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Strange whirling, fluffy and squishy toys

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Toys in Japan

Japan is well-known as a creative hub for art, fashion and technology and weird things too. So it is not surprising that you can find some imaginative toys in the country.

In this weekly blog, for Japanese learners, Ishibashi sensei; one of the teachers at JOI online school, introduces some popular toys that are a little on the weird side...

Listen to the video to learn Japanese listening and also read the vocabulary list to study some new Japanese words.

Strange whirling, fluffy and squishy toys




 最近、みなさんの国ではどんなおもちゃが流行っていますか。 日本ではとても変わったおもちゃが流行っています。 例えば、くるくる回して楽しむハンドスピナーと呼ばれるおもちゃ。 ふかふか、ぷにぷに、とした感触触って楽しむスクイーズと呼ばれるぬいぐるみキーホルダーなど。 遊び方は単純なのにどうしてそんなに人気があるのでしょう。 これらのおもちゃは子どもはもちろん、若者の間でも流行っています。


To listen to this blog, please watch our Youtube video. 


 最近(さいきん)、みなさんの国(くに)ではどんなおもちゃが流行(はや)っていますか。 日本(にほん)ではとても変(か)わったおもちゃが流行(はや)っています。 例(たと)えば、くるくる回(まわ)して楽(たの)しむハンドスピナーと呼(よ)ばれるおもちゃ。 ふかふか、ぷにぷにとした感触(かんしょく)触(さわ)って楽しむスクイーズと呼ばれるぬいぐるみキーホルダーなど。 遊(あそ)び方(かた)は単純(たんじゅん)なのにどうしてそんなに人気(にんき)があるのでしょう。 これらのおもちゃは子(こ)どもはもちろん、若者(わかもの)の間(あいだ)でも流行っています。


Strange whirling, fluffy and squishy toys

Recently, in your country what toys are popular ? In Japan some weird toys are popular. For example, there is a toy called the Hand Spinner which you play with by turning it round and round. And there are some stuffed toys or key holders called Squeeze which feel fluffy and squishy which you can play with by touching them. Although the playing style of these toys is so simple, I wonder why they are so popular. These toys are popular among children of course and also among young people.

According to research, these toys are apparently "useful to relieve stress". When people become unable to stand their free and boring time, they unwittingly do something, this then becomes a habit. Using your smartphone or putting some tobacco in your hand when you have free time both fall into this category. It would be good if you could play with toys like these to relieve stress instead of getting a smartphone addiction or nicotine dependence, right?

流行(はや)る‥be popular

くるくる‥round and round




触(さわ)る‥ touch

ぬいぐるみ‥a stuffed toy

キーホルダー‥key ring


イライラする‥get annoyed


暇(ひま)‥free time. boring



当(あ)たる‥fall into

スマホ中毒(ちゅうどく)‥smartphone addiction

ニコチン依存症(いぞんしょう)‥nicotine dependence


Hajimemashite, my name is Kaori Ishibashi.
I live in Ibaraki city, in Osaka prefecture, with my husband, son and daughter. Ibaraki city is in between Osaka and Kyoto and is in a very convenient location. Before I was married, I went to Canada and Spain as an exchange student. So I too love to study languages.
Since my children are still so young, I cannot readily go abroad, so I am really glad of the opportunity to communicate with people from various countries through JOI. Let's study Japanese together.

Start 3 Trial FlexLessons for only $9 !

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Guest Saturday, 25 September 2021