I have been using KaniWani alongside WaniKani from day one. But not just for the English → Japanese practice, I have been practicing writing out the kanji before I type in my answer to make sure I wrote the kanji correctly, followed by entering in my answer to see if the word was correct.
What do you do in addition to WaniKani?
Practice writing out the kanji?
Practice English → Japanese?
Or just use WaniKani?
Every so often I’d grab some manga or another reading source and see how my general reading holds up with understanding and minimal interruptions. I’m ecstatic every time I realize I’m getting engrossed in the actual story. ^^
Otherwise, WK has been a constant habit to do, with other activities acting as supplements to help improve kanji recognition and vocabulary.
I use the Kanji Study phone app to practice writing kanji. Someone on here once made a post explaining how to import WK data, and I did so for the first 12 levels (hopefully I can find this post again so I can eventually add the rest). I also write down new kanji and vocab items at least once. It might not be the most efficient or useful thing to do, but I enjoy handwriting in general, and being able to write at least the most common kanji is one of my main goals.
I’ve also started reading level 0 and 1 graded readers and trying to figure out NHK Easy articles, and I’m watching Japanese Ammo’s beginner videos and taking notes. I’d like to do more (and I have a huge bookmark folder with all kinds of useful links), but I currently lack time and energy. Once I have some free time (and enough courage), I’ll maybe try out italki for some actual conversation practice…
I don’t use the SRS because I’m a Chinese speaker. I know there are Chinese speakers using WK though, and I’m presuming they’re here to learn the readings. I guess they find it helpful. I generally learn readings through exposure and inventing ways to make readings ‘feel’ natural, like asking myself if the sound of the word evokes any phenomenon that seems relevant to the meaning (e.g. 滑らか is なめらか, and that made me think of なめる=to lick, which made me think of ‘slippery’, which is a possible meaning of 滑らか, which also means ‘smooth’) or just ‘forcing’ myself to associate a sensation or emotion with a word (e.g. 訪れる is おとずれる, and I taught myself to visualise 訪 every time I heard the おとず bit. Also, おと evokes stuff like おとす, which means ‘to cause to fall’, and the idea of ‘descending’ can be sort of linked to ‘visiting’…). Anyway, you get the idea: my brain works in strange ways, but all these half-links and quarter-relationships add up and help with remembering new words.
That said, I just wanted to applaud you for even trying to write kanji, because my impression is that it’s really rare: most people just want to consume kanji, not produce them, and as many people have pointed out on WK, learning to write isn’t necessary for being able to read. I personally think it’s an essential skill, and that it’s very helpful for absorbing new characters, but it’s true that we have computers nowadays, and they can make up for a lack of writing knowledge. In any case, I hope your efforts keep paying off, and that you find joy in learning to write kanji. All the very best!
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