What are tips for learning hiragana?

In addition to the helpful answers here, I'd add some tips that worked well with me both with kana (I assume that you'll be learning katakana as well) and kanji.

(1) Use graph paper when writing them out for practice; finely-graduated grids really help you to get the visual "balance" of each character correct.
(2) Once you give yourself a chance to see examples of the characters, write them out from memory. Check your work with an answer chart. Spend as little time as possible checking and as much practice time as possible drilling from memory.
(3) Learn the kana in blocks of five, dictated by the five vowel sounds of Japanese, in their dictionary order, i.e., a i u e o. As soon as you start to get a pretty good handle on one block, add the next.

If you practice consistently, memorization will come much more quickly than you think. Have fun with your studies!

I would recommend Duolingo. It's a free app, it has a few different language courses you can take, including japanese. After 5 or 6 lessons (about 10 minutes each) I understood hiragana. The japanese course in general is very good, but sadly they don't have separate lessons for katakana so it was a bit harder to learn.

Another great way to learn is to take a set of symbols each day (e.g. ka, ki, ku, ke, ko) and write them over and over until you can do it from memory. It takes a bit longer, but this way you can learn katakana at the same time (you just write the symbol in both hiragana and katakana if you want to learn both).


First, Google and print out a hiragana chart. Second, start with one column and start learning and memorizing the characters. Next, continue by learning another column every week, until you finally reach the last column. Finally, test yourself by using flash cards, writing down all the characters in chart form, or however way you want to test yourself.

The key to learning the hiragana chart is practice, so practice your hiragana everyday.
Just find a list and write them over and over. Use them whenever you can. You can learn to read hiragana in about half an hour, and learn to write after you fill up a few pieces of paper.
Hiragana42 - Tofugu
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