This section will be designed to be covered in parallel to the main lessons, which focus on grammar and communicative functions.
Upcoming lessons (tentative):
- Introduction to Kanji
- About Radicals
- How to Learn Kanji
- Kanji for Numbers, Times, and Dates
- Other Super-Basic Kanji
In the meantime, check out the lessons section, which also covers Hiragana and Katakana. You can also subscribe to the blog in order to be alerted to new content, including material on Kanji when I get to it.
For those who haven’t started learning Japanese yet, Kanji are the Chinese characters used in written Japanese. It takes Japanese schoolchildren 9 years to learn the roughly 2000 Joyo (General Use) Kanji needed to read a Japanese newspaper, but for us foreigners the initial goal is the most common 500, which is enough to understand simple written Japanese. But here’s the thing: you don’t actually need Kanji in order to read and write Japanese. That’s right, between the syllabaries (scripts where each character represents an entire syllable) Hiragana and Katakana, you can express any word that you can say in Japanese. We’ll get into what exactly it is that Kanji are good for, but as a beginner your first goal is this: learn the 92 Kana symbols. If you’ve done any serious practice memorizing arbitrary items, you can do this in the space of a couple afternoons.