I don’t hold with using mnemonics usually in language learning, but with Japanese there is so much going on at once in a word – the various readings, the shape of the kanji, etc, that sometimes odd wordgames and things like that can help. It’s a waste of time to try and do it for every word, but here are some of mine which I already shared (to greater or lesser levels of appreciation) on http://www.readthekanji.com.
Here’s just ten to be going on with. I probably have done about a hundred, but to see them you need to join http://www.readthekanji.com!
1. To Deliver
That square head by the basket is like *Todo the dog with the square head in the Wizard of Oz in Dorothy’s cycle basket. That’s the moment when he jumps out, so he can’t be *delivered to the interfering neighbour.
If you get *sand inside your ear, the *suna you get it out, the better.
(Another, less polite one, is based on the reading of “suna” backwards, given the fact that if you slide along a beach backwards you’ll probably get some sand in there. But I didn’t put that one up, at least not yet.)
If the *circumstances in the company worsen, the boss le-*ts-u-gou..
4. Or less than, not more than
*Ika-rus was NOT able to get HIGHER THAN other people for long. Is the symbol on the left a bit like his broken wings falling with him the spot in the middle tumbling to the ground?
The prisoner warders are issued with new *keysets every *season
“That’s a nice *kuukou clock, where did you buy it?”
“At Geneva *Airport.”
*Fukai didn’t realise it was going to be that *deep!
“Dad, Justin Bieber’s so *famous even *yuu may have heard of him!”
9. Preparation / setup / arrangements
He had made all the *arrangements and *preparations, but, being of a nervous disposition, he was still very *”junbi” (jumpy) before the event…
10. To bring up
Looking at the kanji, you might see the frowning face of a very strict upbringer. He’s a right “sod at err”-ors made by his students.
- Kanji wear it? (ask.metafilter.com)
- How to learn hiragana in one hour or less (boingboing.net)
- Kanji for gold named year’s best (japantimes.co.jp)