a Karate

“Karate is a form of martial arts in which people who have had years and years of training can, using only their hands and feet, make some of the worst movies in the history of the world.” – Dave Barry

Just like さけ (sake), this word is often mispronounced by English speakers. I bet you know this word when you see it, but do you pronounce it correctly or do you pronounce it more like the incorrect “karadee”? Let’s find out.

Take the word “karate” and break it up into its individual kana parts (I’ll give you a hint, there’s three parts). Find those three kana on the hiragana chart and write the word out. Pronounce the three individual kana to find out the correct pronunciation of the word karate. Did you get it right? You can hear the pronunciation up at the top of this page by clicking the play button left of the word.

When you write “karate” out in hiragana, it comes out to からて. This is really really easy, right? Reading and writing hiragana is actually very simple once you learned all the characters. Now, I know you don’t know how to do that (quite) yet, but we’re getting there. You’ll be reading and writing words like “karate” with no problem soon enough.

Once you feel comfortable turning the first three words (sushi, sake, and karate) into hiragana (using your hiragana chart) it’s time to move on to learning the hiragana itself. Be sure you understand how hiragana works and how words are put together first, though, as we’ll be using that as you learn to read and write hiragana!

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