“Learning How to Write” Japanese Workbooks

Pardon me!

I haven’t been writing my blog because I have been working on my manuscript. (I have more than one. It’s all very complicated. But for now, we’ll just say manuscript.)

I like to write early in the morning, before five. This morning was so pleasant. With the window open, it was dark outside and I could hear the crickets serenading me.  (Once you have read “The Cricket in Times Square,” you never think of crickets the same way again.)

Then when Mr. Husband comes groggily downstairs at 5:30, I stop writing, because my muses are flighty little things and disappear in a bursts of sparkles that only I can see.

I’ve gotten off track. The following post has nothing to do with Fukushima, but I think it is interesting.

I wanted to show some “How to Write Japanese” workbooks. The kind that Japanese parents buy for their Japanese preschoolers at the local bookstore.  These workbooks are all aimed at native speaking children.

By the way, there are three writing systems that Japanese kids need in order to be literate in their language.

They are:



kanji (also known as Chinese characters because they were originally developed in China and Japan borrowed them)

Here is a Kumon workbook for ages two, three, four.  It teaches hiragana.

This was my inspiration for today’s post!  A new–and popular–set of poop-themed workbooks. These teach kanji.

The first page, first kanji.  It means “one.”

Ichi is one in Japanese.

In Kanji:  一

Some other kanji workbooks

These are fart themed!!!!!!!!

First page

My cousin’s daughter has just started high school in the United States. She chose Japanese as her foreign language!!!!!

I sent her the above three workbooks.  I wasn’t sure of her level, so I looked through all the workbooks carefully, and chose ones that I felt would be good for non-native speakers.  (Although none of the workbooks are actually meant for non-native speakers.)

From left:

hiragana, for age two (Please note that very few Japanese kids are literate at age two!  This particular workbook is beginning type “let’s get ready” sort of workbook.)

katakana, for ages three, four, five

kanji, for ages five, six

From top down, the same books. Please note that I chose the easiest ones I could find. No poop or fart themed ones, sorry.




About kireikireikireiI am a mom.

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