At long last

Well, it has finally happened. After a year and a half, I finally have reached level 60!

I managed to go at a relatively steady pace with the only disruptions being when I went on vacation and used vacation mode.

However, when I look back, there are definitely some things I wished I knew when I started Wanikani:

    1. As soon as you can, try to make a plan for doing lessons and reviews and stick with it and ensure that it will get you what you want (and setting reasonable goals along the way). It took me a while to find the right number of new items to do, but eventually, I came up with a plan for tackling a few groups of lessons in the morning and keeping on top of my reviews on an hourly basis so the new kanji don’t get bunched up too much. That being said, I would have been in a lot more trouble if I did not come up with this plan and stick to it (either having it taken longer for me to get to level 60 or getting overwhelmed and burnt out).
    1. Review new kanji shortly before the reviews to refresh them in your mind. It saved me a lot of failed reviews and aggravation and helped reinforce the new kanji. I did not do this much with the radicals or vocab (due to ease and not blocking levels).
    1. Know hiragana well before starting. I was a bit shaky on it and it definitely did not help me for the early levels. Overall, katakana knowledge is not too much of a factor for WK, but it is still very good to have.
    1. Install and practice using a Japanese keyboard. This also makes the reviews much easier.
    1. Don’t wait too long to start grammar studies. I would make sure I knew hiragana and katakana and very basic kanji and vocab before starting a beginner textbook, but you should be there by levels 5-7. Whatever vocab and kanji you learn in one source will help you in the other.
    1. Use vacation mode when you need to. Do not use it frequently, but if you know you will not be able to do reviews for a few days (or concentrate and do reviews), turn it on so you do not get too overwhelmed when you come back. Also, since I was probably be a bit rusty with what you have in your reviews, it helped me to not do lessons for a few days after deactivating vacation mode and focus solely on mastering my regular reviews.
    1. Find things to keep you on task and motivated while doing WK. Doing 60 levels of WK is, let’s face it, a slog, and it is difficult to keep your eyes on the final goal. I used the 0/0 thread to keep me on pace and to give me a short term goal to aim for on a weekly or so basis and Skytree thread (any race to 60 thread would work) to be able to reward myself when I leveled up. Finding things that work for you is a major help in keeping you on track.

Other resources I used:

    1. WK has been the lion’s share of my Japanese studies, but I have done some grammar studies with a dwindling Discord study group (Genki I, Genki II and Quartet I). This definitely kept me focusing on the grammar side and work on that too.
    1. I started Bunpro as well when I realized I was forgetting everything from Genki soon after I learned and did not use it routinely, which I definitely recommend using alongside of WK.
    1. I do occasionally read some native material but need to do that more.

Now that I have finished unlocking new items in WK, looking back, I definitely think there are some things I wished WK did and may be able to be implemented in the future:

    1. For radicals with common readings (usually onyomi), list the common reading with the radical when you are learning it. The first radical I remember seeing this with was 且 which almost always was そ and there are a bunch more like that.
    1. Since some people are visual learners and others are auditory learners so maybe having the reading mnemonics be either tailored to each would be very helpful (I screwed up a bunch of reviews from remembering the spelling and not the sound or visa versa).
    1. For radicals that have different meanings that what the radical is called (e.g. 勿 is wing as a radical (the wing kanji is 翼) and is must not as a kanji) have both be acceptable answers when learning it to make learning the kanji easier.
    1. Also, try to place the radicals and their associated base form kanji in the same level or two (the 亜radical is in level 12 and the kanji is in 59), as doing both together heavily reinforces the learning process.

That being said, despite my nitpicks above, WK has been extremely helpful in me learning.

Going forward, my plans are to:

    1. Continue using WK to finish learning the close to 50% of WK I haven’t yet burnt.
    1. Use the newly found time to focus more on reading native materials and to brush up on grammar.
    1. Get back into tutoring to practice my non-existent listening and speaking skills.
    1. Maybe, one day, years down the line, take a JLPT.

It has been a major ride getting here and this is still only the beginning.

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you’re literally not supposed to do this because it disrupts the srs

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Not, really. It’s new kanji, by the time you guru them you’re comfortable with them. I came to the same realization as Phantom.

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I would review any Apprentice items regardless of review time, but Kanji hold hands of vocabularies, as well as vocabularies reinforce Kanji.

Leeches at higher SRS levels are in more difficult positions.

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Major congratulations on getting to lv 60! Well done! :birthday: :partying_face: :tada: :tada:

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Thanks for the feedback, but adding more to the SRS actually helped reinforce it for me, which was the goal to me (as did the vocab). Also, WK has added the ability to review recent lessons too on the main interface.

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Thank you very much!

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Hello.
First of all, congratulations. Secondly, how the hell did you manage to level up every week? I’ll be happy if I can manage 1 level per month. Literally, I have got more than 80 reviews a day and they mean a lot. I never study more than 10 kanji a day and more than 20 vocabulary. And the accuracy. If i study 10 new kanji, it takes me a good 3 days till I can get them right confidently on the reviews. How can you fit this much studying into your everyday life?
I will finish this level where I am at the moment, then I won’t study anything new on Wanikani and only do reviews there so I can start the grammar with Genki. I cannot do both at the same time. I know Any advice on how I can achieve 1 level per week? I’ve been doing my reviews EVERYDAY since I started to use Wanikani.
Thanks in advance.

Thanks.

Sorry for the late response, but hopefully this helps a bit. Firstly, how many reviews are you doing at once (and how many new kanji are you trying to tackle during a review session)? For new kanji, I tried to cap it around 5 and would quickly review them on the homepage a little before. If you are not great with the kanji before guruing it, thats fine since the vocab will help drill it much better (since each kanji usually has a very associated vocab per level).

For review numbers, I try not to do too many in the same sitting since I would lose focus, so using the wrap up feature can help with that a lot. Also, try not to let the reviews pile up too much. I rather spend 5-10 minutes a day on WK 6-12 times per day than an hour once per day. Also, doing this for 5-10 minutes is much easier to fit into your day to day life.

Also, the more you do these reviews, the more patterns that may start to pop up for you and things like when to use onyomi or kunyomi and when you are likely to deal with rendaku become easier to spot.

As far as what I was taking on per day, 10 kanji (until the late 50s) was similar to the max I was doing and vocab was 20-30 per day too. Spread them out over a few hours and dont try to do all of them at once.

I did Genki as well and knowing the vocab in one helps you in the other, so it is good to keep that in mind.

Finally, keep in mind to level up, you only need to guru 90% of the kanji, which, while it means you need to complete the radicals as well to unlock the kanji, it does not mean you need to guru the vocab, so if level up speed is what you are after, focusing on learning the new kanji.

Also, just because I was going at my pace, does not mean it is the right pace for everyone and the important part of this is to be able to make it to your goal when you want to. If you try to go to fast you may burn yourself out and not hit your goals at all.

I hope this helps a bit.

Welcome to lvl. 60, and with a great accuracy rate to boot! And thanks for dishing out some advice and resources for future learners, glad you’re sharing your experience with the WK community!

I’ve got some cake for you for getting through every single WK level. Enjoy! :sunglasses:

-Nick at WK

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Great work, @PhantomWraith! It takes a lot of willpower to go the distance, and I’m proud of you for doing it!

My policy was always that it’s not cheating if I don’t know what exactly I’ll be reviewing. So I’d set up the self-study quiz plugin and just cruise through my Enlightened items or leeches. Besides, at Apprentice level, I don’t think it makes much of a difference.

It sounds like you’re already doing everything right, just tackling reviews when you can. I’d usually just go through all the lessons and just let myself get the wrong ones wrong as many times as it took before they’d sink in! At higher levels, I’d usually learn 5 new items per hour. It felt less onerous that way.

My advice, since I’m a teacher myself: if you need to go slower, that’s OK. It sounds like you’re doing other activities that will keep the kanji fresh in your mind. There’s never any right or wrong with the speed of learning (something I’m trying to make my colleagues at my day job realize too!). Practice every day, try to target your weakest areas, try new things, and ask questions as you need to and you’ll be fine. Your goals will likely take years to reach anyway. Taking extra time to cement easier kanji or words has its own benefits. I went quickly myself and you’d be surprised how often I still brain fart on the “easy” kanji!

Thank you so much for the help. I’m still on the same level since / lvl 8/. I try to do five to ten lessons every day, but there are days when I want to rest or my brain just doesn’t work that well, so on those days I don’t study anything new. I do my reviews every single day. I never miss one. If it says I have 108 reviews, then I do all 108 that day. The Wanikani says, on the other hand, I have only studied 9 percent of the kanjis so far and I have been doing it since last December.
I really think I did something wrong. I want to start studying grammar next month, but I’m pretty sure I won’t be able to study new things on Wanikani and do Anki reviews of Genki at the same time. I do work like 50-60 hours a week and I don’t know how to fit everything into my time.
I am determined that I will learn this language and will be fluent, but at this point I feel a little bit lost.

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Hi
I sometimes do 100 reviews at once, but usually around 60. New Kanji is 5 per day, vocab 5-10.
I tried this technique you mentioned to do 5-10 min multiple times a day and on certain days it helped. I didnt feel that frustrated when I got a bunch of kanji wrong. What was I supposed to know by now?
Did you write down the Kanji you studied in a notebook?
I don’t know how to set the lessons to show me only the kanjis and no vocabs, so I just click on the lessons and whatever comes up, I do it.
Yeah, if your pace is an F1 car, then mine is a Hyundai I10.

Thanks for the help.

Doing the level-up items first really helps to speed things up. You can use this script to do so: [Userscript] Reorder Omega

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Hey, sorry for the late reply.

For me, I have noticed that the more items I try to do at once the worse I tend to do (you just lose focus after a bit). I would definitely try to do your reviews more frequently but in smaller batches (you can use the wrap up function to help with this).

I never did, but tried to focus on either Japanese words that I knew that used that kanji (it helps more than you think) looking for patterns with radicals (which helps a lot with onyomi readings).

So the natural order for lessons without reorder scripts is:

  1. Old level vocabulary
  2. New level radicals
  3. New unlocked kanji
  4. New unlocked vocabulary

The other thing is to get used to some of the sounds and what you are likely to see for kana that make those sounds.

Dont worry as much about speed. Unless you need this by a certain date, it is better to go at your own pace or you can easily burn out (I did that in grammar and it set me back a lot).

Let me know if this helps at all.

Not sure whether someone mentioned this already but this userscript does exactly that. The example is even the same as you used:

Other than that, congratulations to finishing!

That cake looks good

I never actually used user scripts which may be part of my issue. Then again, maybe when you find them on your own it sticks better?

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