Expressing the way of doing things in Japanese

Hello everyone and welcome to today’s lesson from BondLingo. Today we are going to be learning the ins and outs of かた and ほうほう to become able to talk about “The way of doing things” in Japanese. It’s a really effective form to be able to use and will most definitely improve your Japanese communication ability. We will be splitting up today’s lesson into the following sections: 

  1. What is the meaning of  かた and ほうほう? – Let’s learn the basics.
  2. The grammar behind かた and ほうほう – How to form sentences with today’s topic
  3. Some example sentences with かた and ほうほう to see them in action –  Learning through examples
  4. An effective study technique for mastering ほうほう and かた – Let’s put it into practice.

Through this nice simple structure we will be able to effectively master today’s topic. Are you now ready to jump in and get started? Sit back, grab a coffee and let’s start expanding our mind with today’s online Japanese lesson.

Mastering 方法(ほうほう) and 方(かた) JLPT N4 – Do you know how to use chopsticks? | Learn Japanese Online
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What is the meaning of  かた and ほうほう?

Let’s learn the basics.

Now 方法 and 方 both mean way, or process. The usage of each is slightly different grammatically but we will come onto that in the next section. With these words you will be able to talk about the specific ways of doing things for example:

“What is the best way of doing this?”

“What is the way of using chopsticks?”

“Can you show me how to read this in Japanese” etc.

Learning both will be really practical for you and to get started with these words it’s not really that difficult. Let’s have a look at how you can form sentences. 

The grammar behind かた and ほうほう

How to form sentences with today’s topic

Firstly we will look at かた 方. 方 is used with verbs. The way to add かた to a verb is as follows.

たべますTo eatRemove ます formたべAnd add かたたべかたWay of eating 

We use かた after verbs to create “the way of X-ing”

飲み方 のみかた way of drinking 
やり方 やりかた way of doing 
Let’s look at a longer example sentence: 
はし を つかいかた が わかりますか
Hashi wo tsukaikata ga wakarimasu ka 
Do you know how to use chop sticks?

See how つかいます (To use) has been transformed into a noun つかいかた (way of using) by dropping the ます and adding かた。

Now let’s looks at 方法 ほうほう.

It has a very similar meaning but the way you use it is a little different lets look at using ほうほう with verbs first 

たべるTo eatAdd ほうほうたべるほうほうWay of eating Simply add ほうほう 

So to create ほうほうwords with verbs you take a plain for verb and ほうほう it’s quite simple. 

It can also be used with nouns by adding の ほうほう after said noun. For example:

アメリカの方法 The American way
イギリス人の方法 The British way 
私のほうほう my way 

Let’s now have a look at some examples sentences so you can see both かた and ほうほう in action. 

Some example sentences with かた and ほうほう to see them in action

Learning through examples  – Example sentences

First we have an example with “kata”. Pay close attention to the verb form + kata here.

手でバーガーを食べ方は不潔です
Te de Ba-ga wo tabekata wa fuketsu desu
The way you eat a burger with your hands is unhygenic

Here is a good example sentence to use when you want to highlight that you don’t understand the way of doing something.

働き方がまだ分からない
Hatarakikata ga mada wakaranai
I don't yet understand how i do the work 

Now we move on to some hou hou 方法 sentences. 

こういう方法で私は英語をマスターした。
Kouiu houhou de watashi wa eigo wo masuta- shita
This is how I mastered English.

Here we see that the plain form verb is in the past form before adding ほうほう to indicate the tense. “The way i study” becomes “the way is studied” 

日本語を勉強した方法だ。
Nihongo Wo Benkyou shita hou hou da
The way I studied Japanese. 

Lastly we have a noun example sentence with ほうほう. 

アメリカの方法はちょっと強いだと思う。
America no houhou wa chotto tsuyoi da to omou
I think the american way is a little strong 

So now we have seen a few example sentneces with ほうほう and かた lets take a look at a great way you can practice using both of these forms with our effective study technique.

An effective study technique for mastering ほうほう and かた

Let’s put it into practice.

So now that we know all of today’s juicy information we are going to need to put it into practice just like a muscle, if you don’t use it, you lose it. Firstly dedicate 1 full day to practicing with かた and another to practing with ほうほう。One each day try to come up with 20 – 30 sentences and write them down. 

On the third day read the sentences back to yourself and try to translate them from English to Japanese without looking at the Japanese. By doing this your brain should become very comfortable with all of the patterns that we have learnt today and allow you to use both kata and houhou much more fluently. 

This is one of the most important things that you are going to do. It’s no good just reading the information from today and forgetting about it. You need to apply it practically and really push yourself to go that extra mile to master what you have learnt. Try to make it fun and enjoyable by making sentences that you would find useful to know with vocabulary that you are interested in and enjoy.

So guys we really hope that you have enjoyed today’s online Japanese lesson on かた and ほうほう. If you have any comments or suggestions on future content that you would like to see in the next article then please do let us know. Remember to keep powering through and never give up on the learning journey. It is a process that takes time. Until the next time, またね.

Learn Japanese Online with BondLingo

Learn Japanese Online with BondLingo

Learn Japanese Online with BondLingo
Learn Japanese Online with BondLingo

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