How to Say “Can You Teach Me Japanese?” in Japanese

Learning a new language can be an exciting and challenging journey. If you’re interested in picking up Japanese and want to ask someone to teach you, you’ll need to know how to express yourself in Japanese. In this guide, we’ll explore different ways to ask “Can you teach me Japanese?” in both formal and informal contexts. We’ll provide you with various tips and examples along the way to help you on your language learning quest.

Formal Ways to Ask

When speaking in formal settings, such as with superiors or strangers, it’s important to use polite language. Here are a few formal expressions you can use to ask someone to teach you Japanese:

1. 日本語を教えていただけませんか?(Nihongo o oshiete itadakemasen ka?)

Translation: Can you teach me Japanese?

This is a polite way to ask someone to teach you Japanese. By using “itadakemasen ka,” you show respect towards the person you’re speaking to.

2. 日本語の教授をお願いできませんか?(Nihongo no kyōju o onegai dekimasen ka?)

Translation: Could I request Japanese lessons?

This expression is more formal and suitable for situations where you want to express your sincere desire to learn Japanese.

Informal Ways to Ask

When talking to friends, peers, or in casual settings, you can use more relaxed language. Here are a couple of informal expressions you can use to ask someone to teach you Japanese:

1. 日本語を教えてくれる?(Nihongo o oshiete kureru?)

Translation: Can you teach me Japanese?

This is a simple and friendly way to ask someone you’re close to for Japanese lessons.

2. 日本語の勉強を手伝ってもらえる?(Nihongo no benkyō o tetsudatte moraeru?)

Translation: Could you help me with my Japanese studies?

This expression conveys the idea of seeking assistance rather than formal teaching. It is suitable for relaxed and informal situations.

Tips for Language Learning

Learning Japanese, or any new language, requires dedication and practice. Here are some helpful tips to enhance your language learning journey:

  1. Immerse Yourself: Surround yourself with Japanese media, such as movies, TV shows, and music. This exposure will help you develop an ear for the language and improve your comprehension skills.
  2. Practice Speaking: Find language exchange partners or native speakers and practice conversing in Japanese. Speaking regularly will improve your fluency and pronunciation.
  3. Use Language Learning Apps: Utilize language learning apps like Duolingo, Memrise, or HelloTalk to supplement your studies and reinforce what you’ve learned.
  4. Join Language Classes: Consider enrolling in Japanese language classes or hiring a tutor for structured learning and guidance.
  5. Keep a Vocabulary Journal: Create a personal vocabulary journal where you can write down new words and phrases you learn. Regularly review and practice using these words in sentences.


Let’s look at some example conversations using the phrases we’ve discussed:

Formal Conversation:

Person A: すみません、日本語を教えていただけませんか?(Sumimasen, nihongo o oshiete itadakemasen ka?)

Person B: もちろんですよ!どこから始めますか?(Mochiron desu yo! Dokokara hajimemasu ka?)

Informal Conversation:

Person A: おい、日本語を教えてくれる?(Oi, nihongo o oshiete kureru?)

Person B: ああ、もちろん!どんなことから始めたい?(Ā, mochiron! Donna koto kara hajimetai?)

Remember to adapt your language based on the formality of the conversation and the relationship with the person you’re speaking to.

Note: Regional variations may exist in the Japanese language; however, the expressions provided in this guide are commonly used throughout Japan.

Learning a new language can be a rewarding experience, and asking someone to teach you Japanese is a great step towards achieving fluency. Practice regularly, be patient with yourself, and enjoy the process. Ganbatte!

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