JLPT Stories - New Resource for listening and reading

Tofugu has published their monthly resources article and one of those is absolutely fantastic!
It provides listening practice by JLPT level (N5 to N1). Each (very short) story is spoken by a native speaker and has a transcription of the audio. Grammar points are bolded in the transcription and you will find a link to an explanation of said grammar point. If you need it, they also provide a translation to English.

I think, this is a very valuable resource and it’s free !



I love their resources articles so much. Thanks for posting!

The n5 stuff is really fast in comparison with the speakers at the actual test, but thats good.


I just had a listen to all the N5 stories. Wow are they fast. I think I recognize most words and most grammar (when I caught it), but it goes too fast for me to catch what is actually said. Only one of them I got a more complete idea of what the whole story was about. The other three I only managed to catch bits and pieces (aka the simplest sentences).

According to the WK blog, it is normal/native speed. So it is pretty cool to get to practice that. I think I’ll listen to them about once a week until I can catch more. (I was already planing to add in extra listening practice each week, so this came at just the right time!)


I am listening to the N3 and N2 stories right now, in a vain attempt to become better at listening a mere week before JLPT (listening is my week point)… The stories are really fun and the transcript with underlined grammar super useful. Good find !

But yeah I listened to the N5 stories and unfortunately the speaker (Yuuma) talk ridiculously too fast for this level. Actually the speaker of the N4 stories (Daisuke) talk slightly slower so @MissDagger, @Sulax maybe you can take a stab at them ? :thinking: (but then of course the grammar is tougher)


Thanks for the tip! I might very well try the N4, but I think I’ll try to get more N4 grammar under my belt first. So far I’m only listening and not checking the transcript, not even after or listening again with it. I want to practice pure listening even if it will be a bit painful because I won’t understand much. (I’m also daily listening to the weather forecast and man, I’m happy if I can pick out a word per sentence! Usually 雨 right now since it is the rainy period in Japan.)

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Wow that’s a gold mine right there!
Considering I haven’t dipped my toes into listening practice at all really, was quite surprise how much I understood from the swimming story in N5. Mainly vocab and the simplest grammar like recognizing something is in past form. The fact that they take the grammar points directly from the story is so helpful to me, since I have a hard time remembering rules when only given loose example sentences. Having everything tied up nicely into a story is awesome. Now onto tackeling that grammar I missed.


Thanks. Looks like a great resource.

I am going to Tackle n4 this weekend anyway

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I have listened to the swimming story and I was just able to make out a word here and there. But to understand a whole sentence, I’m still far away from.
Then I changed the speed to just half of the original. While this is painfully slow, I managed to understand a lot more…

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My teacher recommended reading along with the script to improve listening skills. Reading the script will also identify gaps in your vocabulary and grammar knowledge.

I enjoyed the stories too. Even though I passed N4 last year, I found the N5 too fast on the first listening. Then I read the script and it all made sense.

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If you listen of Spotify, you have the option to slow down the audio to .8x or .5x if it’s going just a little too fast for you. At .8x speed, it still sounds natural and makes it slightly easier to follow!

After reading above impressions here, I was a bit afraid of those N5 stories.
Imagine how good it felt when surprisingly I was able to understand them at original speed :slight_smile:
They were fast, but not to too much. I think I missed word or two in the first one (about high school). The second one (about college exams) was easier (also because it reused some topics from the first).

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