Hey, y’all. How’s it going? I hit Level 21 this morning, so I thought I’d finally drop a line in the community and introduce myself.
I started WaniKani in April after I finally had an epiphany to begin my Japanese journey. Since then, I’ve supplemented my weekly progress with formal coursework (it’s still pretty dang tough, but I’m slowly learning). Like many of you, there are moments when I’m just like, “Oh, wow. How long is this going to take again?” While I’d say the journey has been mostly positive, waiting has occasionally felt like purgatory.
Rather than become trapped in that thought process, I decided to do something else during this journey and began an intensive workout regimen that has been in place since the summer. Now I’m hitting kanji levels and personal records in the gym. What ultimately ended up happening in this odd yet interesting arranged marriage is there are days when kanji takes the stress away from exercising, and exercising takes the stress away from kanji. Before I know it, one full level takes about one week of workouts. For my first post, I’ll pose this question: Did any of you create another goal while you worked through your weekly kanji reviews to see what milestone would happen first?
To be honest, except on the first 3 or 4 levels, I never felt I was waiting for level up, so as you’re level 21 I am surprised to read that!
If you have free time, you should plunge into grammar and reading. NHK easy news is an almost painless process - the article are short and you can find many articles of your interest. There a book club on the forums too if you want something more than news articles.
I have like two other space repetition systems that rule my life besides WaniKani. Bunpro is where all my grammar goes (adding it in as I work through my textbooks) and then Anki where all my mined vocab goes (also textbook vocab). Then of course I spend time with native material mining vocab for Anki.
I never feel like I’m waiting to level up on WK because I just work through my reviews and lessons as they come up and then am otherwise occupied with my immersion efforts or textbook stuff.
I really doubt you are a slow learner, since clearing 1 third of Wanikani in about half a year is quite quick. Make sure you pace yourself, so you don’t get overwhelmed later on.
Personally that happened to me recently, so I am not actively leveling up right now.
I am trying to focus a bit more on grammar through bunpro for the time being.
Having more than one goal to pursue is good imo, as it most of the time keeps you in the loop when things are not working well in one area. For you that is working out, for me that goal is increasing my Skills in 3D Art.
However sometimes it can feel as if one pursuit slows down the other. In those cases I try to remember that slow and steady wins the race.
I never feel like I’m waiting to level up because I’m balancing a lot of other things each day
In addition to WK, I’m learning how to write kanji and am doing Kaniwani. I’m also working through Minna no Nihongo, so I have vocab Anki reviews each day and textbook exercises to get through. I’m currently also reading 大海原と大海原 along with the absolute beginners book club, so I try and get a couple pages of manga read each day to stay on schedule with the book club.
I guess I focus way more on my day-to-day workload than bigger milestones like leveling up or completing chapters in my textbook or manga. As long as I get my work for the day done, then I feel satisfied.
At this point, since fluency is still far off in the future, I take my joy in small victories, like realizing I could understand something that I couldn’t before, or suddenly catching a joke that I would have otherwise missed. I listen to/read a lot of Japanese in my non-studying time since I watch a lot of unsubtitled Japanese media, and a good chunk of my twitter feed is in Japanese, so it’s really exciting whenever I actually recognize something, even though I’m still quite far away from 90% or even 50% comprehension.
I’m working on Rocket Japanese, so I always have something to work on/learn. I work on grammar, listening, and reading. I watch TV Japan, and also find it so motivating when I can understand something new.
If you feel like you have the energy for more than WK, I’d recommend taking the plunge into immersion learning, listen to podcasts, drama CDs, watch Japanese tv-shows, anime, movies, read books, manga, news articles etc.
There is always something to do I feel, so whenever I had time I’d do Japanese stuff that is fun and keeps me overarching goal of learning Japanese front and center.
WK is for learning kanji, not learning Japanese after all.
A couple of hours after I posted this thread, I changed up my strategy. After reading your posts, I decided to slow down and focused on what I learned up to that point. Shortly after that, I was bombarded with reviews that basically took over my WaniKani time. Once I got those under control, I was able to start leveling up again. However, I’m taking a little longer now and not going at a breakneck speed. As I learned in school, learning new things is like a marathon: you have to know when to jog and sprint. I’m supplementing my kanji reviews with formal coursework and Bunpro. It’ll probably be a while before I hit 60, but I’ll be better off for it in the long run.