Gengo Girls #18: Method Acting

Gengo Girls #18: Method Acting

For anyone too lazy to look it up on their own, the order of the hiragana groups is: Vowels, K, S, T, N, H, M, Y, R, W. Congratulations, you can now alphabetize in Japanese.

A lot of Japanese-to-English dictionaries actually spell the Japanese words with the Latin alphabet and Latin alphabetization. So you would look up “neko = cat” under “N” instead of looking up “ねこ = cat” under .

As a beginner a Latin alphabet dictionary will probably seem easier to use, but I strongly suggest getting a hiragana based Japanese-to-English dictionary instead. Forcing yourself to use Japanese characters is tough at first but will help you master the hiragana. It will also prevent you from accidentally mixing up English and Japanese pronunciation rules. It’s just too easy to see a word like “are” and immediately think of how you would read it in English instead of how it should sound in Japanese. That’s also why this comic has been using hiragana since the very start. In the long run it really pays off.


言語ガールズ #18

Method Acting

Yellow: Now that I’m dressed properly learning 日本語 should be easy.

Blue: That’s why you’re wearing that?

Yellow: To speak like the Japanese you must dress like the Japanese.

Blue: If you say so…

Blue: Anyways, today I wanted to talk about dictionaries.

Yellow: What is there to talk about? They’re just big lists of alphabetized words and definition.

Blue: That’s true, but 日本語 has different alphabetization rules than English.

Blue: For example, their vowels are organized あいうえお instead of A E I O U.

Blue: In fact, each letter group follows the sameあいうえお pattern. So for the “K” sounds the order isかきく け こ.

Blue: So if you remember the あいうえお pattern and the order the letter groups go in you’re done.

Yellow: I guess I’d better go find a hiragana chart to study.