Okurigana - system for remembering

Approaching Level 12, doing okay, averaging around 95% memorization. However when it comes to okurigana attached to a kanji, cannot seem to get things to stick in the memory.
Such as:
to ‘verb’ something
to be ‘verb’
to ‘verb’
have a high rate of failure muddling these up. Does anyone have a good system for making them stick in the memory?


Learning grammar and the difference between intransitive and transitive verbs.


This is one of the first aspects of grammar you are encountering (also vocab, to be honest, and there is some overlap). Therefore, I would recommend starting (or continuing) your journey along the grammar road, alongside the kanji road. The following recommendations are based on my own experience. I don’t claim they are the best for everyone, only that they worked very well for me.

To get a jump-start on grammar, I would highly recommend watching some of Cure Dolly’s videos. (Sad note: she has unfortunately recently passed away during the Covid era – no concrete info on the actual cause, though – but her YT channel is still up.) In particular, she has a playlist for her “Japanese From Scratch” course which really gave me a sense of the logical structure of Japanese grammar in a far more logically intuitive way than any other resource.

[A word of warning though: Some/many people find her voice/accent/presentation to be unpleasant or annoying. Personally, I just think of her as a little old lady stuck in an android body, and thus I actually find it cute and endearing – but I understand why others feel differently. Thus, I highly recommend to turn on subtitles while watching her videos, as she provides complete subtitles for all of her vids and they indeed help overcome her admittedly strange accent.]

Next, in order to get a more-or-less ‘complete’ introduction to grammar, I recommend going through at least one introductory textbook, such as the popular Genki book(s), or Minna no Nihongo, or something similar.

You will definitely notice the difference in how these ‘traditional’ resources teach grammar compared to how Cure Dolly teaches it; hence why I suggest Cure Dolly first. However, I still think they are very useful for ensuring you have a solid grounding for basic grammar in all of its aspects, and are familiar with how the concepts are presented / talked about in more mainstream Japanese Language resources in English / Western languages.

Last but not least, if you thrive with SRS learning systems like WaniKani, then I’d suggest trying out Bunpro for practicing your grammar. One great thing about Bunpro (there are many great things, but this is a big one, especially for beginners) is that it has so-called ‘Paths’ for various popular textbooks and websites that teach grammar. So, if you chose for example to use the Genki books for your ‘mainstream’ textbook, you can follow the ‘Genki Path’ on Bunpro, and it will present all the grammar points in the same order that they appear in the Genki I and Genki II books. In this way, Bunpro will help you to follow along with your chosen textbook, and to reinforce the lessons taught in it.

Later on, you can use Bunpro to go beyond your textbook, and it covers all (I think) the grammar points for the JLPT system, from N5 (basic) up to N1 (advanced). But you can also, if you prefer, pick and choose any grammar points you like, in any order you like.

Finally, once you’ve got some basics under your belt, you would definitely want to dive into reading and/or listening as soon as you’re comfortable/ready, as consuming lots of ‘input’ is considered by most as one of the best ways of strengthening your language proficiency. (It has to be comprehensible, though. It’s not enough to, e.g., listen to lots of spoken Japanese that you don’t understand. It unfortunately doesn’t work that way, by ‘osmosis’. There needs to be a kernel of comprehension on which to build.) But that’s probably a little ways down the road for you, if you’re just starting out. ‘Next Steps’, so to speak.


Fantastic! Thanks for all the work you have put into this reply! I will certainly dive into the Bunpro and Cure Dolly.
I have the Minna No Nihongo, so I guess it is ‘sharp intake of breath time’ and dive in.
Already started the reading immersion process with Yomu Yomu and other readers, really enjoying that.
thanks once again for the comprehensive reply

1 Like

Many thanks, I guess it is time to move on into grammar!