Remembering The Katakana

Remembering the Katakana by James W. Heisig uses a phonetic memory technique to teach you Japanese katakana. The book includes a supplement on learning how to remember which details two methods based on the spaced-repetition system of Sebastian Leitner.

The book is a self-study guide and it assumes the can already read hiragana. It takes the reader step-by-step through the katakana, providing a story or set of hints with which to memorize each character.

Originally self-published, Remembering the Katakana is currently available as part of “Remembering the Kana: A Guide to Reading and Writing the Japanese Syllabaries in 3 Hours Each” published in 2007 by the University of Hawaii Press.

It’s important to note that Heisig is an American so speakers of British English and people unfamilar with American culture may find the book harder to use, although it’s easy to adapt the system as necessary.