Japanese Words & Expressions You Need to Know for School

This list is geared towards new JET(s) with little or no Japanese ability. If you print this and keep it at your desk or in your English classroom, it could save you a lot of stress and confusion! Printable version is at the bottom of this page.

Note to future editors: Please do not edit the list if you plan on overcomplicating it with difficult vocabulary! This is a survival guide, not a dictionary.

Places

  • Shokuinshitsu: Teacher's Room
  • Gakkou: School
  • Chugakkou: Junior High School
  • Shougakkou: Elementary School
  • Budoujou: Training Hall
  • Taiikukan: School Gym
  • Guraundo: School Grounds
  • Toshokan: Library
  • Kyoushitsu: Classroom

Teaching/Grades

  • Juugyou: Class/lesson
  • Sensei/Kyoushi: Teacher
  • Soumu: Head Teacher (grade)
  • Tantou: Head Teahcer (subject)
  • Gakusei: Student
  • Nensei: Grade
  • Ichinensei 1年生: First Grade
  • Ninensei 2年生: Second Grade
  • Sannensei 3年生: Third Grade
  • Ichi: 1
  • Ni: 2
  • San: 3
  • Yon/Shi: 4
  • Go: 5
  • Roku: 6
  • Ni Jikanme: 2nd Period
  • Souji: Cleaning Time
  • Hiruyasumi: Lunch Break

Subjects

  • Nihongo: Japanese
  • Eigo: English
  • Kagaku: Science
  • Bijutsu: Art
  • Taiiku: PE
  • Rekishi: History
  • Ongaku: Music

Classroom Vocabulary

  • Shiken: Test/Exam
  • Shukudai: Homework
  • Renshuu: Practice
  • Renshuu Mondai: Exercises
  • Nôto: Notebook
  • Kyoukasho: Textbook
  • Shiken: Test/Exam
  • Jisho: Ditionary
  • Pasokon: Laptop
  • Tsukue: Desk
  • Isu: Chair
  • Enpitsu: Pencil
  • Pen: Pen

Time/Date

  • Kyou: Today
  • Ashita: Tomorrow
  • Kinou: Yesterday
  • Getsuyoubi 月: Monday
  • Kayoubi 代: Tuesday
  • Suiyoubi 水: Wednesday
  • Mokuyoubi 木: Thursday
  • Kinyoubi 金: Friday
  • Doyoubi 土: Saturday
  • Nichiyoubi 日: Sunday
  • Ato De: Later
  • Ima: Now
  • Tsugi: Next
  • Tsugi no juugyou: Next lesson
  • Itsu desu ka: When?
  • Doko desu ka: Where?

School Events

  • Nyuugaku Shiki: Entrance Ceremony
  • Sotsugyou Shiki: Graduation
  • Bunkasai: Cultural Festival
  • Undoukai: Sports Day
  • Shuugaku Ryokou: School Trip

Miscellaneous

  • Shucchou: Work Leave
  • Nenkyuu: Paid Leave
  • Byoukyuu: Sick Leave
  • Bukatsu: School Club
  • Nichiban: Student Leader in a class
  • Kudasai: Please
  • Onegai Shimasu: Please

EXPRESSIONS AND PHRASES

  • Ohayo gozaimasu! : Good morning! (Say this every day when you walk into the shokuinshitsu)
  • Hajimemashite: How do you do? (Literally "I am meeting you for the first time")
  • Yoroshiku onegai shimasu: I am pleased to meet you. (Literally "Please make good relations with me" or "Please be kind to me".)
  • Kochira koso: My pleasure / Likewise
  • Watashi wa ________desu. : I am _____________.
  • (Country) kara kimashita: I came from (Country)
  • Konnichiwa: Hello! (say when you are passing teachers in the hall)
  • Sumimasen: Excuse me / Sorry
  • Gomen nasai: Sorry (more apologetic)
  • Shitsurei shimasu: Excuse me (more formal)
  • Osakini Shitsureishimasu: Excuse me for leaving before you (Say this every day when you leave school at 4:15!)
  • Genki desu ka?: How are you? / Are you well?
  • Shuumatsu wa dou deshita ka?: How was your weekend?
  • Ii tenki desu ne: Nice weather, isn’t it?
  • Itsu desu ka?: When is it?
  • Doko desu ka?: Where is it?
  • ~~ Chuugakkou de Eigo no kyoushi desu: I am an English teacher at ~~JHS.
  • Arigatou gozaimasu: Thank you
  • Dou itashimashite: You are welcome / Don't mention it / Not at all
  • Omedetou gozaimasu: Congratulations!
  • Daijoubu desu ka: Are you OK?
  • Douzo: Go ahead / Here you go
  • Itadakimasu: You say this to express your gratitude before meals (Elementary school lunch)
  • Gochisou sama deshita: You say this to express your gratitude after meals (Elementary school lunch)
  • Itterasshai: Take care / Have a nice day / Have a nice time
  • Ki o tsukete: Be careful
  • Odaiji ni: Take care of your body (say this to a friend who is sick)
  • Yonde kudasai: Please read it
  • Kaite kudasai: Please write it
  • Kiite kudasai: Please listen
  • Kurikaeshite kudasai / Repeato kudaisai: Please repeat
  • Mou ichido itte kudasai: Please say it again
  • Shitsumon wa arimasen ka: Do you have any questions?
  • Isoide kudasai: Please hurry up
  • Wakarimashita ka: Did you understand?
  • Wakarimasen: I don’t understand
  • Shitteimasu ka: Do you know it/them?
  • Ganbatte kudasai: Please do your best!

Click below for printable version:

English