Drawing Kanji and Vocabulary

That’s actually a pretty good way to approach 時代…

Guess what? Level 8! This means it took me three days less than for level 7! So nine days for the level. I’m pretty happy with the improvement. It’ll be hard to beat. Thankfully, level 8 has 29 kanji which is 1 less than level 7.

Day 1: A Storm Brewing
Ok I figured this would happen eventually around level 10 but as it turns out it’s happening at level 8. I would say that so far I was within familiar territory.

Now I would say that I’m familiar with what is being taught less than 50% of the time. Maybe it’s just this level but we’ll see.

List of mistakes:
助【じょう】help, reading;
~氏【し】sir, reading;
住【じゅう】dwelling, reading+meaning;
支【し】branch, reading;
対【たい】versus, reading;

So in my defence this is from my first time reviewing them and without previewing and reviewing.

I think I have the radicals down now. I drew some to help me remember:


I’m pretty sure this is じょ (short vowel). It comes up in a lot of grammatical terms, so I type it quite a lot.

That aside, I really like your drawings! They’re very nice! I hope they really help things stick.


Day 2: The Challenge Begins
You are right, it is じょ, not じょう.

楽「らく」comfort. While I recognize the kanji as meaning ‘comfort’, the explanation for the reading is related to its constituents as opposed to the meaning of the kanji itself. Another reading for this kanji is がく. In both cases I’d need a good story to remember the reading.
Resting on a rack is the definition of comfort maybe. It’s ridiculous but it might stick.

反「はん」That story works for me, Han solo being the anti-hero is a good one. The stool also looks like the letter ‘a’ so it’s useful to remember anti as well.

点く「つく」to be lit. I had trouble with this one. It doesn’t show up when I type it up for one thing. If something is ‘lit’ in slang then something is ‘too cool’つく!

助「じょ」help Johann.

向こう「むこう」The reading I can remember since it’s nothing new 向=む. The issue lies in remembering what it means. I have a tendency to associate it ending with う as a verb which is not the case. I guess I expected ‘over there’ to something using ここ、そこ、あそこ etc…

出来上がる【できあがる】I keep forgetting this one. The explanation of ‘rise’ + ‘to be able to’ doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. I think this one I’ll need to learn through rote. You rise once you can do something, remember brain!

思い出【おもいで】a memory. A lot of words mean ‘think’ in Japanese, I’ll need to take some time to parse them and figure out which one is used in which context. I was always under the impression that 思 had the connotation of ‘remembering’ something. The mnemonic for this one is good, I should be ok.

向ける【むける】to turn towards, verb. The reading is ok, the meaning is tripping me up. I think I sometimes get fuzzy with 向こう meaning over there. Of course one is a verb the other one isn’t so it should be enough to distinguish them in my head. There’s also turn toward somewhere else if I recall correctly.

当たり前【あたりまえ】sometimes, I want to go too fast instead of taking the time to study the word. This is one example. This one and ‘material’ actually.

“You’ve seen how 当たり means success. If you’ve experienced success before, everything after that seems to be pretty obvious.”

Say what? So 当たり means ‘success’, yes. The second sentence makes no sense to me. If you’re experienced success before, everything after is pretty obvious… In the sense that once you’ve managed to do something it obvious once you’ve done it? What’s ‘everything’? Also, 前 as a kanji means ‘before’, not ‘after’. By ‘obvious’ the alternate meaning is referred here as opposed to the primary meaning of ‘natural’. I don’t understand the meaning of that sentence.

生地【きじ】ah good old ‘material’. ‘Life comes out of the earth’ makes sense as material as in chemical components. Everything is made of something. The readings are: kun’yomi for 生 and on’yomi for 地.

Regarding the drawings, they help tremendously. I didn’t miss a radical once after I drew them.

I’m feeling secure about both radicals and kanji for this level. I don’t know if missing vocabulary slows down level progression as there’s no indication that it does but vocabulary is the challenge for level 8. There are still 12 kanjis I haven’t previewed or familiarized myself with yet so we’ll see. This morning review was 100+ so I might end up waiting to preview tomorrow.


Day 3: To turn

:white_check_mark: So the radicals are no longer an issue. The drawings allowed me to synch them in my mind. Tons of unlock on the horizon.

I usually go pretty fast to I’ll sometimes confuse ‘body’ and ‘someone’ as was the case here.

To Turn!
One point of contention is 向ける and 向く. The former means ‘to turn towards’ while the latter means ‘to face’. The distinction is subtle. To sum up:

向ける: to turn towards;
向く: to face;
回す: to turn;
回る: to revolve;

It’ll be important later on that I differentiate the meanings of each. 回る・回す might be a case of doing vs being done to like we previously discussed.

Nothing else much to discuss. I’d say I’m ready for the next kanji unlocks as well.


So the relationship between 向ける and 向く is that 向ける is transitive, while 向く is intransitive

What does this mean? Well, to simplify a little, 向ける means that something is turning something else towards some direction. On the other hand 向く simply implies that something is turning towards some direction. Think “I turned the mirror to face me” vs “the solar panel turned to face the sun” - in one the mirror is an object that is being acted upon, while in the other the solar panel is (seemingly) acting on its own. You can see in the alternate defintions that you could give “to turn towards” for 向く since it also means this, and 向ける lists “to turn (something) towards” as one of its definitions. I like to use these myself since it makes the difference more apparent to me

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Thank you, that does help to set them apart.

Since I’ve covered the radicals for level 8, I’ve started learning radicals for level 9. If I keep this up, I’ll likely know all of them before even reaching the level:


Day 4: More Radicals
Nothing much to report. I have fairly high % on my reviews and just waiting for the SRS to do its thing. I have this level covered as far as radicals and kanjis are concerned. Vocabulary is still tripping me up at times but it’s rare. It’s mostly older stuff that comes back, nothing recent.

So I’m studying further the upcoming radicals of level 9 which I also got mostly covered. I’ll be done tomorrow. Then I’ll start to preview the kanjis of level 9.

At popular demand, sketches for today:

Make smaller images for better resolution.


OMG these are GREAT!! :muscle:


Day 5: The Next Step

So as I expected, I unlocked the ‘final’ set today. I was ready for them having previewed them already so that was no issue at all.

Apart from that, I’d say I’ve memorized level 9 radicals. Next step is covering the kanji of level 9 ahead of time. This means I’ll be ready for level 9 when it comes around.

:cyclone: One thing which has stumped me is 交じる「まじる」to be mixed and 交ぜる「まぜる」, to mix. This might be a case where ぜる is a variance of する so that should explain why it’s ‘to mix’ instead of ‘to be mixed’. One thing I can’t understand is why まぜる doesn’t provide the verb when I type it. This has happened before; I’d type a verb and it wouldn’t appear. For instance, here’s what is displayed:
I’m puzzled about this and don’t understand it. Why is it not supported by the Japanese IME? Does someone have an answer?


Day 6: Level 9 Preview

Not much to report again today. I’ve been checking out stats about WK users and drawing five new kanjis from level 9. In three days I should have 15 more kanjis covered so I’ll be close to having everything covered by the time I reach level 9.

Kanji covered:


Day 7: Mistake Analysis

As I haven’t done one of those for a while it’d be important to take some time to look what’s been creeping up as part of my mistake list.

  • 人数「にんずう」this one is a rendaku because of the ずう there which is usually すう. The meaning is ok (meaning of people), it’s the reading I got wrong.

  • 数字「すうじ」the reason I got this one wrong is because I confused 学 and 字 so I instinctively typed in math instead of digit.

*数える「かぞえる」I got this one wrong because I instinctively used the on’yomi when it’s really the kun’yomi here. I just was never exposed to the kun’yomi before which led to my mistake. It’s かぞ.

*住む「すむ」to live. I know the meaning, it’s the reading which I used the on’yomi again. I mean I know it in theory but for some reason I want to go too fast and just type in the on’yomi. The kun’yomi here is 『す』む。

*化ける and 代わる. I initially thought they were the same kanji with different okurigana but as it turns out they’re two different kanjis. I guess the meaning sort of threw me for a loop too, since 代わる means ‘to replace’ while 化ける means ‘to transform’. Somehow they were amalgamated in my head. They both use the leader radical but 化ける uses ‘spoon’ on the right while 代わる uses ‘ceremony’ on the right. I’ll need to be careful about these two. 化 as a kanji means ‘change’ so it makes sense to see it appear in ‘transform’ while 代 means ‘substitute’ which means… change. I think I’ll probably nail that one with practice and rote.


For 人数, I like to think of counting people at a people zoo (since it’s an amount of people)

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Ah yeah, that works. I’ve got it memorized now.


Day 7: 7 days a level

Mistake analysis:
数『かぞ』える: to count;
The reason why I’ve made mistakes with 数 is because it has two kun readings: かぞ and かず.


Day 8: Level 9!

I had my doubts that it was possible to level up in eight days but it turns out it is :sweat_smile:.

I think I understand better the role of a ‘re-ordering’ script as it allows you not to be taught vocabulary before you’ve covered the radicals and the kanjis. I was under the impression that you always covered the radicals first, then the kanji and finally the vocabulary. This time around, when I reached level 9 this morning, I was pitched the vocabulary before everything else which made no sense as I (in theory) had not been the taught the readings of the kanjis. Maybe this was a bug. I don’t think this has happened before.

Considering I’ve covered a lot of the material of level 9 already, I’d argue that 7 days is feasible. I don’t think I’d have room for any mistakes when it comes to radicals and kanjis however so I’ll need to be wary of typos. Level 9 has a few more kanjis, 34 vs 29 for level 8 so we’ll see.


you are right with your first assumption though, you most likely got the vocabulary from the kanji of the last level, not the future vocab, some people just want to focus on the next level first, so they reorder, but this can lead to a huge backlog of vocab if you don’t clear it out eventually, from what i’ve read of people discussing the script (i personally don’t use it).

if you want that fast level, you can afford to have 3 kanji missing in the end, but theoretically you can make way more mistakes on the first wave of kanji, as long as you get them right later on and guru them together with the second wave of kanji. 7 days is definitely doable if you get those first three srs stages done without much delay, sadly for me my sleep schedule gets in the way and i always end up with 7 days + 5 to 12 hours.


Would it be accurate to say that, by re-ordering the content of a level, one could tweak the system in going faster than one normally would by using vanilla WK (as is)?

For instance, by putting the radicals and kanji first (required to level up) one could therefore review them faster by the SRS and therefore level up than if they had dealt with the vocabulary as presented first?

I’m asking because I’ve been told that using the re-order script doesn’t make level up faster but people who cover the whole 60 levels in a year say (one of them) that you ‘need to’ use the script to sprint through the levels. I’m just wondering if my understanding is correct.


not a faster maximum speed than vanilla WK, but if you limit how many lessons you do per day, going through the vocab lessons first will take you time, delaying your starting point of radicals and kanji, so it is true under those conditions.
but if you do all your lessons at once (which i’m pretty sure is required for maximum speed), with the goal of always staying at 0 lessons, then reordering shouldn’t make any difference.

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Hmm… I’m not sure I follow to be honest, sorry. I think what you’re saying is that if you order the radicals and kanji first, you could postpone doing the vocabulary indefinitely and simply go through radicals and kanji for each level until you reach level 60. This would require to constantly reorder vocabulary to be after kanji and radicals.

In this case, it would provide a faster speed than vanilla because in vanilla you need to deal with vocabulary as it comes up (mixed in with the kanji and radicals).

I don’t understand what you mean by ‘how many lessons you do per day’. I assume you mean reviews:
(in this case you mean four ‘lessons’ I think).

I think you mean that if you don’t do each review as it comes up, it’ll take you longer to level up because you’ll have to deal with the vocabulary mixed in (like I talk about at the beginning of this message).

Ok, I think I get it. You mean that if you do all of your reviews right away, then you’ll deal with the vocabulary anyway because SRS won’t make you review the kanjis/radicals right away anyway.


no, i mean lessons, what i’m saying is, when you level up, you get a big batch of new lessons, maybe a hundred or so.
these lessons are ordered in a way, that the vocabulary from the kanji of the level before comes first.
most people don’t do all lessons at once, but stagger them over a longer period of time, maybe they do 10 per day, maybe 20 per day, to keep the future review load managable.
the thing is, if you only do a set amount of new lesson per day, you will reach the radicals and kanji of your current new level, only after working through the vocab lessons (which came from the last level), which might take a bit of time, this delays your level up by the amount of time you needed to clear last levels vocab lessons (not guru them, just finishing the first lesson). but you can circumvent this by using the reorder script, which saves this time, because you need the radicals for the level up, but not the vocab.

this of course doesn’t matter if you do all those 100+ lessons in one go, it makes the reorder script irrelevant. this is what i mean when i say it doesnt increase your maximum speed compared to vanilla wanikani if you go as fast as possible, but it makes your level up time more efficient, if you stagger the amount of lessons you do over a certain period of time.