I got an email right at the start reading:
I know it’s only been about an hour, but hopefully you’ve gotten started on WaniKani. If not, the first step is to do your lessons. Once you’ve done that, the radicals you finish here will be added to your Reviews Pile.
But, you may have noticed that you aren’t allowed to do your reviews right away. Because of this, the most common new-member question we get is “Hey WaniKani, why are you making me wait? Forget it, I quit.”
The waiting is very important, though. WaniKani’s reviews are built on something known as a spaced repetition system (SRS). The idea is that you make the most improvement to a memory if you recall it right as you’re about to forget it. An SRS helps you to automate that. When you don’t know an item well, the wait between reviews is much shorter. When you know an item quite well, the wait is much longer. So the better you know something, the longer you have to wait.
Because you’re just starting out, WaniKani has to assume that you don’t know anything. So, the wait times between reviews are relatively short. But, you don’t have many items to review, so it feels very slow. But, as long as you do your reviews when they’re available, and you’re inputting correct answers, you’ll unlock kanji within a couple of days. You’ll unlock Level 1 vocabulary, as well as Level 2 radicals a few days after that. With something as long term as kanji learning, one week is a drop in the bucket. Stick with it through the last free level (Level 3) and you’ll have a better idea of what to expect.
While you wait for your next available reviews, I highly recommend that you read the WaniKani Guide. It will go into much more detail, as well as tell you what you can expect in the future. If you have any additional questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
Please work hard!
Koichi & the WaniKani Team
Just writing it in even bigger red letters so that even the most reading averse individual gets it spoon-fed is certainly possible, but people learning kanji should have an attention span longer than a few seconds.