Guide: How to Say “School Club” in Japanese

Welcome to this comprehensive guide on how to say “school club” in Japanese! Whether you’re a student or simply interested in Japanese culture, you’ll find this information helpful. In this guide, we’ll cover the formal and informal ways to express “school club” in Japanese, as well as provide tips, examples, and regional variations when necessary.

Formal Expressions:

In formal settings, such as during official school events or when speaking to teachers and faculty members, it’s important to use appropriate language. Here are a few ways to convey “school club” formally in Japanese:

1. Gakusei Bu (学生部)

The most common formal term for a school club is “Gakusei Bu” which directly translates to “student club.” This expression encompasses various extracurricular activities organized by students within a school. For example:

“Watakushi wa eigo gakusei bu no iinchō desu.” (私は英語学生部の委員長です。) – “I am the president of the English Student Club.”

2. Buka Bu (部活部)

Another formal way to refer to a school club is “Buka Bu,” which stands for “Bukatsu Bu” meaning “club activities.” This term is commonly used to indicate various sports and other club activities organized by students within a school. For instance:

“Kare wa futōbu no iinchō desu.” (彼は剣道部の委員長です。) – “He is the captain of the Kendo Club.”

Informal Expressions:

When speaking with friends, classmates, or casually mentioning school clubs, you can use informal expressions. Here are a couple of common ways to convey “school club” in a less formal manner:

1. Kurabu (クラブ)

The term “Kurabu” is often used in informal conversations to refer to school clubs in general. While it may also mean regular clubs outside of the school context, it’s widely understood when talking about extracurricular activities within an educational institution. For example:

“Wasuremono kurabu ni san-nin ga iru.” (忘れ物クラブに3人がいる。) – “There are three members in the Lost and Found Club.”

2. Bu (部)

Using only the term “Bu” is another informal way to indicate a school club, particularly when the context is clear. This abbreviation is commonly understood by students and can be used during casual conversations or with close friends. For instance:

“Anime-bu ni ikō!” (アニメ部に行こう!) – “Let’s go to the Anime Club!”

Regional Variations:

Japanese language and dialects vary across different regions. While the formal and informal expressions mentioned earlier are widely understood throughout Japan, there might be some regional variations regarding how “school club” is referred to. Here are a few examples:

1. Kenkyūkai (研究会)

In some regions, “Kenkyūkai” is used as a regional variation for “school club.” Although “Kenkyūkai” literally translates to “research society,” it can also encompass school clubs that focus on specific academic or research interests. Examples include:

“Kagaku kenkyūkai” (科学研究会) – “Science club”

“Gengogaku kenkyūkai” (言語学研究会) – “Linguistics club”

2. Bu-kai (部会)

“Bu-kai” is another regional variation that might be used to refer to a school club. This term combines the word “Bu,” meaning “club,” with “kai,” which refers to a meeting or gathering. Together, they describe the nature of the club as a gathering of individuals with shared interests. For example:

“Dōwa bu-kai” (童話部会) – “Fairy Tales Club”

“Shumi bu-kai” (趣味部会) – “Hobbies Club”


Congratulations! You’ve gained valuable knowledge on how to say “school club” in Japanese. Remember, when speaking formally, use “Gakusei Bu” or “Buka Bu.” In informal conversations, opt for “Kurabu” or the abbreviation “Bu.” Explore regional variations such as “Kenkyūkai” or “Bu-kai” to showcase your understanding of linguistic diversity. Keep practicing these expressions to confidently navigate discussions about school clubs in Japanese. Best of luck with your language learning journey!

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Written by Kristin Amanda

Hello! I'm Kristin, but my friends call me "The Japanese Whisperer". Between taking tranquil hikes in the countryside and stalking quaint thrift stores, I dedicate my time to demystifying Japanese language. Immersed in the vibrant culture for over a decade, I harmonize English phrases with Japanese like a seasoned swordsmith forging a katana. Whether you're keen on greetings or romantic proclamations, I've got you covered. Armed with my trusty computer and love for sushi, grilled cheese, and peach flavored candies, I'm ever ready to dispense the essence of phrases, ettiquette and zesty Japanese idioms. よろしくお願いします (Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu)!

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