Basic Kanji Book: Effectively learn Kanji2000/8/26
Basic Kanji Book was compiled by four Japanese editors (Chieko Kano, Yuri Shimizu, Hiroko Takenaka, and Eriko Ishii) for the purpose of teaching the first 500 most basic kanji. These 500 kanji are divided up into 22 separate lessons. Each lesson is thematically and grammatically organized for higher connection rate in the learning process. Lessons include Kanji for time, Kanji at the Zoo, Kanji for Adjectives, Kanji for Verbs, and many more. The text is written to the goal of preparing the student for higher levels of Kanji learning by laying out the foundations that lead to the understanding of its inner workings. Though the text is complete in itself for accomplishing many basic day-to-day tasks in written Japanese. The teaching methodology includes stroke by stroke lessons, examples of each character in compound forms, both "on" and "kun" readings, practice blanks within the book to follow, transliteration of sentences from English to Japanese, various writing exercises, periodic reviews, practical examples of daily use for the characters within any given lesson, fun games to encourage learning, and helpful illustrations for learning mnemonics. Varied methodologies promote fuller language acquisition. This book is written for the student that has a firm understanding of both Hiragana and Katakana though no prior knowledge of Kanji is necessary. The layout of this book promotes effective self-study though this book could also be effectively used as the primary classroom text for teaching Kanji. In conclusion, few if any other Kanji learning books do as superb a job as this one in making an otherwise difficult task both easy and fun. Quite possibly this is the best Kanji book for high learning retention and practical use on the market.
THE best Kanji Book!2004/3/11
This is an excellent Kanji book! After trying several other Kanji learning books, this one stands out as the best by far! The book is organized exteremely well into sections and lessons. For every lesson there are about 10 different Kanji that you learn and each lesson has some kind of a theme to it. For example, one lesson may cover only numbers, another lesson will cover only animals, etc. There are also exercises at the end of each lesson so you can practice what you just learned. If I had to name one downside to this book, it would be that the answers to the exercises are not listed in the back of the book as they are in many practice books. But overall, I can't say enough good things about this book. It has helped me with my Kanji tremendously!
Found the book in Japan2001/7/28
I have been studying Japanese concurrent with Korean for the past few years. I picked up this book while I was in Japan because I wanted to learn all the Kanji that native Japanese speakers use in their writing. The book is perfect. There are exercises throughout each chapter that force you to use each character in context. Halfway through the book you find yourself reading a simple letter with quite a bit of Kanji in it. Do yourself a favor and at least learn Hiragana before you attempt to learn Kanji. It's also informative to know that the 1st volume teaches about 72 of the 80 characters that are testable when taking level 4 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.
The best beginning Kanji book available2006/8/11
You would be hard pressed to find a better beginning kanji book than "Basic Kanji Book Vol. 1." The combination of logical progression, constant reinforcement through exercises and activity, as well as a stern instance on using only hiragana and learned kanji makes for a powerful study tool.
The first in a series, it takes you through 500 kanji giving you a solid basis in the written Japanese language. Instead of selecting the kanji based on Japanese school levels, or other arbitrary standards, they are selected by pure usefulness in written and spoken Japanese. The kanji are grouped by sections such as "kanji made from pictures" or "kanji for time," with 12 kanji in each grouping. Each section is laid out with writing practice, followed by review and reading comprehension practice.
There are no gimmicks or fancy short cuts in "Basic Kanji Book Vol. 1." Just straight-forward, old-fashioned learning by use. The constant reinforcement in each chapter is really the strong point, as each exercise compounds on previous chapters, allowing for true learning rather than just quick memorization.
Before you tackle this book, you need to have a good grasp of hiragana and some katakana. Like all good Japanese study texts, "Basic Kanji Book Vol. 1" makes no use of romaji so you learn the language directly from the language. It can be a bit hard at first, but if you persevere you will be well beyond the level of learners who stuck to their training wheels.
Part 2 of a great series!2000/9/27
This is part 2 of the Basic Kanji Book, and contains 249 characters, bringing the total for the two books up to 500. This volume is even better than the first because the Kanji are more advanced, and there is a minimal amount of English. All of the instructions are written in Japanese, and the only English you see is when they are translating new words. If you are uncomfortable with the idea of having to know how to read a lot of Japanese in order to be able to understand this book, make sure you get volume 1 and work through that. Otherwise you might have a hard time getting the most out of this book. This is the best book you can get for learning how to read, write, and understand Kanji. It also teaches you how to read train schedules, how to use a Kanji to Japanese dictionary, and how to fill in a form. Once you are done with this book, you'll find yourself understanding a lot more about Japanese and Kanji.