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Lesson Transcript

Do you know how to count big animals?
I'll tell you the answer at the end of this lesson!
Hi everybody! I'm Alisha.
こんにちは、 Yamamori です。
Welcome to Japanese Counters for Beginners, where you'll learn how to count all sorts of different objects in Japanese!
Yamamori-sensei, what counter will we learn in this lesson?
First, let's take a look at what sorts of objects can be counted with the counter.
When you count birds, you can use the counter…
This counter is basically for birds. The bird you are counting can be as big as an ostrich or as small as a baby chick, and it can even be used for a penguin.
Okay, let's count numbers 1 to 10 with this counter.
一羽
二羽
三羽
四羽
五羽
六羽
七羽
八羽
九羽
十羽
Did you notice that there were some numbers that sounded different to how they usually sound?
This counter can allow more flexibility compared to other counters. There are different versions for the numbers 3, 6, 8 and 10.
For number 3, you can also say 'san-ba'.
For number 6, you can also say 'ro-ppa'.
For number 8, you can also say 'ha-ppa'.
For number 10, it's 'ju-ppa'.
Okay. Now let's take a look at some sample sentences that use this counter.
庭にすずめが二羽います。
“There are 2 sparrows in the garden.”
学校で、にわとりを五羽、飼っています。
“We're raising 5 chickens at school.”
動物園で、ペンギンを七羽見ました。
“I saw 7 penguins at the zoo.”
Now it's time for a quiz. I'm going to ask you a question in English. Answer it in Japanese. Are you ready? Make sure you use the right counter.
How many birds are there?
鳥が六羽います。
How many chickens did you draw?
ニワトリを四羽描きました。
We've learned the counters for small to medium size animals, but do you know how to count
big animals? The answer is…
一頭
The kanji for this counter means "head". You can use this counter for large animals that are considered threatening to humans, such as horses, whales and so on.
You might hear on the news… くまが一頭、現れました。
And that means, "one bear appeared." Let's hope you won't hear this news though!
Okay, everyone. That's it for this lesson.
I'll see you next time!

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