Kanjis that can or cannot be on their own

Some kanjis apparently have no meaning on their own, but is only a vocabulary with a mix with other kanjis or hiragana. For example 新 means new, but when it is used as a word, it is written 新しい or 新た. Simply “新” is not a vocabulary word. This is the case with many kanjis.
However, a lot of places use 新 on its own. When you go to “levels” on Wanikani, new kanjis are marked with simply “新”. Additionally, “現” is used to display active kanjis. The kanji means “present/present time”, but has no vocabulary meaning for the kanji by it self.
How does this work? Is there actually a vocabulary for the kanji itself, but it is omitted in Wanikani? Or does this only work for simple displays, and not a part of speech? And how do you pronounce it, is it by onyomi, kunyomi, or does it not have a particular pronunciation?
I have noticed this many places with many kanjis, but I hope these examples describe my point.

Thank you.

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新 on its own can be used to mean “new” as, like, a label or a sign, where grammar generally doesn’t apply. In sentences or general prose text, it’s always going to be a prefix or an adjective.

It can also be a proper noun on occasion too.

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Yeah, it’s not a word in that case, just a symbol basically.

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So it has no pronunciation?

Not in a strict sense. If you asked a Japanese person to read it, they would probably assume you want the onyomi and say しん, but you could just as easily make an argument that it stands for あたらしい and they are just saving space.

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