Learning speaking with WaniKani?


I feel like one downside to WaniKani is that it since it’s more focused on reading, it’s harder to recall vocabulary while speaking than it is to recognize kanji. I’ve tried KaniWani, which is cool, but I feel like it takes up too much time. WaniKani is already a big commitment and doing twice the usual amount of work seems excessive.

How do you guys study speaking? Or how should I approach it? Should I just stick it out and it’ll get better as I progress? WaniKani and Textfugu are my only resources right now. Hope I’m making sense!


I understand what you’re saying but that’s not really a downside of WaniKani. WK is a kanji learning site. You also learn a bunch of vocab, but the main reason for that is to reinforce kanji and introduce alternative readings.

Speaking is a completely different skill. Keep going with Textfugu until you feel confident you can make your own sentences then try chatting or posting on Hello Talk, italki, Lang-8, somewhere like that.

(This advice is in the assumed absence of a to-hand native speaker with whom to practice. Obviously, if that’s an option for you, then do that.)


Yeah I get that, I guess I was just hoping to use WaniKani as an all-around Japanese learning app. Which I guess it could be, but it’s just not so focused on recalling vocabulary and speaking. I’ll have to try some of those sites you mentioned.


I’ll add here, that my Japanese teacher (70 year old japanese man) was watching and listening to me do wanikani. He balked at half of the female’s voices pronunciations. There was too much movement in the tone in 50% of the vocab he said. He said I was pronouncing it better than her, with a more even tone. Perhaps wanikani did this on purpose to help foreigners listen to the sounds with more emphasis? I don’t know. To my teacher it sounded like she was bored and didn’t care.

Obviously I love Wanikani, but just a heads up that it serves it purpose of reading kanji very well. Definitely try and listen to other sources for speaking/listening.

I use iknow.jp which has sentences that I believe sound better, though I’m sure they have their flaws too. I haven’t started it yet but I did buy white rabbit shadowing books to help with speaking.

You can also try shadowing using japanesepod101.com. They make it really easy with being able to play one sentence at a time.


I have started using this. Done the first 2 lessons. Pretty interesting. You need to do it every day to make it work.


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