How to Learn Japanese

learn the japanese language, it might be a little difficult at first, but knowing the right way to learn can make your learning much easier.

Like my sensei explained, for a person to be fluent in a language, which in this case is Japanese, depends on some factors and the most important is the input.

What is Input?

It is nothing more than information you absorb, that is, everything you receive. As examples we can mention listening and reading. Output would be talking and writing.

For simplicity Input would be the input and output the output.

Now we know that getting started on the right foot requires a lot of input, so let's get to know a little more about the Japanese language.

Japanese alphabet


It has about 48 characters and each corresponds to a syllable. For example;か is pronounced KA. See the image below:

Japanese Hiragana Alphabet


It is also 48 characters long, just like hiragana, and is mostly used to write words that have a foreign origin. A katakana character also represents a syllable;カis pronounced KA.

Japanese Katakana Alphabet


The most popular Japanese alphabet is also the one with the largest amount of characters compared to Hiragana and Katakana, much bigger! There are more than 40,000 characters/ideograms, but for you to be fluent you need about 2,000 kanjis. A big difference is that a kanji represents an idea and not just a syllable, an example:

Japanese Alphabet Kanji Tree

The Japanese Alphabet is composed of Hiragana, katakana and kanji. To learn alone or with a Sensei, the first two are simple, kanji is a little more complicated, but not impossible to learn. As my Sensei says, focus on learning the word and not a kanji alone, as usually a kanji has multiple readings even in the same sentence/sentence.

All 3 Japanese alphabets are used at the same time in Japanese sentences.

We cannot forget two options that are a kind of help for those who are learning japanese language, which are the Romaji and furigana.

What is Romaji?

It helps in the pronunciation and understanding of Japanese writing, as we have already seen in the images shown above. Every Japanese character has been “Romanized” to our Latin/Roman alphabet so that any foreigner can understand and pronounce it correctly. An example I cited above would be か=KA.

what does the Wikipedia:

The rōmaji (ローマ字? , lit. “Roman letter”) is used in the phonetic transcription of the Japanese language into the Latin (or Roman) alphabet. Japanese is usually written either in kanji (about two thousand ideograms) or in hiraganas and katakanas (48 each alphabet). Romanization is present where there are messages aimed at foreigners, such as on street signs, on passports, in dictionaries and in textbooks for language students. It is the transliteration of the Japanese language.

What is Furigana?

A way to help those who are learning kanji. We often see in mangas, animes words that are on top of kanji, usually written in hiragana, to help you know the pronunciation and meaning.

Remember that to start inputting, you need to learn to read Japanese. Learning to read you can already devour books, mangas, animes, movies and more.

Well, you got to know a little bit about the Japanese language and its alphabet, more tips coming soon!


Image source: Japanese Online Program