It’s been a long, but amazing run here at WaniKani.
I joined in November 2015, and immediately taught myself to do reviews as soon as they were available, same for the lessons.
And today I can confirm I’ve got everything burned down:
How did I do this so fast?
I already had quite some knowledge of the Japanese language, so I had fewer unknown vocabulary to learn, which effectively cut off a huge amount of things I could possibly forget.
And the fact I kept myself highly motivated made me go through it real quick.
Advises for everyone else
I’d like to give some advise to other people as well.
- Don’t take learning vocabulary too seriously. Too many vocabulary on WaniKani are either unused or written in just kana in the real world. So better treat those as examples on how to read each Kanji in each situation. Kanji have multiple readings, seeing them used in vocabulary like that teaches you how to read Kanji in entirely new words (those you’ve never heard of before), and also be able to guess its core meaning before you dive into your dictionary.
- Explore the real world as early as possible. I understand it could be intimidating to jump in deep waters while you only know Kanji from the first 10 levels, but doing so will not only help you remember what you’ve learned quicker, it’ll also motivate you to learn more.
- For level 30-people or higher: start interacting with Japanese people. This is a very important one, because actually talking to Japanese people in Japanese will boost up your Kanji knowledge, and you’ll be surprised to learn more than you’d ever expect real quick. Chatting with in Discord servers meant for Japanese people taught me countless of new things! And wherever you go, they’re very nice and have even more respect (and sometimes jealousy) if you reveal you’re a west European person who can speak Japanese.
- Don’t worry about knowing ALL the Kanji. Even Japanese people themselves don’t know all Kanji, and sometimes even have to look things up too. This is mostly the result of certain Kanji being not frequently used enough. Even more so regarding hand writing; everyone is typing their text instead these days, and it’s not uncommon to see people take out there smartphones to check how to write Kanji when they have to fill out a form by hand for example.
I hope I’ve managed to motivate some folks here.
And the timing of this achievement brings me to one final thing: happy new year!