February, 2015: Breeze Issue #88

A Free Monthly E-Newsletter for Friends of Japan & Teachers of Japanese

-AJALT Workshop on How to Teach Japanese Phonetics-


AJALT will offer a workshop for Japanese language instructors on effective ways to teach Japanese phonetics.  Attendees will learn about two different teaching methods based on the following tools:

  • The OJAD phonetics dictionary, which is available for free online; and
  • New WADAIKO textbook developed by AJALT for middle school and high school students.

Researchers have made significant advances in developing effective methods of teaching Japanese phonetics, and new, online learning tools are also available.  The workshop will teach about these new methods and tools and help the attending instructors achieve the results they want to see in their classrooms by engaging their students in phonetics early on in their language education.

  • Time and date: March 7 (Sat), 2015 from 9:30am to 3:30pm
  • Location: Japan Foundation, Los Angeles
    5700 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 100, Los Angeles, CA 90036
    Tel. 323-761-7510
  • Number of participants: Maximum 36
  • Participation fee: free 
    (Please bring your own lunch. There are some shops near the venue.)
    All attendees will receive a free copy of the WADAIKO textbook!

Registration and Inquiry

Please send your 1. name, 2. affiliation, 3. educational level (K-12) to
sawa.toda@ajalt.or.jp    Sawa Toda, AJALT


9:30 to noon
Teach Phonetics Using the Online Japanese Accent Dictionary (OJAD)
by Noriko Nakamura

OJAD is a free online dictionary of Japanese phonetics developed by a group of Japanese instructors working with researchers at Tokyo University, led by Professor Nobuaki Minematsu.  Anyone with access to the Internet can use this dictionary for free and learn how to pronounce 9000 nouns and 3500 parts of speech.  The dictionary has already been translated into 12 languages, and more than 250,000 people have accessed it since its launch in August, 2012.  Ms. Nakamura will discuss hands-on teaching methods using the OJAD.

1:00 to 3:30pm
Phonetics Lessons Using the WADAIKO Textbook
by Sachiko Adachi

WADAIKO is a new textbook targeting middle school and high school students and will be published in January, 2015.  AJALT leveraged on its expertise in Japanese language education to develop this textbook, which offers hands-on lessons on the pitch and rhythm of the Japanese language.

Workshop Presenters

Sachiko Adachi
Ms. Adachi is a Japanese language instructor at AJALT with years of experience teaching in China, Thailand, and Northern Mariana Islands. She also teaches part time at Kokushikan University and has authored and co-authored many Japanese textbooks, including:

  • Japanese Language Text, Life in Japan (1983~1988, ASIA RHQ)
  • Japanese for Busy People I (1984, Kodansha International)       
  • Japanese for Busy People I (instruction materials for teachers) (1991, Kodansha International)             
  • 編集委員『中日交流標準日本語 初級 上・下』『中日交流標準日本語 中級 上・下』
  • 『中日交流標準日本語 会話編』(1988~ 光村図書出版株式会社・人民教育出版社)
  • Japanese for Young People textbook series (1998, Kodansha International)

Noriko Nakamura
Ms. Nakamura teaches Japanese at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, Waseda University, and Keio University. She was an instructor at AJALT from 1983 to 1992 and also taught in Indonesia in 1990 at the behest of Japan Foundation. Ms. Nakamura has authored and co-authored many Japanese textbooks, including:

  • 共著『さらに進んだスピーチ・プレゼンのための日本語発音練習帳』(2009 ひつじ書房)
  • 共著『初級文型でできるにほんご発音アクティビディ』(2010 アスク)
  • 共著『新完全マスター読解 日本語能力試験N1』(2011 スリーエーネットワーク)
  • 共著『新完全マスター読解 日本語能力試験N2』(2011 スリーエーネットワーク)
  • 東京外国語大学留学生日本語教育センター編著『留学生のためのアカデミック・ジャパニーズ聴解 中級』(2013 スリーエーネットワーク)
  • 東京外国語大学留学生日本語教育センター編著『留学生のためのアカデミック・ジャパニーズ聴解 中上級』(2014 スリーエーネットワーク)

AJALT (Association for Japanese-Language Teaching)

Originally founded in 1970 (Nishio Japanese Language Research Group), AJALT is one of the oldest Japanese language teaching institutions in Japan. It was recognized as a nonprofit organization by Ministry of Education in 1977.  AJALT students are comprised of business persons, researchers, foreign students, technical trainees, refugees, and even children. AJALT also holds open workshops to help participants develop teaching skills that are targeted to specific groups of learners. Many of these programs are based on course materials developed by AJALT, including “Japanese for Busy People” textbook series, “Japanese for Young People” textbook series, “Japanese for Professionals” textbook, and the “Kanji Daisuki” textbook series.
AJALT was officially recognized by the Japanese government as a public interest association in 2010.