Do you take hand-written notes on tricky vocab?

I’m new here. I did parts of Genki 1 with a tutor last year, but we focused on speaking and grammar while avoiding kanji. After 10 days on WaniKani, I wonder whether you guys take handwritten notes on tricky vocab and kanji. I have no big ambitions to hand-write kanji but my few notes look so awkward. Also how do you organize the onýomi vs kunyomi + translation, if you make old-school flashcards?


Hii, welcome to the community! ^-^

This is just personal preference, but I tend to take notes of every kanji & vocab item I learn during lessons. I feel it helps me remember them better, and it also gives me a handy overview of my items learned in the past few days.
I generally just write “漢字[reading]meaning” when learning, and note down my own mnemonics / re-write the kanji several times if I deem it necessary.

It is of course inconvenient I can’t do quick lessons on the fly without my notebook, but that’s the price you have to pay.

Again, just how I do it, I’m exited to see how others take notes :relaxed:


I practice hand-writing kanji and vocab using KameSame and Japanese handwriting IME.

I use a small whiteboard for the ones I keep getting wrong. When they finally sink in, I wipe it clean (added bonus of being satisfying)…

…and then write down my new problem kanji/vocab. Rinse and repeat

eta - I make columns on the whiteboard for the different on’yomi and kun’yomi readings where applicable


Hi and welcome!

If I’m having trouble with a kanji I’ll learn how to write it and that usually does the trick. I’ll keep a little note like this.


水色ーみずいろーlight blue (color)

By the way there’s also this cool post that might give you some ideas:

Everyone’s journals and notebooks

I keep notes of my mnemonics if there isn’t a place to write them in (like here on WK). I also will take notes on vocabulary that is tied together or very similar that I’m mixing up and make notes on the differences as seeing them right beside each other helps my create separation for their nuances. I also follow a little RTKish mentality of writing the kanji and vocabulary a few times as I recite the mnemonic for it, to help solidify it, tends to help reduce the tricky ones in the long run.

I also have a notebook. I write the kanji, the Vocabulary meaning and then the Kanji reading. Keeping things in a consistent order really helps me remember.

I just repeat them after using the self study script for leeches and failed words.

Kept a notebook of everything minus sample sentences (kay, I have some gems) since day one, ish. :watermelon::fries::ice_skate:

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Actually I’m a lazy ass, I didn’t want to bother writing down the stuffs I learn here but I kept getting similar vocabs wrong, so I had no choice.

Few example of my notes:
願望、望み、希望 means hope, desire, wish
仮説、仮定、想定 means hypothesis
Even though I wrote and memorized them, I’m still not sure about the usage/difference for each of them… The meaning are exactly the same.

Being a non-native English speaker also puts me in a disadvantage.
乱戦 melee
乱交 orgy
混乱 chaos
Just recently, I had a hard time remembering these vocabs because

  1. I thought the meaning was the same (it’s about chaos)
  2. That was the first time I encountered the words like “melee” and “orgy” so I had to study the English meaning first to be able to get a slight understanding of the word

I have a notebook of random unknown words I come across. I don’t update it as I see them, but I’ll sit down every week or so and go through my dictionary search history on my devices and jot them down. I’m not quite sure how I’d arrange them in a flashcard style but my notebook looks like this:

please no one call me out on my handwriting ok

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Thanks everyone! This was very helpful … I guess every newbie operates in a bit of a WK vacuum before some routine establishes itself. I’ve started to write tricky ones on the whiteboard in my office and will start a little ノート this weekend.


I took a photo to show you my whiteboard and promptly forgot to upload it. It’s changed three times since I took this ( my current problem areas are つき/げつ/がつ and にち/じつ )


I don’t write anything. I tried, but I found it took too much time and it made learning less enjoyable.
Since Wanikani has great mobile support, I’m constantly doing reviews whenever I can.
This may change when I get to higher levels, but for now it seems to be working for me.

Ah, I like that use different colors! I’ll start doing this. Btw, also interesting to see a bit of level 6.

I find writing new kanji as I’m learning them can help; especially to differentiate similar kanji. I’m not a very artistic person, so I find it difficult to remember the details of kanji without writing them. I just use lined paper to write them.

Any kanji that I just can’t seem to remember, I’ll continue review and rewrite them until they stick. It’s also for kanji that I’ve forgotten over time.

I don’t write out vocabulary at this point since they are much easier to remember than kanji.

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