Is it ok to go pretty slow?

Hi there, everyone!
I’m at level 3 right now, but reading the forum, I think I might be going really slow, especially with doing new lessons, and I don’t know if that could be bad for my overall progress (not about the time it will take, of course if I go slower it will take much longer but I don’t care about that, but more in the remebering everything). I usually only do 5 new lessons a day, some days maybe 10. I do all the reviews as soon as I can.


Considering you do all reviews, your pace is just a matter of how many reviews you can juggle, and how many lessons you can do without feeling tired/burned out. Your health is key.

Try to do 10 lessons for a couple days, and see if the number of reviews you have to do each day is still manageable, and if you don’t feel too tired. If yes, you can probably keep that pace going.

Experiment with the numbers until you find a nice balance. Try to keep apprentice numbers below 100 overall, and focus on reviews only for a bit while the number is above it


42 → 43 took me roughly a 1.5 months, doing mostly 3 lessons a day (gone up to 6 a day now as I want to aim for 1 level a month). 5-10 a day is fine imo.

To get a rough estimate for how many reviews you’ll get in relation to the number of lessons you’re doing you can multiply the number by 7 (because that’s how many days it’ll take for the reviews to start catching up). So if you do 10 a day you can expect about 70 reviews a day in a weeks time.

People who do loads of lessons as fast as possible get buried by hundreds of reviews later on.


My apprentice items so far are very low most of the time, way less than 100. I might try to do 10 lessons some days and five some others.


I’m currently on day 41 of level 16. And I do reviews daily. You aren’t slow at all. My only concern at present is the number of burned items that I have. I’m approaching 1000 and I’m concerned that my slow pace at present might lead me to start to forget the burned items.

I really do need to pick up my outside-of-wanikani reading.

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I would recommend sticking to a pace for at least 5 levels. Then try to increase your pace for the next 5 levels and see. Once you hit level 30, then I would say you’d have enough experience to vary your pace every level or so.

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The answer to your question is: go at YOUR pace.

This isn’t a race. This isn’t do or die. This is learning. If you can breeze through 500 reviews a day or you can only get through 15, you are LEARNING in either case.

For some people it comes as easy as breathing. For most folks, it comes with some difficulty but they can push on. For still others it is grueling and painful. Just because it’s easy for Person X doesn’t mean it should be for Person Y and X should not feel superior and Y should not feel inferior. You are who you are and learning at the speed that works for you.

Think of it this way. You are already further along in learning Japanese than the person who never started. At level 3, you probably know more kanji, better, than I did “studying” over 20 years. So you are already better than me :smiley:

The other thing to remember is, if you speed up, be sure you can manage what that means. What I mean is, say today you do 20 reviews, get them all to Enlightened. In 4 months, all of those will come back to you, on top of your normal daily grind. And once the Burning starts, you can’t just put it out. You can stop doing new lessons which can help but then you may only be getting through the Burns.

In the end, find what is comfortable and manageable for you. You don’t want super cooshy fall asleep on the couch comfortable. You want the slight pain of a rickety chair biting into your back but still more comfortable than sitting on the floor comfort. :smiley:

Or do whatever you need to do to keep learning. It’s that simple.

Either way, good luck in your studies. If you ever need help, want to scream, or just want to have a break, keep stoppping back. Everyone here is happy to help!


I only do lessons if I am below 100 in Apprentice items. Takes me about 18 days a level.

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I think the most important is if you are keeping a consistent schedule. Learning a language is a long term game. So, I believe there’s no point trying to ‘speed hack’ it.

If you are doing only a few lessons everyday but you are doing everyday–it’s better than doing a lot in one day and skipping days because you few overwhelmed with the reviews.

I learned this in the bad way hahaha.


I only do 1 or 2 lessons a day. Go at your own pace.


I’m studying grammar mostly with Genki. I try reading but I barely get a couple of words from an article.
I don’t really care about the time, I’m doing that mostly as a hobby and for the intellectual challenge.

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In my long history with WK, I’ve gone at various paces. Whatever works at the time. The only caution I’d give is that you have to remember whatever you do now will come back around at some point. So don’t overcommit if you think you’ll be tied for time later.

I’ve gotten to a phase where I pretty much only do new lessons on weekends, and then I only do so many items as to be able to retain the new information. Usually that means about 10-30 new items each weekend, depending on my workload, but there also have been weekends when I haven’t done any new items within WaniKani…

This is mainly because I’m focusing on textbooks and progressing with those (for example, within Genki and Minna no Nihongo, I’m just starting to see words that I studied here months ago pay off in my studies).

How? I’ve been clearing my WK board for for 20 days in a row and I’m still at level 1. I normally do WK either after or before my textbook lessons, I’m currently going through Marugoto A2.

Leveling up requires guruing 90% of the current levels kanji, so you are probably failing some over and over again. How many times a day are you doing WK? You may miss some of the intended intervals if you only review once a day.

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Ah, that might be it. There are couple where the mnemonics are giving me hard time and I’ve been doing my studies during the couple hours of free time I have available after work.

Whenever you feel like you are going too slow, just look at me - I joined at 2016 and am still only lvl 29… Granted, many things happened, but still, I can’t purretend that my greatest nemesis has always been the Great Cat of Purrocrastination… :cat2:
And yet I’m not giving up.

And neither should you. Just go at your own pace and if somebody accuses you of being too slow - may they be hissed at by cats! :cat2:

Anyway, best of luck at your studies! May the Great Cat of Purrseverance always accompany you! :cat2:


It’s taken me 3 years to get this far and I’ve taken a couple of 3-4 month breaks where I’ve only done reviews and no lessons at all. When I am doing lessons, I like to keep my apprentice count to approx 60. Go as slow or as fast as works for you.

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