Anyone tried Kanken?

You got better than 95% on 200+ random kanji, I’m definitely impressed! No wonder you goofed on 悟, though, quite a feat of concentration.


This is amazing, truly impressive Leebo! How much would you say you rely on mnemonics when recalling strokes?


I can’t think of a kanji where I write it by recalling a mnemonic. They’re just ingrained now.


Interesting, I mean WK dedicates a lot of effort in the teaching of mnemonics, but like native learners of English, when you have mastered the language, you don’t have to rely on any memory cues to recall the spelling of words right? I’ve always felt that this is true for native learners of Japanese from what I saw over five years in elementary schools teaching in Japan.

Trying this deck (and Anki) now! I did 20 level 10 cards, only checking my stroke order. I guess doing 20 new cards every evening should be fine for now.

1 Like

I think the mnemonics are designed to be forgotten eventually. That’s one of the reasons it’s amusing to hear people criticize WK for “filling your head with unnecessary or false explanations” because eventually you will move past them and only have the knowledge of the kanji and words left over.


Oh, I thought of one where I use a mnemonic for a word, though it’s not a WaniKani mnemonic.

To remember that 田舎いなか starts with 田 and not 舎, I think [でんしゃ] で [いなか] に行く, because でんしゃ would be the onyomi for 田舎.


Really intriguing stuff, as you progress you reply less on stories but more just on instant recall. I passed Kanken 7th grade years ago, as I progressed through grades 9 and 8, I just memorised kanji for the strokes that they are, this is waaaaay before I’ve even heard of WK. Even now, I would struggle to think of a single kanji which I would remember a mnemonic to recall a stroke.

For me a big part of it is now I have the scaffolding of knowing how kanji are structured. Mostly by phono-semantic compounds.

I can look at 瓢 and see 票 and 瓜 and since those two kanji are ones I know well, putting them together is not a problem.

When I first started, learning such a complicated kanji was like drawing a random set of lines with no connection between them… and so I might write the wrong element at the bottom of 票 or something while trying to write 瓢 (if I had tried back then).

But now there’s no way I would make that kind of mistake… I would either just forget what the two components are, or I would be able to write it completely.


Right the component analysis breakdown is definitely an effective strategy, especially for the written aspect of learning the language - something that i’m sure natives are intuitively aware of.