Learn Hiragana – KA KI KU KE KO

In the last lesson we went over あいうえお — the core vowel sounds. The Japanese language consists of simply adding consonants to these core sounds. Let’s start with K first.

This is a very simple lesson, nothing tricky in the K consonant series.

KA KI KU KE KO-かきくけこ

First let’s cover how to pronounce these characters. You can tap each character to hear native pronunciation.

Pronouncing かきくけこ

  • か (ka) – sounds like “kah” — “ah” with a k in front
  • き (ki) – sounds like “key”
  • く (ku) – sounds like “koo”
  • け (ke) – sounds like “kay” — like “okay” without the O
  • こ (ko) – sounds like “koh” –“oh” with a k in front

Look Out For き-さ and け-せ

You haven’t learned a couple of these characters yet, they’re in the next lesson. You can see (ki) is very similar to (sa). It has one more stroke across the top stem.

(ke) and (se) are a little less similar. The catch is when written on signs け almost looks like せ. I like to think け is “facing left” and せ is “facing right.”

Recall Practice

Time to practice! Just like in all lessons, do this as many times as it takes for you to feel like you can confidently select the correct answer without guessing.

This recall covers あいえうえお and かきくけこ together.

Good job! Continue practicing until you can confidently complete this with ease. Use the buttons below to restart the practice (challenge yourself with inverted and challenge mode).

Once this practice feels easy to you it’s time to take a quick break and then move on to the next lesson.