How context/example sentences should work


#1

The context sentences are probably the weakest part of WaniKani.

The sentences provided vary greatly in difficulty, some vocabulary words have several sentences and some only have one.

Most vocabulary entries have sentences disproportionately difficult compared to the vocabulary level.

I often have to rely on the sentence examples on Jisho (provided by tatoeba). The sentences vary in difficulty and don’t always cover natural speech.

Solution

The existing context sentences should be retained, but every vocabulary item should have at least one example sentence that uses simple grammar and vocabulary.

Ideally the words should be used in a context which is relatable to every day life.

Write less, say more.


#2

I was gonna search for some of the previous threads that have brought this up, to see if I could find a better answer, but I… need to get back to work. lol.

I’m pretty sure they’ve been working on adding more sentences, that’s why the earlier levels have more sentences. the rest of the levels are still in progress.


#3

I tend to agree. These sentences need to be a bit more focused. It’s nice to have examples that reuse kanji/vocab we’ve seen before, but it is tough to have items that we haven’t learned yet on top of complex grammar. Perhaps a side benefit is that I throw these sentences into Google Translate to get a passive head-start on recognizing unlearned terms.

According to @Leebo, they’re adding more sentences, but they’re doing so from the lower levels up. We’re going to be stuck with a single sentence for vocab for a while.


#4

Here a few other threads…

https://community.wanikani.com/t/suggestion-regarding-example-sentences/12578?source_topic_id=22943

#5

I have seen some of the previous topics, some of them have been closed as they’re too old to reply to.

I wasn’t aware they were already working on improving the sentences. It might be worth focussing on the vocab items that people get wrong the most.


#6

They’re fixing this by creating more than 1 example sentence for each word that will only use Kanji you recognize. Try checking the example sentences for levels 1 to 10 and you’ll see. They’ve already improved those ones.

As you can understand, this is a progress that takes time, so be patient. If case you’re not getting the meaning of a word, just search for it on http://ejje.weblio.jp/.


#7

You mean garbage sentences written by non-natives? If you have a problem with the example sentences here, using worse sentences is not a good solution.


#8

Im using jisho a lot too for my kanji, what other resource would you suggest?


#9

Your response comes off really harsh. Even if something is true, that doesn’t mean it’s worth saying.

I want to listen to what you have to say because you are clearly knowledgeable, but posts like this encourage me to ignore you.

What do you recommend for examples sentences?


#10

I never said it was ideal. It’s best alternative that I know of. I am open to suggestions.


#11

See, after the first thousand times you see people make these posts you tend to stop caring. It’s not my job, any advice I gives is solely for the other person’s benefit, it’s up to them whether or not they want to listen.

As far as other places go, to @ambo100 as well, ALC is a good start, beyond that, Weblio uses a variety of different corpora, so just exclude the Tanaka / Tatoeba ones and you’re fine. If you really want to get academic about it “The Balanced Corpus of Contemporary Written Japanese” is a great resources.

Finally, literally Googling the word and finding random native sentences is even better than non-native sentences.


#12

But caring is important!!!

What you say can motivate and encourage others.

Thanks for the recommendations Syphus. :smiley:


#13

I didnt even know that jisho is considered bad, or that the sentences are written by non-natives. I understand the frustration sometimes from you veterans, but having some solid arguments of your opinion would be much welcome (Which you already stated). But something that is basic knowledge for you might be the opposite for someone else. I’m glad you shared your recommendations though, thanks! :smile:


#14

The problem is the underlying Tanaka / Tatoeba corpus that is used because it is the main free / easily available sentence site that is used on all these free dictionaries / apps. It’s the same with EDICT, the dictionary that Jisho and most of those apps are based on.

When you look at a real dictionary (like Wisdom E-J if you have a Mac) you can see it’s like night and day.


#15

I don’t think the sentence uses particularly complex grammar despite being rather long. Is there really anything there that is beyond N3 grammar? As such, I wouldn’t say this sentence is disproportionately difficult compared to the vocab level. Plus, the English translation makes it clear what kind of arrangement or agreement this word relates to. And that’s the main purpose of it, to differentiate it from things like 組み立て or 賛成.