How to start

Hi, trying out for the first time but I cannot figure out what I am supposed to do. Does anyone have any tips on how to get started?

After many comments it turns out most of what I needed to know was in the confirmation email. Thanks everyone for getting me started.

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In the top left of you should have something which looks like this

Click on the circle for the lessons to get to your session.

Did you read the guide?

If you have read the guide and still have some confusion let us know.


Thanks, I will give it a look. I just went through the first time user tutorial.

Thanks, I thought that circle was just a counter. I did not realize it started something. Thanks. That did it. I will check the guide to see if there is a way to learn the Japanese names for these radicals.

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uhm, thanks ; ) I think this best explains my predicament… Medieval helpdesk with English subtitles - YouTube


Wanikani doesn’t teach the Japanese name of the radicals. However, after you “guru” the radicals, it will teach the kanji that is made up of those radicals, some of which may be identical to the radical. When it teaches you the kanji, it will teach both the meaning and the most common Japanese pronunciation.

Got it, thanks. It seems to be working now.


Are the english words we are learning connected to what the radicals actually mean in Japanese?

In some cases the radical will come back as a single kanji with a related meaning, but not always. For example, the radical mountain matches directly with the kanji of mountain. However, if you look at the list of kanji for the radical of gun, there isn’t such a direct correlation.

Thanks, yes, I thought the “gun” one was made up. That and the toe, cross, and fin. I studied chinese radicals a long time ago and I believe there were meanings associated with each of the base radicals.

Actually, is the “gun” a real radical? I could not find it on radical lists online.

Seriously, read the FAQ and introduction topics. They have all your answers.

I’ve seen references on here to the radicals not being “official” ones, or comments to that effect.

Aha! Here’s someone asking a very similar question.

Sorry, I have trouble navigating around the site still. I read the FAQ and it just says to be nice and not criticize people. I did not see anything about the radicals there.

And a little later…

Ah, there are two FAQs, that was confusing. One for the forums and one for the website. The link to the website FAQ was a little hard to find but I found it in a post. Too bad they aren’t teaching stroke order… that helped me a lot in finding words in dictionaries. Anyways, I will give it a try still and see what I think after the free lessons are up.

Thanks, that link helps. I just want to understand what I am getting in to if I start handing over money and buying into the program. The link helps me understand why they made up names and to definitely not mention them to Japanese since they will have different meanings. My goal is to learn more kanji and their kana names that go with them. Getting the actual radical names is not the end of the world for me.

You can install this script for stroke order diagram.

If you don’t know how to install userscripts, read this: Visual Guide on How To Install A Userscript


Yeah, I guess finding the links can be a bit confusing actually. I started many years ago, but I thought they still put a couple of links on the dashboard when you sign up?

Did you find this topic yet? New People Questions! ~~~<3 [Lost?! Confused?! We're here to help!]

I wonder why people never read the first email they get … Maybe the text is a bit too flowery? :wink:


Thanks for pointing that out. I thought it was just a click to confirm type email and did not scroll down on my phone.