Donguri Kai

All classes will be online as of 3/19

Donguri Kai provides children who have Japanese learning experiences a continuing education for advancing their Japanese language skills and knowledge of Japanese culture.

Our program helps children become proficient in Japanese language and culture through shared experiences in a stimulating learning environment.

All classes are taught in Japanese and participants are encouraged to use Japanese during the class.

Program Objectives:

  • Create a positive learning environment by incorporating various activities of cultural events, singing, reading, experiments, crafts, and physical activities
  • Reinforce practical conversational skills and listening comprehension
  • Build a foundation of reading and writing Japanese letters with systematic approach
  • Support student’s continuous learning by utilizing the JF Standard for Japanese-Language Education
  • Assist the family to foster the student’s long-term goals by providing information and resources

Level 1: Basic Learner 1 (max 12 students)


This class is for children who have some Japanese learning experiences and are interested in reading and writing letters. This course concentrates on vocabulary, greetings, and phrases that are commonly used in daily life. The class practices Hiragana writing with stroke orders.

Required language proficiency:

  • Children in kindergarten through 2nd grade;
  • Able to  understand instructions in Japanese and participate in class activities, and;
  • Can recognize some Hiragana letters and/or read own name in Hiragana letters

*  Please use “Self Assessment Guide of Japanese Comprehension for Donguri Kai” to assess your child’s Japanese comprehension prior to registering to the Level 1 class.

2020 Winter session (10 classes):
Saturdays, 10:00 am – 11:15 am (75 mins)
January 25, 2020  to April 4, 2020 
* No class on March 14

Tuition (10 classes)
JASC Member: $230 (Sibling discount $161)
Non-member: $280  (Sibling discount $196)

Level 2: Basic Learner 2 (max 8 students)


The class learns Katakana words and basic sentence structures. The class focuses on listening and reading comprehension and conversational skills.

Prerequisite: Take level 1 before this class, or contact the instructor for a level assessment.

Required language proficiency:

  • Between Kindergarten and 2nd grade;
  • Able to understand some story content and topics related to basic personal and family information;
  • Can read and write all Hiragana letters with some assistance
  • Can use common phrases and sentences to express own needs and ask questions to friends  

 2020 Winter session (10 classes):
 Saturdays, 9:00 am – 10:30 am (90 mins)
 January 25, 2020 to April 4, 2020
* No class on March 14

Tuition (10 classes)
JASC Member: $275 (sibling discount $192)
Non-member: $335   (sibling discount $234)

Level 3: Independent User 1

This class focuses on  reading sentences with Hiragana, and Katakana, and writing multiple sentences. The class utilizes  conversations and presentations to reinforce subject matter.

Prerequisite: Take level 2 before  this class, or contact the instructor for a level assessment.

Required language proficiency:

  • Kindergarten and older
  • Can understand conversation content of native speakers when spoken to slowly
  • Can read a short picture book with some assistance
  • Able to compose short sentences to describe own needs and give direction  to others

*No class offered in this session

Level 4: Independent User 2 (max 8 students)

This advanced class targets children that are able to use the Japanese language through reading, writing, and communication without assistance. The class emphasizes in amplifying vocabulary, expressions, and Kanji words, enhancing written and verbal communication skills through various projects.
A kanji class is introduced once a month for building Kanji knowledge and search skills

Required language proficiency:

  • Kindergarten and older
  • Can comprehend a story of Japanese books, children TV shows, or movies with with an outline
  • Able to discuss with friends about their immediate environments (e.g., school)
  • Can independently read picture books written in Hiragana at a minimum
  • Can write short sentences independently

 2020 Winter session (10 classes): 
Thursdays, 4:30 pm – 5:45 pm (75 mins)
January 23, 2020 to April 2, 2020
* No class on February 27

Tuition (10 classes)
JASC Member: $270 (sibling discount $189)
Non-member:  $330 (sibling discount $231)

Donguri Class Student Policies

  1. Attendance

Students are expected to attend all classes and are responsible for keeping up with all classwork. 

For student absences both planned and unplanned, please notify the instructor of your child’s absence prior to class or as soon as possible.

At the second absence, within 3 days a parent is requested to evaluate with the instructor the child’s ability to continue the class.

  1. Classroom Behavior

In order to maintain a pleasant learning environment for everyone, students are expected to follow these basic rules in class. Please make sure that your child understands and follows these rules: 

  • Come to learn and participate in class activities.
  • Respect other students’ interest in learning. Do not distract class activities or interrupt other students from learning. If a student elects not to participate, they will be allowed to remain in the class but may not be disruptive or require special attention from the staff.
  • Donguri classes are not designed to be open play periods for children.
  • Please try to speak Japanese with the teachers as much as possible, using the words and sentences learned in class. Feel free to ask teachers any time for help in speaking or understanding Japanese.
  • Donguri students must always stay in the classroom space. Teachers’ permission is always necessary for using the restroom or leaving the classroom space. This is necessary as there are many programs and attendees of other programs at JASC during Donguri classes.

In the event a student cannot demonstrate appropriate classroom behavior, they will receive a 1st warning from the teacher. Should the student require a 2nd warning, their parent(s) will be notified. Upon the 3rd warning, a parent must accompany the student in class until appropriate behavior is demonstrated.

  1. Parent/Family Support

The Donguri program often holds several special events throughout the year that depend on parent/family participation. These events are part of the curriculum and are opportunities for students to practice and demonstrate their skills to family members. Please try  to make an effort to attend these special events to support your child’s participation in the program. Other family members and friends are highly encouraged to attend. Participation and support may also include donations for supplies and food items for these events.

Click here to download Donguri Class Student Policies

If you have questions about the status of your membership please contact the office at jascinfo@jasc-chicago.org or 773.275.0097.  Use this form to become a member or renew your membership.

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