Continue WK/BP or switch to reading?

I’ve reach almost exactly half on WK and BunPro. Level 32 on WK as you can see, and I have finished N5 and N4 on BunPro and about 1/3 of N3. I burned out. Or completely lost enthusiasm. I don’t know. I’m currently on vacation mode on both sites. (There’s also the issue of my thesis still not being done…) Half of my apps+gurus are leeches (and they are LEGION). On BunPro, I don’t think it’s that bad, but being fairly deep into both WK and BP that means a fair amount of work even without leeches, if I keep adding lessons. (Which I don’t atm, I’m not that crazy; I haven’t for like a month before turning on vacation mode).

I know I should be asking myself this question, but I don’t know. And it always helps to hear other people’s thoughts. One of guesses why it all became so hard to go through (except the leeches) is that I was doing the same thing over and over (even when I was doing lessons), which simply bored me. (Or maybe the fact that I hardly missed a day, ever?)

Anyway, so I was thinking, maybe instead of simply restarting WK and BP, maybe I should completely switch to reading (as that would be a mostly new experience compared to grinding SRSes)? And maybe adding kanji here and there on Anki? But what do I do about the new grammar I encounter? Or should I simply read read read, look up everything I don’t know each time and hope I remember it that way? But that could make reading a slog then? Or simply rest a little, and try WK+BP again and hope my enthusiasm comes back after a, say, month of rest? I might finish my thesis by then, so I’ll feel better and have more time? Before turning off vacation mode, I could grind leeches via the script, too.

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Yes, I would switch to reading. I was feeling the same thing a couple weeks back so along with some other stuff going on, I froze all the SRS and just used that time to read. Then after a couple of weeks, the burnout of WK/KW/etc. went away and now I’m back into the swing of things again. Some times it’s good to step away from the SRS a bit and focus on actually using your knowledge to consume content.

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I would just give it a break and read a lot of stuff. When I read casually (study mode off!), at least for the grammar, I don’t really look up everything that I don’t know unless it shows up a couple of times, that definitely tells me that this is something that I should know. After a while you can go back to that same material.

It might be not as efficient as studying in a systematic fashion, but at least you’ll take a nice break and keep reviewing without the anxiety of the srs.

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I’d say keep doing at least some of your reviews(not lessons!) but otherwise focus on reading until you’re feeling ready to continue with the other stuff (and to ease your way back to SRS stuff, maybe consider just studying words that are relevant to what you have read or are reading at first). I’d still recommend trying to find balance between reading and SRS when you get that point though instead of just focusing entirely on the SRS stuff again.

It’s basically what I did about year ago when the beginner book club started Aria and it worked well enough for me. That said, I’m not you, so I can’t say if it will work as well for you as it did for me.

And for the actual reading, I’d say just look up the things that feel necessary to understand what’s happening, but that’s just how I usually do it.

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Hi Nenad, I wouldn’t say what to do as everyone’s journey/goal is different. But I’ve been using both systems so I can relate a bit and yeah, SRS is can be time consuming and even mundane. Lately I’ve gone back and forth on each site to try to work on the most needed areas. I’ve considered it to be a training time to expose my weaknesses and work on them. I’ve tried to embrace the leeches and ghosts with more positivity as I probably would not have had the patience in my own self studies without SRS and the redundancy is necessary. In that sense, growth is not measure by adding new material or increasing levels but it’s still growth for the victories of just grinding the ghost or leech material. I would even argue that fast progress w/ high accuracy on these SRS systems sort of misses the point of using them.

I know you got a thesis that requires a certain amount of focus so I can see the challenge. I’ve had long stretches where I barely had any time for Japanese (a nice contributor to my own slow progress) but just anything like reading, SRS, restarting or otherwise is still a step moving forward and time never wasted. But I’m a believer in strong fundamentals and reviewing the first 30 levels or N5/4 is never a waste either IMO.

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You’ve made enough progress on WK that you may want to just switch to reviews-only for the foreseeable future. I did that myself and enjoyed it.

I also ended up restarting BP recently, and I’m intentionally failing any reviews I’m not 100% on. The ghost review feature has helped me drill really basic stuff like the various TE forms.

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Change to learning how to write it and put pen to paper. It adds a whole new level and really tests you and increases your ability. Some people would be surprised at the level they are at here and if they were to take a pen and attempt to start writing they would struggle. Learning to write reinforces the Kanji and proves beneficial being able to recreate it. Just give it a go for a little while and see if it does make a difference or test yourself if you can actually write the Kanji without looking it up to check and then check after to see if you were right.

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I think it’s totally normal to get burned if adding more than a couple seemingly harmless SRS apps into your routine, the workload adds up after a couple of months, the momentum gets lost, you find no time to do stuff that you actually enjoy in japanese or even worse within the rest of your daily routine :cold_sweat:

Anyway … something like that was what I had when in level 25 here in WK. No new lessons for a month, just reviews, and reading more and more was what I did. :slightly_smiling_face:

Long story short, I gained momentum again, enough to come back to WK (and Anki). Finished (on my own terms but still) WK and decided to only add stuff that I actually wanted to do to my routine.
That now looks like watching shows, sometimes assisted with apps to pick up vocab and sometimes just unsubbed, driven solely on the insterest that I have in the content (which now I’ve picked up a japanese related hobby is almost a dailly thing) without caring too much to pick anything more than the message.

In any case leaving SRS apps to a minimum (30 mins daily tops) in my routine has been probably one of the better decisions I’ve made in relation to japanese in the long run. Finding a hobby that switched my attention from learning japanese to using japanese has been the other major game changer.

simply look up in the dictionary the first time you enocunter something new and leave the rest to the constant immersion like any other new vocab you encounter; I think for vocab SRS can make sense up to some point but for grammar, the more you see it into use it will become so much better… there I think SRS is just pointless when reading is an option. In any case after some point (N4 perhaps) new grammar is just regular vocab, nothing like は vs が stuff :sweat_smile:

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I think you have plenty of knowledge already for venturing on your own in reading.

I started reading regularly about six months ago, when I was already six months in with my studies. At the time I was about level 20 on WK and I was doing N4 grammar on BP. It was quite challenging then. Frustrating even.

Right now, even though it’s still challenging, it doesn’t feel frustrating anymore. What I don’t know, I just look it up. It gets less challenging with time.

Also, if you are still interested in continuing to immerse yourself in the language, whether by reading or consuming any other media, then you’re not giving up anything. You’re just focusing your efforts. Giving up would be to completely remove yourself from Japanese, because then you’d start to forget what you’ve worked so hard to learn.

My advice is, just keep doing what you like, but don’t give up immersing yourself with Japanese. You will learn, without fail, no matter what methods you’re using :wink:

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I’d suggest also considering ways to adjust your WK/BP habits once you get back into them to avoid another burn out. There is no reason to rush through either of them.

In my case I put WK/BP on vacation mode on Friday night and reactivate Monday morning and feel fresher for it.

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