All About Japan

Memorize Kanji With Cute Stop-Motion Videos

Video Learning Japanese

Kanji is often considered one of the hardest things for students of the Japanese language to master. Memorizing the Japanese language system adopted from China can be a daunting challenge for even the most diligent of pupils, which is why Tokyo animator Ayako Hiroki has created videos to showcase kanji in cute and memorable scenes.

Called “Kanjigram,” the short videos in the collection began appearing online at the end of June, with the first clip paying homage to the character 字 (azana/aza/ji), which makes up the second half of the word kanji (漢字).

This clever animation splits the character into its two parts, or radicals, showing a child (子) throwing a roof (宀) over its head.

Next up is the kanji for “tree” (木).

Seeds are used to create the kanji for “seed” (種).

梅:plum(うめ/バイ) ・ 6/6は梅の日。おにぎりになりたい梅のおじいさんのアニメーション。 その昔、雨の降らない日が続き、作物が育たず人々が困っていました。そこで神に梅を奉納したところ、大雨が降って無事に作物が育ったことから、6月6日を梅の日としたそうです。「梅雨」という言葉も、この恵みの雨が由来。 漢字の「梅(バイ)」は元々「楳・某(バイ)」で、神に捧げる器を木にくくりつけている形が由来だと言われています。昔の人にとって、梅は神聖なものだったんですね。 ・ #kanji #kanjigram #stopmotion #animation #madeinjapan #instart #instagood #animationart #artistsofinstagram #handmadefont #handmade #ume #plum #instafood #onigiri #dragonframe #漢字 #コマ撮り #アニメ #おにぎり #梅 #梅雨

A post shared by |Ayako Hiroki / kanjigram | (@kanjigram_a) on

One of the most adorable clips in the collection is this one, which depicts an umeboshi pickled plum hobbling over to a rice ball with his walking stick, before throwing himself onto it to create the word “plum” (梅).

Another cute clip pays homage to the kanji for “violet” (紫).

Having just appeared online less than a month ago, there are plenty more kanji and videos to come, so be sure to follow Ayako's Instagram account if you want to keep expanding on your Japanese skills.

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