Japanese Language Lessons in London
Himeji Jo, Japan

Learning Japanese

Testimonial from a current student

I have been taking weekly lessons for just one hour with Nori for over 3 years. With his guidance I've developed from a rudimentary understanding of basic grammatical constructs and minimal vocabulary, to being able to read news, manga, novels. I'm able to understand videos, movies and anime and, most important, converse in daily casual and professional conversation. Nori finds materials and articles that match your level and interest; he speaks to you in Japanese at a good speed to force your listening skill to develop. He also takes time not simply to explain the usage of certain constructs, but shows you why they exist. With Nori you will learn the actual history of the language you learn, which is interesting and helpful in learning and understanding, and instrumental to memorising.

I think it's obvious that I recommend Nori from the perspective of a long term learner. If you're serious about Japanese, he’ll get you to the next step and guide you on your journey.

The focus of your learning will typically be on speaking and listening as having these basic skills will make it easier to extend your knowledge. The Japanese language uses three different character sets - Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji. It is recommended to at least learn Hiragana (it's not as difficult as it looks) as this will increase your understanding of the sounds or phonemes used in Japanese. This can be added to as your learning and confidence develops with the katakana characters and Kanji (Chinese characters) - indeed I can help you learn up to the 2,000 characters in common usage by most native Japanese and more.

All teaching is done through the English language.

Dependent on your needs, we may forego reading and writing if not thought necessary.


You should only expect limited progress if you depend solely on the teaching activities. I will usually give tasks for you to do between lessons so that you can also be learning independently and reinforcing what you’ve been taught in your own time. The best time to do this is either straight after the lesson or just before the next one.

Text Books

I would typically follow a text-book based structure to your learning and am familiar with most books used in the UK (e.g. Japanese for Busy People, Minna no Nihongo, Genki etc.), so if you have already started learning with one book, then we can continue with it.

Our recommended course book however is "Japanese For Everyone - A Functional Approach to Daily Communication" by Susumu Nagara (Gakken) with its Workbook, Kanjibook and Tapes and we occasionally use the additional supporting resources e.g. listening and task based materials, such as "楽しく聞こう” or "にほんご きいて はなして".

These textbooks are obtainable only from Amazon for relatively low prices, though the workbook and kanji book for "Japanese For Everyone" are out of print but second hand books are still available from Amazon UK. Please check the Learning Materials section of this website.

Where you require tuition to support your studies for a formal qualification e.g. GCSE/A Level or JLPT exams, then the appropriate set books for that syllabus will be used.