Not able to remember that 授 is instruct

I’m having a terrible time with 授.
I can’t seem to remember that its meaning is instruct and I always, always type teach.
Jisho doesn’t list teach as a valid meaning so I feel uneasy about adding it as a synonym.
I know there are nuanced differences, but I can’t think of any circumstances where the word instruct can’t be substituted with the word teach, which is adding the problem of me not being able to remember it correctly.

Any advice?


I don’t know if it’s remotely helpful. But (in English) if you were reading instructions they tell you what to do (without caring if you understand or not). They instruct you (inform you) about how to do something. Whereas the nuance of ‘teach’ might be that the teacher actually is trying to actively get the information into your head and help you do it right*. (I don’t know if you can find some sort of visual cue or radical-related story that you could relate that to?)

*some people’s experience of particular teachers may lead them to disagree here


Kanji like those which on their own aren’t a word, you shouldn’t worry so much about getting the ‘meaning’ exactly right, since in a way it doesn’t really exist.

木 on its own literally means tree, so that’s important. But 授 doesn’t have that literal meaning on its own.

The meaning being taught is kinda an approximate translation of what type of meaning it brings to words. If you know what those words mean (like 授業) then technically the individual kanji ‘approx meaning’ is no longer important at all.

Long story short worry more about the vocab meanings rather than individual kanji (which aren’t a word on their own)


I would add it as a synonym.

If I had to define the difference between “teach” and “instruct” in English I would have to sit and ponder for a while. So there’s no point getting hung up on that distinction when in this case they’re both just glosses to help you remember 授.

In fact, looks like I did just that a long time ago, so you’re not alone!


Yeah, that’s also one of the frustrating things! I do know the vocabulary!

So yeah, I’m going to add it as a synonym then! Thank you for repliers for you support in this difficult decision

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