皆様、こんにちにゃあ！Welcome to Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online; if we were a television programme, we’d officially be available for syndication! We’re your hosts, your guides to Japanese language and culture, Kiki+Koko! And this— this is a special blog post. We have an announcement that you’ve probably already guessed from the title and the thumbnail. ついにできました。100投稿目を達成しました！！We’ve finally done it! We’ve reached our 100th blog post!! This is a special milestone for us and another special milestone for ieindigoeast.com as a whole. We’re so glad to be a part of this site and to continue to share with the world! We want to thank each and every one of you who has even taken a look at one of our articles. We deeply appreciate those who return and read our articles everyday. Your readership, viewership, and listenership is what allows us to keep creating for others. We would like to thank the loyal patrons of Indigo East and those who turn off their Ad-Block so that the site itself can survive along with us. We hope to be able to create even more content and expand into new areas to both educate and hopefully, entertain. Our journey to 100 posts started with a purpose and continues to hopefully hundreds more because of you.
Earlier this year, we trekked out on our journey. We stepped out into the frozen tundra, looking at a blank slate. It was the white screen of a blank Word document. As the text cursor appeared and reappeared, blinking in succession, there was a decision to make, and it wasn’t the initial one we had come across prior.
Before our 初めの一歩, first step, we had to stare down the lens of our Panasonic VHS Reporter AG-HT4 Camcorder, and utter our first words into the microphone, deciding not just what we were to do, but why? Whether it’s audio-visual or the written word, our motivation was the main key to the start of this journey.
When we first inserted the VHS cassette into the camcorder and turned on our phantom power, we had the same motivations in mind as when we pressed the first key on the keyboard. We’re not just here to teach you Japanese language and culture, but so much more. As bilingual individuals, we found we had the advantage of bridging the entire Earth. Knowing two languages opens up an entire world that was in plain sight all along. It’s like a veil is lifted and something that may have been literal nonsense to you before has suddenly become not only coherent, but useful and enjoyable. It gives you a new perspective and allows you to enjoy life on the planet Earth two-fold. But, sometimes, people can have that opportunity inadvertently taken away, or at least deferred.
Over the years, before we began teaching Japanese, we’ve met many friends who have wanted to learn, but sadly, not everyone made it very far. Classes that moved to fast and expectations that were set too high dashed their hopes and in some cases, completely crushed their dreams. Seeing courses that promised fluency in thirty days and classes that expected immediate absorption after one exposure created a veritable heckscape for those language learners. From a native speaker’s perspective, people who have known and learned all of the most basic parts of their own language, and after years of teaching the same material, these thoughts weren’t meant to harm anyone, they were just misguided.
When teaching a language, we knew we couldn’t think in the terms we’d seen others using as it wasn’t realistic. Everyone doesn’t have the benefit of having their brain steeped in a language prior to learning, and many prerequisites can’t be expected. Many run under the idea that those who are older and have more reasoning skills can more easily absorb a language and that we can’t compare older children and adults to the youngest of native speakers. But, if you’re starting at square one, it’s important to think this way. In early childhood education, kids are able to colour ABC print outs for weeks. In Japan, there are basic kanji that are taught through sixth year! That’s spread out with other subjects and day-to-day knowledge, so it’s realistic to truncate, but it’s still something to think about.
We know that many people learn at different paces, and we wanted to create something that allowed people to learn at their own pace. Self-study is useful, but you can’t always trust everyone you come across. Whilst browsing some social media sites, we came across so many completely incorrect and misleading vocabulary lists. It’s so important that your first exposure is correct, or you could end up memorising something incorrectly. We understand that people are well-intentioned mostly, but we feel like it’s something deeply important as the words one uses is the way one is perceived. It’s a sort of trust we would never dream of encroaching upon. We just wanted to create a place where you could feel safe in that way, without having to stumble around on the internet, collecting incongruent non-facts.
But, we also wanted people to enjoy learning a new language. We continue to do our best to create a relaxed and fun learning environment that encourages you to continue on. However, if you’re not looking to learn Japanese fluently, we’re also here for you! Whilst focusing on fluency is important, it’s a bit of a discouraging concept. We have to admit that as you learn more, you’ll realise how much you don’t know, yet. It’s just part of learning. But, we want to make sure to correctly turn that concept around!
Learning a language is a journey. You have to appreciate what you’ve learnt along the way rather than constantly being bogged down with what you don’t know yet. You know more than you think, but there is always more to learn. People who have learnt Japanese passed level N1 of the 日本語能力試験, nihongo nouryoku shiken, or Japanese Language Proficiency Test, feel they’re lacking. For perspective, there are doctors in Japan—doctors—who can’t pass the N1. For more perspective, think of the people you talk to everyday in your own native language. Does everyone speak like a scholar? Does everyone speak perfectly? So, in the end, if your aim is fluency, fluency would have to be defined as something tangible to you. Does fluency to you mean being able to articulate every thought that comes into your mind and understanding the nuance of every conversation, or is it just being able to have a simple chat with friends or understanding what your Japaense-speaking coworkers are saying. Whether you just want to order sushi in Japanese or you want to become an absolute scholar, then you have to appreciate every step along the way and define the exact steps you want to take. We can provide lessons, but we hope that articles like these, for those who are very serious about their learning, will help. But, we’re just happy to spread a little knowledge, understanding, and hopefully something positive to take away.
We would also like to thank our wonderful site host who wrote us a personal message and helped create this special photo! (The HD version can be viewed on the official Indigo East | Patreon)
「SpeRaToBo || ieindigoeast」は１１４投稿目を祝ってますけれでも、嬉嬉先生と興子先生のおかげです。「Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online」の100投稿目を達成しましておめでとうございます！毎日、投稿の全部を読みのが楽しかった！
‘SpeRaToBo||ieindigoeast is celebrating their 114th post, but it’s thanks to teachers Kiki+Koko. Congratulations on ‘Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online’ achieving its 100th post! It is impressive to continue working hard making more than 100 posts. Thank you for your hard work! Cheers to another 100 posts!
(∩´∀｀)∩Banzai! Banzai! Banzai!
Whilst this definitely isn’t the complete summation of what we think and feel, as that would take up a novel, we thank you for your continued following and support where we’ll hopefully get out all of our thoughts and feelings eventually.
After reaching this many posts, we can say it feels like there’s even more of a legitimacy in an odd way. Not as though we haven’t given enough to prove ourselves worthy of the internet thusfar, but it definitely feels like a milestone that shows to readers you’re truly dedicated. We definitely feel as though we can wear our own badge of honour, calling ourselves bloggers. But, we’re definitely more than bloggers as we prepare more videos and podcasts!
In a sort of celebration, and as a way to make sure you can stay up-to-date with our future plans and projects as well as catch up on past ones, we’ve joined several social media sites! (You know you’ve made it to the big time when you have proper social media pages to that effect, hehe.)
Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!!
Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online on Pinterest
@kikikokoNihonGO on Twitter
Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! on Tumblr
@kikiandkokoletsnihongo on Instagram
Support the content and our mission by subscribing, following, and more! We appreciate it more than you know~
Also, we want to make sure we can continue to offer this and even more content for months and years to come. Turning off your ad-blocker can do an immense amount! (Honestly, there are some great advertisements that are usually related to our content) Even still, because many people use ad-block, advertising alone can’t cover the cost of running this site and surviving with food and shelter. If you want to ensure our survival for 100 more posts and longer as well as the continuation of the creation of new and even better content, feel free to leave a TIP in the TIP♡JAR to keep it going, or for long term contributions in increments, you can join our Patreon where our gracious host, Indigo East, usually posts behind-the-scenes, sneak-peeks, exclusive content, and more. And, we join in as well! Again, if you’d like to support our survival and the creation of more content to be made available to as many people as possible, you can also share the content! You can easily share via Twitter and Pinterest where you can retweet and repin respectively without even having to type! Gestures like that go a long way, and we appreciate it.
Thank you for joining us! We hope that you continue with us on this adventure, and we appreciate that you’ve chosen us to assist you on your Japanese learning journey!