Choose your own reading

Hi guys, just checking, is it possible, or is there an option somewhere to pick your own reading to learn (betwen on and kun)? I am only on L6 at the moment but I started noticing some kanji that are forcing me to learn not the more common reading. Latest example is (star) 星, we are asked to learn the kun reading ほし, but when I checked the list of vocab words using this kanji, out of 8-9 vocab words, only two are actually using kun reading. All the other ones are using the on reading せい。

I learn the best when I go and see the actual word in action and trying to find the one or two that I can easily remember with the suggested reading. And more often than not, suggested reading is the more useful one, but from time to time, I find some odd ones and would like to swap them around.

星’s kun reading is actually very commonly used. It’s used for the stars in the sky.
The on reading, if you looked carefully, is used for the names of the planets.

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If you’re going to learn the language, then you’ll have to learn all the readings, it’s not like you can just learn a portion of the language and sort if "get by."
Think about it: the Kun’yomi reading for 星 is going to be used in exactly one word: “star.” It’s not like there is an adjective and an adverb and a verb for “star”, so WK can’t reinforce that reading with a bunch of words, but it also not like nobody ever says the word “star” either, it’s a very common word! So by giving you the Kun’yomi reading with the kanji they found a way to reinforce that reading with repetition, and it’s a reading you’re going to need. Brilliant! See? Koichi really is more than just a pretty face!



There really should be a way to add “reading synonyms” just like there are meaning synonyms, because sometimes WaniKani flat-out doesn’t have all the valid readings. Right now your only option is to use the override script if you enter a valid vocab reading and it’s marked incorrect. Oh well.


^^He’s Grumpy Naota, I’m Dreamy Naota.

…just noting the difference…

The problem is that we have to learn the reading that is recommended/thrown to us. The only way to find the alternate reading is by visiting the kanji dedicated page and look it up there. I am doing that all the time, and that is why I started to notice that we don’t always learn the most useful reading so I was looking for a way to switch that around and reinforce through repetition from the start.


You could wait until it comes up in your studies on WK!

Koichi and Viet must have had a big headache when choosing whether On or Kun reading should be WK_emphasis.

I personally hate it when WK_emphasis is Kun, and is not a complete vocab unless you put る (or other okurigana) at the end.

Still, I like the concept of letting Kun being WK_emphasis once in a while.

星 being ほし is not really that bad, I think. What should you think when you see 星 alone?

Good comment, thanks. I have no preference on vs kun. Just want to focus on the most used/useful reading before learning the other one. I just got to another one on Level 7, the kanji is for group 組. This time reading to learn is on reading そ. I checked the, there is only 4 words using this kanji, and the only one calling for on reading won’t be necessary until level 34. The other three words require kun reading くみ which if I could choose would like to memorise first.

組織(そしき) is in level 27, not 34. But you are agree that the kun reading would have been more useful to learn first. After 20 levels of no vocabulary using そ it was pretty hard for me to remember.

Through every kanji that has the tophat radical on the right has an onyomi of そ, so it’s pretty easy to remember.

That doen’t help at all, because for all those levels 組 is the only Kanji with 且 on the right side. If you don’t study Kanji outside of WK, the odds of figuring out that this is somehow a phonetic radical are very slim.

jasenko just learned it at level 7!

But yeah, that’s just something I knew before I started WK. Never thought about where they’re placed in WK.

get gud mirite

Considering I literally just hit level 27, I will keep this in mind. I’m sure this will be helpful. Thanks!

I keep trying to put そ instead of くみ on those vocab because of it. Yeah, I agree it would make more sense to learn くみ first here, simply due to when that vocab is introduced in WK

This is one thing I miss about WK, too little emphasis is made on phonetic radicals like that. Currently I only remember it being done once so far, and that was on my current level XD
They have sometimes used other kanji with similar meaning with same reading to teach you the reading, but I have seen several radicals affecting the kanji to be read same way, yet no mention of it. Even if they give you a new mnemonic for that kanji reading, why not mention "it is read same way as kanji because they share radical "

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We could have things like Ken the squid.
Because he is so proud of his name, he names every Kanji he is in after himself.

Ken the squid would make for great mnemonic material in general

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Wow, thanks so much for pointing this out. I didn’t know there was some method to this madness :slight_smile:
Will research this more, there is probably a bunch of other radicals that I already know readings for and should only focus on learning the meanings.

This is not really so much related to original question but wanted to ask about spelling of 星 in sentences.
Like 金星 きんせい is spelled kinsei with last letter being i. Usually せい is spelled as long e. 先生 Teacher せんせい Is spelled like sensee even it’s written sensei. Is 星 some exception with it’s spelling?

You mean it’s pronounced “see”?
星 as in 金星 is also pronounced “see”, so no exception there.
But 星 by itself is pronounced ほし.

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