Have Japanese people tried Wanikani?

I was actually curious. Because this seems like a great resource and there are some japanese people that do want to improve their kanji and also there is elementary and middle school students that learn kanji.


I don’t see why many would. If they don’t know the kanji yet, they need to know the English, which most don’t. If they do know the kanji, it’s not the most efficient way to learn English. They learn more kanji than WK for free, and more thoroughly, through their schooling.

Occasionally we hear about over-the-shoulder comments from Japanese spouses or significant others criticizing the vocabulary chosen by the creators.

I doubt there are very many Japanese adults who want to improve their kanji who are below a level where they can benefit from WK.


Most elementary and middle school students don’t speak English…


It’s not oriented towards a typical English vocabulary. A lot of times the nearest equivalents to the Japanese are more technical-sounding English, so it’s just not that useful going the other direction.

Schoolkids concentrate on うんこ :wink:


Does @gojarappe neesan count?


Hardly. I’m about as Japanese as I am Chinese.

Yes, but it doesn’t stop us from learning how to read kanji so they end up being fine with it.

うんこ漢字ドリル is hilarious. I use it myself, just not as often as I’d like. :+1:t3::+1:t3:


I’m desperately trying to get my hands on a copy, it looks hilarious!

Has anyone compiled a list of those vocabulary words?

The only one that comes to mind is 航空母艦, but the guy was telling a story about how his wife thought it was stupid that the word was on WK and then he saw it on the news that same day, or something like that.


Here’s the short version:

Japanese person says “We don’t use that word”

Five minutes pass.

Japanese person uses that word.

The amount of words I’ve learned on this site that I haven’t seen at least once is incredibly small.


I was reading an email from my sensei and she sometimes throws in a few kanji. At the same time I had just finished reading someone complain about kanji no one ever uses not 5 minutes before and right in the email was one of them. I thought it was funny.

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My roommate made fun of me for learning 艦隊. I pulled up osu about 10 minutes later and saw it in the header for a song. I almost feel stupid for not realizing it was the kantai in kantai collection, but oh well.


Hm, I guess I have something to look forward to! I got super excited when I got to the level with the kanji for boat. I was like why am I learning how to say “hull” at such an early level. Then I quickly realized that I’m a marine engineer working at a naval shipyard so it’s pretty awesome I got something so niche and relevant to my life so early.


If you goal is to speak Japanese at an adult level, then basically all the words you know in English are words you need in Japanese. If you see a Japanese translation of a word on WaniKani and don’t know the English (implying your native language is English), then you might argue it is not that important. Possible words like 核分裂 (karyokinesis/ nuclear fission) for example.

I actually had a little while until I realized that too actually.

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Which kanji was that? :slight_smile:

On the other hand I hear 核問題 about once a day on the news.

I don’t remember haha. I think it might have been in this topic?

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Huh. I was just basing it on the idea that I’ve pretty much never heard of karyokinesis outside of more advanced science courses. It’s a pretty specific science term all things considering. Welp, the news is the news ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Well karyokinesis, yes that’s not an every day term, but Nuclear Fission, that’s an every day term when you hear about North Korea every other minute.