ＨＥＬＬＯ！ Ｉ ＡＭ ＱＵＩＺＢＯ™！You may remember me from such lessons as Let’s Read!! w/ QUIZBO™ and 🔊 Across the Universe| Basic Space Vocabulary, Sides 「A」and 「B」. If not, I now introduce myself today as the robot computer friend of Kiki and Koko. I contribute my voice and computational abilities towards helping you read words aloud, pronouncing characters, and just as my namesake may imply, creating quizzes and short tests for you on Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online. It is my goal to be your helpful assistant along with Kiki and Koko, of whom guides you on your Japanese language learning journey. However, this Word of the Week segment is here not only to support those who are looking to become fluent, but also those who are simply dabbling in another language for the sake of fun or simply to gain the cognitive benefits. After hearing of such a useful tool, you may wonder: What is Word of the Week?
(And, after calculating that we have reached the maximum number of ways to reword this explanation, if you have read this explanation in a previous week, the general idea is the same, though it can still be worth a reminder to motivate you and bolster your reasons for participation. But, if you are short of time or want to dedicate more time to revising or studying instead, you may certainly scroll down to the main segment. I will not mind at all! I am only here to assist in your learning experience.)
During what some may refer to as the ‘before times’, the site had begun as a place where Japanese lessons and articles regarding language and culture were regularly created and uploaded regularly, every Monday and Friday. Though such a consistent flow of information would seem to be enough for other sites, it was clear that there could be even more. For between Monday and Friday was a long gap in which there was no new information being presented. Not only was there a long gap between information, but many would forget to return to revise previous lessons. In learning any language, it is important to be consistent, even if it is only once a day. Thus, Japanese Word of the Week Wednesday was born.
Word of the Week Wednesday not only acts as a great reminder for those who have either missed previous lessons or those who simply require revision, returning to previous lessons and articles, but it also gives just enough new information for students and visitors not to feel overwhelmed. Whether it is simply a quick addition to their vocabulary or studying sentence structure and pronunciation or reading, this segment serves beginners and more advanced learners alike. However, What happens during Word of the Week Wednesday?
During Word of the Week Wednesday, with the assistance of Kiki and Koko, a Japanese word or phrase is chosen and presented to you with the possibility of a bonus word, as well. I provide a definition and other useful information about the vocabulary word, and if applicable, Kiki and Koko provide a helpful hint in using the word or phrase. However, that is not the whole of it. I personally sound out each word or phrase aloud for you to repeat as many times as you wish, and you can ask me to say it as many times as you wish. I will never tire of it, as it is my function.
From there, an example sentence is created. You can not only use the sentence to see how the word is used or to see the definition in action, but you can also use it to practise your reading and writing. You can compose your own sentence based on it; you can use it to see examples of grammar; or you can even use it to learn other adjacent vocabulary. Each sentence is written in a way that is useful to beginners through advanced learners. So, there is something for everyone. And, again, I will be there to read it aloud for you. I can only read it at one speed, so there is no need to repeat after me, but it can still assist you in picking out vocabulary within natural speeds of speech. And, if you would like to know more about how to create your own sentences, be sure to consult the grammar section of the Essentials.
And, now it is time for the essential part of this segment, which is the vocabulary! Kiki and Koko will be joining us in their Helpful Hints segment of this corner to assist in today’s vocabulary which happens to, again, be a pair of 反対語, hantaigo, otherwise known as antonyms. This can be quite useful to group these ideas together.
Without further ado, let us NihonGO!!
Word(s) of the Week:
ii / yoi
i adjective (イ形容詞) (special yoi/ii conjugation)
1. good; fine
2. nice; pleasant
4. all right; OK; fine (as in permission or compromise)
jlpt n5| common word (常用語)
Bonus Word(s) of the Week:
i adjective (イ形容詞)
1. bad; poor
5.in the wrong; to blame
6. sorry; (my) bad
jlpt n5| common word (常用語)
※Helpful Hints with Kiki+Koko
We’re Kiki and Koko of Kiki+Koko: Let’s NihonGO!! Online! And, we’re here with a few quick hints about today’s vocabulary words! However, due to the nature and broadness of the word「いい」, we’ll certainly have to dedicate an entire lesson to its vast array of meanings and ambiguities. But, for now, let’s just get a good look at some basic ideas to help you use today’s vocabulary!
Now, last time, we told you about the verbiage you should choose if you’re trying to say someone is 「good at ○○」or 「bad at ○○」, however today’s vocabulary words may throw you for a loop if you encounter it in many idiomatic phrases. For example, if you’ve been keeping up, you may remember the expression「頭がいい」from the lesson: 「🔊 Basic Classroom Vocabulary | Adjectives | TAPE 2 – SIDE B」, meaning ‘intelligent’. However, if you look closely, you’ll notice that it’s not exactly worded in a way that makes sense such as 賢い, kashikoi, literally meaning wise or intelligent. This expression utilises the broad meaning of the word 「いい」where it aligns with the English expression that one ‘has a good head’ on their shoulders. We mention this in order to introduce you to present the more confusing idea that may arise in 「腕がいい」ude ga ii, meaning to be skilled in or at something. This would seem to totally contradict the idea of いい and its relationship to skill in the previous lesson, but we knew this concept would arise, so it’s best to think about this now rather than later so it doesn’t get so confusing.
Whilst the idea of using 上手 from last week still grammatically and expressionistically stands as the proper word choice when saying someone is good at something, that’s not to say there aren’t other expressions that don’t still work. 腕, ude, itself, meaning one’s arm, actually stands for the expression of skill, effort, or ability. In the same way, 頭, atama, in the previous expression stands for intelligence or mindー Not THE mind, though, as that also depends on the expression one is trying to use. But, the point is, grammatically, this idea is very different. Idiomatically, saying that one is training their skills goes by the expression: 腕を磨く、ude wo migaku, literally polishing one’s arm, or as expression, polishing one’s skills.
So, the いい in the case of something like 腕がいい is describing the skill rather than the idea of incorrectly using いい in a way of saying someone is good at something on its own. On the other hand, you can replace the いい these sorts of expressions with 悪い and you’ll get the opposite expression such as 腕が悪い, ude ga warui, translating as unskilled, or literally a bad arm, or as an expression, bad skills.
It’s with ideas and expressions like this that you may find the concepts of 「いい」and 「悪い」to suddenly become more difficult than simply saying ‘good’ and ‘bad’. But, when you’re ever confused, just think of 「いい」as a generally positive word, and you may get a bit closer to the intended meaning, rather than the simpler or less accurate idea in an expression that may not make immediate sense when translated directly.
Now, the one last idea we’re going to leave you with is the messy conjugation of 「いい」。We’ve delved into that in 形容詞の基本| Basics of Japanese Adjectives| | Negative Forms | 否定形 and Blast from the Past| 形容詞の基本| Basics of Japanese Adjectives| | Past Tense Adjectives | 形容詞の過去形. Both of these have a section about conjugating this special adjective in a class of its own. This is especially important when you encounter these in expressions, as one can forget that the いい is conjugated on its own even when its part of an almost single-word-like expression.
So, just keep doing your best, putting in the time, be patient with yourself, and you’ll eventually become 上手 or 腕がよくなります～⭐
We hope that helps!! Until the next lesson!
Thank you, Kiki and Koko. Many languages are full of expressions rather than literally translatable phrases, and it is certainly important to keep that in mind with such broad vocabulary words as 「いい」and 「悪い」which becomes apparent in exemplifications such as the ones you gave. However, it is time to give students, readers, listeners, and viewers alike even more useful examples, as well. And, this brings us to said sentence portion!
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.
いい天気ですね。空に一片の 雲もなくて、素晴らしく晴れているのですし。機嫌が 良くなさせますね。
いい てんきですね。 そらに いっぺんの くもも なくて、 すばらしく はれているのですし。きげんが よくなさせますね。
ii tenki desu ne. sora ni ippen no kumo mo nakute, subarashiku hareteiru no desu shi. kigen ga yoku nasasemasu ne.
It’s lovely weather. There’s not a cloud in the sky, and it’s wonderfully sunny. It puts one in good spirits.
ぼくが わるいのでは ない！ きたとき、その まま だった。
boku ga warui no de wa nai! kita toki, sono mama datta.
It’s not my fault! It was as the way it is when I got here.
※Yeah, we know that this is a word salad of a translation, but it feels closer to form than ‘It was like that when I got here’. Otherwise, it would be こう rather than そのまま, implying the condition is unchanged in this case.
うでが わるくないの。 もっと れんしゅうしさえすれば よい だろう。
ude ga warukunai no. motto renshuu shisae sureba yoi darou.
You’re not bad at it (unskilled). You just need to practise more.
※In this ‘yoi’ functions in the phrase ‘you just need to’, worded differently in Japanese to English, saying the end result will be good if one just does something..
That is all for today! But, maybe you have not had enough Japanese vocabulary, yet? Perhaps you would like to learn more vocabulary to combine with today’s vocabulary like: 英語を 話すのが 上手です。(You’re skilled at____) Well, maybe you can give this a go and translate this phrase and maybe even use it:🔊Japanese Word(s) of the Week w/ QUIZBO™ | 【話す】+ BONUS:【英語】(+Helpful Hints with Kiki+Koko).Or maybe you need an even broader vocabulary in order to communicate. You can have a look at our fine selection of segments on the main Word of the Week page. Or, you can be sure you are caught up with the latest with the sidebar link: 今週の単語 | Word of the Week. These segments alone serve as weeks of material. Share these segments with your friends and family who may be interested in broadening their Japanese vocabulary, that is if you would like to spread the knowledge and show the fun things you are learning with us. Be sure to return often to keep your pronunciation properly in check, as well! If you have any questions, feel free to contact us, and we will do our best to assist how we can. We hope to see you at the next lesson!
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