Culture · Japanese Language · Living in Japan · Teaching · 早口言葉

早口言葉: Japanese Tongue Twisters

What can I say, I am at work right now and for the first time in a while I have two periods in a row with no classes to teach. Using the new elementary school English textbook makes it so that my free time is very free indeed as there is no prep I can really do.

Anyway, I started teaching English tongue twisters to my elementary school students as a way to help them improve their pronunciation. This month’s tongue twister is “Black Bug’s Blood” at least three times fast, but five if they can handle it. This mainly resulted the students erupting into fits of laughter at their own pronunciation and listening to their neighbor’s pronunciation. Needless to say, it was a success and their homework was to practice it and have it memorized by the next lesson. I am hoping to have a little contest between the lunch groups. I am trying to make this a monthly thing, but I would like it to be an every two week thing and then do something with all the tongue twisters they have learned at the end of the year.

Teaching English tongue twisters got me thinking that maybe I should post some Japanese tongue twisters here on my blog. Japanese call tongue twisters 早口言葉 (quick mouth words) and, just like in English, their tongue twisters make just about as much sense as their English equivalents. With that being said, I thought I would start with an easy one and make them a little more difficult with each passing week.

So, here is this week’s 早口言葉:

バスガス爆発
Hiragana : ばずがすばかはつ
Romaji : Basu gasu bakuhatsu.
Translation : The gasoline of the bus exploded

When I get home tonight, I will post a sound file here.

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