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How Does One Become a Japanese Language Tutor?

By Jon, published on 20/02/2018 Blog > Tutoring > Advice for Tutors > Becoming a Japanese Language Tutor: Everything You Need to Know

Practiced by more than 127 million people, Japanese is today the 9th most spoken language in the world.

Thanks to its impressive cultural growth, Japan is attracting more and more American people, who flock to discover the country’s latest technological inventions!

Many of our compatriots (and especially the young people) are now interesting in knowing the Japanese language by heart.

So, why not get started with Japanese tutoring?

Whether Japanese is your mother tongue or not, you can easily find a wide range of students interested in your classes.

Here are our tips to help you become an in-home Japanese tutor!

How to Become a Japanese Tutor

Depending on the type of teaching you are interested in, teaching Japanese will fluctuate in difficulty.

If you want to be a traditional teacher and give classes in Japanese grammar, Japanese writing, or Japanese conjugation in school, you will need a diploma! But tutoring jobs are great jobs for ex teachers or those looking for a way around getting a diploma.

Indeed, national education asks that its teachers have a BA in the language in order to teach at the middle school and high school level.

If you are looking to be a professor/researcher in Japanese, you will need to catch a recruiter’s eye with a PhD.

On the other hand, if you want to become a Japanese tutor, no diploma is needed!

Private tutoring is open to all from the age of 14 onwards.

 

temple-japan How about learning Japanese in the heart of Japan, where everything is almost as picturesque as what is pictured here?

 

However, some elements of your professional training will be particularly appreciated by your student:

  • Having lived in Japan, studied in Japan, taken a language study trip there or worked in Japan for a few years,
  • Having a BA in Japanese,
  • Having an MA in Japanese,
  • Having another language certification,
  • Taking a MOOC course on the Japanese language and culture,
  • Passing a Japanese SAT Subject Test

A trip to the country of Geishas is of course recommended, and almost mandatory.

During Japanese language classes, many students want to discover the country of the rising sun’s culture!

In order to know the Japanese culture by heart, the best is to live in immersion in the Japanese archipelago and communicate directly with the inhabitants.

Whether you are a Japanese-American or simply one of our compatriots, you will be able to give Japanese language lessons at a regular pace to ensure the progress of your students!

What Level Do You Need in Order to Give Japanese Classes?

To teach Japanese, no need to have a Master’s degree!

First you need to master the basics of the language:

  • Know how to count in Japanese,
  • Know most of the signs of the language (kanji, kana, katakana or hiragana),
  • Learn to pronounce Japanese words well,
  • Have a good Japanese accent,
  • Practice speaking with native speakers (for example, having a Japanese penpal),
  • Master the different word elements,
  • Know suffixes (sama, kun, chan, senpai, sensei etc.),

Eventually, you should know the details of life in Japan (courtesies, Japanese cuisine, how a normal conversation happens etc.).

The basic teachings of the Japanese language can easily be mastered through Japanese language intensives, for example.

You do not have to be an expert in the language: many students will use your services for a simple introductory course.

Therefore, whatever your level, you can offer Japanese language classes to American students!

lost-japanese Get lost in the Japanese language!

4 types of teachers are distinguished:

The professor-student who teaches beginners to finance his studies.
The bilingual teacher who has already traveled to Japan and who is fluent in the language.
The native teacher who has Japanese as his mother tongue.
The teacher of National Education who is a graduate and / or an associate.
Of course, your level will have a direct impact on the price of your private lesson: the more qualified you are, the more expensive your class will be!

It is not enough to analyze his level to teach Japanese, but that of students, then?

Yes, some types of students will be more adapted to your teaching: for example, if you have a plethora of Japanese diplomas, you will be a great teacher for a student trying to pass the Japanese SAT Subject Test or studying for an entrance exam to a Japanese school. Beginner students are more suited to teachers-in-the-making.

How Do You Find the Students for Your Japanese Classes?

Learning Japanese has never been so popular!

Attracted by its very original culture, many young American people today want to travel to Japan and be part of a host family in order to immerse themselves in the springs of this civilization.

If you look hard enough, you cannot miss the slew of students interested in Japanese classes!

You still don’t know how to find students for your Japanese classes?

Here are some techniques to help you:

  • Talk to your family and loved ones about your teaching approach in order to allow for word of mouth.
  • Get the word out in your neighborhood to promote your classes.
  • Post ads in schools to reach students directly (language schools, university…).
  • Post ads in department stores in order to reach families.
  • Start a teacher’s profile on sites such as Superprof…

geisha-class What if you dressed up as a geisha for your classes?

If “physical” ads do not work, try to post your tutoring ad on the internet.

Thanks to Superprof, you can give Japanese lessons remotely: with only your webcam, you will be able to reach students from all over the United States of America!

Do not hesitate to surf the chat forums dedicated to the country of the rising sun. There are tons of active ones where students ask for tutors!

You may be able to contact a student interested in your private tutoring lessons!

Don’t forget to indicate your contact information (email address, phone number …) on your ads in order to facilitate communication with the students. Some sites even offer online chatrooms to discuss Japanese classes!

No need to travel to Japan: you will go directly to the student to help him progress in the language of Mishima!

How Does One Organize a Japanese Tutoring Class?

Having a student is not everything. Once you have them how can you teach Japanese effectively?

What is the best way to organize your Japanese tutoring class in order to get good results?

First, use your first hour of class as a kind of introduction to any future teaching.

Its important to define the student’s expectations: between easing into discovering the basics of language to expressing themselves in everyday life, there is a difference!

You will also have to know where your student is headed.

If he or she wants to prepare a Japanese entrance, for example, your lesson should be more academic.

Also be aware that learning a new language is much more effective for young students!

If your student is an adult, you will need to take your time and use pedagogical methods to help him or her in his or her late learning.

Start with the basics of teaching:

  • Revising previous lessons,
  • Textbook exercises,
  • Online tests,
  • Getting an adapted schedule going,
  • Definition of short or long term goals,
  • Constantly learning new signs in Japanese writing (there are more than 5000 to remember!),
  • Assessment of skills at the end of the session.

However, you do not want your Japanese class to be like a classic school lesson.

Tutoring’s greatest asset is its originality!

If you would like to differ from a basic class, it’s essential for you to really take a look at the Japanese culture.

japanese-culture Sushi is a great way to get a student interested in the Japanese culture!

Don’t hesitate to introduce the Japanese culture to your student:

  • Mangas and animated cartoons,
  • Video games,
  • Robots
  • Calligraphy,
  • Japanese cuisine,
  • Origami,
  • Ikebana,
  • Reading haikus, etc.

Your class will become much more educational and you will awaken your student’s deep interest in the subject!

How to Set the Right Price for Japanese Classes?

Do you want to get started in Japanese language teaching, but you do not know how to price your Japanese class?

Do not panic: here are our solutions!

First of all, keep in mind that the average of a Japanese course on Superprof is 20.17 €. This price can obviously vary according to your teaching.

Indeed, depending on your type of course and your experience, rates can change from 10 € / hour to 30, or 40 € / hour!

Here are some conditions to consider:

  • If you go through a private tutoring organization, the company will set the price of your course.
  • If you go through an online platform (Superprof, for example), it’s up to you to choose your rate.
  • The price evolves according to your diplomas and experiences.
  • The price changes according to your student’s level.
  • Your available material will have your course rate increase or decrease (for example, if you help your student to learn calligraphy through your own material, your course will be more).
  • The distance can lead to important transportation costs: adapt your rate to the student’s distance from your home.
  • You can offer attractive packages to get more students (for example, for ten hours of classes purchased, one hour is given free).
  • On Superprof, 92% of our teachers do not have students pay the first hour: this introductory session will allow you to better define your future rate according to the expectations of the student.

current-money The average rate for one hour of Japanese tutoring is 25 USD.

If you choose Japanese as your foreign living language, you won’t face a lot of competition.

Indeed, the most popular languages remain French, Spanish and German!

Thanks to this, you will not necessarily need to lower your prices to make you stand out!

Thanks to our advice, you now have the keys in hand to get started in the Japanese private education realm!

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