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This is how to quickly memorize the kanas ツ and シ forever

imagine that the two parallel strokes of ツ are heavy rain;

and imagine that the arc is a huge wave raised by the very bad weather;

we have here a Tsunami;

the word Tsunami begins with : TSU;

TSU is the reading of : ツ

people would say : we can say the same thing for the kana : シ

no, here the two parallel strokes are horizontal;

we will imagine that they represent a friendly wind;

the arc here is no longer a huge wave;

but the sail of a ship;

the word ship begins with : SHI;

SHI is the reading of : シ

If you find this helpful, please upvote it to let others see it

You know that there are some kids who downvote everything

December 24, 2018


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Similarly I remember them because in Tsu the two strokes line up like writing the hiragana つ from left to right and then curving back to the left and Shi lines up like writing the hiragana し from top to bottom and then curving up to the right. I remember they are the ones with three strokes because their romaji have three letters.

Then for So and N the same, with So being horizontal and N being vertical, and both having fewer letters and fewer strokes.

(forgive my super messy editing)

December 24, 2018


your version is altogether easy to memorize and, much probably, quite accurate as regards the origins of these letters, since from what I understand hiragana and katakana for the same sound tend to be different derivations from the same Chinese character. It makes sense that the graphical result would be quite distinct but that the general motion of the hand would stay more or less the same.

December 31, 2018


Thank you so much for posting this! I've been struggling for so long with this lol

December 24, 2018


When I learned Japanese in school, we were taught to remember them like this:

ソ is for sewing needle. The short line to the left is a button that you're sewing, the long arc is the needle.

ツ is for needle and two (tsu) buttons. The same basic shape and angle as ソ, but with two lines/buttons.

シ is for she is smiling. Two eyes and a smirking mouth. It helps me to think of it as the face of the hiragana し (for she has long hair).

Unfortunately I can't remember the mnemonic we learned for ン. I guess I just remember that it's the same basic shape as シ, except she is missing an eye. ン for only one eye, maybe? If anyone knows a better mnemonic for ン I'd love to hear it!

March 6, 2019


Everyone did a great job of capturing this. A round of lingots on the house!

December 25, 2018


Thanks for this. It is so easy to mistaken these two kana as they are so similar if one doesn't pay attention to the orientation of the two parallel short lines.

December 25, 2018


I usually just guess based on the rest of the word(s). 役に立った ! 書き留めておきます。

December 26, 2018


Genius! Thank you so much for this Jawad-Dawdi, as well as to everyone else who contributed their strategies! :D

December 26, 2018


Very nice mnemonic

December 31, 2018


Wow these are very useful. Thank you

December 28, 2018


this confuses me :D

December 28, 2018


Nice way to remember it :)

December 29, 2018


This was an EXTREMELY helpful post: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/32305913 Or just remember"Shi is looking up at Tsu and I think she really likes you"

May 23, 2019


If anyone notices this post, please try to bring other people to this post, I have had trouble with these kana for-EVER!

April 4, 2019


I have found it easier to remember these as faces and the one facing left is leaving. See ya tsuun! get it its a joke but it does help.

June 7, 2019


This is really helpful! Thank you! ありがとございます!

September 27, 2019
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