2023 Update for Level 1-10 Context Sentences

Update: We’ve updated sentences levels 1-10! :tada:

Hi, y’all!

We are updating context sentences for the first ten levels of WaniKani.

Before this update, we tried not to use kanji above the vocabulary’s level. Many sentences, especially at earlier levels, used words that are written in only kana or a mixture of kanji and kana, even when it is not so common to write that way in real life. This made the sentences hard to parse and quite confusing from time to time. That’s why we decided to change it and improve the readability of the early-level sentences.

This time, we tried to create sentences that didn’t need to use kanji above the vocabulary’s level. We also tried to avoid using just kana or a mixture of kanji and kana in a word when it is not common to do so.

For example, one of the old sentences for 大人 was:

This is the adult price.

Since りょうきん is usually written in kanji as in 料金 (and that’s above level 1 where we teach 大人), we decided to update this sentence to:

A ticket for an adult, please.

If you are curious and want to see more updated sentences, check out the level 1 context sentences, as they have already been updated. We are slowly updating the rest of the context sentences over the next month or two. I’ll let you know when it’s all updated.

Thank you, and hope y’all enjoy the new sentences!


Question, why not just keep the old sentences, use the kanji where it makes sense in Japanese, then add furigana?


Adding context sentences that contain only the Kanji that has been studied so far is a great move! I know I would have loved it when I was beginner doing the lower levels.

But I don’t understand why removing the existing sentences as well? There is a lot of interesting stuff for more intermediate learner in them, like longer length, more idiomatic and varied. The mixture kanji-kana is really confusing, but full kanji with furigana would be perfect IMHO.


We don’t have a system to add furigana to context sentences yet, unfortunately :cry:

But that and adding furigana for common word combinations occasionally pop up in our discussions. I agree it would be cool to do something like what you two mentioned in the future for advanced learners!

And we have a backup of all the old sentences in our internal system, so bringing them back shouldn’t be hard after adding some tweaks to them (converting kana to kanji, and adding furigana, for example) in the future. :+1:


I think especially a combination of the two systems works well, where you have furigana only for kanji/readings that have not yet been taught. This allows reading practice for known words (which works less with furigana), without causing frustration because most sentences are unreadable (which happens with unknown words without furigana).


I agree that adding furigana could be awesome for new learners (well, any learners really). That way it not only shows how common sentences look like (that is, sentences that aren’t potentially “made easy” just for the sake of it) while not keeping anyone from reading it, but also potentially reinforces knowledge acquired elsewhere or acts as foreshadowing of what people are going to learn soon!


Rather than have them at earlier levels, why not have those sentences appear at later levels when those Kanji are introduced? At the very least, ensuring that there are no more than 1 or 2 unknown words that someone has to look up would be more helpful. The way I see it, the new sentences will probably end up with a lot of Hiragana / Katakana only words beginners will have to look up since they aren’t taught.

Since you’ll be looking things up all the time out in the real world, there’s no need to strain a user who’s already learning Kanji. There’s also the issue of grammar in the sample sentences too, but that’s a different story altogether.

My genuine feedback is that I’ve found sample sentences to be only useful for comedic relief up until level 30 or so. The script for anime context sentences and Jisho tended to have better example sentences.

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Thank you for the excellent feedback and suggestions, everyone!

The way I see it is that context sentences are to give you a better idea of the nuance of the word and how it is used in some context rather than reading practice. They’re context sentences, after all. We have the definitions and the meaning explanation, but they are often not enough to give you a good gist, especially when there is no perfect equivalent in English. In that sense, our priority is to have sentences that you won’t have to bother looking up a word to showcase the nuance/uses/meanings, etc., of the word if it makes sense.

I agree! I actually had a thought of making a rikaikun-type extension that does that (so that you can use it for materials outside WaniKani as well) in the past. Then I think someone already had created such an extension and shared it here on the forum… I couldn’t find it now, but maybe if someone remembers it or knows about it, they can point it out?


Thank you, Jenny


This is Kanae, not Jenny :angry:


Fine, fine, I’ll be Jenny


You’re Jenny :angry:




Sorry it took us more time than we originally expected, but the level 1-10 new sentences are live now! :tada: