Katakana (カタカナ)is the second Japanese alphabet you should learn! There are 46 kana (“letters”). Children in Japan generally begin learning to read and write katakana as preschoolers, and master it during their first year of elementary school. Katakana is phonetic like hiragana, and used for words that are not native to Japan. (Lingodeer has a great explanation HERE).

What you’ll find on this page:

  • Printable worksheets for learning how to read and write katakana
  • Printable katakana learning charts
  • Printable katakana flashcards
  • Printable katakana books
  • Katakana learning videos
  • Advice about how to learn/teach katakana
  • Lesson plans for teaching katakana

Printable Katakana Worksheets

If you do a Google search for “カタカナ 練習 プリント”, you will find dozens of resources, but these are the best free worksheets that I have found!

NIFTY Corporation (ニフティ株式会社) is one of the leading internet service providers in Japan. Their sub site, キッズ@nifty, is a homepage made just for children. It is full of games and study helps, including dozens of katakana worksheets like this one. Click the picture or HERE to see them all!

ちびむすドリル (happylilac.net, by PADIN HOUSE/株式会社パディンハウス) is my FAVORITE website for printable Japanese worksheets. They have worksheets for every age and subject. Find their katakana worksheets HERE.

Printable Katakana Learning Charts

KF Studio’s Katakana chart is adorable and is my favorite. You can print it out to whatever size you want and display it on the wall where it can be viewed daily.

Printable Katakana Flashcards

Using flashcards are a great way to review katakana. Kids-Points.com (こどもの習い事と家庭学習) is one of the best free resources I have found. Download their flashcards HERE. Just print, cut, and fold. I laminate almost everything I print to help them last longer. I’ve been using THIS laminator for years!

Printable Katakana Books

These printable katakana mini books are fantastic for those learning katakana for the first time. They are created and shared by Japan Foundation. Simply print, cut, fold, and start reading!

Katakana Learning Videos

Advice About How to Teach/Learn Katakana

(First, check out this page about how to teach hiragana!)

  • Teach children to read and write hiragana first, then teach katakana in a similar way.
  • If you try to teach both hiragana and katakana at the exact same time, children may become confused.
  • A great way to learn katakana is to read katakana-heavy books to children. For example, a book about dinosaurs or Pokemon characters would have a lot of katakana. (Click HERE for a Pokemon Katakana video)
  • Once children have learned hiragana and katakana separately, begin integrating the two. For example, “Here is the hiragana あ. Can you find the matching katakana?” And practice writing simple sentences that use both hiragana and katakana.

In Japan, children typically learn how to read hiragana at 3 years old, begin writing hiragana at 4 years old, and learn proper hiragana stroke order at 5 years old. They typically learn to read katakana at 5 years old and are able to write katakana around 6 years old. If you are learning Japanese as a second language, don’t worry if you are learning at a slower pace.

Lesson Plans for Teaching Katakana:

<Coming soon!>

You may also enjoy this post: KATAKANA RESOURCES

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