I took a break, what now?

So I had to take a month break back in August (Specifically from Aug 20th-Sept 20th) because I had to study a lot for my Uni exams because I slacked off all year so it was a do or die moment. One thing lead to another and now my Japanese learning has been effectively terminated since august, so around 5 months now.

I used to be level 22 on WK, working daily with decent results (my overall accuracy was around ~94-95%) and I was more than halfway through Genki 2. What should I do now , since I want to resume. Should I start over WK from lvl 1 and go back to Genki 1 or should I start from some other WK level? Or should I just pick up where I left off? Any advice since I guess I’m not the only one who took breaks so some here may have personal experience in dealing with this.

Thanks regardless, wishing you all the best.


Try picking off where you started. Only reset if it turns out you need to, and don’t go all the way to level 1 without first trying to reset just two or three levels.

I was away for 2 years at level 11, reset to 9 because I didn’t remember most items above that level, and that worked out alright.

WaniKani Reorder is useful in this situation as well.


With that accuracy and your level, I would just resume. I did pretty much the same thing when I was around your level.

Just dont do lessons and keep working at your reviews until you have them back to normal. It’ll suck for a bit, but just power through it.


How big is your review queue?

I came back from a similar hiatus to around 1400 reviews.

Here’s my advice from that thread:

Looking back on it though, I think I would have been better served by spreading out that review load by doing around 100-200 day. Those big batches would come around again over the next couple of months and that made it harder overall.


I legit am just getting back into wanikani after a few months long break in vacation mode.

I was level 32, reset back down to level 28.

I did some of the reviews that piled up to see where my knowledge and memory are at. Nope!

Reset down to 24. Still nope!

I don’t have any sort of time limit to hit level 60, so I reset down further to level 21.

I could of stayed at 28 comfortably and just grinder through and let the SRS work for me, but right now I’m looking more at just reviewing things and having an easy time while I try to build the habit back up.

So try resetting only a few levels, do that for a little bit and see how much comes back to you. Then adjust accordingly. Like I said, I’m looking for an easy workload right now as I just want to get back into the act of simply using wanikani. My apprentice numbers are really light. Easily less than 50. For me that’s perfect at the moment, for you, that might be too much.


I highly recommend trying the self study quiz script.

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I feel like pushing through the tough review sessions is the best way to go. Actually taking the time to look up what you’re having an issue with while pushing on is ideal in my opinion. I’ve taken 2 ‘long’ breaks and regret my reset.

Long Answer

I also took a break. Though this is my second time. The first time, I reset to 10-15 levels because it was a long time. I didn’t remember much at all (still regret it). Don’t remember how many months it was.

I came back recently and was in the same situation as before but I didn’t reset. Started learning Korean and got absorbed. I was getting 45%-70% for the first week or so… then after that it steadily rose and now it’s back to 95%+.

The hardest part for me was remembering the radical meanings. Some have changed as well and it was a little hard to get used to. At the end of the day, if you’re really having trouble remembering something (anything) just look it up with the search function (magnifying glass icon). If you take 2 minutes to refresh your brain on a single item it will take you very far.

Just my opinion based on my experience. The first time I reset was mainly because I hated seeing the very low grade after each batch of reviews. It made me feel like I wasn’t learning properly/just didn’t get it. When in reality I just needed a proper refresher :upside_down_face:

Whatever you choose to do, good luck. Bottom line is persistence is key right? And with Genki, I suggest a ‘thorough review’ basically doing the same thing as with WK (I’ve also done this). When I wasn’t comfortable with a grammar point, I’d try using it, looking for example sentences, or asking a Japanese friend about it.


Don’t do new lessons for a while, focus on doing reviews. 50-100 a day until you have none left.

I’d read through Genki 1 and 1st half of Genki 2 chapters and grammars. Most of it should return fast, if something seems less familiar make notes of it so you know to review it more. But this can be quite fast process, after that just move forward from where you left.


echoing everyone here saying to just start back up again where you left off. I was gone from wk over a year (thank you, vacation mode) and just picked up where I left off. it was really hard at first because even though I only had about 200 reviews, I had forgotten almost everything. so I just chipped away at the reviews and now I am mostly back to normal.

maybe it would have been smarter for me to have just reset back the beginning of the level I was on, but oh well. it took a few days to maybe a week to get back into the swing of things and finally feel comfortable with the reviews I was getting.

I used the reorder script to prioritize items from lower levels, but that’s pretty much it.

although I should clarify that I hadn’t stopped studying japanese outside of wk during my break, so a lot of the words I had encountered in previous levels were mostly still in my head.

From My Journey of 368 days (+ The Ultimate Guide for WK 📖 ) - #2 by jprspereira

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Don’t reset.

Try doing reviews and see what you remember. You likely remember a lot more than you think you do and if you can pull off 65-80% accuracy, I would say just stick to your current level, don’t reset any, and get Apprentice items to 50. Once you have 50, start new lessons again.

If you find you just can’t get some kanji from a particular level, drop a level. You never want to drop all the way to 1 IMO because then you will find the first levels are probably too easy for you and become demotivated to continue.

In the end though, do whatever you need to do to keep moving forward! :wink:

I’d just power through your reviews. When you come across a kanji you don’t remember, also take a look at what vocab it appears in. If you’re really not getting anything right you might wanna reset a few levels, but 20 levels takes a long, long time and if you’ve already stagnated once (and had to reset all the way) it makes it really easy to just give up after 6 or 7 levels. Accuracy doesn’t need to be perfect, anything you get wrong you’ll review again soon anyway. You can also pick up a self-study script, it’ll give you random reviews of whichever set you want (kanji only, a certain SRS level, everything, whatever) to give you a refresh without it affecting your actual accuracy.

And echoing what everyone else here has said, don’t do any lessons. How big is your stack? I’ve found that sitting down with some decent music, a cup of coffee, and absolutely nothing else to do that night can do wonders on your pile. After losing internet for a few days I had a pile of 900 reviews, and I did them all last night. Sucked, but you’d be shocked what you can do in one sitting.

where can I find it?

1492 reviews / 44 apprentice ones.

I didnt know you could reset just a few levels, how do you that? iis there a script?

It’s in the “Danger Zone” section on your profile, so no scripts needed.

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I’ll 2nd that thought. Binge reviewing got me into major trouble for just that reason - the reviews would come up in gigantic piles later. Doing even 100 reviews a day will eventually dig you out of any review pile, as long as you’re not doing lessons :slight_smile:

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I created a user script which makes these “review only” times more gratifying. Basically, you can see your progress even when you’re not doing lessons. This helped keep me motivated when I was in a similar situation :slight_smile:

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Aye agreed. I think the only benefit to doing it the way I did is that 100 item review sessions feel like easy sauce afterwards. :joy:

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