Japanese newbie here:
Is there a comprehensive list of basic words that are written in Hiragana (mainly because of lack of Kanji or because in mainstream media it's simple done "because")?
While surfing around beginners materials and websites (like this one
or this one
) I managed to catch some, but as a teacher I have to say I'm quite disappointed that such a resource is not more easily available as it would help immensely those of us that are still learning Hiragana and Katakana, specially to practice fast reading and identifying/memorizing words.
Is there an exercises book or page where transcription from Romaji to Hiragana/Katana exercises are available? (I'm thinking of something like this
but you know, with more exercises).
Is anyone aware of Katakana to Hiragana and vice versa transcription exercises?
Good morning, and welcome to the
joy that is Japanese.
I am sad to say that there really isn't a resource that gives you all of the hiragana and katakana words as your foundation--at least, not that I know of. I remember seeing the advice "learn all three writing systems at the beginning of your studies", and I have found this to be true: so much is written with kanji that not knowing them will only hinder your progress. In Japan, since the kids don't know all of the kanji until high school, they have many graded readers where kanji is introduced slowly and most everything is written in hiragana. But this reading material is only geared towards kids. In shounen and shojo manga, you will find dialogues written in kanji, but in smaller font you will find the reading of the kanji in hiragana. These are called furigana, and you buy a furigana dictionary to aid your looking up kanji words.
As for learning hiragana and katakana, I like this
book: but before you balk at the price, please note the used book price.
I really like this book because it builds up the use of the syllabaries; for example, you learn how to write "Sue" (スー) and then "Sue Lee" (スー・リー), and you reuse the ones you learned. For kanji, my favorite book (that I'm using currently) is Let's Learn Kanji
, where instead of memorizing all 2,000 kanji, you learn the 200+
radicals, and thus making the kanji more approachable.
I hope this answered your questions.
Edit: Here is an Astroids-type game for hiragana and katakana: http://www.valiantls.com/games-for-learning-japanese.html
I can get to a high level with hiragana, but the katakana ソ、ツ、ン always trip me up.