Lets count in Japanese!

Hakata Gion Yamakasa
Hakata Gion Yamakasa
October 6, 2017
Umeda Sky Building
Umeda Sky Building
December 10, 2017

Let's count to 100 in Japanese!

Konnichiwa, today we are going to learn to count in Japanese. I have painstakingly created these images with Adobe Photoshop for you. I have included the kanji and different pronunciation for each. Kanji have what is called on-yomi and kun-yomi readings. On-yomi are carried over from the original Chinese kanji and are written in katakana. Kun-yomi are written in hiragana. Note: not all kanji have kun-yomi.


To the left you will see a sample of the images below showing you what each section corresponds to.


The ON reading of 1 is pronounced ICHI

as in ICHI-JI which means one o'clock

The KUN reading of 1 is pronounced HITO

as in HITO-TSU which means one thing


The ON reading of 2 is pronounced NI

as in NI-SHU-KAN which means two weeks

or NI-GATSU which means February

The KUN reading of 2 is pronounced FUTA

as in FUTA-TSU which means two things


The ON reading of 3 is pronounced SAN

as in SAN-NIN which means three people

or SAN-ZEN which means three thousand

There is no KUN reading


The ON reading of 4 is pronounced SHI

as in SHI-GATSU which means April

The KUN reading of 4 is pronounced YON

as in YON-HYAKU which means four hundred


The ON reading of 5 is pronounced GO

as in GO-NIN which means five people

or GO-JI which means five o'clock

There is no KUN reading


The ON reading of 6 is pronounced ROKU

as in ROKU-NIN which means six people

or ROKU-EN which means six yen

There is no KUN reading


The ON reading of 7 is pronounced SHICHI

as in SHICHI-JI which means seven o'clock

The KUN reading of 7 is pronounced NANA

as in NANA-JU which means seventy

or NANA-TSU which means seven things


The ON reading of 8 is pronounced HACHI

as in HACHI-GATSU which means August

or HACHI-JI which means eight o'clock

There is no KUN reading


The ON reading of 9 is pronounced KYU

as in KYU-JU which means ninety

or KYU-JI which means nine o'clock

There is no KUN reading


The ON reading of 10 is pronounced JU

as in JU-HACHI which means eighteen

or JU-GATSU which means November

There is no KUN reading

Lets count higher!

If you want to count higher you start with ten plus the number so that JU-ICHI would be 11, and JU-NI would be 12 and so on. When you get to 20 it would be NI-JU which is basically 20+10, so then 21 would be NI-JU-ICHI or 20+10+1. See if you can figure out how to count all the way to 99 using this method. The word for hundred is HYAKU. Have fun learning!

That's all for today! If you enjoyed this lesson on how to count in Japanese please stay tuned for more lessons and share on your favorite social media!

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