It looks a little strange, but the Korean alphabet actually easier than
The first step is to learn the sounds of the Korean letters ( called "jamo" in Korean). Just click on the character below and hear what sound it makes.
You'll have noticed that I haven't used any English letters to write down the names of the sounds. Some textbooks do this, but if you read them you'll find you speak with a horrible English accent that no-one understands. Just click, listen, relax and don't worry if you can't hear or say the differences between each sound, that will come with practice.
Speaking of which, the best way is by playing games. Make sure your speakers are turned up and have a try of these two games, which can you do the fastest?
Korean Alphabet Game 1 - Korean Alphabet Game 2
Once you've got all the basic sounds, all you need to do is put them together into words. For example, when you were a kid you learned the alphabet with "ah, buh, cuh", then began spelling out words like "d" "o" "g". Korean's just the same. But instead of being boring and writing the words in a straight line, Korean is a bit more funky, you write them in blocks....
Each block has 2 or 3 jamo and you read each one from top to bottom, left to right. e.g. in these two examples you read the red jamo, then the blue, then the green in the left hand block, then move on to read the red, blue and green jamo in the right hand block. Needless to say the colours are just here to help explain, usually everything is written in the same colour.
Of course none of this really matters if you don't actually know what the word means once you've read it. So get cracking at some of the useful words and phrases games first, then pop back here later.
| If you teach in Korea, be sure to
check out my "Genki English" Teachers Set
|Or if you want to learn more Korean,
have a look at the Rocket Korean Free Trial
Or Pimsleur Korean: