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Learning Japanese: Hiragana Resources

Updated on October 2, 2017

Learning Hiragana

This is a list of resources for you to practice and learn Hiragana. This list includes resources from different websites you may not know about and ways to learn using sites you use every day such as Youtube! There's also information about books and fun ways to study to help keep things interesting!

Memrise Is a fantastic resource for learning Hiragana. Their courses are free (but a premium membership is an option) and the community is full of people who are on your same level or higher and would love to help you. Memrise also helps you actually memorize what you learn by use of repetition, flashcards, and paying attention to what answers you get wrong so it can help you get them right.

There are so many courses on Memrise that you can't go wrong and the opportunity to make friends who can also help you makes this a valuable resource for learning Hiragana and so much more. What's more if you're studying other resources outside of Memrise you can make your own courses to help yourself study and review what you've been learning from other websites or work books.


Youtube is a great resource when learning Hiragana. There are tons of videos on the subject ranging from simple pronunciation help to songs and games that can help you learn and remember Hiragana. There are also tons of Japanese Youtubers who you can watch and learn from as they discuss current topics and some even teach you more about Japanese culture as a whole. Youtube is also a great resource for someone who needs to immerse themselves in Japanese so they can get used to the sounds of it because the more you listen the better you'll be able to understand and there's no better way to do that than to find something that interests you and there's so many Japanese Youtubers doing everything from teaching the language to Youtube challenges or even making gaming videos that you're sure to find something that will keep your interest while you learn.

For example:

  • Japanesepod101
  • Dr. Moku
  • Tofugu
  • learnjapanesejpbasic
  • JapansocietyNYC
  • Learn Japanese TV
  • Ikimashou Japan

Tofugu's Ultimate Guide to Hiragana

Tofugu: The Ultimate Guide To Learning Hiragana is a great resource to help you remember the Hiragana shapes using pictures. They also have tons of helpful videos and a page full of their own resources for learning Japanese online.

Tofugu also has several other guides that are really helpful so it's worth taking a look at. No matter what your skill level they've got something for you.


Lentil is a great place to learn Hiragana and Katakana. It teaches you the Hiragana characters as well as helps you learn to read them while also teaching you vocabulary at the same time. It's a great way to kick start your Japanese studies or also a great tool to use to review if you're an intermediate or advanced learner.

Lentil doesn't only cover Hiragana and Katakana it also covers family names, nature words, station names, days of the week and some Kanji too!

Online Games

Here are some links to online games that can help you learn Hiragana, because learning doesn't always have to be serious, it can be fun too!

Taking a break from studying to play a game can be fun, specially if the game is also helping you learn. It's a nice change of pace from studying which can become stale and feel like a lot of work if you let it take over too much so these games will be a great resource for you to keep studying or reviewing what you know while keeping your mind fresh and taking a break from those textbooks or online quizzes.


Helpful Books

Books can be a big help in learning Japanese and Hiragana workbooks are a valuable resource for learning Hiragana and also the basics in vocabulary and grammar. You can find workbooks at your local bookstore or online, Here is a list of some useful workbooks below that you can acquire online.

Some helpful books include:

  • Learning Japanese Hiragana and Katakana: A Workbook for Self-Study
  • Japanese Hiragana & Katakana for Beginners: First Steps to Mastering the Japanese Writing System
  • Japanese from Zero!
  • Let's Learn Hiragana: First Book of Basic Japanese Writing
  • Guide to Learning Hiragana & Katakana
  • Practice Makes Perfect Writing Japanese Kana
  • GENKI I: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese

    The Genki: An integrated Course in elementary Japanese is a fantastic set of books that I've used myself and they are widely used and very helpful for everyone from beginners or more advanced learners who want to brush up on the basics, The Genki books start off slow with English and Romaji and eases you into reading Japanese only by the end of the book and the pacing is good so it doesn't throw you in the deep end before you're ready, it's a valuable resource I recommend to anyone trying to learn Japanese.



Practice makes perfect. No matter what you choose as your primary source for learning hiragana one of the best things you can do is never give up and keep practicing until you get it right! You'll be reading and writing Hiragana in no time as long as you keep at it!

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