• This course is offered in Term 1 (Feb-Apr) and Term 3 (Aug-Sep) each year.

  • This course is offered as a live-streamed Zoom course only and has no in-person component.

Date & Time:

  • Our 2023 Term 1 class is held on Thursdays beginning 16 February 2023 from 6:30-8:00pm and continues for 8 consecutive weekly sessions.

Time Zone equivalents:

for live-streaming Zoom Sessions from New Zealand. If your Time Zone doesn't suit our live-streamed class, you can also access our courses by watching the live-recorded sessions that are posted to the course webpage each week, usually the next day.

  • Honolulu, Hawai’i: begins Wed 15 Feb 2023, 7:30-9:00pm

  • US Pacific: begins Wed 15 Feb 2023, 9:30-11:00pm

  • US Eastern: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 12:30-2:00am

  • London, UK: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 5:30-7:00am

  • Paris, France: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 6:30-8:00am

  • New Delhi, India: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 11:00am-12:30pm

  • Bangkok, Thailand: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 12:30-2:00pm

  • Singapore: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 1:30-3:00pm

  • Tokyo, Japan: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 2:30-4:00pm

  • Sydney, Australia: begins Thu 16 Feb 2023, 4:30-6:00pm


  • Our Introductory Japanese 101 course begins with a focus on learning hiragana and katakana scripts, writing and reading practice, and includes basic introductory grammar, vocabulary and conversation. Basic everyday vocabulary and expressions will be taught, always with a view to empowering learners so that they feel encouraged to build their own sentences and be able to make some simple conversation during our first Term. This course is designed for a total beginner who would like to learn basic pronunciation, greetings, simple conversation, and introductory reading and writing. Our instructors will guide you through a foundation of the Japanese language with many visual and audio materials.

  • Please note that this course is offered via Zoom only and has no in-person component. You can access the live-streamed sessions and interact with the rest of the class and the teacher, or you can choose to watch the video recordings of the live sessions, which are usually available 1-2 days after each session (which allows time for our video editors to edit and post each session to the course web page).

Meet our Instructor:

Japanese instructor Hidekazu Oka

Hidekazu Oka is a 24 year old originally born in Tokyo, Japan. Before he settled in New Zealand seven years ago, he lived in Singapore for two years, and Taiwan for five years. Hidekazu is currently a third year student at the University of Waikato, double-majoring in Mandarin and Mathematics as well as being a Mandarin class representative in his second year. At the moment, Hidekazu is planning to develop a career teaching Japanese and Mathematics at the secondary school level. In his spare time, Hidekazu enjoys watching motorcycle vlogs, while dreaming to own his own motorcycle again, as well as enjoying authentic Chinese foods.


This course is offered as a Zoom-only course and is available via the live-streamed sessions or the posted video-recordings of each live session posted 1-2 days after each class session. There is no in-person component.

Other in-person classes are held at the EarthDiverse offices and classrooms located at 401 Anglesea Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton (located just north of the Hamilton Central Bus Station) (entrance is located on the side of the building, see map below). Those looking for parking for our evening classes can park just in front of the building in any of the available car parks. Daytime parking can be found in our dedicated car parks, or free 2-hour on-street daytime parking can be found just in front of Anglesea Street.

Distance Learning:

This course has distance-learning options only and there is no in-person class component. Learners have two options to attend this course once they have registered:

  • Attend our live on-line classroom sessions via Zoom at the regular scheduled day and time.

  • Watch the live-recorded class sessions at your leisure, at a time, day and place more suited to your schedule.

Distance-Learning option:

  • In addition to our in-person classes in Hamilton, our courses offer distance learning options for those unable to attend classes in-person. Live-streamed Hamilton classes are available via free Zoom software for those living outside the Waikato. Live-streaming allows you to participate fully in your own learning, ask questions of the instructor and participate fully in the same way as if you were in the physical classroom.

  • Those unable to attend the scheduled date and time of the actual class sessions, or those who need to miss a class or two due to previous engagements or unexpected illness, can watch any or all of the live-recorded video sessions on their computers, laptops, tablets or mobile devices and study at their own pace and in their own time.

  • Detailed instructions on how to access our distance learning components will be sent after completing your registration. There are no additional fees for this service. However, distance learners will need access to a desktop or laptop computer with a good quality web-camera (tablet devices and mobile phones can also access our live-streamed classes), a built-in microphone (most modern laptops have built-in microphones) or a headset with a microphone. You will also need to download and install the free Zoom software on your computer or device. Those accessing the video recordings will be able to do so with a simple web browser on any device.

Pricing options:

All prices in NZ dollars and includes GST. Unwaged includes students, seniors and retirees.

Course curriculum:

Week by week new material will be posted throughout the duration of the course. Video recordings of each weekly session will be posted here after 1-2 days after each class.

    1. EarthDiverse Course Information

    2. EarthDiverse Zoom instructions

    1. Japanese writing practice sheet

Additional course info:

  • Videos and PDF content of class presentations or whiteboard notes are uploaded weekly after each live session
  • Begins on Thur 16 Feb 2023
  • NZ time: Thursdays 6:30 - 8:00pm


  • Those who cannot make the class meeting day and time either in-person or via live Zoom sessions may consider accessing this course through the weekly recorded video sessions. Class videos are posted within 24 hours of each live class session and are available for your own personal learning session on a day and time of your choosing.


  • Introductory Japanese materials will be used throughout the course and are included in the course fees. These will be distributed as PDF files and posted to the course web page each week, which you can print at home and add to your own loose-leaf notebook. These may be supplemented by additional materials. You will require a pen or pencil, a notebook for taking notes, and perhaps a recording app on your phone to record yourself and your spoken progress. Any notes that your instructor writes on the class whiteboard will also be posted as a digital PDF file on the course web page so that you can print these out at home and add them to your own notebook.


Prerequisites for this Course:

  • There are no prerequisites for this course.