Use Anime Lingo To Boost Your Kanji Reading Ability — 9 Comments

  1. Wow, it has been some time since I watched Naruto (before I even started learning japanese) and I remember thinking the Ninja categories were so cool. Now that I see they are just 下,中,上, it sounds so silly XD

    But you are right, these names are great to memorize some readings. I memorized the げつ reading of 月 thanks to Bleach (the protagonist sword is called 残月). All the swords in this anime have a name and they are called contantly, so I´m sure fans already memorized most of them, it´s just a matter of checking the kanji :p

    • でしょう? I remembered most of the readings of Kanji 風 水 雷 土 波 火 陰 星 from just the titles of the kages! The fact that kanji and charaters/techniques are related helps too.
      And checking the kanji makes the show soo much more interesting. I never expected byakugan would literally translate to white eyes. I don’t know whether that’s clever or plain lazy.

  2. I actually think I might try this, specifically with the 斬魄刀 and ability names from Bleach, which I’ve always found super interesting in the first place.

    And if anything, it’ll help put things into perspective from a native language standpoint instead of just the english translations of them. :)

  3. I’m about halfway through shippuden but I don’t get the Japanese word for spring one. It kind of sounds like some of the character’s name’s endings (ShikaMARU, AkaMARU, KonohaMARU) but its haru not maru. Can someone explain?

    • If you are asking about the last statement, keep in mind it was a puzzle. I HAD to give some clues to let my friends decipher the message.
      (a) Naruto is a 忍者—–> Implies that 忍者 is read as “Ninja”

      (b). Naruto wants to be 火影 of the village. —–> Implies that 火影 is read as “Hokage”. Either 火 is Ho and 影 is kage, or 火 is hoka or 影 is ge. 50-50 chance. I haven’t provided any clues as to which version is correct as I can’t let them get them all correct.

      (c) Naruto has crush on a girl whose full name is “Sakura 春野.” —-> Implies that 春野 is read as “Haruno”

      (d) Naruto is a 下忍 and remains as such while Shikamaru becomes the first 中忍 of their group. —–> From (a), we can deduce that 忍 is nin. Consequently 者 is ja, 下 is ge,, and 中 is cyuu.

      (e) The Japanese word for spring is 春. —->Almost every *hardcore* anime fan knows that Haru is spring. So from (c), we can deduce that 野 is no, because 春 is haru.

  4. One method I used to learn hiragana was making flashcards with pictures of anime/manga characters I was familiar with and writing the hiragana for their name next to the picture. Because of Naruto and Yamato, I’ll never forget that と is “to”.

    • It’ll almost be an year, wow, can’t believe how far I’ve come. Here’s a bonus that wasn’t able to make the cut:

      As an exercise, I have compiled 30 words from Naruto (~35 kanji+36 readings) that every Naruto fan should be familiar with.

      Instruction : Use the google images. For example searching for 風影 brings up the image of our red haired friend. If 影 is read as “Kage, what would 風 be read as? (in context of our red haired guy)

      (I have already filled in some readings)

      忍者= にん  じゃ
      忍び= しの  び  
      下忍= げ  ?
      中忍= ちゅう  ?
      上忍= じょう  ?

      影=  かげ
      火影= ほ  かげ
      星影= Although he doesn’t deserve this title :P

      術= じゅつ
      分身の術= ぶん しん の じゅつ

      隠れの里= かくれ  の  さと
      砂隠れの里 =


      Did all the readings stick? Let me know in the comments below!

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