hiragana and katakana

16 Sep

I made a simple video explaining difference of Hiragana and Katakana for those who study Japanese. I’ll make continuous series of such video to explain more. So please let me know what you want to learn from me.
THANK YOU! 🙂

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33 Responses to “hiragana and katakana”

  1. Miss Ia September 16, 2009 at 3:47 pm #

    Thank you for the video! I enjoyed it- it's great to know the difference the two. I have some questions, though, can you spell every Japanese word in hiragana? Why do the Japanese use both Kanji and Hiragana? I thought it might be because Japanese phonetics might have different meanings but sound the same, so Kanji can help differentiate between the word? I want to know if it's possible to write a letter in hiragana only, and still have the meaning clear? I would love to learn the meaning of the most used kanji characters (because I want to order the GosuRori magazine and be able to understand the pattern instructions for sewing haha). 🙂

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 12:40 am #

      You could write everything in only Hiragana, and that makes sense, which only looks like childish because we start to learn Hiragana and Katakana at elementary school, or at kinder garden, and gradually we learn Kanji one by one.

      Oh how your comment sounds interesting to me, as I've never thought of why we use Kanji! Without Kanji, it's hard to read. It'd take you long hours and need much effort to learn Kanji, but once you learn it, it's very convenient! Let's say if I had to read a book with all Hiragana, I'd feel so tired by the time I finish the fist page. (Same can be said to all Katakana. Ahaha! How crazy it'd be!) With Kanji and Hiragana, plus some spicy Katakana, we can enjoy reading faster and with better understandings. You'll see what I mean once you master Kanji. 😉

      Thank you so much for your interesting comment. Let's talk about this in my video some time later. I'll also make a video or post that tells you some useful Kanji collection. 🙂

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 3:07 pm #

      Why my comment is gone again…? Let me copy and paste from intensedebate dashboard. :S

      You could write everything in only Hiragana, and that makes sense, which only looks like childish because we start to learn Hiragana and Katakana at elementary school, or at kinder garden, and gradually we learn Kanji one by one.

      Oh how your comment sounds interesting to me, as I've never thought of why we use Kanji! Without Kanji, it's hard to read. It'd take you long hours and need much effort to learn Kanji, but once you learn it, it's very convenient! Let's say if I had to read a book with all Hiragana, I'd feel so tired by the time I finish the fist page. (Same can be said to all Katakana. Ahaha! How crazy it'd be!) With Kanji and Hiragana, plus some spicy Katakana, we can enjoy reading faster and with better understandings. You'll see what I mean once you master Kanji. 😉

      Thank you so much for your interesting comment. Let's talk about this in my video some time later. I'll also make a video or post that tells you some useful Kanji collection. 🙂

  2. countrykoko September 16, 2009 at 7:55 pm #

    This video is so kawaii! You're english is really good! Nice to know the difference in the Japanese language. Love your site!

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 12:43 am #

      Oh…^ ^ I'm glad to hear that. I know my English is not perfect, but I am not just waiting for everything turns to be perfect. I'm always a beta version myself! LOL

  3. Yoshida-Los Angeles September 17, 2009 at 5:28 am #

    Hi,
    How about introducing some words that we might hear in a Japanese TV show that might be difficult to look up in a dictionary?
    For example, I often hear 何やってんだよ or 何やってんの? It is impossible to find やってん in the dictionary but I hear it at least twice in every Japanese show I watch. I was really confused for many months because I thought the people were saying あてん . So, if you could talk about some other interesting words that are hard to find in a dictionary, it would be 面白い

    Thanks

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 3:09 pm #

      Hi, thank you for your comment. That's very interesting! XD Good idea~ ^ ^

  4. theSWIT September 17, 2009 at 9:18 am #

    hello kirin san ! can I know if some words which have a proper hiragana, can we write/speak in katakana? eg: airport is “kuukou” but can we say “ea-ru-po-to” instead?

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 2:44 pm #

      YES, there are many. For example, "kusuri" = "doraggu" for drug, "yuka" = "fulo-ringu" for flooring, "tsukue" = "desuku" for desk, and more and more…For airport, "eapo-to" without "ru".

  5. Nora September 17, 2009 at 9:57 am #

    Hello!
    I´ve discovered your site recently and it´s great!
    Thank you for posting this interesting video…now I can see clearly the differences between hiragana and katakana.
    the video is kawaii!

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 2:45 pm #

      Thank you, Nara! I'll try to make more interesting videos. 🙂

  6. pencapchew September 17, 2009 at 12:45 pm #

    マクドナルド hehe…

    • kirin September 17, 2009 at 2:50 pm #

      マクドナルド!!It's one of the words that is pronounced so differently from original English way! Foreign restaurants are written in Katakana, of course. デニーズ、サブウェイ、クリスピークリームドーナツ、スターバックス(We'd call it スタバ. As for Mc.Donald's, マック in east Japan, or マクド in west Japan.)  :)

  7. Jamaipanese September 17, 2009 at 3:57 pm #

    really great video. Haven't visited you blog in a while and glad to see you still turning out great posts

    • kirin September 18, 2009 at 10:57 am #

      Thank you so much. I was worried if a person like me can make any good video, because I'll never know what people would feel difficult to learn. But thank you. I feel now that I can keep making this kind of videos! 😀

  8. G... September 18, 2009 at 3:46 am #

    キリンさんは英語が上手ですよ。ブログは読みやすいです。

    As for Japanese lesson ideas, as Yoshida-san said, I think Japanese slang and contractions would be a good idea. 「~ている」>「~てん」, 「~てしまう」>「~ちゃう」、形容詞の「え」刑 (凄い>すげえ), etc.

    I think another topic we have difficulty with is when we should use 上げる or くれる.

    Finally, I am very interested in 方言, and I would love to learn some of it.

    • kirin September 18, 2009 at 11:03 am #

      おそれおおいです~^ ^; G…さんこそ、日本語お上手ですね!
      うーん、なるほど!I'm using all those expressions without thinking, but if I were you, I understand you'd feel hard to get them. 方言!Wow, that might be the hardest thing to me, as I've been located in Tokyo / near Tokyo all the time in my life so far. I wish I could have any experience of living some other areas with speaking Japanese in dialect to that area. :p

      But thank you so much for your opinion. That was interesting to me!

  9. アマンダ September 18, 2009 at 1:25 pm #

    I would like some way to practice speaking naturally. So for me it would be useful to watch Japanese conversation and then repeat what the people are saying (eventually at the same speed). でも、私は中級です。下級の方が多いでしょうね。

    • kirin September 19, 2009 at 1:48 am #

      Oh you are that good! Keep going! As for beginner, 「下級」っていうか、I'd say 「初級」。初級 – 中級 – 上級。 You'll be advanced level in a mean time. 🙂 Keep it up!

  10. Walter September 18, 2009 at 5:33 pm #

    Your videos are becoming part of your comfort zone, no ? I knew the different use of katakana fro foreign or imported words, but I still watched the entire video . You do it so well. And the word balloons are great!

    • kirin October 8, 2009 at 1:33 pm #

      Thank you! I think I've replied to your comment before, but it's gone? (?_?) Sometimes IntenseDebate works very strangely…

  11. bianca October 3, 2009 at 5:08 pm #

    I have a Japanese subject but we only study the basic communication, we won't be tackling how to read and write Katakana, hiragana or Kanji. This post was really helpful. I really really want to learn more! I'd love to travel to Japan someday. Hopefully, if I have enough money, lol.

    Thank you!

    • kirin October 8, 2009 at 1:42 pm #

      Travelling in Japan costs less than before, I think. I've been to Sydney, Amsterdam, Brussels, Venice and Florence this summer, but I thought meals in Tokyo is a lot cheaper!! Some time ago, people said "everything is expensive in Tokyo" but I think it's no longer nowadays! We could have lunch for 500 yen – 1000 yen and that includes coffee and salad, and we can be stuffed. How much do you think I had to spend for a sandwitch and a bottle of water in Amsterdam? It was about 12-13 euro! We could have the same meal for half amount of money. I found it's even cheaper than Sydney.

  12. Leonard October 11, 2009 at 2:02 pm #

    Kririn what does this mean? カヌログ I have just learned the basic 46 katakana and this would translate to Kanurogu if I'm not wrong.. but i can't find any word in my English vocabulary similar to this, Plz help =/

    • kirin October 12, 2009 at 8:18 am #

      There's no Japanese word such as Kanurogu (カヌログ), but I guess it might be Katarogu (カタログ)=catalog.
      What do you think?

      • Leonard October 12, 2009 at 7:00 pm #

        Ah that is probably it cause it was mentioned in a Japanese shopping site, thx Kirin! Weird that they spelled it wrong.. btw don't you have a Japanese word for catalog? If so, why do some websites use katakana, spelling the foreign word instead for it's own language? Doesn't make sense to me.. :p /cheers! Leonard

      • kirin October 13, 2009 at 4:51 am #

        I don't know if we have any corresponding word for "catalog" in Japanese. I've never seen it, and that's why I guess every Japanese shopping site or magazine uses "カタログ" in Katakana, because it's originally a foreign word. If there were any Japanese word for catalog, that would be something like "mihonchou" (見本帳) but it sounds sooo classic and out-of-date as if we lived in Edo era. (LOL)

      • Leonard October 13, 2009 at 6:33 am #

        Ahh i think "mihonchou" sounds nice even if it makes me think of a little dog or some kind of pet :$ Thx for your answers! 😀 ♥

  13. Nicole October 30, 2009 at 2:43 am #

    こんにちは、キリンさん!(笑) T__T;;
    And.. that's about my level of Japanese. I can read katakan, hiragana and some basic (usually text-message) type of writing thanks to my penpals and Japanese blog, but I'm honestly not that good. ;w;
    I especially have difficulty when thrown into a situation (like speaking) ! I think I freeze up.
    I know you've said such things about when you first started to learn English. The speaking is so difficult.
    But my question is, wasn't it a big help when you were actually forced into speaking situations?
    Does it help your language skills a lot?
    Anyway, thanks so much for offering your help. I want so badly to better my Japanese language skills. 🙂
    Please feel free to email me! I need all the support I can get! ;w;

    • kirin October 30, 2009 at 1:18 pm #

      こんにちは!コメントどうもありがとう。
      As you say, that's so true. I finally could speak English after I went to the U.S college. Japanese people study English from elementary school but our education is too much weighted with grammar, reading, and writing. That's why most of us lack in listening and speaking skills, which turn out that many of us still keep learning English after work at English schools if encouraged.
      But my English went better at work, because I had to correspond with foreign customers by emails/ phone/ fax everyday.
      So…I think you need a "big why" : why you need to speak Japanese? がんばって!I'll make a new video about this, as your comment was interesting to me. Thanks!! 😀

  14. chemgirl June 1, 2010 at 2:11 pm #

    i like your blog…its a good effort..its so interesting because it helps me to get to know Japanese better.. =)

    • kirin June 1, 2010 at 11:55 pm #

      Thank you for your comment. Compared with other categories, learn Japanese category is poor in my blog. I want to make more useful videos in the future. ^ ^

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  1. Kirin explains Katakana and Hiragana | Tokyo Videos - September 18, 2009

    […] from tokyokawaiietc.com is back with a new video about katakana & hiragana. Share and Enjoy: These icons link to […]

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