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Japanese context elaborations

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Achievement objectives

AOs: L6

AOs: L7

AOs: L8


Cook Islands Māori


Gagana Sāmoa





Vagahau Niue



Assessment for qualifications:

Japanese L6: Example 2

Example 2: Rotorua experience

やすみに、かぞくといっしょに ロトルアに行きました。キャンプじょうに

いっしゅうかん とまりました 。ぼくは マオリのたべものがすきだから、

ハンギを たべに行きました。たべながら、マオリのダンスを みました。


Context and text type

Ben writes an entry in his blog about his holiday in Rotorua.

Text type

Online journal, personal opinion. Productive.

Examples showing how the student is:

Communicating information, ideas and opinions beyond the immediate context

Ben communicates information about the holiday using the past tense:

  • やすみに、かぞくといっしょに ロトルアに行きました。

He combines an opinion on holidays with information about what happened on his holiday:

  • ぼくは マオリのたべものがすきだから、ハンギを たべに行きました。

When he says おもしろいでした, Ben makes an error that is quite common in learners of Japanese. The past tense of adjectives and nouns is でした, but for adjectives, the last must be dropped and ~かったです added. This shows that Ben has not recognised that おもしろい is an ~い adjective. This will not necessarily inhibit communication.

Expressing and responding to personal ideas and opinions

Ben uses an adjective to express an opinion about the Māori 'dance' he refers to:

  • おもしろかったです。

He uses the expression すき to express liking:

  • マオリのたべものがすき

Ben, writing for Japanese readers, mentions his experience of Māori culture when on holiday in Rotorua. For example:

  •  ぼくは マオリのたべものがすきだから、ハンギを たべに行きました。

He appears to take it for granted that his readers will understand what he refers to. This may not be the case.

Communicating appropriately in different situations

Ben uses -ます verb endings to suit the blog context, where the audience may include people outside immediate family and friends: 

  • キャンプじょうに いっしゅうかん とまりました。

He avoids using the first person singular pronoun, except in one place. He knows that Japanese people rarely use ぼく or わたし when it is clear that they are the subject of the sentence, for example:

  •  やすみに、かぞくといっしょに ロトルアに行きました。

The use of ぼく or わたし when not needed can make a speaker or writer sound a little arrogant to Japanese ears.

Understanding how language is organised for different purposes

Use of ながら means that no 'I' pronoun is required, since this form is used only for simultaneous actions referring to oneself:

  •  たべながら、マオリのダンスを みました。

The Japanese language uses katakana script for foreign or loan words. The text illustrates the appropriate use of katakana, for example:

  •  ロトルア (Rotorua), マオリ (Māori), マオリのダンス (Māori 'dances'), ハンギ (hangi).

Opportunities for developing intercultural communicative competence

The choice of Rotorua for the family’s holiday provides an opportunity for students to explore the significance of Rotorua as a holiday destination and to find out about one or more famous holiday destinations in Japan, especially destinations based around onsen.

Explicit comparisons could be made between cooking styles and diet; for example, comparing the hangi style of cooking to traditional Japanese cooking.

Last updated March 6, 2013