Free Audio Lesson
Learn a new language while commuting, while cleaning the house, or working out. Like millions before you, discover the power of the scientifically sequenced and portable Pimsleur Method.
Includes 30 lessons and Hiragana reading instruction on 16 CDs (16 hrs), plus Reading Booklet and User’s Guide.
The Easiest and Fastest Way to Learn Japanese
Did you know that about 122 million people in Japan, and another 8 million worldwide speak Japanese? For Americans, it’s perceived as a difficult language to learn, but in fact, it’s quite regular. Once you get the basics down, you’ll be surprised how quickly you’re able to begin speaking it. And even knowing a little bit of the language will make travel to Japan far easier, and much more fun. Whether your goal is to travel, communicate with friends or colleagues, reconnect with family, or just understand more of what’s going on in the world around you, learning to speak Japanese will expand your horizons and immeasurably enrich your life.
The best part is that it doesn’t have to be difficult or take years to master. Thirty minutes a day is all it takes, and we get you speaking right from the first day. Pimsleur courses use a scientifically-proven method that puts you in control of your learning. If you’ve tried other language learning methods but found they simply didn’t stick, then you owe it to yourself to give Pimsleur a try.
- Quick + Easy – Only 30 minutes a day.
- Portable + Flexible – Core lessons can be done anytime, anywhere, and easily fit into your busy life.
- Proven Method – Works when other methods fail.
- Self-Paced – Go fast or go slow – it’s up to you.
- Based in Science – Developed using proven research on memory and learning.
- Cost-effective – Less expensive than classes or immersion, and features all native speakers.
- Genius – Triggers your brain’s natural aptitude to learn.
- Works for everyone – Recommended for ages 13 and above.
What’s Included in Japanese 4?
- 30, 30-minute audio lessons
- Approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes of Hiragana reading instruction
- A Reading Booklet and User’s Guide
- In total, over 16 hours of audio, all featuring native speakers
What You’ll Learn
Japanese Level 4, Lessons 1-30 includes 15 hours of spoken language practice, and approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes of reading instruction, broken down into thirty convenient half-hour lessons, plus an easy-to-use guide and Reading Booklet.
Japanese 4 covers a variety of everyday topics. What if your phone’s battery is running low? What if you forgot your wallet on the bus? What if you’re late for an appointment or to meet your friends? Do you know the correct way of dipping yourself into an onsen (hot springs) at a traditional Japanese inn? We’ve got you covered! In Japanese 4, you’ll be immersed in the culture while you are leaning the language!
Some of the activities covered in Japanese 4:
- You’ll visit a Japanese garden and have tea, go shopping, try on clothes, visit Japanese hot springs.
- You’ll learn to negotiate lodging or plan a move.
- You’ll learn how to get help finding something you’ve lost, and how to ask for and understand detailed directions.
- You’ll be able to discuss the seasons, historic cities and buildings, sports and outdoor activities and hobbies like photography, express appreciation to your hosts or friends, and amazement and wonder when trying new things.
Reading and Writing in Japanese
By the 5th century AD Chinese characters began to be widely used in Japan. This early alphabet, Kanji, created new literacy, but brought many complications in pronunciation. In the 8th century, two new phonetic alphabets, or kana, were devised to bridge the gap: Hiragana and Katakana. Hiragana is used along with the Kanji to show the syllables that form suffixes and particles – “sounds” in other words, while Katakana was used for foreign loan words, like “coffee” or “computer.” Today in Japan, the three writing systems are combined, with Kanji, Hiragana, and Katakana all appearing within a single sentence.
In Japanese 4 you will begin to learn to read the Hiragana alphabet. There are forty-six basic Hiragana syllables, with additional modified syllables that represent voiced and contracted sounds. Japanese is usually written from top to bottom in vertical columns and from right to left.
This course will expand your vocabulary, encourage you to share your opinions and interests, introduce you to less formal conversations, and help you to venture out to new travel destinations in Japan. You’ll learn to share your impressions and opinions, express gratitude, describe people and places, and convey your preferences with characteristic Japanese politeness and grace.
The Pimsleur Method
We make no secret of what makes this powerful method work so well. Paul Pimsleur spent his career researching and perfecting the precise elements anyone can use to learn a language quickly and easily. Here are a few of his “secrets”:
The Principal of Anticipation
In the nanosecond between a cue and your response, your brain has to work to come up with the right word. Having to do this boosts retention, and cements the word in your mind.
Words, phrases, and sentences are selected for their usefulness in everyday conversation. We don’t overwhelm you with too much, but steadily increase your ability with every lesson.
Graduated Interval Recall
Reminders of new words and structures come up at the exact interval for maximum retention and storage into your long-term memory.
You work on multiple aspects of the language simultaneously. We integrate grammar, vocabulary, rhythm, melody, and intonation into every lesson, which allows you to experience the language as a living, expressive form of human culture.
Constant Feedback Loop + Build-in Testing
Pimsleur’s unique system of cues and responses provides a constant feedback loop. You can test yourself as you go, and make incremental corrections in creating and refining cohesive, clear responses.
Gives You a Solid Foundation
Each lesson and Level builds on the ones before it and in turn sets the framework for the lessons and Levels that follow. Learn what you need to prosper and to build a foundation to future learning.
The Japanese Language
Japanese has many “registers” or levels of politeness. Throughout every level of your Pimsleur course, you will learn how to speak at a polite register, which is appropriate in virtually any situation you are likely to encounter in Japan. In Level 4, you will also learn some ways of speaking in a less formal manner, used in conversation between friends, family members, or colleagues who are at the same level in an organization.
- CDs are formatted for playing in all CD players, including car players, and users can copy files for use in iTunes or Windows Media Player.