Anyone taken a temporary pause on kanji?

Like the title says I was wondering if anyone has taken a pause on kanji, just wondering for the future. Like let’s say my Japanese progress goes well and I get to n4 like around next September, that’s like a year and I’ll probably surpass the n4 kanji quite a bit before September (right?) Anyone have experience with taking/deciding not to take a break?

Edit: Shoot sorry guys I meant n4 not n2🤦

well I don’t know, but don’t forget to put yourself in Vacation Mode if you decide to take a pause :durtle:

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I didn’t quite get what you’re asking. Are you wondering how much knowledge you will retain if you make a year-long break, or… ?

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How would you get to N2 without continuing with kanji?

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I think about it every day :slight_smile: but no i wouldn’t take an extended break. If i go on vacation i usually end up using vacation mode and rarely i will take pause all studying for a day or two just so i can chill. But i find i forget a lot during this time and try to avoid doing it as much as i can

I think he means that if he aims to be able to read N2 Level Kanji by next September, he should be able to read all of the N4 Level Kanji long before that.

If you wanna be able to read all of the N2 Kanji, you have to complete Level 52. Assuming the fastest rate of exactly 7 days per level up from your current level and 4 days for each of the short levels (41-52 except for 42, 45 and 48), that would take you about 320 days. Or in short, the latest possible time to achieve this is by Late November. If that’s your goal, then an extended break isn’t recommended.

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Yes. I did levels 1-20 then took a break as I focused on working with a tutor, grammar, speaking and listening. I jumped back after Genki 2, but go at a slowed pace as I continue with other parts of learning.


Yes. I just took a two or so month pause from doing new lessons because my life got a little busy. I did the reviews whenever I could, but I didn’t want to overload my mind.

My only pauses were at night to get some sleep. I have done my reviews every day (almost always down to 0) and I try to keep the daily lessons below 25. Now I am determined to continue like that until level 60.

(the light blue squares are days with >300 reviews)

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Shoot sorry I meant n4 it’s was a typing I mean like once I get to n4 kanji wise while I’m still working on the grammar and vocab and stuff should/could I take a break

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Kinda, not quite year long though maybe a couple months. Also if I will retain higher level kanji after not using them outside of wanikani. If I’m at n4 but have a bunch of n3 to n2 kanji that I know. Is it better to just hold off on learning those until later

Not yet, I will be crushed under a pile of reviews if I take a break.

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A couple of months is way too long in my opinion. You will likely forget how to read most N4 Kanji, unless there are multiple mediums in your life that can help you to reinforce your reading ability.

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WK doesn’t split kanji into strict groups that match the JLPT lists. There’s no real disadvantage in my opinion to learn latter kanji if you decide to learn Japanese by following the progression though the JLPT tests. Learning kanji via SRS just means that there is a very good chance that you’ll remember at the time you come to use them for real.

Check out the JLPT coverage section of to see how WK correlates to JLPT:

By level 27 you’ll have covered both N5 and N4 kanji but if you look at the way the percentages change then you can see diminishing returns if your goal was only to reach N4. Given you’ve set yourself a timescale to reach N4 then getting to level 15 or so will get you pretty much there.

I’m kinda in this transition (although I continued on a few levels further). My WK time is being reduced as I focus more on doing Genki 2 next and supplementing with other materials. I’ve got enough of a receptive kanji foundation to go slower here for a few months.

I’ve just come back to WK after ~15 months. I’ve reset myself 10 levels (5 at first, but it was still too much) and while my initial pass rate on items is horrible (say 20-40%), it quickly gets better (to about 80-90%). Guess it really is easier to relearn stuff. Though there’s three important factors to take into account:

  1. I had a shit-ton of leeches. I was doing 300+ reviews (which I recently learned is normal… for levels 50-60) for months because I had leeches and stubbornly refusing to stop adding lessons. If you aren’t as crazy as me, you probably won’t have to reset that many levels back (or at all).
  2. I’ve been reading along with the Beginner Book Club during the break. Maybe that helped solidify some kanji that I wasn’t reviewing? Not sure how strong that effect is since I’ve been using hiragana and a dictionary, though. I’ve also been doing a bit of Anki/Koohi.
  3. I made use of vacation mode, which I recommend to you as well in case you take a break. That way you come back to a couple of hundred reviews instead of a couple of thousands (depending on which level you are before the break).
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When I want a break, I stop doing lessons but keep doing reviews. That way, I reduce my workload, but still make progress squashing leeches.


Well when I finish WK at the end of January I’ll take a break on learning new kanji for a while, probably until I start encountering kanji I don’t know in reading (my grammar’s not great so at my reading level I don’t stumble across a whole lot above level 30 if I had to guess). Are you talking about taking a break from WaniKani or just kanji in general? I think stopping WK is much more difficult because of the SRS and the number of not just Kanji but other vocab scattered among the different levels- getting back into it is much more difficult at that point (and at your level a lot of people would opt to just reset if it’s been a few months).

I just hit level 21 and I am taking a break from Kanji and Vocab lessons to work on my Grammar and I also need my Guru pile goes down a bit since it is 688 at the moment. I will still be doing Reviews everyday like normal but I wanted to take the time to get my Grammar up since I kept neglecting it due to wanting to learn more Kanji and Vocab.

I’d say if you are going to take a break from Kanji I recommend that you still continue your reviews but don’t take up anything new on the Lesson pile. It’s all about a good balance. I probably won’t take up new lessons for around 2-3 Weeks and once I resume lessons again I will more than likely take another break around Level 35 to take N4/N3 Grammar. Hope this helps you even a little bit :smiley: