Is it just me or...?

Do the wanikani menomonics and radical explanations start to make more sense once you level up a bit? I’ve noticed myself starting to find patterns and stuff in some of the words.


Yes, at first I was like “why are you introducing all these silly characters to me as if this was some kind of children’s musical?”, but once I met them a few times they got more helpful.
On the other hand, a few levels later the mnemonics deteriorate again. It seems like around level 10 the team got tired of coming up with detailed scenes for you to imagine, so the mnemonics become less detailed and leave much of the scene to your own imagination.


Yeah, I experienced the same. I got familiar with these characters like Ms. Chou or Kouichi and have little stories of them in my mind. Every now and then their readings come up again and add a new chapter to their stories. Im excited to see what the crazy Ms Chou is going to do next.


Ah, this brings beautiful memories of my first month here to my mind :face_holding_back_tears:

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That makes me wonder if it’s something they updated into it the way it is now later or something. I stopped paying attention to the stories before level 10, so never noticed that much. But halfway through level 20, you notice the number and quality of example sentences really drops like a rock. You’re lucky to have one half-useful example sentence every batch of 5 lessons.

They still add and update example sentences from time to time. So it feels like the much lower quality is kinda just the old content. How it used to be before they updated the pages.

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They are mostly for getting you off the ground for the on-yomi readings. Around level 20 or so you should see patterns emerge for the on-yomi readings that will make it so you can spot on-yomi on kanji you see for the first time. That way, you don’t really need to focus so much on the on-yomi readings.

Your first introduction to this concept iirc. should be Level 11’s: 令 (Radical)

Whenever you see it in a kanji’s right or bottom position, the on-yomi will most likely include れい.

I think I’ve already seen it before 令, with 放 for example (same on’yomi as 方)

Around level 20 or so you should see patterns emerge for the on-yomi readings

I actually found the user script for Keisei a bigger help than trying to spot the patterns myself:

I find this script is a brilliant help to learning kanji and I wish there was a kanji learning tool honoring this information more - grouping kanji accordingly.

Don’t get me wrong, I like WK in general, but it’s quirky naming of radical parts of kanji is neither a help when looking up kanji (thankfully Jisho does this in an intuitive way) nor is it helpful outside the context of WK itself - often WK does not acknowledge the meaning radical, especially if the meaning radical is actually a composite of other primitives. I read this complaint often - you basically get a whole kanji as part of another kanji but WK points out all the minor primitives all over again in forming a story, when the meaning is broadly related to the composite.

But then again, Japanese is such a legacy of changes atop of changes, there’s no one true way to slog through it, anyway. :sweat_smile: