God communicates with his people through language. God uses the Bible which is written in human languages to communicate with us. As the people of God, we are to obey his commandments, the greatest of which is to love him and our neighbor. To love God, we need to know who he is as he is described in the Bible. Similarly, to love others, we need to know them, through language.
Japanese is one of modern languages in the world. Japan has less than 1% of its population that identifies with Christianity. Japan, with its stunning nature, rich cultural heritage, charming people in their quiet, reserved, polite, yet determined nature, still needs to hear the good news of the Gospel more. Once closed to the world, Japan has now opened up for the world in general. By knowing the Japanese language, we are responding to their open-arms, to create friendships with them. Mutual benefit, thus, can be gained: Japanese culture will be appreciated, and at the same time, we will be enriched by the Japanese cultural values as well as able to share our beliefs and our own cultural values.
To love is to know. We are obeying God’s command to love others, in this case, the Japanese, when we attempt to know them, through the Japanese language.
Students will learn the Japanese writing system (first kana, and later gradually kanji) as the preliminary condition to learn the language as a whole (ESLRs: DC, NLL). Students will learn new vocabulary, grammar points, and expressions through each lesson in the textbook and the CD, which they will use to compose sentences, and later short compositions, to create conversations, and to read short essays (ESLRs: DC, ET, NLL). Students will develop their listening skills by listening to the recorded conversations/CD (ESLRs: DC). Japanese culture appreciation is done through creating posters, watching and reviewing Japanese movies, and learning Japanese songs. In creating posters and reviewing movies, students will learn to compare and to contrast the Japanese cultural values to their own, thus, enabling them to exercise their thinking skill and to apply their Christian beliefs to the posters’ and movies’ content (ESLRs: ET, NLL, SCW, RC). Students will write and memorize Bible verses in Japanese (ESLRs: RC).
Textbook: Living Japanese, Book 1, by Tsuyako S. Coveney, Kenneth G. Boston, Masahito Takayashiki, Tomoko Nakamatsu, 2006
CDs (Living Japanese; Instant Immersion Japanese v.2.0)
Japanese Bible & dictionary
50 minutes daily, 5 days per week, 2 semesters
- Introduction: forms of greetings, how to introduce oneself and/or one’s friend
- Showing someone around a university/a school: university/school terms.
- At the student residence: describing people and things (I), indicating degree, expressing likes and dislikes.
- Studying the Japanese language: describing people and things (II).
- Getting arround 1: indicating the existence or location of things and people, asking and telling about indefinite things and people (I), terms of respect for family members.
- Getting around 2: asking and telling about one’s plans, suggesting and inviting someone to join in an activity, expressing time and frequency, expressing quantity.
- Getting around 3: the use of verbs with objects, verbs of communication, stating the place where an activity is carried out, asking and telling about plans, deciding what to have at a restaurant, a coffee shop, etc., ordering at a coffee shop.
- University/School life: describing daily routine activities, past tense, expressing the duration of time, expressing “from ~ to ~” with reference to times and places, negative questions.
- Trip to Hokkaido: describing things and states in the past, describing weather, describing and asking about indefinite things/places/people (II).
- Shopping: giving explanations or justifications, asking and giving advice, shopping terms and phrases.
- Presentation(s) and/or skits
- Reading Exercises
- Kanji Quizzes
- Movie Reviews
- Vocabulary Quizzes
- Class Participation