Category Archives: Grammar

Difference between ように and ために


おはようございます (Good morning). This is a repost. =)

For this article, I did a reference from this book: 初級日本語文法と教え方のポイント by: 石川保子先生. Her books are really very good. Please support her books.

Let’s take a look at 「ために」 first.

A   ために、 B
Chinese translation of 「ために」: 因此,因而,所以
原因・理由を表す (Describing Cause/Reason)
For A: Put in a sentence that describes cause or reason. It can also be a sentence that describes a purpose. A sentence that should have with a cause/reason and result.

Let’s take a look at an example.

Sentence 1:
Because of some urgent business, i cannot attend the afternoon meeting.
Let’s take a look at another sentence.

Sentence 2:
Because of some urgent business, please allow me to rest from the afternoon meeting.

Sentence 2 is not correct. For B, you cannot have sentences that describe volition.
目的を表す (Describe Purpose/Aim)

When you are using this grammar for describing purpose and aim, it is ok to have sentences that describe volition for B

Example Sentences:

For the sake of protecting my family, i worked hard
For the sake of protecting your family, please work hard

For the sake of protecting your family, Work hard!
Now, for 「ように」

A ように B
Chinese translation for 「ように」: 为了

For A: Put in a sentence that describes a purpose.
Example Sentences:
In order to be able to understand Japanese conversation, every day i listen to the tape.

In order to raise the children up, the parents are working hard

In order for the cold not to get worse, do take your medicine and go to bed early.
There are lots of examples that before 「ように」, verbs that are non volitional or verbs with ない form are used.

You can take it as in order to achieve the result that is describe by B, A is done.

For 「ために」, you already know in your consciousness (意識) that you need to achieve something , so you express the will to want to complete something.

Like in this sentence,
For the sake of protecting my family, i worked hard

as compared to 「ように」 whereby you express the aim and what you are doing to achieve the aim.

In order to raise the children up, the parents are working hard
Some other good examples out there:

Difference between に and で – Repost



こんにちは。This is a repost.
(Today, i received my correction for my teaching course assignment. There’s a question in the assignment regarding 「に」 and 「で」 which i like to talk about. )

① 移動行為の方向を示します. 英語の「to」に大体対応します。 (Indicate a direction of a movement act. It’s similar to 「to」 in English. )
② また、間接目的語の後ろにも置かれます。 (Also, it is also put after an indirect object.)
私はAKB48コンサートへ行きます。 (I went to AKB48 concert. (point 1) )
姉は私に辞書をかってくれました。 (My sister bought a dictionary for me)

① 活動場所を示し、場所の後に置かれます。 (It indicates the place of the activity and is put after the place)

AKB48会場で歌を聞きます。 (I listen to songs at AKB48 concert hall)
秋葉原駅で待っています。 (I am waiting at Akihabara)

In contrast to the above example on 「で」, 「に」 is a particle that describes existence, let’s take a look at the below examples.


② 「名前はそこ書きました。」

What are the differences between and ?

For ①、 you are describing that the location of where your name is being written to (to a piece of paper) . 「i wrote my name over there (maybe somewhere on a piece of paper)」

For ②, you are describing that the location of where the action of “your name is written (e.g on a table/in a room) ” 「i wrote my name over there (on a table/room/etc) 」

③ 「庭物置を建てた」 (In the garden, a store room is built)

④ 「庭物置を建てた」 (In the garden, a store room was built)

For ③、 the place where the store room exists is in the garden. There’s a possibility where the garden can also be somewhere else in the garden.

For ④、the building of the store room is done at the garden, where the store room is, it is probably somewhere else in the garden.

⑤ 「あそこボールを投げる」 (I am throwing the ball to over there)

⑥「あそこボールを投げる」 (I am throwing the ball over there)

For ⑤、You are describing the location of where the ball will end up (あそこ)

For ⑥、You are describing the location of which the action of throwing the ball is being done.

⑦ 「そこステレオがあります」 (There’s a stereo over there)

⑧ 「そこパーティがあります」 (There’s a party of there)

Also, if you are describing location of nouns that has no movement (e.g ステレオ), use 「に」。

For unnatural/dynamic nouns (e.g パーティ,結婚式 ), use 「で」.

⑨ 「仕事に疲れる」(精神的にまいっている) 

⑩ 「仕事で疲れる」(肉体疲労)

In sentence 9 and 10, 「に」 is used for mental fatigue, 「で」 is used for physical fatigue.

Introduction to 未然形 2 (Conjugation of ない-form/受身形/使役形)



Today i will be talking about conjugation of ない-form/受身形/使役形.

Yesterday we looked at 未然形 (in this post, i will refer it as 未).

Let’s take a look at how to change to the various forms.

Group 1 verbs/五段動詞

ない-form: 未+ない (かいますー>かいー>かわ (未然形)→かわない)

受身形: 未+れます (かいますー>かいー>かわ (未然形)→かわれます)

使役形: 未+せます (かいますー>かいー>かわ (未然形)→かわせます)

使役受身形: 未+されます (かいますー>かいー>かわ (未然形)→かわされます)

Exception: verbs on the さ row

使役受身形: 未+せられます (はなしますー>はなしー>はなさ (未然形)→はなさせられます)


Group 2 verbs/ 一段動詞

ない-form: 未+ない (たべますー>たべ (未然形)→たべない)

受身形: 未+られます (たべますー>たべ (未然形)→たべられます)

使役形: 未+させます (たべますー>たべ (未然形)→たべさせます)

使役受身形: 未+させられます (たべますー>たべ (未然形)→たべさせられます)


Group 3 verbs/ サ変動詞, カ変動詞



します→されます (Exception)

します→させます (Exception)

します→させられます (Exception)

Notice all the exceptions uses さ, instead of し? I will explain a bit more in the last article. So hold your doubts for the moment.


ない-form: 未+ない (きますー>きー>こ (未然形)ー>こない)

受身形: 未+られます  (きますー>きー>こ (未然形)ー>こられます)

使役形: 未+させます (きますー>きー>こ (未然形)ー>こさせます)

使役受身形: 未+させられます (きますー>きー>こ (未然形)ー>こさせられます)

Tomorrow, i will discuss on the basic grammar under ない-form.

Thank you.


Introduction to 未然形 1 (Imperfective form)



At the request of some students, this week i will be writing about 未然形 (みぜんけい), ない-form, 受身形 (うけみけい/passive form) and 使役形 (しえきけい/causative form)

I am sure those who have studied Genki, Minna no Nihongo or any other textbook, you would know what is ない-form. So what is 未然形 (みぜんけい)?

未然形 is one of the forms that native Japanese learn in school to form ない-form, 受身形、使役形、意向形, etc. In this week`s articles, my focus will be more on 未然形, ない-form, 受身形 and 使役形.

In the Japanese language (known as 国語/こくご) that native Japanese learn, there is only 未然形、連用形、終止形、連体形、仮定形 and 命令形。
How to form 未然形?
Group 1 verbs/五段動詞

Step 1: Remove 「ます」from the verb.


Step 2: Change the last Hiragana to あ-段 (だん)/ あ-column

ー>かわ (未然形)

Note: All い will change to わ (e.g つかいますー>つかわ)

Group 2 verbs / 一段動詞

Step 1: Remove 「ます」from the verb.
たべます->たべ (未然形)

Group 3 verbs /サ変動詞 (さへんどうし) and カ変動詞 (かへんどうし)
ますー>し (未然形)
ますー>こ (未然形)

Tomorrow i will start to talk on how to conjugate to ない-form、受身形 and 使役形。


Introduction to Keigo Part 4: 丁寧語


こんばんは。Next up, we have our 丁寧語 (ていねいご), one of the easiest of 敬語。

I guess most of us are familiar with ~です or ~ます. How about ございます or でございます?



This is what we call 丁寧語 (ていねいご) / Polite form. It express the politeness towards the other party through the usage of polite words. It is also used widely regardless whether there is a person of higher status or not. It is one of the most common forms that is used in daily life.

If you are having issues using Level 3 (尊敬語) or Level 0 (謙譲語), you might want to consider using Level 1 (丁寧語) instead. This is something that you will never go wrong. However, from the listener’s point of view, if they are of a higher status, they might get angry why you are not using Keigo.

I remembered i got my 1st job working as a Japanese call centre agent and i did the whole phone interview in Keigo. The IT manager and the director were very impressed with me (at that time, my level was only about N4), so knowing Keigo does help.

日本語: 丁寧な言葉づかいによって相手への敬意を表す。高める相手の有無を問わず幅広く使う。

Example sentences:

こちらは としょかんの じむしつ です。(This is the library’s administration office)

あそこは きのくにや です。 (Over there lies Kinokuniya (a Japanese book store)

There is something else that you guys might not know. That is joining adjectives with ございます。I read that it is not so commonly used. Nonetheless, let’s cover it.






I was asked some questions by some students on Reddit. I would reserve all the questions until the end of section and end off with the frequently asked questions.

Have a great day ahead.






Introduction to Keigo Part 1: Types of Keigo



Today, I will be introducing Keigo as part of the new series upcoming for next week.

Let’s learn the different types of Keigo that we have today.

In the olden days, there were only 3 types of Keigo, 尊敬語 (そんけいご), 謙譲語 (けんじょうご) and 丁寧語 (ていねいご).

In 2017, another 2 types of 敬語、丁重語 (ていちょうご), a subset of 謙譲語 (けんじょうご) and 美化語 (びかご) were identified.


If you were to ask your sensei, they might not know about 丁重語 (ていちょうご) and 美化語 (びかご).

Next week, I will start to talk a bit more about the various forms in greater detail, but first, I need you all to understand some examples of these 5 types of Keigo.

尊敬語 謙譲語 丁重語 丁寧語 美化語
いらっしゃいます 申し上げます 申します たべます ごはん
おっしゃいます うかがいます まいります のみます おみず

Question: Why are we learning the 5 different types when we can survive with 3 different types?

Answer: I will give an analogy. If the price of the food is now $10 instead of $8 two years ago, would you be able to get away just by paying $8? Chances are the restaurant staff might ask you to fork out another $2. Same theory over here. To appreciate the language better, it is better to learn the new concepts rather than the old concepts as taught in the textbooks. I personally encountered problems with Keigo previously. Since i have learned a bit more about Keigo, i hope to share what I have learned, so that it is easy for you all to pick it up.

The next few posts i will go into more detail in the following order.

  1. 尊敬語 (そんけいご/ Honorific form)
  2. 謙譲語 (けんじょうご/ Humble form)
  3. 丁寧語 (ていねいご / Polite form)
  4. 丁重語 (ていちょうご / Courteous form)
  5. 美化語 (びかご / Beautifying words)

Thank you for reading and have a great weekend ahead.

Its 1225am here in Singapore.


Giving and Receiving 3 with いただきます



I have fallen ill (burnout), but nonetheless, i still want to finish writing this set of posts.

Today, i will cover いただきます。Let’s take a look the difference between いただきます and もらいます。

For those who have not read Part 2 of the series, i will repeat myself again.

Level 2 refers to 目上の人(i.e superiors, seniors, teachers, etc).
Level 1 refers to people who are in the same social status (i.e friends, acquaintances, etc).

Let’s take a look at the following example from the post 2 days ago.

わたしは ともだちに 花(はな)を もらいました。 (I received flowers from my friend)

In the event, if you are receiving something from someone who is in a higher status than you, e.g seniors, superiors, teachers, etc, it may be better to use 「いただきます」instead of 「もらいます」。

Some examples would be:

わたしは せんせいに 花(はな)を いただきました。 (I received flowers from my sensei)

わたしは しゃちょうに おみやげを いただきました。 (I received souvenirs from my company director)

Red: Giver of action
Blue: Receiver of action
Green: Object

Take note that if you were to use 「もらいます」or 「いただきます」, the person receiving has to be you or someone who is emotionally close to you (e.g your family members, your colleagues at your company).


I hope you understand today’s article. Part 4 would be one of the hardest to understand, i would try to break it down so that it is easier for you.