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Japanese TODOFUKEN-Prefectural Kanji [free download!]

TODOFUKEN Prefectural Kanji -with Furigana
TODOFUKEN Prefectural Kanji -with Furigana

Japanese TODOFUKEN-Prefectural Kanji [free download!]

The added card to the "Kanji List by Grade" is the "TODOFUKEN-Prefectural Kanji -with Furigana." You can download the PDF for free at the end of the document.


In Japan, there are 47 prefectures called "都道府県" (to-dou-fu-ken). However, unlike the significant authority held by the "states" in the United States, the role of the Japanese prefectures is closer to that of "counties."

The history of prefectures dates back to the Meiji era in 1871 when the Meiji government abolished the system of "藩" (han), which were regions ruled by Daimyos (feudal lords) that numbered between 200 and 300 during the Edo period. This was part of the government's efforts to modernize the political system. They gradually integrated and changed administrative divisions.

As of now, the prefectures consist of 1 "To" which means 1 capital(Tokyo-to), 1 "Dou" which means multiple countries to 1(Hokkai-do), 2 "Fu" is the 2 centers of a magistrate (Osaka-fu and Kyoto-fu), and 43 "Ken" prefectures (others-ken).

■Kanji study of TODOFUKEN

In the curriculum of Japanese elementary schools, 4th-grade students have to memorize the locations, shapes, and names of the prefectures.

They have tests and homework where they must provide the names of the prefectures in Kanji characters.

The Kanji characters used for the prefectures are numerous, some are complex, and many have unique readings. Even for Japanese elementary school students, memorizing them can be quite challenging.

This difficulty is particularly pronounced for children with learning disabilities, and my eldest son, despite memorizing all the prefecture names and their shapes, struggled to write them in Kanji😭. He had to redo tests where he was required to write all 47 prefecture names in Kanji multiple times.

So, As a support tool for children with learning disabilities and those preparing for junior high school entrance exams, I have created and shared this "Prefectures Kanji table" on the 🇯🇵Japanese version of my website in Japanese. But, 🇺🇸English version is for anyone interested in Japan and is welcome to make use of it.

The features of this "Prefectures Kanji " include:

  • Arrangement of Kanji characters used in prefecture names in 50 sounds "a-i-u-e-o" order.

  • Common color-coded index with the "Kanji list by grade," for easy reference.

  • Designed in a postcard size, making it convenient for reference on study desks.

  • 🇺🇸The English special version has a Furigana(pronunciation key) of the alphabet.

Like the Kanji list, it is suitable for various purposes such as homework assistance, reasonable accommodation at school, and Kanji checking for exam preparation. You can adjust and print it in your preferred size for your child's convenience.

In total, there are 73 kanji characters used in prefecture names, as indicated when listed. While this may seem challenging at first, upon closer inspection, you'll find that more than half of them are relatively simple Kanji.

For context, my eldest son used to say things like, "I like Ishikawa and Yamaguchi! Niigata! Ehime! Okinawa! You three brothers have too many strokes in your names!" while grumbling about his homework. 😅

■Useful Games for learning Japanese geography and history

For those who want to learn more about Japan's geography and historical landmarks on maps in a fun and engaging way, we recommend the following games, as enjoyed by my children. *The link below is the official website of the game company.

A historical simulation game set primarily in the Sengoku period.

Players choose their favorite Sengoku Daimyo, strategize battles and diplomacy, gradually expanding their territory through meticulous planning to achieve national unification.

While it may seem a steady-paced game, once you get into it, it fosters a deep love for Japanese history If you fall in love with the game, the geography and former names of provinces across Japan become ingrained in your memory.

MOMOTETSU (by KONAMI) 🇯🇵 *Not available in English

A board game in the form of a thrilling race across Japan, aiming to become a real estate tycoon, suitable for family or friends (solo play is also okay).

This Sugoroku-style game not only features famous landmarks and locations, but also offers an enjoyable way to learn intricate geographic details such as local specialties, traditional crafts, and railway routes from various regions in Japan. It's not just a geography lesson; it doubles as an introduction to economic concepts like stocks and real estate investment. However, be cautious of getting too caught up in the excitement!

A global version, "MOMOTETSU World," is also available, and you can find the analog version at toy stores in Japan.

■Tools share [free download!]

Please read my website terms of use for more information.

For Japanese children/advanced learners(without Furigana)→🇯🇵[Japanese version] Download



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