu ne, いいですね (Ii desu ne) to mean, "Sounds good."
Matt: When you hear a plan someone has and you think it sounds good, you can use the same expression, right?
Natsuko: Right. For example, if someone says 明日、りょこうに行きます。
Matt: meaning “I'm going on a trip tomorrow.”
Natsuko: You can say いいですね。
Matt: which means “That's good.” or something like “Oh, that's wonderful." Okay, what's the next word?
Natsuko: 5人かぞく
Matt: meaning "family of five"
Natsuko: Here we have the number 五, the word 人 meaning “person” and かぞくmeaning “family.”
Matt: Altogether, it means “family of five”. We can replace the number 5 with something else, right?
Natsuko: That’s right. If you have a family of three, you can say 三人家族 to mean “family of three.” 三人 is the word meaning “three people.”
Matt: Can you give us an example using this word?
Natsuko: Sure. When you hear someone saying he has a family of ten, you might say.. 10人かぞくは、たのしいですね。
Matt: which means ”A family of ten is fun, isn't it?” Okay, now onto the grammar.

Lesson focus

Matt: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to ask how many family members another person has.
Natsuko: First, let’s learn how to ask the question.
Matt: That sounds good. Natsuko, how can you say.. “How many are in your family?”
Natsuko: 何人 かぞく です か。何人 means “how many people”, and かぞく means “family”. Then you can put です か which means “Is it” or Is there”?
Matt: It literally means something like “A family of how many people is it?” or “How many are in your family?”
Natsuko: If you have a family of four, you can use the phrase that we talked about in the previous section and say.. わたしは、 四人 かぞく です。
Matt: which means “We are a family of four.” Of course, you can put a different number here.
Natsuko: In this sentence, 人 (nin) is a counter used for people. You can use this counter for anyone – men, women, children, and the elderly.
Matt: When you talk about the number of people that make up your family, make sure to use this counter. Natsuko, these days, there are more families made up of a single person, or two people. In that case, how can they talk about their family?
Natsuko: You can use the words hitori and futari. For these two words, you need to read them hitori and futari even though they have the Chinese character meaning 人 at the end. When you want to mean “one person” or “two people”, you cannot read as ichi-nin and ni-nin.
Matt: Okay. So how would you say “I have a family of two”?
Natsuko: You can say.. わたしは、 2人 かぞく です。 But listeners, note that we don’t have a word like hitori kazoku.
Matt: Then, what word can you use when you want to say “I live alone”?
Natsuko: You can say ひとりぐらし (hitori gurashi) instead. ひとり (hitori) means "one person," and ぐらし (gurashi) is a phonetic changed version of くらし(kurashi), meaning "life." So ひとりぐらし
Matt: means “living alone.” or literally “having the life of single.” Okay. What if we want to answer the question more specifically by saying “I have one older brother and one older sister?”
Natsuko: In that case, you can use the pattern がいます。In the last lesson, we learned the names of family members. You can use the words to explain what family members you have in your family.
Matt: Okay. So if I have one older brother, how can I say that in Japanese?
Natsuko: “Older brother” in Japanese is 兄. Using this word, you can say 兄がいます。
Matt: Which means “I have one older brother.”
Natsuko: If you want to say “I have a younger brother and a younger sister”, you can connect two nouns, 弟
Matt: meaning “younger brother”
Natsuko: and 妹
Matt: meaning “younger sister.”
Natsuko: with the particle と meaning “and.” With these, you can say.. 弟と妹がいます。
Matt: “I have a younger brother and a younger sister.” Listeners, make sure to check the PDF lesson notes to see more examples and explanations of this lesson focus. Now, let’s practice. Try to think of your own sentence during the pause, then Natsuko will give you the answer. Firstly, to ask your friend how many family members they have, you say,
(Pause)
Natsuko:  何人かぞくですか。
Matt: How many family members do you have?
Matt: Next. If you have a family of five, what do you say?
(Pause)
Natsuko: わたしは、5人かぞくです。
Matt: I have a family of five.
Matt: If you have a younger sister and a younger brother, you say
(Pause)
Natsuko: 妹と弟がいます。
Matt: Which means “I have a younger sister and a younger brother.”

Outro

Matt: Okay, that’s all for this lesson. Thank you for listening, everyone, and we’ll see you next time! Bye!
Natsuko: またねー

33 Comments

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JapanesePod101.com
Monday at 6:30 pm
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How big is your family?

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Chris
July 23rd, 2019 at 4:41 pm
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can ふたりきょうだい also be used when you want to say you have two brothers, or does it specifically mean one brother and one sister?


if i wanted to say "I have two older brothers" would I say 兄が二人います?

also, how would I say "I am the youngest"?

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Rebeca
July 10th, 2019 at 10:51 pm
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おはよう〜


私は二人家族です。or (私の家族は二人です。)is grammatically correct too?

私と母です。3人きょうだいがいます、けど今ここですまない。


When I say, my family are 2 people, do I say futari desu, but I need to write the 人 kanji?


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JapanesePod101.com
March 21st, 2019 at 2:47 am
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Konnichiwa Tatiana,


Thank you for asking here.


>>I have a question, is wrong if I say "anata no kazoku wa, nan-nin desuka?"

It's not wrong at all! But perfect to ask how many family member (one) has. 👍 Good job!


Keep up the good study with us! Feel free to ask us any questions!


Sono

Team JapanesePod101.com

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Tatiana
January 29th, 2019 at 2:51 am
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こんにちは!

わたしは、4人かぞくです。両親と、弟がいます。



I have a question, is wrong if I say "anata no kazoku wa, nan-nin desuka?"

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JapanesePod101.com
December 11th, 2018 at 1:25 am
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Hi サバンナ,


Thanks for leaving a comment!

両親と2人の弟があります。

>> 両親と2人の弟がいます is better.


Thanks for studying Japanese with us!


Sincerely,

Miki H

Team JapanesePod101.com

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サバンナ
November 21st, 2018 at 5:51 am
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私は、5人家族です。両親と2人の弟があります。

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JapanesePod101.com
October 17th, 2018 at 12:01 pm
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Thank you for your comments, everyone!


>こんにちは、Gabbieさん

私も4人かぞくですよ😄


>Hi Mark,

Please push the play mark at the left of the lesson title on the top.


>Kon'nichiwa, Anna-san

Sō desu ka😄


>Kon'nichiwa, Ethar-san

You can say "futari no imōto ga imasu" or "imōto ga futari imasu" for two younger sisters.


>こんにちは、Matthewさん

そうですか。四人家族ですね👍


>こんにちは、エマニュエルさん

そうですか😄兄弟の中では、エマニュエルさんがお兄さんですね。


Keep studying with JapanesePod101.com

Cheers,

Miki(美希)

Team JapanesePod101.com

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Emmanuel
August 2nd, 2018 at 3:12 am
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こんにちは、エマニュエルです。私は五人家族です。両親と、弟と妹がいます。でも私は一人で住んでいます。


じゃまた!

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Matthew Klassen
July 27th, 2018 at 10:31 pm
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こんにちは!一人っ子ですでもいま二人子供はいます。四人ですよね。息子と娘がいます。じゃまた

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Ethar
June 4th, 2018 at 4:18 pm
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watashi wa rokunin kazoku desu. chichi to ane to ani to imoto (futari) ga imasu