Japanese Classes NYC – 日本語

Thank you for coming to our website and expressing an interest in our Japanese program. We have multiple offerings for individuals and organizations to learn Japanese.

Group Class Schedules

Class Schedules

Summer Daytime Intensive

Summer Daytime Teens

Private Classes




For more details on the Japanese program, please visit:

Teacher Profiles        – Student Testimonials     – Curriculum

Japanese classes can also be taken in the below format:

For Credit                     – For Business                 – Online

Private Classes for Adults

CONTACT US About Private Lessons for Adults

Would you like to get the best out of your experiences traveling to Japan? How about you’re looking to develop in depth knowledge and functionality in Japanese, and group classes in the past haven’t worked for you? Do you have a specific need in Japanese to develop your language skills quickly?

Hills Learning’s curriculum for Japanese comprises both language and cultural instruction. For each class, we follow our SWIRL methodology, developing at least three of the five language skills per class. Our main goal for Japanese private lessons is to develop conversational skills, but we also specialize in test prep (JLPT and others), cultural etiquette, business, or just general language acquisition.

Within this basic framework, Hills Learning’s staff develops curriculum and assessments based on student needs and goals. Private lessons are a unique opportunity for students to learn Japanese at their own pace.

Private Classes for Teens (Japanese Tutoring)

CONTACT US About Japanese Lessons for Teens

Are you (or your young teen) interested in learning about the Japanese language and culture? How about your teen watches hours of anime or reads manga, and would like to learn the Japanese language? Maybe your teen wants to eventually travel to Japan or study abroad?

Hills Learning offers a unique opportunity for teens learning Japanese in private lessons. We can not only teach them the basics of the alphabets, reading, writing, and conversation, but it’s also possible that the classes your teen is taking with us can be transferred to their respective high school or college for credit. Please see For Credit for further information.

Teacher Profiles

Our Japanese teachers are native speakers of the language and have many years teaching experience:

Japanese classes nycSAYOKO

Sayoko is very dedicated to her teaching craft, having been a teacher for over 15 years and taught all levels of students looking to learn Japanese. She has certificates of Japanese teaching proficiency, a BA from Osaka University of Arts, and has also attended NYU.

“Learning a new language is a lot like cooking. You can’t make a delicious meal by just reading a cook book! It takes many times practicing and using the language to become regularly proficient. My lessons are interactive and we go well beyond the textbook.”


Kaoru has a strong international background, having lived and taught in Cambodia for 13 years and has learned to varying degrees the Cambodian, French, Vietnamese, Tibetan, Chinese and Korean languages. Besides teaching Kaoru has also worked for newspapers both in Tokyo and New York.

“In my classes I always try to encourage as much Japanese language communication as possible with minimal English. I love teaching students who are passionate about the Japanese culture and I look forward to every new class.”

Japanese classes nycAYA

Aya has a BA in linguistics and has undergone multiple certification programs for teaching Japanese. She also has masters degree from Naropa University. Aya has multiple experiences as both a translator and instructor. Her masters degree in theatre gives an interactive element to her classes.

“I believe the joy of learning foreign language is in the moment one can communicate in the target language.  Therefore, I try to use my class time for students to practice using Japanese in real situations that they will encounter in everyday life.”

japanese teacher nycYURIKO

Yuriko, a Tokyo native, graduated from Waseda University. She worked for a publishing company specializing in language educational materials and eventually published several books on language. After she acquired a Japanese teaching certificate in 2003, she became motivated to teach with an interest in improving US-Japanese relations, one student at a time.

“Language is a significant part of culture. I also like to demonstrate the peculiar nature of Japanese society and its culture by teaching the Japanese language with authentic real world materials.”


Nobuko has a masters degree from the University of Arkansas and also a teaching certificate for teaching Japanese as a second language from YWCA College in Osaka. She is also a licensed teacher in Japan. She has worked as an intrepreter, translator and Japanese teacher in both the private and public sectors for over 20 years.

“I have vast experiences learning foreign languages such as English, Spanish, Korean and Chinese. I believe my personal experiences learning and teaching foreign languages enhances my ability to teach Japanese and give students real world skills in the language.”

Student Testimonials

At Hills Learning we offer classes for a variety of students that take Japanese with us. Our students are usually serious about learning Japanese, but also like to enjoy themselves in class and are usually interested in the culture as well as the language.

Please read more about what our students are saying:

Isaiah R (Group Class Student) – “The instructors are very good. They don’t just teach in the classroom, they teach you how to teach yourself. I’ve studied Japanese at different language schools in New York, university courses, as well as private lessons and by far this school is absolutely the best. The best not only for the level of instruction and student:teacher ratio but also because the school actually truthfully listens to what your language learning goals are as well as properly assess your current language abilities to point you in the correct direction to help you achieve your language learning goals. ”

Gabriella B (Group Student) – “If you are looking for a friendly, but professional place to learn Japanese, Hills Learning is the place to go. My teacher is a native speaker who has a background in linguistics. She can give specific, clear explanations of any kanji or grammar questions one might have. The atmosphere is casual, but serious. Classes are small. The sensei corrects each student’s homework nand explains errors individually. ”

Chunming L (Private Student That Passed N1) – “The teachers’s been a great help with my prep for JLPT 1 and she makes the effort to go beyond textbook material by organizing discussions of current events and modern Japanese culture. I’m going into the exam fully prepared and expecting to do well..”


Our Japanese curriculum is designed to develop the speaking and listening components of the language. Our philosophy is target language only, meaning our students communicate in Japanese and practice using the language in the classroom.

Our main textbook series that we reference is the Genki series. The textbooks include audio cds for listening practice and drills. Hills Learning also adds to our Japanese curriculum authentic materials and other resources for students. We also have our own unique assessments that check in on student progress and help our students by providing individual feedback on strengths and weaknesses.

Here is more detail about our 40 levels of Japanese classes:

http://www.hillslearning.com/resources/japanese-hills/ – curriculum details