Kanji Essentials

A quick reference guide for learning the 1,945 General-Use Kanji officially documented by the Japanese Ministry of Education.

Ideal for students who already know Hiragana and Katakana, this learning tool will help you to:

  • remember Kanji readings (Onyomi & Kunyomi)
  • view and practice Kanji stroke order
  • listen to Kanji pronunciations and examples
  • learn Kanji compound words
  • see how Kanji is used in real sentences

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User reviews

Good app for study Kanji.

– Changphuak, 3 Nov 2014 (Japan)


This app is great for learning how to write words .. I love it.

– Pmrigo, 1 Nov 2014 (USA)



This app is SO close to perfect! It’s exactly what I’ve been looking for .. this app is a MUST HAVE for ANY Japanese learner!
– TheFourthWarner, 16 May 2013 (USA)

Frequently asked questions

Why don’t some of the stroke order diagrams match the displayed kanji?

This is because the glyph (shape) of the handwritten form is different from the printed (typed) form. Example: 冷 (Cool).

What are ON-YOMI?

ON-YOMI (音読み) readings are those which were derived from classical Chinese pronounciations and in most cases, are used for compound words – eg 食事 (shokuji) – which are formed using multiple Kanji characters, similar to how Latin and Greek roots are used in compound words in European languages.

What are KUN-YOMI?

KUN-YOMI (訓読み) readings are native Japanese readings and are used in most cases when you see a Kanji character on its own – eg 白 (shiro) – and in all cases where you see Okurigana (ending with Hiragana) – eg 食べる (taberu).


Learning Japanese iPhone and iPad apps © Dale Clifford 2012-2015.
These applications made possible by the following resources:

  • The Japanese government published a list of the 1,945 most commonly-used basic kanji in 1981 and is freely available. This database contains 27 seperate descriptions (cells) of each basic Japanese kanji which cover such fields as classification, frequency of use, number of strokes, pronunciation, etc.
  • The KANJIDIC2 dictionary files licensed from The Electronic Dictionary Research and Development Group under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike v3.0 licence.
  • The KanjiVG stroke order data is copyright © 2009-2012 Ulrich Apel and released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike v3.0 license.
  • Sentence examples compiled by Professor Yasuhito Tanaka at Hyogo University and his students are available under a Creative Commons Attribution (France) v2.0 licence.


Kanji Essentials
1 vote, 5.00 avg. rating (94% score)