Japan’s unusual humour strikes again in the form of Unko Kanji Drill books. “Unko” means “poop” in Japanese and these books are popular among children who must learn over a thousand kanji during their elementary school years. I am a big fan of learning kanji the way the Japanese do as children instead of the more popular cramming methods and so I am a huge fan of step by step kanji books. I have given away one of my favourite (and cheapest) kanji drill books found at the 100 yen store Daiso. However, The Unko Kanji Drill series has taken over as my go-to book for kanji learning as I make my way through the first 2 volumes.
As I said learning new things (especially languages) as children do is what I recommend. Living in Japan now I have come to realise that children here are OBSESSED with poop (and other things I won’t mention here). Writing the kanji is one thing but using it in sentences and remember the various readings is where many (including myself) find the process frustrating. It’s so frustrating to finally feel like you recognize a kanji character only to be reading it wrong. Kanji drill books help with writing and reading, plus I assure you that you will not find more humorous sentences to help with the memorization process. These sentences also help to expand your vocabulary and solidify your Kana skills so I highly recommend you learn hiragana and katakana first.
How do you practice kanji? Do you know about the Unko Kanji Drill books? Tweet met @Jamaipanese or leave a comment below.
Kirk is a proud Jamaican who started Jamaipanese.com in February 2006 and now lives in rural Japan. He enjoys sharing his experiences learning about Japan, personal milestones in life as well as interests such as photography, gaming and travelling.