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Ta form : Japanese verb conjugation for making “タ形”

Written by Kaori sensei

Ta form? I’ve studied Te form….but What is Ta form? Today I will show you how to make Ta form and introduce some important expressions used at the beginner level.

Like Te form, Ta form can be used in a variety of expressions. If you have studied Te form, there is no need to be afraid of the conjugation! If you haven’t studied Te form yet, learn it in this article!

How to make Ta form?

Very simple. First, each verb is converted to Te form. Next, replace “Te” with “Ta” in Te form.If “De” is used, replace it with “Da”.

Step1. Convert to Te form

(To eat)  たべる → たべ

(To wirte) かく  → かい

(To swim) およぎます → およい

Step2. Replace “Te” with in “Ta”

(To eat)  たべ → たべ

(To wirte) かい  → かい

(To swim) およい → およい

※If “De” is used, replace it with “Da”.

Masu formTe formTa form
ききますきいてきいた
およぎますおよいでおよいだ
はなしますはなしてはなした
あそびますあそんであそんだ
かえりますかえってかえった
いきますいっていった
たべますたべてたべた
ねますねてねた
きますきてきた
しますしてした
Masu form vs Te form vs Ta form

How to practice Te form?

Step1. Proper understanding of rules

Surely,it seems obvious, doesn’t it? However, when different conjugations are introduced in the future, different rules will be used and many new verbs will be introduced. Therefore, it is important to firmly input “this is the rule for Ta form”.

Step2. Repeat until you can answer reflexively

In the beginning, You will think…”Which group is this verb?” ,and then if it is Group I, You will remind that “What is the letter before Masu…..?”.It is the right process. However, when it comes to real conversation, there is no time to think about it. You need to respond reflexively, i.e., within 1-2 seconds.

Definitely,if you want to be able to speak, this time lag can be a problem.So, for this kind of conjugate memorization, use flashcards.The recommended app is Anki. If you haven’t used it yet, please also read this article.

Ta form expressions for beginners

First, the ta form is used in informal conversation as a past tense expression. There are many other useful expressions.The mistake is often made in connecting Te form.Let’s recognize it as a Ta-form expression!

1. ~たり~たり (do…and do ….)

: to list up two or three activities or events among several.

にちようび、さんぽしたり、えいがを みたり した。

I had a walk and watch the movie on Sunday.

*します → した (Group Ⅲ, Irregular verbs)

*みます → みた(Group Ⅱ, Ru-verbs)

2. ~たほうがいいです (It would be best to)

: To propose or recommened to someone the speaker’s opinion or advise.

毎日(まいにち)、野菜(やさい) を 食(た)べたほうがいいです。

It would be the best to eat vegetable everyday.

*たべます → たべた ( Group Ⅱ , Ru-verbs)

3. ~たことがあります (I have the experience of…)

: Indicates experiences

日本(にほん) へ 3回(かい) いったことがあります。

I have been to Japan 3 times

*いきます → いった ( Group Ⅰ , U-verbs)

4. ~たら (if….)

: Indicates supposition if something occurs, then something else will happen.

日本 へ いったら、おいしい すし を たべたいです。

If I go to Japan, I want to eat good sushi.

*す → すない ( Group Ⅰ, U-verbs)

More about Japanese verbs

Additionlaly,if you want to master Japanese verbs, this is the book for you. Verbs are very important in any language. Let’s master them and learn to speak them!

600 Basic Japanese Verbs

Japanese verb conjugation

About the author

Kaori sensei

Japanese online teacher, live in Kamakura, Japan. She is currently working as a language teacher and online Japanese experience host to introduce Japanese culture to the world. She originally worked as an engineer at a Japanese company, so she is familiar with Japanese business culture too.

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