Do you know the origin of the Japanese word arigatou

Do you know the origin of the Japanese word for thank you – arigatou? Watch this nice video and find out.

Here are the two kanji mentioned in the vide0:


有 - ari - to exist

難 (no kanji card yet). This is the kanji used in 難しい – muzukashii – difficult





How do you say thank you in your language? Let us know in the comment section.

Speaking Japanese without saying a word No.2

This is the second series of speaking Japanese without saying a word. It starts with a recap of lesson 1 and then goes straight ahead into the second gesture that will allow you to speak fluent Japanese without hardly saying a word.

Please check out the list of other videos on Japanese gestures.

How to speak fluent Japanese without (hardly) saying a word – abbreviations

Popular Japanese Abbreviations

This is another episode from Ken Tanaka on how to speak Japanese without hardly saying a word. This is about abbreviations of names of popular stores and restaurants – enjoy!.

What other abbreviations to you know in Japanese?

Do you know Japanese gestures – Vol.8?

Japanese gestures

Japanese have their body language and gestures. This video introduces you to one very typical gesture. There are more to come.

Learn more about Japanese gestures


Doraemon is one of my favorite childhood animation growing up in Japan. Fujiko Fuji is the creator of this famous Japanese manga series, and if you grew up in Japan, I am almost certain that you know Doraemon. I had never missed an episode as a child! Doraemon was first published in 1969. Due to the popularity of this series, this Anime TV series started a few years later. So I pretty much grew up watching Doraemon cartoons.

Doraemon is actually a robotic cat from 22nd century that came to help a wimpy boy, Nobita. Whenever Nobita faces problems, Doraemon comes and rescue him. If Norita needed help for the test, Doraemon gave him Ankipan, which is a memory bread. Norita didn’t want to memorize words and prepare for the test, he decided to take an easy way out by getting help from Doraemon.

This is his pattern in every episode, and actually this is the theme of this anime. When Nobita gets bullied at school, he again cries for help. And Doraemon is back helping Nobota by handing a tool from his tiny pocket. This tool can be used to get revenge on bullies. Doraemon often warns Nobita not to misuse his tools, but Nobita often uses that in a wrong way to get ahead of other kids or to get revenge on bullies. Nobita almost always learns some kind of lessons in the end. Actually my parents didn’t want me watching Doraemon, because they thought that it wasn’t an appropriate animation. They said that this could have given me a lazy attitude toward life..well, but the whole point of this animation is that we get a very strong message from each episode that we can’t always rely on others to solve our problems. If we get some help, we must not misuse that. So I personally think Doraemon is a great Japanese animation every kid should be watching. But this is just my personal view on this.

What makes this animation more attractive and exciting for us is that Doraemon is also giving us the dreams, many of which are unrealistic so they are just dreams. But sometimes we all need to dream about something especially as a child. I remember saying to my friend in 5th grade that I want Doraemon!! It would have been so cool to have him at my house, and he could have introduced me to all these tools which can make my dreams come true. I wanted “dokodemo doa”, which means anywhere door. You think of where you want to go, and then open Doraemon’s dokodemo doa, you are there! This will never happen realistically, but it was cool to think about that. So I very much enjoyed watching that animation every week. And that is why even adults still like watching draemon. And I am one of them even though I haven’t watched in years.

Here is a clip with the entry sequence of the anime series including all songs.

About the Author

Hi My name is Yumi! I am originally from Japan and have lived in Southern California for many years. I have been tutoring my native language on a part-time basis. I look forward to contributing articles about Japanese language and culture. If you have any questions, please feel free to write me. 🙂

Yumi is the owner of the Yumi to Lesson website which helps students to learn Japanese (