歳 vs 才: What to use for preschool presentation

Hey everyone! I’m making a self intro presentation for a preschool, and I want to write the quiz questions I have at the end in basic Japanese underneath the English so they can follow along (I’m just hoping they stay engaged and learn a few words). For the question of “How old am I?” should I write it as “何歳ですか” or “何才ですか”? Researching this on WK says that the second one is easier to write and so is taught at earlier levels, but is it suitable in this case? Thanks in advance!

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If you’re teaching in preschool, then most, if not all, students won’t know any kanji (certainly not formally), and many may not even be able to read hiragana or katakana.

My advice: write it in all hiragana, read it aloud, sound out each kana while pointing to it on the screen, point to yourself. (Also if you want to ask “How old do I look?,” you can say 「何歳に見える?」)

They’re going to be excited to meet you either way so enjoy your time with the students!

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Yeah, preschoolers might not be able to read at all… so you could think of it as “I should make it as easy as possible and do it in all hiragana,” or you could think of it as “it won’t matter what I write, so full kanji or even English wouldn’t make a difference.”

And yeah, 何歳ですか will be interpreted as “How old are you?” so 何歳に見える? is better for both the meaning, and the fact that it’s not keigo, since you’re talking to little kids the less keigo you use the better.

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