Kanji: General Discussion

Study methods, grammar, vocab, etc.
酢七面鳥 Jun 22, 2008

6 comments


Jul 12, 2008 たこ
Do you know that all Japanese can't recall all of Kanji? If he/she knows all of it, he/she is not a Japanese but already a dictionary.
When we come across unfamiliar Kanji, we can often guess the meaning and pronunciation of it from the formation of it.

If you have your eyes on it's structure, I think, you can save a lot of time when memorize it.
Complex Kanji consists of a few 部首. So, if you have memorized main 部首, you can guess the meaning or pronunciation of a lot of Kanji without dictionary.

I hope this will help you.
Jul 12, 2008 酢七面鳥
I have created my own weird stories, and completely torn kanji apart in ways that only make sense to me. For example, 又 to me is a pair of tweezers (I call them pick-ups). 軽 I remember means light because it is a car that can pick up dirt (and it must be light dirt if a car can pick it up, after all, it isn't a truck!).

I think Mr. Heisig did the same thing, but I did the whole thing from scratch, which came naturally for me, as I learned kanji. That is also how I study other topics besides Japanese, by making weird stories that only I can understand.

Of course, I know this has nothing to do with the real meaning of the components of kanji, but I don't really care, as long as it can help me remember kanji, and read and write Japanese.
Jul 14, 2008 atylmo
I agree. Learning by the radicals (or primitives, etc) is the way to go. Instead of memorizing a big huge block of strokes you memorize the little pieces and where each piece goes to make the larger block.

It also, as たこさん mentioned, allows for flexibility when you're reading something. If you don't know the kanji, you may be able to seek out a definition by what it's made of, and if you can get close enough the context will do the rest. Sometimes the radicals can give away the pronunciation as well.

The radicals and making stories up out of them has probably been around for a long time. The only thing Heisig did was popularize it and make people go "Oh, duh ><".

Lastly, that is a good story 酢七面鳥さん. I'll have to remember that one when I get that far :D I try to stick to the Heisig primitives but sometimes they really don't work.
Aug 4, 2008 Olivia 올리비아야
Well I did my kanji drilling where you write it out so I know the strokes I also drilled thefirst 200/300 kanji.

Now Idon't know how many kanji I know but i learnedl ike 600+kanji from songs and lyrics cause it's fun and i care about what they say.

just use jim breen to look up stuff you don't know... so. I recommend MUSIC
Aug 4, 2008 ウィットニー
I really need someone to help tutor me in Kanji, since I know nothing of and doubt I will learn very easily out of a textbook. I am an American native (and still live here) and am fluent in only English. I would really appreciate some help if anyone can... thanks.

If you would like to help me, please send me an email at aquaghost@ymail.com.

Thanks again.
Aug 7, 2008 Ryan
I also have had success with learning radicals first then compound radicals, then kanji built of those. I found a site that put them in order that way with pre-made (sometimes insane) stories to help remember definitions and 音 readings. It is not the best made site I've ever seen, but it gets the job done.

WARNING!! this site is very vulgar at times. It isnt my site, and since I've pre-warned you, i take no responsibility. Honestly the ridiculous nature of his stories did help me remember.

http://www.hellodamage.com/kanjidicks/d1.htm