Nihongo Philacon has three levels of competition, rising in difficulty from level 1-3. The levels correspond to years of Japanese education – i.e. first year students should be able to compete at level 1, second years at level 2, etc.  JASGP encourages participants to register accordingly.

However, we recognize that not all Japanese programs move at the same pace. Students may register for a higher or lower level of competition than their years of study, but will need support from their teachers.  Participants MAY NOT repeat levels – i.e. if a student participates at level 1 in 2012, they must proceed to level 2 in 2013.

Below is a guide to the content covered at each level.

Level 1

Content: Self, Food, Animals, Colors, School, and Calendar

Level 1 participants should be able to exchange greetings; Give self-introduction (name and age); Ask questions about others; Use formulaic expressions; Identify things (classroom objects, animals, pets, etc.); Tell and ask time; Express days of the week; Express numbers and quantity (1-99); Express likes/dislikes, Read/Write katakana and hiragana

Level 2

Content: All of Level 1 plus Seasons, Weather, Location, Clothing, Family

Level 2 participants should be able to handle Level 1 content and express numbers and quantity (1-9999); Report routine events; Express location; Express existence; Negotiate basic social routines; Ask for clarification or repetition; Express dates and relative time; Identify conditions.

Level 2 participants will also be questioned on the follow kanji:

百 千 万 円 月 火 水 木 金 土
日 本 人 学 生 先 大 小 上 下
中 外 前 後 右 左 時 間 分 半
毎 曜 週 年 今 明 来 行 入 出
食 飲 話 聞 書 見 会 帰 男 女
私 名 好 国 回 語 山 何 口 町

Level 3

Content: All of Levels 1 & 2 plus Leisure, Shopping, Friends, Home, Health, Holidays, Restaurant, Occupations, Schedules, and Transportation.

Level 3 participants should be able to address Level 1 & 2 content and report past and future events; Ask for a specific item; Identify and describe physical features (relative size, color, qualifiers, etc.); Issue and respond to invitations; Describe mode; Make suggestions; Express quantity (basic counters); Express ability; Express physical condition; Express wants and needs; Request assistance; Express preferences; Give simple evaluations; Describe progressive action; Express movement; Obtain information (ask simple questions); Express frequency.

Level 3 students should be familiar with Level 2 kanji and the following additional kanji:

父 母 兄 姉 弟 妹 家 族 子 自
朝 昼 夜 天 気 雨 雪 安 新 古
東 西 南 北 春 夏 秋 冬 教 室
高 校 勉 強 弱 店 屋 所 料 理
色 赤 青 白 黒 音 楽 運 動 紙

Culture Questions

In addition to the content described above, there will be some questions at all levels that speak to Japanese culture.  Categories include:

  • Body language and gestures
  • Clothing
  • Food
  • Geography
  • Japanese calendar (festivals, holidays)
  • Musical instruments
  • Politics
  • Youth and culture