“Yasashii Nihongo” Seminar 「やさしい日本語」講演

Hi! Janeです。


On July 10, Saga City CIR Alex were able to hold a “Yasashii Nihongo (Kind/gentle/easy Japanese)” seminar for the first time! Despite worries over the approaching typhoon, we had an unexpectedly full house. (About 70 people!)

Yasahii Yasashii2


What is “Yasashii Nihongo”?

It is Japanese that is adjusted to the target audience’s age, Japanese language ability, disabilities, level of understanding, etc. to make spoken and written communication more effective.


  1. 対象者にとって難しいことを把握しましょう!
  2. 「当たり前」を考え直してみましょう!
  3. 実際に使ってみましょう!

The seminar was divided into the following three parts:

  1. What is particularly “difficult” for Japanese language learners
  2. Re-evaluate “common sense”
  3. Practice



At the end of the session, we broke up into groups of 4~5 to discuss what we learned. Here are a few interesting comments from the participants.

  • 確かに、私たちも海外に行ったときは「やさしい英語」で話しかけてほしいですよね!自分に置き換えて想像したら、共感しやすかったです。
  • 子どもに語りかける時の言葉づかいを参考にするといいとのことでしたが、大人相手にそのような言葉づかいをするのは、少し、抵抗がありますよね…でも、やっぱり、「そちらは危険ですよ!」で伝わらないなら「それ、あぶないっ!」って言うべきだし、災害が起きた場合には言葉づかいの丁寧さより命を救うことの方を優先するべきですよね。
  • If I go on vacation somewhere, I’d want people to use “yasashii” English with me, too! I found I could relate easily if I put myself in others’ shoes.
  • We learned today that imagining how you would speak to a child could give you a good idea of how to simplify your Japanese. That being said, I’m hesitant to speak to an adult as if they were a child… But, when you think about it, if they’re not going to understand “Please be careful, that is hazardous”, it would be better to say “Stop, that is dangerous!” and especially in the case of a natural disaster, we should put people’s safety before politeness.


Lastly, the Saga Shimbun newspaper ran an article on the event. Please check it out! (Click on the image to view the larger image)



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