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Tips for High School Japanese Classes

Speak the language as much as possible in class to improve your pronunciation and use of vocabulary and grammar.

If you don't understand a grammatical concept, ask your teacher for clarification. Not all the grammar in Japanese is the same as or even similar to that in English.

There are plenty of words and grammatical concepts that exist in English, but are frequently taken for granted. Think about how a concept works in English to help you remember how to apply it to Japanese if it is the same or similar.

If you need to write about an article you have read in class, focus on the content of the article and how the author communicates their ideas. In a Japanese class, you will most likely focus on reading comprehension, so you need to demonstrate that you understand what the author is saying in Japanese, including small details. Read the article two or three times, while taking notes, so you do not miss anything important.

Use a variety of specific vocabulary. Ensure that you only use words that you know the meaning of and that also make sense in context.

Ask your teacher for suggestions on improving your writing. They can give you feedback on how well they understand your writing and whether your structure and word choices are effective.

Kanji are very important in the Japanese language. Be sure to practice kanji frequently to remember how they are written. To remember the meanings of kanji, you can create a mnemonic by imagining them as pictures that relate to their meanings. (submitted by JS)

For example, the kanji for "sleep" looks a little bit like a person in a bed with their dog next to them. (submitted by JS)

If you enjoy watching popular Japanese media such as anime or television shows, you can try to recognize words you know in order to solidify them in your memory. (submitted by JS)