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Steps To Master Japanese 5

2 minute read · Mon 27 September

Steps To Master Japanese 5

Translate Wisely

I’m not against using translations to understand a foreign language, but do it wisely. Japanese and English are quite different from each other.

わたし は トム です。means I am Tom.
Don’t translate it like that. Instead, do it like "I Tom".

If you try to completely translate Japanese to English, you’ll end up confusing yourself, and worst of all, it slows down your speech. As you learn how to use the actions verbs, the word order will be more or less the opposite.

きょう ジム へ いきます。means I’ll go to the gym today.
But if you translate from the English sentence, it takes a while to put the sentence together in Japanese.

If you’re responding to a question きょう どこ へ いきます か。
don’t translate it like “Where are you going today?”

In your mind, it’s like this:

  1. Hear Japanese
  2. Translate it into English
  3. Think in English
  4. Translate it back to Japanese

That makes the conversation move very slowly. Instead, “translate” the question like “today where go?” Then, it’s easier for you to process the question, and form your response like “today gym go” and say it in Japanese きょう ジムへ いきます. Some people can be obsessed with completely understanding everything, but it’s not necessary and it actually forms a bad processing mechanism. Not to mean never translate anything but never translate like that. That’s the fastest way to be able to speak Japanese more quickly and fluently. Stop the processing!

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