The Gauntlet Guarantee

20121009-155931.jpg I got the call to sub for a Japanese class last weekend. Do I speak Japanese?

Um, no.

I knew the lesson plans would be in English but still, I wanted to learn some Japanese.

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So I looked for apps on my iPad. I found a couple free apps for learning Japanese but they weren’t working. Frustrated, I turned to YouTube.

I found this channel and practiced a bit after the kids went to bed. I wrote down some basic phrases like “Good morning!” and “My name is…” After I memorized “good night”, I went upstairs to tuck in the kids and practice the phrase. But they were fast asleep.

I began the first class in Spanish: My name is ___. I don’t speak Japanese but I have YouTube.

Then I tried out a few of my new phrases. The students appreciated my effort and clapped.

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“Better than the last sub,” said one kid.

“Really? How was his pronounciation?”

“He didn’t even try.”

Bummer. Not everyone is excited to sub as I am. Perhaps I would not have been as excited had there been little notice. Still, I told the kids I would learn more Japanese if I had the chance to sub for them again.

The gauntlet has been thrown.

Japanese phrases, Adventures of a Sarcastic Sub style
(If you speak Japanese and I wrote these wrong, please let me know so I can correct them. Thanks!)

#

The vowels are like vowels in Spanish. (Duh, and if you don’t speak Spanish?)
a = when you go to the doctor and say AHHH
e = long /a/ sound, hAte
i = long /e/ sound, like fEEt
o = oh
u = sometimes it’s silent, otherwise it’s OOH like in ballOOn

#

Hijimemashite = Nice to meet you
Watashi wa-_____ des = I am _____
Yoroshiku onegai shimasu = Please be good to me

Wakarimaska = Do you understand me?
Wakarimasen = I don’t understand

Ohayou gozaimas = Good morning
Konnichiwa = Good afternoon
Sayounara = Good bye

Duomo arigatou gozaimas = Thank you very much
Douitashimashite = You’re welcome

Chotto matte kudasai = Please wait
(when I was having technical difficulties with the CD player)

Ganbatte kudasai = Good luck
(before a quiz in third period)

Itterasshai = Go and come back
(to a kid who left to go to the bathroom)

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