Reading & Writing Hiragana

Japanese is written with a combination of three types of script: Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji (Chinese characters). Individually, Hiragana and Katakana represent sounds, and Kanji represent meanings. Hiragana characters are used for function words (such as in, at, and on), for inflectional endings (indicating sound changes used to express tense, negation, and the like), and for some content words.

Like the individual letters in the English alphabet, Hiragana characters represent sounds. Hiragana written today comprises 46 characters. Two diacritical marks are used. Two dots〝 change a voiceless consonant to a voiced consonant (e.g. /k/ -> /g/). A small circle ° changes /h/ to /p/. These diacritical marks are not part of this module.

First StepLearn to read Hiragana.   Second StepLearn to read Hiragana faster.


Third StepPractice spelling with Hiragana.   Fourth StepLearn to write Hiragana.


Final StepPractice writing from dictation.