Do you use Yomichan? It’s an amazing—and free—way to look up Japanese words instantly in your browser. In this video, we’ll go through how to install it and then Clay will give an example using NHK’s beginner-level news site, News Web Easy.
- Download for Chrome (or Brave) or Firefox here: https://foosoft.net/projects/yomichan
- Install the plugin
- Go back to https://foosoft.net/projects/yomichan/ and download at least the J-E-J dictionary and the Pitch Accent dictionary
- Bam! You are done.
To use, simply mouse over a Japanese word and press the SHIFT key.
- Brave Browser: https://brave.com/ (Highly recommended—earn BAT tokens for free too!)
- Yomichan: https://foosoft.net/projects/yomichan/
- NHK’s News Web Easy: https://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/easy/
- Anki: https://apps.ankiweb.net/
Hello, this is Clay from theJapanShop.Com.
Reading is one of the best ways to learn
vocabulary, improve your understanding
of Japanese sentence structure
and understanding grammar, but it can be
a challenge, especially for beginners.
In this video I will show you how
to quickly look up words
using a browser plugin.
A free browser plugin called Yomichan.
With this plugin, you can quickly look up
words, find example sentences,
and look up the pitch accent again.
It's completely free.
Reading native level Japanese is
something you should do every day.
However, without some help,
it may be more frustrating
than productive for beginners.
And by the way, if you are a beginner
or upper beginner,
I do recommend our digital bundles.
Every sentence is broken down, every
word defined and grammar is explained.
And of course your support
is greatly appreciated.
But if you are an upper beginner or
intermediate or above,
you need to be reading native level
Japanese and it's never been easier.
And with Yomi Chan,
it is easy to read a novel in your browser
or read at the latest news article.
Simply go to the Yomichan website and I'll
leave a link below in the description
and you can read all about what it does.
It even has on demand audio playback.
For most words, you can see the Kanji
for clicking on the characters.
You have two choices
Google Chrome and Firefox.
Now I'm actually using the Brave browser,
which is something I totally recommend,
especially if you're Privacy focused.
But Brave browser works with Chrome.
It based on the Chrome architecture,
so click on that.
If you're using Brave,
once you do that, you install it and then
you come back to this web page
to download the dictionaries.
If you're a beginner,
I recommend just getting the English-Japanese
dictionary here unless your native
language is not English,
and then the pitch accent
that dictionary at the bottom here.
I recommend starting with those two
because as you add more to these,
it fills up all of the options and it can
be kind of a mess
to parse through and try to figure out
what is the best translation for what
if you're an intermediate level, go ahead,
have fun download everything because
the more information is better
and you know what to look for.
I assume you have it installed
and let's give it a try.
Now, if you're a beginner, I recommend
starting with NHK News Web Easy page.
Again, we'll leave the link
in the description below.
It has recent Japanese news articles,
but in simpler Japanese and all
of the Kanji have furigana over them so
you can read them even if your Kanji
ability isn't that great,
I'm just going to pick one of them.
This one looks kind of cute.
so there's a baby Cheetah in Wakayama Ken.
Now this easy web obviously already has
furigana, so you can get the reading
without having to use Yomi chan.
But let's say you just don't
know what Wakayama Ken is.
If you mouse over it and hold down
the shift key, it gives you
the definition which of course, is
So what I do is I often just kind of start
reading an article, and if there is a word
I don't know at all,
of course I look it up if there's a word
that I kind of know,
but I don't know, maybe the
pitch accent and you can come down
here and this shows the pitch accent.
So this is a heiban word made
instead of Umareru.
You can get the correct
Or I should say that the standard Japanese
pronunciation, depending on what you have
installed, the more you have installed,
the more information will give you.
But again, I think if you're a beginner,
just stick with the main dictionary
in the pitch accent dictionary, and then
you will get all this information here.
Now let's say also, you want to study
what does this Kanji actually mean?
You can click on the Kanji and you can see
the stroke order and meanings, readings,
which of course, this is one of them that
has just a ton of readings.
I mean, I knew this would be a lot,
but that's that's insane.
Anyway, it tells you the JLPT level,
and I don't know if that's N5 or
it's the old four level,
because I would assume that would be
on the easiest test in five level anyway.
And the grade level would be the Japanese
elementary school grade level.
First graders learn it
stroke count and frequency.
I guess that's tied to newspaper.
How often it shows in newspaper,
maybe in novels as well.
So it's a very, very common
word Kanji, of course.
And you can look it up depending on what
Kanji textbook you're looking at.
It gives you all that information, and all
this information is absolutely free.
That's just amazing.
And another good thing about the easy web.
It also has a recording where
you can listen to them.
You can turn off the furigana and turn it on.
It's very, very good for beginners.
And of course, it works with any website.
So I like to read a news article a day
and just to try to try to learn new
vocabulary and to see what's
happening in the world or in Japan.
Actually, more interested in
what's happening in Japan.
So you can go on to an article and Taifun 14 go
you can say what is this high
wave and you look and it says high wave,
heavy seas and it gives you
the pronunciation taka Nami.
And so you can read
through articles easily.
Now reading in itself,
you will learn vocabulary, words, you'll
learn about pronunciation and so forth.
But to help it stick,
it's best to make flashcards.
And I use personally the Anki program,
which is free except for the iphone.
It costs a little bit of money
for the iphone, but and I really
only use it for the iphone.
I believe there's a way you can connect
Yomi Chan to go directly into Anki,
but since I only use it on my iphone and I
think it's important to actually
physically type things in, it helps you.
It's one more layer to help
you remember the word.
I tend to do that.
So whenever I see a new word,
I put it into my Anki, and then
every day I review my Anki.
If you were not familiar with Yomichan,
I highly recommend installing it.
Stopping what you're doing
right now and install it.
The links are in the description below.
If you are familiar with Yomichan or some
other, there are other browser extensions.
I would love to hear your thoughts
on it in the comments below.
How do you use it to improve
your Japanese vocabulary?
So until next time?
This has been Clay from theJapanShop.com.