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Japanese / Year 3 and 4 / Understanding / Systems of language

Curriculum content descriptions

Understand that hiragana symbols can be combined to represent words

[Key concepts: consonant, vowel, kana, foot, mora, rhythm, pronunciation; Key processes: recognising, differentiating, demonstrating]


  • recognising that there are 19 distinct consonants in Japanese (k, g, s, sh, z, j, t, ch, ts, d, n, h, f, b, p, m, y, r, w) and five vowels (a, i, u, e, o)
  • understanding the system of basic Japanese sound combinations, that is, a vowel can be attached to most consonants to produce a kana
  • understanding that vowel length can differentiate words in Japanese, for example, ‘e’ () for a picture and ‘ee’ (ええ) for ‘yeah’
  • recognising the concept of the minimum unit of rhythm in Japanese (‘foot’ or フット) and that one foot in Japanese consists of two moras, for example, ごちそうさま is pronounced as a three-foot word ごち・そう・さま
  • demonstrating understanding of the differences in pronunciation of English and Japanese versions of loan words such as バナナ、ペット、サッカー
General capabilities
  • Literacy Literacy
  • Critical and creative thinking Critical and creative thinking
ScOT terms

Pronunciation,  Vowels,  Consonants,  Japanese language,  Hiragana,  Mora

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