Day 22: Long vowels

In katakana, long vowels are represented by the elongation mark. On the other hand, in hiragana they are represented by two hiragana letters.

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ああ(aa) is pronounced as prolonged “ah.”
いい(ii) is pronunced as prolonged “ee.”
うう(uu) is pronced as prolonged “oo.”

かあ(kaa) is pronounced as prolonged “kah.”
きい(kii) is pronounced as prolonged “kee.”
くう(kuu) is pronounced as prolonged “koo.”

えい(ei) is pronounced as prolonged “eh.”
Accordingly, けい (kei) is pronunced as prolonged “keh.”

おう (ou) is pronounced as prolonged “oh.”
Accordingly, こう(kou) is pronounced as prolonged “koh.”

Look at some examples. The vowels in the underlined syllables are doubled.

とけい (tokei), pronounced as toh-keh, is clock/watch.
くうこう (kukou), pronounced as kookoh, is airport.

―――――

This is ぼうし. How do you pronounce it?

hat
ぼうし (hat)

Boh-shi.”

This is ちょう. How do you pronounce it?

butterfly
ちょう (butterfly)

Choh.”

Well done!

Day 21: Katakana Quiz

What are the following words in English?

1. バナナ
2. クッキー
3. シャンプー
4. テーブル
5. ベッド
6. アクセサリー
7. ピアノ
8. スプーン
9. ソファ
10. コイン

―――――
Answers

1. banana
2. cookie
3. shampoo
4. table
5. bed
6. accessory
7. piano
8. spoon
9. sofa
10. coin

Good job!

If you didn’t do well, go back to Day 11 to Day 20 and practice until you feel confident.

Day 20: Katakana Review (2)

You have learned all the katakana characters. You will have a quiz tomorrow, so please review what you learned from Day 11 to Day 19 today.

Basic katakana

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Katakana with diacritics

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Katakana with small letters

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Special katakana combinations

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Last but not least, don’t forget small ッ!

Good luck! グッドラック!

Day 19: Katakana (8)

Today, we will study special katakana. As you know, katakana is used for loan words. However, sometimes it is difficult to prounce foreign words only with the katakana we have learned. The katakana combinations below are helpful for representing the pronunciations of foreign words more accurately.

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ウィ、ウェ、ウォ (wi, we, wo)  are pronounced as “wee, weh, woh” as in window, wet, woke, respectively.
シェ (she) is pronounced as “sheh” as in shed.
チェ (che) is pronounced as “cheh” as in chess.
ティ、トゥ (ti, tu) are pronounced as “tee, too” as in tee, too, respectively.
ツァ、ツェ、ツォ (tsa, tse, tso) are pronounced as in pizza, pizzeria, canzone in Italian, respectively.
ファ、フィ、フェ、フォ (fa, fi, fe, fo) are pronounced as “fah, fee, feh, foh” as in father, fig, feather, falk, respectively.
ジェ (je) is pronounced as “jeh” as in jelly.
ディ、ドゥ (di,du) are pronounced as “dee, doo” as in decent, do, respectively.
デュ (dyu) is pronounced as dyoo as in dew.
ヴァ、ヴィ、ヴ、ヴェ、ヴォ (vi, va, vu, ve, vo) are pronounced as vah, vee, voo, veh, voh as in vast, vivid, déjà vu, vet, vote.

—–

Let’s learn 10 new words.

ヴィヴァルディ is Vivaldi.
デュエット is duet.
モーツァルト is Mozart.
チェロ is cello.
フォーム is form.

Here are some questions. What is カフェ?

It is café.

What is ティーカップ?

It is teacup.

What is ソフトウェア?

It is software.

What is ディスク?

It is disc.

What is ジェットエンジン?

It is jet engine.

Awesome! You have completed all the katakana letters. Congratulations!

Day 18: Katakana (7)

Today we will study small letters. The first one is ッ. Small ッ represents a brief pause before the next consonant.

The other small letters are ャ, ュ, andョ. Small ャ, ュ, and ョare added to i-row letters to make palatalized sounds.

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キャ、キュ、キョ (kya, kyu, kyo)
シャ、シュ、ショ (sha, shu, sho)
チャ、チュ、チョ (cha, chu, cho)
ニャ、ニュ、ニョ (nya, nyu, nyo)
ヒャ、ヒュ、ヒョ (hya, hyu, hyo)
ミャ、ミュ、ミョ (mya, myu, myo)
リャ、リュ、リョ (rya, ryu, ryo)

How about these four columns?

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ギャ、ギュ、ギョ (gya, gyu, gyo)
ジャ、ジュ、ジョ (ja, ju, jo)
ビャ、ビュ、ビョ (bya, byu, byo)
ピャ、ピュ、ピョ (pya, pyu, pyo)

Check!
・Can you recognize each letter?
・Can you pronounce them properly?
・Can you write them properly?

Let’s learn 10 new words today.

チョコレート is chocolate.
キャンプ is camp.
シャツ is shirt.
チューブ is tube.
ショー is show.
カップ is cup.
ジュース is juice.
ギャロップ is gallop.

Here are some questions. What is メッセージ in English?

It is message.

What is コンピュータ in English?

It is computer.

Very good!

We will complete the whole set of katakana letters tomorrow. We are almost there!

Day 17: Katakana (6)

We have learned 46 basic katakana characters. We will go on to more advanced katakana. Today we will study katakana letters with diacritics (two short diagonal lines and a small circle).

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ガ、ギ、グ、ゲ、ゴ  (ga, gi, gu, ge, go)
ザ、ジ、ズ、ゼ、ゾ  (za, ji, zu, ze, zo)
ダ、ヂ、ヅ、デ、ド  (da, ji, zu, de, do)
バ、ビ、ブ、ベ、ボ  (ba, bi, bu, be, bo)
パ、ピ、プ、ペ、ポ  (pa, pi, pu, pe, po)

ジ and ヂ have the same sound. Also, ズ and ヅ have the same sound.

Because we don’t usually use [v] sound in Japanese, the [b] consonant in バ、ビ、ブ、ベ、ボ represents both English [b] and [v] sounds. For example, English “valve” is バルブ in katakana.

Pay attention to the stroke orders of the diacritics. Here are the stroke orders of ベ and ペ.

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Check!

・Can you recognize each letter?
・Can you pronounce them properly?
・Can you write them properly?


Let’s learn 15 new words.

グラフ is graph.
ゲーム is game.
ページ is page.
レンズ is lens.
ケーブル is cable.
レーザー is laser.
データ is data.
プリンター(プリンタ)is printer.
ブログ is blog.
ポスト is post.
ブラウザー(ブラウザ) is browser.
キーボード is keyboard.

Here are some questions. What is メガ in English?

It is “mega.”

What is giga in katakana?

It is ギガ.

What is pen in katakana?

It is ペン.

Super!