I haven’t used Wanikani for about a year, life happened, and unfortunately I’ve had little time to absorb kanji from other resources. As a result, I feel like my kanji ‘knowledge’ has become shallow and I often misread or even misunderstand kanji. I’d like to study kanji more actively again by resetting, but I’m not sure which level to reset to. I’m sure I want to use Wanikani again, instead of Anki for example, because I enjoy the structure here based on the SRS and the mnemonics. And of course, Wanikani would just be my primary kanji resource, but I would go with a slower pace and I’m still studying grammar, getting in daily reading, listening and speaking/writing practice through other resources.
On the one hand, I think it would be nice to start over from level 1 and really relearn everything (with an additional focus on pronunciation and example sentences, which I paid very little attention to in my first run, regretfully). I would also continue with other resources and hopefully reinforce the kanji more effectively than I did the past years. On the other hand, I plan on taking the N1 next July, and I would especially like to review kanji of the later levels (and so reset to level 30 or 40).
There are some topics similar to this and I have read those, but they usually ask for advice on whether to reset at all. So I’d like to hear your thoughts on which level you have reset to (if you ever went from 60 to 1 or some other level) and how that experience was. (But if you want to share your thoughts on resetting vs. using a different resource, that’s of course fine too!)
I personally have been thinking of resetting back to level 1 myself as well, after I have burned everything there is to burn. The reason for this is that my knowledge of Japanese was very bare-bones compared to what it is now, and I genuinely think that my absorption of the information will be significantly better next time. I have already experienced this when resetting my 1+ year progress in BunPro, and at no point have I regretted that decision.
It will take a little while since I really want to “complete” Wanikani, but since I have lifetime, I don’t really mind it. I’m a little completionistic, so I just really want to finish it.
However, on the other hand, I am also slightly afraid that resetting back to 1 will mean that I get into a period without much new information and therefore motivation to continue going back to 60. It’s kind of scary to redo this marathon, with the possibility of you never finishing it.
Do you have similar reasons as to why you’re not sure whether to choose level 1?
How would you go about this? Aren’t the pages unlocked anyway even if you haven’t reached that level yet?
From what I’ve read, I understood that resetting to 1 also means you lose all the ‘old’ names for the radicals. If you originally lessoned before the major rename, you’ll have to relearn all the radicals. Apparently not an issue if you reset to level 2 (? 3?).
I think there are more efficient ways to spend one’s time after WK and certainly more challenging avenues for growth. Do you really need 8 SRS levels of 山 or 一?To each their own if you really enjoy it but I think the WK expansion vocab or 10k would refurbish any stale kanji while learning new material. Not to mention typing SRS is not time effective at all. At worst, I would just resurrect items per level for myself.
Instead of resetting you could also use one of the self-study tools like the self-study quiz script or the self-study function in Flaming Durtles. If you choose to review all items (including the burned ones) you get a random refresh of all WK items without going through the whole SRS process again.
You may even want to unburn the items you don’t remember, so that those are reset to apprentice status.
I agree. The filter options of Flaming Durtle are great. I would never reset to 1. Imagine how many hours of your life you will waste, going through things you already know. I guess, I would check out some levels in the overview like 20, 30 etc. and see if I still know most of the kanji/vocab. When I find a level where I do not remember every, I don´t know, 4th kanji or so, it might be a good starting level again. All the best on your journey…again
When I reset, I went through all the kanji starting from level 1 and chose the level where, for several items, I couldn’t remember both the reading and meaning of a kanji or mistook it for another kanji. I think it was somewhere around level 16. So far, it has been a good experience. The lessons and reviews go much faster, so it takes less time than it took the first time around and I can take more time to focus on other things, such as additional meanings, vocabulary, and pitch accent. Also, the increased knowledge of Japanese really helps too. I have a lot more vocabulary to tie the kanji to and it’s far easier to read the example sentences.
That said, I’ve been feeling like there has been a distinct lack of challenge, so I wouldn’t reset quite that low in hindsight. Perhaps the time would be better spent on reading and getting more practice that way.
I know this isn’t exactly responding to your post topic, but rather a food for thought in the event you haven’t considered it.
When I reach level sixty, I don’t know if I am ever going to reset, but I am going to go back and try to learn how to write all the WK kanji. I feel like right now it’s more important to just be able to read, and sprint towards the N2 benchmark post… but at some point in time I think learning to write the language as well will be like burning those little turtles into my very soul.
I will also continue studying Kanji beyond level 60 with other resources at the same time.
Speaking of which, is there any news or plans of there being an expansion pack for WK? I know I’d be willing to pay for it.
I looked it up, and you’re right! Old names will be marked as correct but the lessons/mnemonics for the old names can no longer be displayed if you reset to level 1. Resetting to level 2 keeps an option available in your profile to ‘Display old mnemonics’. The content overhaul was in December 2018, so people that started WK after that have always used the new naming.
Thank you for your responses! I’ve had to rethink some of my opinions, so I’m very glad you all responded.
This is EXACTLY the situation I’m in. Especially “My knowledge of Japanese was very bare-bones compared to what it is now, and I genuinely think that my absorption of the information will be significantly better next time” really resonates with me. Wanikani was literally the only Japanese studying I did for a long time (I started at 18 and didn’t always know how to study well/just didn’t put in the effort ), so restarting would allow me to solidify the kanji, VOCAB, and also pronunciation.
Quick question, I’ve been considering subscribing to bunpro to work on grammar more actively, but I’m not sure how to use it. Did you add lessons manually or follow a path? Do you have any tips for starting with bunpro?
Yes, sorry my phrasing was unclear. I meant I want to actively relearn and review them through Wanikani, instead of just looking at the page and studying them independently. (Spoiler alert but after reading all comments here I think resetting to level 30 or so makes the most sense with my current goals, but I might reset again to a lower level at some point to focus on writing or pronunciation.)
However, I’m also afraid I’ll struggle with motivation if the information is still too clear. But the next comments helped me with that:
Yep, this is definitely a problem. I’d like to also pronunciation and pitch accent, so in that case there might be some value in it, but at the same time I can’t say I’m looking forward to repeating those specific kanji So as Pep also mentioned, this would probably not work well for my motivation. Have to consider that for sure.
This is a very clever way of going about it. As @2000kanji also mentioned, I had no idea flaming durtles had that function, thank you both for the tips!
Thank you for sharing your experiences! This helps me a lot, and you mention exactly the things I also want to focus on in a rerun. Reading this and the comments before I do feel like resetting too low would probably not work well. I don’t think it’d be throwing away time per se, because of pronunciation, example sentences, etc. But I think right now I would be more motivated with a bit of a challenge. I think starting at level 25/30 I took a one year break, and after that I became a bit sloppier with vocabulary. Maybe that’s a good point to start from again, but I’ll make sure to check how well I actually remember everything around that level.
This is a super nice idea!! I hadn’t even considered incorporating writing as well, but honestly I’ve wanted to practice writing more seriously ever since I read this topic by @heisamaniac. Maybe you find this topic interesting too, if you haven’t seen it before!
Also thanks to @rwesterhof and @vvv for clearing up the old radicals thing. I had not considered that at all, but yes I’d like to retain the option to choose whether I want old mnemonics to be displayed or not, since I learned those.
So in conclusion, I’ll figure out which level is best to reset to based on how well I remember the kanji and vocab! I think it’ll be somewhere around level 30. Either way, I’m excited to use Wanikani actively again
I’m still very open to more opinions or experiences if anyone wants to share
I actually started by just going through their JLPT based lesson order, but I quickly just sunk into chaos. This was because similar concepts would be taught far apart from each other, and I actually need those things to be presented to me in groups to get the nuanced differences between the different types of grammar.
I then reset and followed the Tae Kim path, since Tae Kim is free and really resonates with me. It almost feels like a person is just talking to you about some grammar concept in Japanese. From then on, when I wanted to add more grammar, I would read every chapter of Tae Kim, after which I would add the SRS review items into my queue. I currently believe that my grasp on grammar is much, much, much more firm, and am even finding that my listening ability is growing a little bit.
I heavily recommend BunPro, but follow a path and study the material alongside it if you want things to stick well
Also, the Tofugu podcast has been on a streak of talking about little grammatical nuances between certain words within the Japanese language. I adore this content, and have been listening to them while doing chores or running errands. I really feel like it gives a bit of a native touch, definitely have a listen if you’re into podcasts These days it’s mostly hosted by Kanae, with frequent guests Rachel, Cameron, Mami and Jenny.
I’m also a lifer, so I have decided to restart from Level1 when I reach 60. It will be faster than the first time around because I should know them, but if I should have forgotten any, they’ll be there again. I figure reviewing for the rest of my life (since I’m nearly 71) will work well. I also plan to work on writing the Kanji and continue doing other work such as intensive grammar and writing in Japanese. By the time I reach Level 60, a quick redo from Level 1 should be an easy review, which will be motivating as well.
Oh I didn’t know about that!! I’ve reset from around level 24 to level 1 a couple of months ago but I think it would have been wiser to reset to level 5 or 6: the first levels are a bit too slow and now that you’ve told me about that level 2 reset behavior, it makes resetting to level 1 a no no.
As I’ve only just begun I don’t have much to add to the conversation. However, in listening to spoken Japanese on youtube and anime I’ve noticed that words will sound a bit, or even significantly different when spoken in a sentence rather than as a stand alone word. Maybe it’s an issue of the stand alone being an example of perfect diction, but if your knowledge and understanding are high enough, I think it may actually be preferable to hear the words you want to learn to say better in the the context of phrases and sentences rather than by themselves in order to sound more natural as well as to better understand them in the context of the naturally spoken language.