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Practicing your skills

 


 

particles

We've seen quite a few particles by now: の, が, は, と, に, を, か, へ, で, も、から、まで、け(れ)ど(も)、よ、 ね/な, ながら and がてら. The first practice assignment I'm going to give you is: for every particle in this list, briefly describe what it does. If it does multiple things, then just list them all. It's okay if you forget a few roles here and there, since you're bound to go "oh of course" when finding out you missed one, which means you'd have recognised it properly in a Japanese sentence anyway.

The second assignment is "make sentences with each particle in the role(s) that you indicated". By all means mix particles in longer sentences, because this makes for pleasant reading, but remember to indicate in which role you're using the particles per sentence.

Things to do when you're a 連用形

The following section is about all the funky things we can do with a 連用形. I know I'm going to tell you several of the roles that it is used for later in this section anyway, and this is intentional; I cannot properly ask you to practice without telling you what to do, which will in part answer the first question I have for you anyway:

  1. What can the 連用形 be used for? Notice I didn't ask specifically about verbs and verbal adjectives, so I expect you to tell me about both. Which conjugations does it allow for?

Which brings us to the real practice.

  1. The verb list for the combined lessons 1, 2 and 3 is getting quite large. Instead of conjugating every verb, just tell me how I put things in て form, making sure to explain which contractions might occur. Give a verb example from the lesson word lists for each of your generic explanations though.
  2. And just for convenience sake, do the same for the plain past tense.
  3. How would you explain the て form to someone? in fact, explain the て form in your own words. This might need a bit of text, so don't try to give an as short as possible answer, because that's just begging for having an incomplete explanation.

Nouns, pseudo-nouns, quasi-nouns, almost-nouns...

Since the noun is fairly simple compared to the verbal words in Japanese (as well as in most other languages), lesson 3 effectively wraps up the subject of nouns and noun related words, so let's practice with them a little.

  1. What's the difference between nouns and noun adjectives?
  2. What's the similarity between them? (hopefully unnecessary hint: think verbs)
  3. How can you tell whether the word you're looking at is a noun or an adjective, if it's just listed like on the word page for this lesson?
  4. What's the て form for a noun or noun adjective (and where does that て form come from?)
  5. How would you mix verbal and noun adjectival て forms?
  6. Explain how ない might be mistaken for a noun (use your brain on this one =).

some more こそあど knowledge

Another practice session where you'll actually be learning more information. Aren't you glad you looked at the practice session now? In this block we'll look at what こそあど + か and こそあど + でも do, and how to add particles to a こそあど + も/でも construction. Which is excellent, because that will wrap up the topic of こそあど words too, basically.

interrogative こそあど words + か turn into the generic indicative: どこ, "where", becomes "anywhere" as どこか, どれ. "which", into どれか, "any one", and どう, "which way" becomes どうか, "any way".

interrogative こそあど words + でも is sort of the superlative form of こそあど words + も - contrast the following two sentences:

日本語: どれもべていいですよ。
English: You can eat all of them.

日本語: どれでもべていいですよ。
English: You can eat any of them.

The difference between も and でも is generatlity; も simply makes a blanket "all or nothing" words, while でも creates an all or nothing statement of the form "any one of the possibles will do", which by extention automatically implies all or nothing, depending on whether the "possibles" should be considered affirmative or negative (which depends on the verb test as is mentioned in lesson 2)

This use of か, も and でも also applies to several non-こそあど interrogatives; , いつ, and なぜ (though for this last one really only か is useful):

- what
か - something
も - nothing/everything
でも - anything
いつ - when
いつか - some time
いつも - never/always
いつでも - any time
- who
か - someone
も - no one/everyone
でも - anyone
なぜ - why
なぜか - for some reason

(Note the sound change in when it gets paired with でも)

Location, location, location

We're going to practice locations a bit. Look at the following image and try to answer the following questions, in formal polite japanese, with the location of things explicitly put in the location description pattern that we looked at in the lesson (hover your mouse over the image for the item numbers:

the room of thingies
  1. ブランケット
  2. べっど
  3. スタンド
  4. めがね
  5. いす
  6. 敷物
  7. 流し台
  8. 本棚
  9. 箪笥
  10. コンピューター
  11. テレビ
  12. 天井
  13. ランプ

questions:

  1. めがねはどこ?
  2. からえますか。
  3. 猫はどこ?
  4. 部屋に本あります?
  5. 流し台は?
  6. どんな壁に箪笥あります?

and finally of course,

  1. describe the rest of the room!

The pop quiz

As semi-last task, see if you can translate the following 60 words:

  1. かう
  2. おそい
  3. おんがく
  4. まえ
  5. かなり
  6. よこ
  7. めがね
  8. しょうじょ
  9. なにか
  10. せいねん
  11. しょくぶつ
  12. つける
  13. ~しゃ
  14. みえる
  15. かとてき
  16. しも
  17. がんばる
  18. いける
  19. うたう
  20. えいが
  21. こうえん
  22. つける
  23. としよりもの
  24. しょうねん
  25. ~てき
  26. じ (two translations)
  27. さしみ
  28. すむ
  29. あいだ
  30. きる
  1. Stockholm
  2. quiet
  3. middle-aged person
  4. box lunch
  5. cinema
  6. deceptive
  7. middle-aged
  8. remain, be left over
  9. opposing
  10. listen
  11. sea
  12. chinese characters
  13. useless, no good
  14. futile, useless
  15. divorce
  16. lively, busling
  17. flower
  18. unreasonable, impossible
  19. basically
  20. marry
  21. young
  22. a young person
  23. close
  24. leave [behind], reserve
  25. study
  26. kimono
  27. live
  28. put (and leave where put)
  29. deep
  30. remember

And then as really last task, if you feel up to it, see if you can also do the remaining 50:

  1. うえ
  2. かわ
  3. おちゃがし
  4. せんもん
  5. しもかわ
  6. きれい
  7. かぶる
  8. ~かん
  9. なく
  10. しずむ
  11. ひだり
  12. うしろ
  13. きし
  14. としより
  15. ひま
  16. ちしき
  17. しかく
  18. はく
  19. となり
  20. みぎ
  21. あさい
  22. すわる
  23. なか
  24. こと
  25. そと
  1. get in to (gloves, rings)
  2. station
  3. make it in time
  4. fast
  5. require, need
  6. marriage
  7. after
  8. (a) study
  9. rock
  10. distant
  11. river bank
  12. famous ("of name"
  13. divide, separate
  14. bloom
  15. bag, briefcase
  16. paint
  17. deep inside
  18. character, symbol
  19. tighten (necktie, belt)
  20. jacket
  21. thing
  22. Helsinki
  23. widow
  24. down, under
  25. wear (glasses)

And sit back

That's almost it for lesson 3 - now you just have to post your worked out practice session on the forum so that you can get some teaching feedback on what you did right, and what you did wrong (remember, practice sessions without feedback are pretty worthless, since you're going to believe you're adequate at scoring yourself. You're not; when you're your own teacher, you're the eastiest student to mislead).

- Pomax