(Beginning Level) Japanese Study Resources: Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji

I thought I'd take a moment to share some of the resources I find most useful for beginning Japanese learners! I highly recommend you supplement them with a class or tutoring sessions, but please take a look.

1. Real Kana
This is an excellent site for memorizing hiragana and katakana (the first step for any Japanese learner). It simply shows you a character, and you must type the romanization. (For example, ? = a)
There is also a kanji version (for more advanced learners). This is great for memorizing readings, but it doesn't show you any english definitions, which is a big drawback in my opinion.
Warning: make sure you learn how to pronounce each sound correctly! (This is where a tutor comes in handy~ *wink*).
Genki is one of the common textbooks used for Beginning Japanese (another being Yookoso). This site is meant as a supplement to the textbook, but is useful for anyone who is starting to delve into the world of kanji. You simply select a lesson, then it will show you a kanji and you must type in the hiragana reading. (NOTE: you must set up your computer to type in hiragana! It's easy and so rewarding.)
Again, a drawback is that the site does not provide you with an english definition. This leads me onto my third and final resource... Anki.

3. Anki:
Arguably the greatest tool for any language learner. The god of flashcards in the digital age. Really.
Anki is an application for your computer (or device, if you have some money to spare) that allows you to create your own flashcards or download pre-made decks.
The app is totally customizable: you can have multiple fields on the card (for example: kanji, hiragana, AND definition!), make multiple decks, set a limit of cards to be quizzed on per day, choose certain problem cards to be re-quizzed on, etc. Anki does the work for you.

It's hard to explain in full, so I highly suggest you download the computer app (for free), and play around with it. Here you can access shared decks and give it a test run:

That's all for now! Please feel free to send questions my way, even if I'm not your tutor. (Of course, if you need a tutor, I'm here too!) Thanks for reading.
Ganbatte kudasai!
- Madeline


Madeline T.

Enthusiastic Japanese tutor with a diverse liberal arts background

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