Everyday Kanji Lesson – Part 2

Posted on 31. Jan, 2016 by in Culture, Grammar

Photo from Dakiny on flickr.com


Part 2 of the Everyday Kanji series is all about “fruit”.  At grocery stores in Japan, some of these Kanji’s are listed in the sign.  Most often, Kanji’s are mentioned next to hiragana or Katakana.  It definitely doesn’t hurt to learn these Kanji’s. Perhaps you can start with your favorite fruits below. Most the fruit names that we use in Japanese are Gairaigo (外来語、がいらいご) which is sort of a “loan word” that came from another language, such as English. You will notice below that the way we pronounce them are almost identical or very similar to English. We sometimes pronounce these based on transliteration of original English words.  For example, “Melon”, “Lemon”, “Banana”, “Kiwi”  are one of the Gairaigo’s that has very similar pronunciation as English.


苺 (Ichigo,  いちご、イチゴ) – Strawberry

林檎 (Ringo, りんご、 リンゴ) – Apple

檸檬 (Lemon, れもん、 レモン) – Lemon

蜜柑 (Mikan, みかん、 ミカン) – Orange

葡萄 (Budo, ぶどう、ブドウ) – Grape

桜桃 (Sakuranbo, さくらんぼ、サクランボ) – Cherry

甘蕉 (Banana, ばなな、バナナ) – Banana

甜瓜 (Melon, めろん、 メロン) – Melon

杏子 (Anzu, あんず、アンズ) – Apricots

無花果 (Ichijiku, いちじく、イチジク) – Fig

彌猴桃 (Kiui, きうい、キウイ) – Kiwi fruit

甘橙 (Orenji, おれんじ、 オレンジ) – Orange

柚子 (Yuzu, ゆず、ユズ) – Pomelo

茘枝 (Reishi,れいし、 レイシ) – Lai chi fruit

柘榴 (Zakuro, ざくろ、ザクロ)- Pomegranate

鳳梨 (pineapple, ぱいなっぷる、パイナップル) – pineapple

梨 (Nashi,なし、 ナシ ) – Pear

桃 (Momo, もも、モモ) – Peach

柿 (Kaki, かき、 カキ )-persimmon

西瓜 (Suika,すいか、スイカ) – Watermelon

酸桃 (Sumomo, すもも、 スモモ) – Plum


Do you have any other series of Kanji’s that you would like me to cover in this blog? If you do, share with me in the comment section, I will try to incorporate your request into upcoming posts! It’s always nice to hear from readers to see what they are most interested in!  Enjoy learning Japanese!

Everyday Kanji Lesson – Part 1

Posted on 31. Jan, 2016 by in Culture, Grammar

Photo from Dakiny on flickr.com


We use Kanji’s everywhere when we write or express in Japanese. Not all Japanese words has appropriate Kanji’s, but I would say 90% of them do. Things around the house, outside (nature, public places, etc..) There are all sorts of Kanji’s and the process of learning Kanji’s are almost endless. Typically in Japan, elementary students start learning with easier and simpler ones starting at 1st grade. From there on, they continue to study new Kanji’s every year until the end of high school. Even if you were able to memorize them all throughout your elementary, middle school, and high school, there are more to memorize. You will encounter some Kanji’s that you might not know how to read or pronounce even though you might have an idea what the Kanji might mean.

In today’s post, let me show you some of the Kanji’s that are related to “animals”. All of these animals have just one Kanji to be applied.  Inside the (), there are transliteration, Hiragana and Katakana are listed.


犬 (Inu, いぬ、イヌ) – Dog

猫 (Neko, ねこ、ネコ) – Cat

猪 (Inoshishi, いのしし、イノシシ) – Wild Boar

牛 (Ushi, うし、ウシ) – Cow

兎 (Usagi, うさぎ、ウサギ) – Rabbit

馬(Uma, うま、ウマ) -Horse

狼(Ookami, おおかみ、オオカミ) – Wolf

蛙 (Kaeru, かえる、カエル) – Frog

亀 (Kame, かめ、カメ) -Turtle

狐 (Kitsune, きつね、キツネ) – Fox

鯨 (Kujira, くじら、クジラ) – Whale

熊 (Kuma, くま、クマ) – Bear

犀 (Sai, さい、サイ) – Rhinoceros

猿 (Saru, さる、サル) ーMonkey

鹿 (Shika, しか、シカ) -Deer

鯱 (Shachi, しゃち、シャチ) -Orca

象(Zou, ぞう、ゾウ) – Elephant

狸(Tanuki, たぬき、タヌキ) –  Raccoon

虎(Tora, とら、トラ) – Tiger

鶏 (Niwatori, にわとり、ニワトリ) – Chicken

鼠 (Nezumi, ねずみ、ネズミ) – Mouse

羊 (Hitsuji, ひつじ、ヒツジ) – Sheep

豹(Hyou, ひょう、ヒョウ) – Leopard

豚 (Buta, ぶた、ブタ) – Pig

蛇 (Hebi, へび、ヘビ) – Snake

鰐 (Wani, わに、ワニ) – Crocodile


Next time when you see the above Kanji’s, at least you will know what they mean now..  Some of them are not easy to write it, but for reading and understanding purposes, it’s not too bad, right?


Japanese Kanji Quiz – Part 1

Posted on 31. Jan, 2016 by in Culture, Grammar


Photo from MIKI Yoshihito (´・ω・) from flickr.com


As part of the series for learning Kanji’s, I decided to create the following Kanji Quiz below. Have you many of these can you guess? I tried to stick to simple Kanji’s but some of them might be a big more complicated than others. Answers for each challenge are at the bottom of the page. See how many of these you can solve! Enjoy!


Challenge 1

Which Kanji will apply to () below. Note: The same Kanji should be applied to all ().

元( )ですか?今日は ( )持ちの いい 天( ) だよ。だから() 分も最高です。


Genki desuka? Kyo wa kimochi no ii tenki dayo. Dakara Kibun mo saiko desu.

げんきですか?きょうは きもちの いい てんき だよ。だから きぶんも さいこう です。




Challenge 2

Create a synonym for each Jukugo(Compound words, in this case, two Kanji’s combined together)

Transliteration (Translation)

Shizen  (Nature) – 自然(しぜん)ー( )然

Bokoku (Birth country) -母国 ー( )国

Yashin (Aspiration)- 野心 ー( )望

Jyu-yo (Important)-主要ー( )要

Yu-mei (Famous)-有名ー( )名

Yoso- (Prediction)-予想ー予( )

Kekka (Result)-結果 ー結( )

Isshou (Lifetime)-一生ー( )生







Challenge 1 – 気

元(気)ですか?今日は (気)持ちの いい 天(気) だよ。だから 気分も最高です。

Translation:How are you? It’s nice weather today. So, I feel so good.

  • 元気ですか? (げんきですか?) – Genki desuka? (How are you feeling?, How are you?)
  • 気持ちのいい (きもちのいい) – kimochi no ii( nice)
  • 天気 (てんき) – Tenki (weather)
  • 気分(きぶん) – Kibun (to feel, feeling)

Challenge 2

Shizen  (Nature) – 自然(しぜん)ー(天)然

Bokoku (Birth country) -母国 (bokoku)ー(祖)国 (sokoku)

Yashin (Aspiration)- 野心 (yashin) ー(野)望 (yabou)

Jyu-yo (Important)-主要 (shuyou)ー(重)要 (jyuyou)

Yu-mei (Famous)-有名(yumei)ー(著)名(chomei)

Yoso- (Prediction)-予想(yosou)ー予(測)(yosoku)

Kekka (Result)-結果(kekka) ー結(末)(ketsumatsu)

Isshou (Lifetime)-一生(isshou)ー(終)生(shusei)


Challenge 2 might have been a bit complicated unless you are familiar with Kanji’s.  The first one might have been easier if you are just starting to learn some Kanji’s.  Even if you didn’t know these, don’t get discouraged. Kanji’s are one of those things where you will learn one at a time. Writing Kanji’s are another story, but reading them will come easier once you familiarize yourself with more of them.