Kanji Hacks 漢字の覚え方

How to memorize kanji so they stick

学(まな・ぶ、ガク)

Meaning: study, learning

Components: Something close to ツ, 冖 (cover), 子 (child)

  • Heisig refers to the combination of the first 5 strokes as “school house.”

My hack: You know how books lean one way or the other when you put them on a bookshelf? I imagine the first three strokes as books. And when a child has to study, s/he is covered in books.

You can also remember “school house” that way, because where else would you be covered in books?

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April 26, 2009 Posted by | 8 strokes, Grade 1, JLPT 4 | , , , , | Leave a comment

A note on Heisig

Most people who are studying Japanese have heard of James Heisig, author of the Remembering the Kanji series. I used these books myself when I first started out, and I found them very useful. His efforts have helped thousands of students master kanji, and my hat is off to him for all his work.

That being said, I feel that there is room for other approaches, and that is why I started this blog. I will still refer to Heisig’s mnemonics and what he calls “primitives” occasionally, but most of what you will find here is all original work. (I also don’t want to cause any trouble by referring to his work too much!)

If you’re a fan of the Heisig books, by all means leave your mnemonics in the comments, even if they have nothing to do with my hacks!

April 26, 2009 Posted by | General learning | Leave a comment