Why learning Japanese grammar isn’t good – frogs!

One of the requests I most often get is for more Japanese grammar lessons.

Well, aside from the fact that most modern spoken Japanese is in single word form (communication isn’t the forte of the current generation!),  grammar study doesn’t really help you learn how to speak a language.

Grammar is more for linguistics students who take a language, chop it up, look inside,  try to figure out how the individual bits work and then try to make rules out of what they find.

Think of a frog.

It’s a funky little creature that hops and jumps and sticks out its tongue.

You’ll never know everything about it, but the best way to learn is to watch it.

Listen to it.

See how it moves and how it lives.

That’s how you learn what it’s like to be a frog.

But if you chop it up, look inside, try to figure out how the individual bits work and then try to make rules out of what you find….

You just end up with a dead frog!

Japanese is the same.   It’s alive.

So rather than chopping it up,

Watch it,

Listen to it,

See how it behaves.

Then do the same.

That’s how you learn to speak Japanese!

2 Responses to “Why learning Japanese grammar isn’t good – frogs!”

  1. Ivan says:

    really nice solution for learning grammar))))))
    thanx)

  2. emmie says:

    Hi, I just ran into your blog and thought this explanation about why you don’t need to focus on learning grammar too much is very easy to understand and fun to read! I’m going to tell my students about that. Thank you. BTW, I joined your session in Fukuoka long time ago and glad to find that you’re doing quite well and now have a blog for Japanese learners. Good luck!

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