Katakana Karuta

Students learn to hear the difference between katakana pronunciation and REAL English by playing this fast paced card game.

Archived from Englipedia.
Originally submitted by Lizzie Joy / Tara O'Neil on Apr 13, 2008.


  • KatakanaKaruta files. You will need one set of cards for each group. Laminated for durability if you so desire.


  • Say the 20 words featured on the cards for the students in exaggerated Japanese katakana and then in correct English. Help them to differentiate between pronunciations (ex. seh-ta and sweater). This is an excellent opportunity for the JTE to talk about how katakana is NOT an equivalent for English.
  • Go over each word, having the students repeat the correct pronunciation.
  • Divide the class into groups
  • Give each group a copy of the cards and instruct them to spread them out over their desks.
  • Explain that you will say a word and if you use katakana English they are NOT to grab it but if you say the word in correct English, they should get it.
  • Play for several rounds.
  • Have each group select a reader for their group and that student says the words in katakana or in English.


  • Feel free to change the cards to incorporate any of your katakana pet peeves, that's why I included asparagus!


  • This is a fun activity for all grades, even 3rd years enjoy reviewing their pronunciation. Exorcising katakana English is a lesson that is always relevant. This could possibly be used in elementary school with advanced students, but I haven't done it yet...let me know if you try!


  • Make sure you take time with 1st years and allow them to practice saying the words correctly or the last step of the game will be a total bust!




Total 0

Estimated time: 30 min

Submitted by: Englipedia Archive

March 11, 2019


Sign in or register an account to leave a comment.