Always messing up book and tree

I’m pulling out my hair!

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Book and tree don’t look the same. Book has an extra stroke.


本 木 - find the difference.


Please read the FAQ and the Guide. Pink corresponds to kanji and purple to vocabulary.


No, there’s supposed to be a pink card (kanji) for 木 (tree) and another for 本 (book); and since they can both be used as words, there is also one purple card (vocabulary) for each.

This is a common problem that has more to do with kanji than WK. As you progress you will get better at differentiating similar looking kanji, but you need to take your time and identify the differences. In this case, 本 has a extra strike than 木, if you’ve not been able to identify this and you’ve been thinking all this time that what makes them different is the color of the background, you’ve not been paying attention.



Ouch. I’m sure glad to know that’s waiting for me.


If you’re struggling on 木 and 本, you’re really gonna have issues when it comes to 士/土 and 末/未…


To be fair I still sometimes have to really sit and think when I see 末/未


Hey dude. Sounds like you need to slow down/chill out. The difference between book and tree is pretty obvious. I don’t think you’re incapable of seeing it, if you genuinely can’t then you might have an eye problem. I’m not saying that to be cheeky. You’re probably just in such a hurry and stressing yourself out that you keep missing the difference. There are going to be kanji with even more subtle differences to come. I worry that if 本 and 木 are causing you problems then future kanji might even cause you to give up. You don’t have to fly through your lessons and reviews like a maniac. Take your time. Going a little slower now will actually help you go faster in the later levels. What I mean is that pretty much every kanji that comes after level 10 is made up of something or at least contains something you learn before level 10. Remember that this should be fun too.



My trick is that it started off as a tree 木, but then a new branch started growing above the first. When it looks like 未, it’s not yet full grown, because the upper branch is shorter, but when it looks like 末, it is, so it’s reached the end. :slightly_smiling_face:


OOOOH that’s good, I’m going to use that. Thank you!

I’ve struggled with the distinction because they are both abstract time-based concepts, whereas 士/土 have never really been a problem because a samurai is obviously different from the ground.

Wow. it sounds like something extra is going on if 木 and 本 look exactly the same to you. Definitely read the FAQ.

Maybe try downloading an app where you can see the stroke orders as animations? For example jisho or Kanji Study. Seeing the animations can help you recognize the smaller differences.

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I’ve been struggling with this still. This is an easy way to remember. Thanks

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I literally didn’t notice there was a difference for the longest time and I was like “why am I getting this wrong half of the time?!!!”

They were on my wall of shame for the longest time. I think one might still be there.


I’m wondering for 本 why did wk name it real for the radical?
Why can’t they just name it book? Then you’ll have less things to remember because the radical and the kanji would be the same.

Well, the kanji does also mean “real”, so it’s not really another thing to remember, or at least, it’s another thing you’d have to remember whether they’d used it for the radical or not (and it only means “book” when used in a word in a very few instances, so really that’s one of the least useful synonyms to remember for that kanji).

They evidently thought that “real” was going to be more useful in mnemonics, so that’s what they went for, but if it’s really tripping you up you can add “book” as a synonym for the radical :slightly_smiling_face:

You have to remember it as “real” at some point. For instance, in 本物 (ほんもの), which is “real thing” or 本人 (ほんにん), “the person himself/herself”

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