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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 3

Example 3: About holiday plans

ベンくん、ぼくと つぎのやすみに ロトルアに行きませんか。今学校

で マオリ語を べんきょうしているので、ファカレワレワむらの ふるいたてものを みたいです。ハンギは おいしそうですね。どこで たべることができますか。ロトルアで おみやげを たくさん かうつもりです。

Context and text type

Ben, a learner of Japanese, receives an email from Takeshi, a Japanese international student, about the holiday that they are going to take together. This is an extract.

Text type

Email, informal. Receptive.

Observations a student might make concerning:

Information, ideas and opinions communicated in the text

Takeshi suggests a possibility for a future holiday:

  • ぼくと つぎのやすみに ロトルアに行きませんか。

He asks where it is possible to eat a hangi meal:

  • どこで たべることができますか。

He expresses a future intention – to buy lots of souvenirs:

  • おみやげを たくさん かうつもりです。

How the writer expresses personal ideas and opinions

Takeshi expresses his opinion on hangi food initially as an adjectival statement, then as a conjecture, saying it looks delicious:

  • ハンギは おいしそうですね。

He expresses a desire to see some old buildings in Whakarewarewa village:

  • ファカレワレワむらの ふるいたてものを みたいです。

When Japanese people use the たい form, the particle is often changed to . But sometimes the is retained, as in this example.

How the writer communicates appropriately in the situation

Takeshi addresses Ben by name at the beginning of the email:

  •  ベンくん、ぼくと つぎのやすみに ロトルアに行きませんか。

He uses the くん term of address to signify that he and Ben already have an established relationship.

Takeshi would most likely sign off his email in a particular way, but as the text is an extract, we don’t get to see this.

How language is organised for the writer’s purpose

Takeshi uses the linking structure ので、(a more polite form of から) to explain why he wants to see some old buildings in Whakarewarewa village – he is studying te reo Māori:

  • 今 学校で マオリ語を べんきょうしているので、ファカレワレワむらの ふるいたてものを みたいです。

Takeshi uses katakana script to identify words that are not historically part of the Japanese language, for example, New Zealand place names:

  • ファカレワレワ (Whakarewarewa), ロトルア (Rotorua); aspects of Māori culture: ハンギ (hangi); people’s names: ベン (Ben).

The text illustrates the way in which Japanese writing uses a mix of kanji and hiragana and katakana scripts; for example:

  •  ベンくん、ぼくと つぎのやすみに ロトルアに行きませんか。

Opportunities for developing intercultural communicative competence

Whakarewarewa village may not be known to all students, creating an opportunity for them to explore the features of the village and find out about the different buildings in a Māori village. These could be compared with those of a traditional Japanese village, and with buildings in villages of other cultures known to students.

Takeshi’s reference to buying おみやげ provides an opportunity to explore the convention of taking back souvenirs for friends, family, and workmates. This can be compared with comparable practices in other countries. Students could explore the commercial opportunities this practice offers countries like New Zealand that have high numbers of tourists from Japan, China, and other Asian countries.

How might students apply the knowledge they have gained to create Japanese language texts of various types?

Last updated March 6, 2013