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JOI Support staff and manager.

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Japanese children's songs

When learning a new language, one great source of learning can be children's learning materials. Japanese children's songs can help you to learn Japanese vocabulary and also are a great insight into Japanese culture.

There are thousands of children's songs that you can use, and many sites online that introduce a number of these. When you find yourself a little stuck in a rut or losing some motivation in your language learning, then doing something silly like reciting a children's rhyme can really help to cheer you up and find a new focus in Japanese.

In this weekly blog by the Japanese teachers at JOI, one teacher Chiharu Takase sensei introduces one of her personal favourites from childhood. Please read this simple blog, learn some new vocabulary, and listen to the song and video on YouTube.



By TAKASE Chiharu



 この曲は「寒太郎」という男の子が寒さを連れて町にやってくるという設定なのですが、「ヒューンヒューン ヒュルルンルンルン」と風の音を表す擬音語とともに、この寒太郎がをかぶり、マントをして、腰に刀をさして空を飛んでくるのです。「寒太郎、なんてかっこいいの!」と子どもの私はテレビに釘付けでした。

 みなさん、ぜひ一度You Tubeで聞いてみてくださいね。寒太郎、かっこいいと思ったらぜひコメントくださいね。

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



 この歌(うた)は「寒太郎(かんたろう)」という男(おとこ)の子(こ)が寒(さむ)さを連(つ)れて町(まち)にやってくるという設定(せってい)なのですが、「ヒューンヒューン ヒュルルンルンルン」と風(かぜ)の音(おと)を表(あらわ)す擬音語(ぎおんご)とともに、この寒太郎(かんたろう)が笠(かさ)をかぶり、マントをして、腰(こし)に刀(かたな)をさして空(そら)を飛(と)んでくるのです。「寒太郎(かんたろう)、なんてかっこいいの!」と子(こ)どもの私(わたし)はテレビに釘付(くぎづ)けでした。

 みなさん、ぜひ一度いち(ど)You Tubeで聞(き)いてみてくださいね。寒太郎(かんたろう)、かっこいい!と思(おも)ったらぜひコメントくださいね。


Have you heard of a program called “Minna no Uta”? It is an approximately 5 minute music program on NHK. Even though it is a music program, singers do not come on and sing, children's music is played along with animations. I used to love this program when I was a child. All of the songs were wonderful but I would like to introduce one song that I especially liked as a child which had a unique melody. It is a nursery rhyme which is just right for this season. The song's name is 'Kita Kaze Kozou No Kantaro'.

The song is set around a boy called Kantaro who brings the cold to the town but, the sound of the wind is expressed onomatopoeically as 'HyunHyun Hyururunrunrun' and in addition, he wears a conical hat, a cape and in his waist, he carries a sword and he comes flying through the air. As a child, I used to be glued to the TV thinking, “Kantaro is so cool!”

Please listen to the song once on YouTube. If you also think that Kantaro is cool, please leave a comment.

独特【どくとく】 (n,adj-no,adj-na) peculiarity; uniqueness; characteristic;

童謡 【どうよう】 (n) children's song; nursery rhyme

擬音語 【ぎおんご】 (n) {ling} onomatopoeic word

笠 【かさ】 (n) conical hat (East-Asian style); coolie hat;

釘付け【くぎづけ】nailing on; nailing down; nailing shut; being glued (to); being unable to take one's eyes (from);

Konnichi-wa, everybody. Hajimemashite. My name is Chiharu Takase.
I was born in the spring, that's why my parents decided to include the the Kanji for spring (haru) in my name. My hometown is in Yamaguchi prefecture on the western coast of Honshu, but now I live in Kyoto, one of Japan's early capital cities. I'm married with one son, and my hobby is the Japanese tea ceremony.

Learning a new language, including Japanese, can be tough at first, but once you start comprehending the patterns and rhythm, you'll find that there is nothing more interesting. Do what you can, when you can, and enjoy the challenge. I'm really looking forward to meeting you in our online Japanese classroom. Let's spend an enjoyable 50 minutes together. Dozo yoroshiku onegai-shimasu.

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Guest Saturday, 25 September 2021