Learning Japanese is quite challenging, but Duolingo is here to help! After learning Hiragana, you’ll learn Katakana, the second set of Japanese writing system. Katakana is mainly used for transcription of foreign language words into Japanese.
This chart starts from upper right hand side corner, and goes down from top to bottom.
Here’s the katakana list with stroke order. This chart doesn’t have romaji for those who know the katakana already and need to learn how to write them. click to enlarge
Here’re the first five letters and pronounce as short vowel sounds.
|Hiragana||あ い う え お|
|Katakana||ア イ ウ エ オ|
|Romaji||a i u e o|
|Pronunciation||/a/ /i/ /u/ /e/ /o/|
Hiragana and katakana have the exact same pronunciations.
|-||Learning Katakana - consonants|
|Hiragana||あ か さ た な は|
|Katakana||ア カ サ タ ナ ハ|
|Romaji||a ka sa ta na ha|
|Hiragana||ま や ら わ を ん|
|Katakana||マ ヤ ラ ワ ヲ ン|
|Romaji||ma ya ra wa wo n|
Do you know any katakana words in Japanese? Please share with us in comments.
Japanese is unreadable without the Katakana, because it is used for foreign words to help the Japanese say them correctly and such words are all over the place, therefore Katakana being deeply mixed with the Hiragana, so are there any plans to add it to the course? To be honest, without both the Hiragana and Katakana you should have just stuck to the Romaji, learning only half of it isn't of any use.
I think only Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji are necessary to know, because they are the composition of Japanese writing system.
Romaji is a thing that Japanese use to communicate with foreigner, it's useful to use romaji when you first learn Japanese and haven't been familiar with Kana.
They are all both equally important because missing one means missing one of the structure of the language and would make a sentence incomplete.
but if you really want to compare, I would rate it like this: Hiragana > Katakana > Kanji
Kanji is in lowest because you can spell Kanji with Hiragana and speaking Kanji will be using Hiragana pronunciations instead of the Kanji's original Chinese pronunciation, but not knowing how to read Kanji or read it can be a problem.
Hiragana and Katakana just includes tons of simple and common words and not knowing them is just problematic.
Hiragana is the "default" alphabet. Katakana is used for foreign words, Kanji is essentially the same as the Chinese alphabet, except the characters are pronounced differently. A Kanji character represents a word or concept. And Romaji is just Japanese words written with the English alphabet. Hiragana and Katakana are essential if you want to learn Japanese, and Kanji is also something you should learn, because they are also commonly used. Don't even bother with Romaji because you'll end up pronouncing Japanese characters the English way.
If you don't learn Hiragana, you will have a harder time with Katakana, not to mention Kanji. If you don't learn Hiragana properly you won't know the basic words, and you get way past behind. If you don't learn Hiragana properly you MAY learn how to say the words associated with them, but in no way can you really learn them. Hiragana is not that hard though, you can learn it properly in 1-2 weeks. Check the Hiragana section of the Discussion, there is -I think- Tofugu's guide which associates pictures with the Hiragana, and with a few days of practise you can master it and all the words.
Japanese has four alphabets. The alphabets are Hiragana and Katakana. There is also Romaji, which is romanized Japanese, but that's hardly ever used. There's also Kanji, which is derived from Chinese characters, and there's a bunch, but while you need to know at least 5,000 Hanzi, you only need to know half that amount of Kanji. It sounds difficult, but you'll get used to it, and after you conquer the writing system, Japanese won't be as hard. If you're having trouble, I recommend Tanoshii Japanese and JapanesePod101.
HelpfulDuo has some discussions teaching the Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji. Check them out if you need help.
I hope this helps you out!