Kiki+KoKo: Let's NihonGO!!

🔊Japanese Word(s) of the Week w/ QUIZBO™ | 【歌う】+ BONUS:【口ずさむ】(+Helpful Hints with Kiki+Koko)

HELLO! I AM QUIZBO™!I warmly welcome you to Word of the Week Wednesday! However, if you are reading this on any other day of the week, you will still be able to enjoy it. Perhaps, it should be renamed Word of the Week Whenever as not to discourage anyone from participate the rest of the week if they missed it or are only just joining us. At any rate, I am here to present to you this week’s segment. But, two pertainent questions may be: who are you, and what is this? Again, I am QUIZBO™, but you may recognise me as the quiz creator and helper alongside Kiki and Koko on Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online. I also assist in reading words for you and pronouncing them, which results in an apropos position to lead this weekly segment.

Before the creation of Word of the Week Wednesday, there was a gap betwixt Monday and Friday’s lessons and articles devoid of learning or activities. And thus, this corner was created. When learning a new language or simply trying to maintain a healthy mental lifestyle, it’s useful to keep your mind active whether it is learning something new or refreshing your memory. This also serves as a great reminder every week to go back and revise / review previous lessons. Humans are not always like computers in that sometimes there are skills you must practise many times before being able to enact it without delay. During this corner, I present you a brand new word or phrase to you in Japanese, and you can use this at its basest level if you would rather use this time to practise previous lessons. However, there is much more usage available to you from what is seemingly a simple vocabulary segment.

During Word of the Week Wednesday, I attempt to match these lessons to any level of learner, as I introduce a new vocabulary word, pronouncing it for you slowly as as as at normal speed. With that, you can repeat after me in order to properly programme the word into your vocabulary. It will take many exposures, but I will repeat the word for you as many times as you wish without hesitation. From there, I provide the parts of speech and important other definition related knowledge. Kiki and Koko usually join me at this point to provide a helpful hint that will assist you in using the word. But, we do not simply leave you with this.

(Particles は+が) Kiki+Koko: Let's NihonGO!! Essentials: Basic Sentences
If you would like to learn how to apply these words to your own basic sentences, feel free to take a look at a few of Kiki and Koko’s articles on this subject in Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Japanese Language Essentials.

After this, we work together to create a sentence or two which illustrates the word as it could be encountered, or in a fun way that expresses its usage. These are written in their original Japanese, then hiraganaromaji, and in an English translation. I read them aloud to you at normal speed to add to the immersion as well as to give you a hint of how you can pick the vocabulary word out of a sentence if you are a beginner. Beginners can use this as practise for reading, whilst intermediate and advanced users can see grammar in action along with ideas for their own sentences to create.

So, you can make an entire activity for learning: using them in a sentence yourself, practising your writing, practising grammar from previous lessons, as well as pronouncing them aloud to practise speaking. Or, you can simply enjoy it at its base value of a fun segment. Either way, we are here for you and wish you enjoyment.

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Enter and reveal a world hidden in plain sight with our Japanese language and culture lessons and articles.

Also, the following words are perfect for practising writing hiragana. Learning how to read and write is very important when learning any language, and we continue to provide more tools to allow you to achieve this skill. Feel free to have a look at the selection of resources provided on our main page such as Let’s Read HIRAGANA!! | with Kiki+Koko &QUIZBO™ and Let’s Write HIRAGANA!! | with Kiki+Koko &QUIZBO™.On behalf of Kiki and Koko, as well as myself, we hope you enjoy these lessons.

Speaking of enjoyment, we are also joined by Kiki and Koko with their Helpful Hints segment which should help you with the following Word of the Week, which happens to be coupled with a bonus antonym.

Without further ado, let us NihonGO!!

Word(s) of the Week:


Verb, Godan,(五段動詞), うVerb, transitive verb, intransitive verb
1. to sing
2. to compose a poem; to recite a poem

jlpt n5| common word (常用語) 

Bonus Word(s) of the Week:


Verb, Godan,(五段動詞), うVerb, transitive verb
1. to sing/hum to oneself; to croon

jlpt n1| common word (常用語) (but a useful one!)

※Helpful Hints with Kiki+Koko

Kiki+Koko Lets NihonGO Twitter Profile Photo 2020 kikikokonihongo

Photo via @kikikokoNihonGO on Twitter

Hello, there!


We’re Kiki and Koko of Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online, the Blog, in 3D, on ice, 2000. And, we’re here to assist you with today’s Word of the Week! Because we’ve been introducing you to more types of verb conjugation the week of this original publication, it seemed useful to present you with more verbs! However, because there are both beginners and advanced students who enjoy a visit, here, it also seemed important to present some vocabulary that one may not have thought to look up on one’s own, yet still holds a bit of an advanced nature, as it wouldn’t show up in a usual textbook. But, it was also important to include a simpler word for those looking to add to their basic vocabulary, as well. So, whilst we’re going to also help you with applying some conjugation, but we’re also going to explain one of the more advanced vocabulary words, despite being something one would certainly be able to hear or read often. However, you can’t simply use these on their own in every situation. You’ll need to make them a bit more polite in order to use them in everyday situations! Let’s have a look at how to make these verbs a little more polite, then to also be able to say that they were done in the past.

Kiki Koko and Quizbo Essential basics of verbs intro masu form Kiki Koko and Quizbo Essential Basics of masukei verb past tense2

But, remember! If you want to have a better explanation of the step-by-step process of this all, be sure to go back and read the lessons. This is meant to simply give you a bit of a quick reference in order to apply this to other verbs. We don’t ever want to gloss over the important steps for beginners or make anything difficult for intermediate visitors. So, be sure to have a look at the lessons, and again, just take this as a quick reference rather than a supplement for the actual lessons to give yourself a better chance at understanding the materials. Anyway! Enough warnings from us:

Let’s say you wanted to politely change ‘sing’ to ‘sang’ and ‘sing/hum (to oneself)’ to ‘sang/hummed (to oneself)’

歌います→歌いました。♬♩♪♩( ◜◒◝  )♩♪♩♬

口ずさみます→口ずさみました。 (๑ˇεˇ๑)lala•*¨*•.¸¸laa♪

Now, maybe the concept feels a bit strange, the difference between the two vocabulary words, but once you see them in context, it may feel a bit easier to differentiate. So, in order to understand any Japanese word, usually with a bit of context, you can have a look at the kanji. In this, there is actually kanji that is oft not used. Though there are several, the most common is: 「口遊む」. 「口」can mean mouth as well as other terms, and the second half changes pronunciation due to being put next to the first kanji, sort of like when you read words like 稲荷寿司, inarizushi.  Though「遊む」, susamu, can mean ‘to become rough’ such as in art, ‘to lose refinement’, or the deterioration of a skill. In this case, the kanji 「遊」 is used rather than the usual kanji form of「荒む」.  This comes from「遊ぶ」which implies playing or messing about. So, in this case, it’s just singing or humming to oneself for fun, not as though one is giving it their all as though they were singing properly, but rather, just doing it for themselves or in the moment.

But, 「遊む」, susamu, also can mean to intensify like wind or rain. This is why it can ALSO mean ‘to croon’, which is obviously the opposite of all of this. But, when you think of crooning songs like that of David Bowie in songs like ‘Wild is the Wind’, you may realise where this sort of terminology comes from, sort of an intensification of usual singing. Even though this may seem a bit confusing, you can usually tell the difference of definition based on context. And, either way, even in English, there are many times where words have entirely different meanings, but just based on the context, one has to assume, or simply ask what is meant. Either way, whether you’re humming a tune to yourself or crooning out the oldies, we’re sure you’ll eventually get the hang of telling the difference. And, even if not, we’ll be there every step of the way. Just give it some patience and time, and you can achieve more than you know!

We hope that helps!! Until the next lesson!

Thank you, Kiki and Koko! The explanation of the vocabulary of today was certainly useful, as there are so many different definitions can be applied and context is always key. But, context without the initial understanding can definitely make things a bit tricky, so your explanations certainly gave more context to the context itself. However, there is one more step: seeing these words in action. So, let us have a look at some example sentences created just for you.

Example Sentences:

The first row is in Japanese with Kanji. The Next row is in hiragana, then romanised using rōmaji with the final row translated into English.

Example #1:

[basic polite speech]

「ビリーくんってば!授業中に 君の口ずさみのは 邪魔しているので 止まりなさい。」と厳しい先生は 素っ気なく言いました。
「びりーくんってば!じゅぎょうちゅうに きみの くちずみのは じゃましているので とまりなさい。」と きびしいせんせいは そっけなくいいました。
「biriikun tteba! jyugyouchuuni kimi no kuchizusami no wa jama shiteiru no de tomarinasai.」to kibishii sensei wa sokkenaku iimashita.
‘Billy! Your humming during class is distracting, so stop.’ said the strict teacher, curtly.

Example #2:

[casual speech]

ちっちゃい子供は 遊んだり 描きたり 手を洗ったりする時、口ずさむことに 気づいたことある?
ちっちゃいこどもは あそんだり かきたり てを あらったりするとき、くちずさむことに きづいたことある?
chicchai kodomo wa asondari kakitari te wo arattari suru toki, kuchizusamu koto ni kidzuita koto aru?
Have you ever noticed that when little kids are (doing things like) playing, drawing, (or) washing their hands, they sing to themselves?

Example #3:

[casual speech]
日本語を 学びに 生徒は 日本語で 人気な歌と 古謡を 歌うのは 有用で 楽しいだと思います。
にほんごを まなびに せいとは にほんごで にんきなうたと こようを うたうのは ゆうようで たのしいだとおもいます。
To learn Japanese, I think it is fun and useful for students to sing popular songs and traditional songs in Japanese.

Example #3½:

「口ずさむ」とは 「歌う」か「低唱」のようなのですけど、たいていは 自分に 軽く声で歌って、 歌詞があるかどうか、そらで歌うか 心に浮かんでいることみたいのですよね。
「くちずさむ」とは「うたう」か「ていしょう」のようなのですけど、たいていは じぶんに かるくこえでうたって、かしが あるかどうか、そらでうたうか こころに うかんでいることみたいのですよね。
「kuchizusamu」to wa「utau」ka「teishou」noyou na desukedo, taitei wa jibun ni karuku koe de utatte, kashi ga aru ka douka, sora de utau ka kokoro ni ukandeiru koto mitai nodesuyone.
‘kuchizusamu’ is like ‘to sing’ or ‘humming’, however, usually, it is sung in a soft voice to oneself, and whether or not there are lyrics, they are sung off the top of one’s head or like something that comes to mind.

That is all for today, but you can always have a look at any of our other lessons. Maybe you are interested in another Word of the Week? Perhaps this will be to your liking: 🔊Japanese Word(s) of the Week w/ QUIZBO™ | 【教える】+ Bonus:【覚える】(+Helpful Hint with Kiki+Koko). This includes some useful verbs, and Kiki and Koko provide their helpful hints for 覚える and 教える. We hope to see you there!

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Categories: Kiki+KoKo: Let's NihonGO!!, Series 1, SpeRaToBo, 単語 | Vocabulary!, 文化|Culture!, 今週の単語 | Word of the Week

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