LearnJapanese Tae Kim's Guide to Learning Japanese





Katakana Practice Exercises

Posted by Tae Kim

Fill in the Katakana Chart

Here is the katakana chart you can use to help test your memory. 「ヲ」 has been removed since you'll probably never need it.

Click on the flip link to show or hide each character.

Katakana Table
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Katakana Writing Practice

Here, we will practice writing some words in Katakana. Plus, you'll get a little taste of what foreign words sound like in Japanese.

Katakana Writing Exercise 1

Sample: ta | be | mo | no = タベモノ

1. pan パン
2. kon | pyu- | ta コンピュータ
3. myu- | ji | ka | ru ミュージカル
4. u- | man ウーマン
5 he | a | pi- | su ヘアピース
6. nu- | do ヌード
7. me | nyu- メニュー
8. ro- | te- | shon ローテーション
9. ha | i | kin | gu ハイキング
10. kyan | se | ru キャンセル
11. ha | ne | mu-n | ハネムーン
12. ku | ri | su | ma | su | tsu | ri- クリスマスツリー
13. ra | i | to ライト
14. na | i | to | ge- | mu ナイトゲーム

More Katakana Writing Practice

This Katakana writing exercise includes all the irregular sounds that don't exist in Hiragana.

Katakana Writing Exercise 2

Sample: bi- | chi = ビーチ

1. e | i | zu | wi | ru | su エイズウイルス
2. no- | su | sa | i | do ノースサイド
3. in | fo | me- | shon インフォメーション
4. pu | ro | je | ku | to プロジェクト
5. fa | su | to | fu- | do ファストフード
6. she | ru | su | ku | ri | pu | to シェルスクリプト
7. we- | to | re | su ウェートレス
8. ma | i | ho- | mu マイホーム
9. chi- | mu | wa- | ku チームワーク
10. mi | ni | su | ka- | to ミニスカート
11. re- | za- | di | su | ku レーザーディスク
12. chen | ji チェンジ
13. re | gyu | ra- レギュラー
14. u | e | i | to | ri | fu | tin | gu ウエイトリフティング

Changing English words to katakana

Just for fun, let's try figuring out the katakana for some English words. I've listed some common patterns below but they are only guidelines and may not apply for some words.

As you know, since Japanese sounds almost always consist of consonant-vowel pairs, any English words that deviate from this pattern will cause problems. Here are some trends you may have noticed.

If you've seen the move "Lost in Translation", you know that / l / and / r / are indistinguishable.

(1) Ready -> ディ
(2) Lady -> ディ

If you have more than one vowel in a row or a vowel sound that ends in / r /, it usually becomes a long vowel sound.

(1) Target -> ターゲット
(2) Shoot -> シュー

Abrupt cut-off sounds usually denoted by a / t / or / c / employ the small 「ッ」.

(1) Catch -> キャ
(2) Cache -> キャシュ

Any word that ends in a consonant sound requires another vowel to complete the consonant-vowel pattern. (Except for "n" and "m" for which we have 「ン」)
For "t" and "d", it's usually "o". For everything else, it's usually "u".

(1) Good -> グッ
(2) Top -> トッ
(3) Jack -> ジャッ

English to Katakana Exercise

Sample: Europe = ヨーロッパ

1. check チェック
2. violin バイオリン
3. jet coaster (roller coaster) ジェットコースター
4. window shopping ウィンドーショッピング
5. salsa サルサ
6. hotdog ホットドッグ
7. suitcase スーツケース
8. kitchen キッチン
9. restaurant レストラン
10. New York ニューヨーク