Teen Japanese Language Camp in Japan

Video and Photos

uchi
uchi
hanabi
hanabi
Torii Layers
Fukuoka from the air
My friend and I at a shrine giving respect to the gods as well as getting our fortunes. The guy red shirt is from Turkey.
Taiko drumming was one of our class excursions where we were trained by professionals who travelled around the world to perform.
"Encouragement" from a monk...This is what they do for monk trainees. I now have a new respect for monks.
Explore Fukuoka, Japan during your language camp abroad.
Explore Fukuoka, Japan during your language camp abroad.

About

Learn and improve your Japanese skills through full language and cultural immersion on Greenheart Travel’s summer language camp programs in Fukuoka, Kyoto, or Tokyo, Japan!

We welcome teen students of all skills, including beginners! Live with a Japanese host family and make international friends from around the world, all while perfecting your Japanese language skills.

Program-at-a-Glance:
- 20 hours of class a week (4 core classes per day in 2 hour blocks)
- Daily cultural and historical excursions
- Accommodation with local Japanese host family allows for full immersion
- Camps located in downtown Fukuoka, Kyoto, and Tokyo, Japan

Now accepting applications for Winter 2019/2020 and Summer 2020 programs!

Highlights
  • 20 hours of language classes per week
  • Medical Insurance and 24/7 Emergency Contact Support
  • Assistance from a personal program manager before, during and after your program
  • 2 meals per day (Breakfast & Dinner) included in the program
  • Be eligible to apply without having to meet any language requirements for Fukuoka location

Questions & Answers

Yes, we do have camps then occasionally! Email Connor at ccargill@greenheart.org for more info!

Hey Natalie. You will fly there on your own (we have students flying in from all over the place so we don't have just one flight) but we'll make sure you feel comfortable with the directions and how to navigate the airport. Once you get there you will be picked up at the airport and in a group or with your host family the entire time you're in Japan.

We accept teens from ages 14-19 years old in Japan!

Yes, the total costs to pay are as listed there! The fee includes all accommodation, 2 meals per day, and language classes while you're in Japan, as well as a lot of other things that you can read about here: https://greenhearttravel.org/program/teen/language-camps/fu… It does not include your flight to Japan, however. The cost of a flight depends on where you are coming from...

Reviews

9.64 Rating
based on 11 reviews
  • Growth 9.5
  • Support 9.5
  • Fun 9.3
  • Housing 9.8
  • Safety 9.7
Showing 1 - 8 of 11
Default avatar
Grace
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experience in Fukuoka!

I went to Fukuoka, Japan the summer after my sophomore year of high school when I was 16, and it was the best experience of my life! I met so many incredible people from all over the world at Genki JACS and my host family was the best anyone could ask for. I was originally only supposed to go for 4 weeks but I was having such an amazing time that I extended it a 5th week.

Host family: I was nervous when I first met my host family, but they turned out to be some of the kindest, sweetest people I'd ever met! They spoke some English, but I used Japanese with them as much as possible. I ate dinner with them every night for about the first 3 weeks (I later started to go out with friends as I got closer to people) and my host mom would always make wonderful meals. My favorite dinner was when my host mom prepared okonomiyaki for us. It was SO GOOD! I would also have lots of interesting conversations with them during and after dinner comparing different cultural things. Staying with them helped my Japanese improve significantly, as I always had my Japanese-English dictionary app with me so I could look up words I didn't know. This improved my vocabulary significantly. My host family also took me a few places such as to a baseball game, a music festival, and a shinto shrine (Dazaifu). Overall, they were the best host family I could've asked for!

Daily life: Usually I would wake up, go to school, get lunch out, and then explore around Fukuoka for a little bit. Fukuoka is extremely safe and I never felt even slightly in danger. I could walk around with my phone in my back pocket and my wallet with my bus pass in my hand and didn't have to worry about a thing. The train station Hakata Eki is also a huge shopping center, so sometimes I would go up to one of the higher levels where there was a stationary store and I would buy postcards to send to family and friends. There is also a Japan Post Bank very close to the station so I could easily send them there and the staff were very friendly and helpful. You can also take out money from your account at any Japan Post Bank, so look for those! I also enjoyed either walking or taking the bus to Tenjin where there is an underground shopping center around the train station and food hall where I would often try different foods. Then I would take the bus home, shower, eat dinner with my host family, and do homework in the living room while my host dad watched TV. Sometimes I would also call my family or friends from home from inside my room. As I made more friends, though, I would sometimes go out to dinner with them or explore around the city and hang out at Kego Kouen (Kego Park), which is where lots of young people hang out on Friday nights and weekends.

School: Genki JACS was a fantastic school with very kind, friendly, and patient teachers. I learned a lot there and always felt comfortable. I also became friends with many of the people in my classes, and I still keep in touch with some of them! People there are a range of ages and many are in their 20s (the youngest I met was 14), but it never felt uncomfortable. Everyone was friends regardless of age and was supportive of each other. We usually got about one worksheet a night and would go over it the next day in class.

Friends: Most of my friends actually ended up being other foreigners attending Genki JACS, but they were all incredible people. I would hang out with them a lot after or in between class and explore parts of the city with them. I even ended up going on a hike with some of them at a nearby mountain!

Fun experiences: By far my favorite experience was actually something I coordinated outside of the program with some friends, so I encourage people going on this trip to not be afraid to seek out some of their own adventures! I went on an incredible hike with a bunch of people from my program through the rain. It was super challenging, but well worth the breathtaking view at the top. We could see the city, the mountains, and the land for miles. Another fun experience was when I went with Genki JACS to Shikanoshima, a nearby island. The water was so clear and blue and we went to a hotel for part of the day where we had the option of onsen as well as a huge meal. My host family also took me to onsen about a week before the trip to Shikanoshima on the same day we went to the shrine. It was a very positive experience and I felt a lot less awkward than I thought I would've. I got a few curious glances being a foreigner, but everyone was pretty unconcerned and was just enjoying the relaxing experience. I'm glad I went with my host family because my host mom and sister were able to show me the whole cleansing process before getting into the water. I would highly recommend onsen to anyone going to Japan, as it was very body positive and helped me realize how unique all bodies are. Another interesting experience I had was doing some modeling! I'm biracial (African American and Caucasian) and so my tightly coiled hair was a marvel to many people in the country. I was walking in Tenjin station one day when a man asked to do my hair! So we coordinated and I brought some friends with me to his salon as a precaution and he styled my hair and we did a photo shoot! It was a lot of fun and made me feel a lot more confident in a country where I very clearly looked like no one else.

Take aways: I feel like I definitely matured a lot during my trip. I learned to be independent, to not shy away from new experiences and adventures, and to make decisions on my own. I would highly recommend this trip to high school and college students especially because the city is so safe and is a wonderful environment for growing and maturing without many risks. The people I met from around the world at Genki JACS really expanded my horizons and increased my desire to travel even more (my trip actually lead me to visiting a friend in their native country a few months later!). My Japanese language skills improved a lot and my vocabulary in particular expanded. Between classes and my host family, I started to be able to just shoot out phrases without thinking, which was an amazing feeling.

If you have any questions or want more info, I posted about it on my Instagram @graceinnihon. Feel free to message me about it!!

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Octopus. My first full day in Japan, I went to a music festival with my host family and afterwards, we got takoyaki. Takoyaki is a kind of dough-like ball with a little bit of octopus on the inside and lots of flavorful, savory sauces drizzled on the outside. I didn't want to be rude and seem close minded, so I ate it and it was actually delicious! I order them now in the U.S. when I'm at Japanese restaurants and I even introduced them to my friends. My host mom would also put octopus chunks in my salad sometimes for breakfast (she was the kindest woman and made me breakfast EVERY day!) which took getting used to but I grew to like it a lot!
Read my full story
Default avatar
Dahn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Sending My Kid

My 17 year old daughter participated in the Teen Language Program in Fukuoka, Japan this last summer. This was without a doubt the scariest thing I’ve ever done. Putting my kid on a plane to Amazingland alone was emotional and frightening, but I just kept reminding myself that this was for her, and I didn’t want my fear to be her roadblock. So, in front of her I was all brave in my SuperMom cape. Behind the scenes, I was a disaster, but the difference in my daughter from that moment when she left for Japan and when I picked her up was simply astounding. She was uncertain and nervous when she left, but returned all smiles and confidence. Her speaking skills improved tremendously with full immersion. Greenheart took excellent care of us, and Connor was a joy to work with! So if you’re on the fence, count this as encouragement to take the step. This experience entirely reshaped my daughter. Now, when she talks of college, she shows interest in much more significant degrees than she did before. She thinks bigger now and has set her bar much higher than it was before. She has learned that just because something seems scary doesn’t mean it’s beyond her reach. She is already trying to figure out how to get back to Japan and has begun saving her money again. So, yes, as a mother I was sure I’d lost my mind when I agreed to this, but I definitely got cool mom points for supporting her when it was time for her to level up.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
If I could send her again I would send her for longer. The teachers in the school there were really good. My daughter was sorry her trip was so short. We had played it safe, though, and started with two weeks. Now we wish we had signed up for longer!
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Madison
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experience!

This program was an amazing experience and it is something I will never forget. I never expected to have this chance and I’m so glad that I did. The staff at greenheart travel were amazing and answered all 101 of my questions. I felt very safe while I was there and walked all over. My favorite part about the whole trip was my host family. I could not have been placed in a better family. They matched my personality and took amazing care of me. I hope to visit them again someday. The placements were very good as everybody I talked to loved their families as well.
The classes were fun and fast paced and I really enjoyed them. There was a lot of homework and my host family had to help me with it but overall I really loved this program and would gladly go back

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
I ate so many unfamiliar things including raw eggs, intestines, raw fish, and many more. They were very interesting and not really my favorite but I’m glad I tried everything
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Margaret
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Life changing

I learned so much more not just about the language but I got to really dive deeper into the culture of japan. I made friends from all of the world and would not trade this experience for anything. If you ever get the chance to go abroad take it. You will be amazed at how it changes your views. This program really exceeded my expectations. My host family was truly wonderful and I really felt a part of their family. If I have learned Japanese a few years earlier I wish I would have been able to study abroad there. I plan on going back next year for six weeks. There are so many fun and exciting things to do in japan. A tip is to get out as much as possible if you stay inside all the time you're going to miss all the amazing things that are included in the program.

What would you improve about this program?
Nothing. I loved everything about it wish I would have chosen to stay longer.
Default avatar
Irene
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My stay in Tokyo

I only stayed in Tokyo for 2 weeks, but it still was one of my best experiences abroad!
My host family was really kind and funny and I could adapt to their everyday life easily. They had a daughter my age so we really bonded and it was very nice.
The school (GenkiJACS) and Greenheart Travel staff members (Allison Yates) were really helpful with everything and I appreciate their support! The classes were practical and useful, having different teachers everyday was really fun. At the school I was able to meet wonderful people and now I have friends from all around the world.
I'm very glad I joined this program and I recommend it to anyone willing to learn about Japanese culture and language!

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Emily
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Fukuoka Experience

I had one of the most amazing families anyone could get! They were the sweetest and did not mind showing me around anyplace I wanted to go. I loved Hakata station and an old lady basically pulled me into a crammed elevator while laughing because I was afraid I couldn't fit! The people in this particular town seemed so nice and open to foreigners. I personally felt like I fit in there. The staff was fun and did not mind if we asked what certain things were or got particularly confused even if the rest of the class got annoyed. Everyone had such a positive atmosphere that even the rain didn't seem to phase.

What would you improve about this program?
I'd personally like more contact from Greenheart but not too much. They did contact me about twice while I was over there and I might suggest maybe an email each week for this particular program because it is rather short.
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Samantha
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My Stay in Japan

I was able to make close friends from around the world and was also able to become close with my host family. ( I still contact them and I hope to be able to see them again in a couple years.) The staff at GreenHeart Travel (Allison Yates) and GenkiJACS were amazing and they were able to answer all my questions. The only things I regret not doing were not being able to attend the last school day due to the weather. Thus making me not able to say proper goodbyes to anyone at the school. Also, I wasn’t able to go to all the places I have wished to go to. During me stay there, I was able to find some fantastic boba milk tea. I would be happy to share where I got them from if you want to know. (Sorry, I just had to say this because I love boba a lot....haha.) I do feel like the culture excursions on Saturdays could be improved. Overall, I feel that this trip was amazing!

Default avatar
Alexander
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A really great adventure.

I was in the summer language camp program for two weeks, and those two weeks were a fantastic time, not only was the school very nice and I feel I learned a lot, but being located in Tokyo, and living with a host family helped my language and communication skills increase exponentially, and I have also felt the experience in general has made me more able to communicate with people, even if I am doing it in English. I would definitely do it again if I ever have the chance.