Hello good people of Wanikani! After quite some time I have to say I finally did!! Lvl 60!!
Before saying anything else let me show you the statistics of my progress.
Status and Accurancy
As you can see I had my ups and downs, mainly pausing for about 160 days due to work. I then tried to rush things. Especially starting around level 41 I took advantage of the fast levels in order to hit that 60. The reason? Well due to COVID I’m starting a 2nd Master’s degree and I decided that at least I wanted new lessons out of the way.
My advise? If you don’t HAVE to rush, DON’T DO IT! I have to admit at some point I felt burned out and was really close to quitting. I admit I cheated a bit on the Kanji, but I know this will bite me back eventually. I already see it with previous Kanji I’m having trouble remembering.
Below I will try to reply to a few questions out of my head!
Was it worth it?
Yes! A thousand times yes. I started learning Kanji using some free material around, but after a while I realized I wasn’t making any progress. Simply by spending each day 3 hours for example reading Kanji from a textbook won’t help you in the long run. By using WaniKani I was able to memorize Kanji and Vocabulary, and I got excited when I realized that: HEY!!! I’M LEARNING JAPANESE!!! Whether it was the fact that I paid for this service, or simply seeing the reviews pile up, the result is that I had a motive to push myself hard in order to succeed.
Do you remember every single Kanji and Vocabulary you've learned? Especially the burned ones?
Well obviously not. I’m afraid I only started with grammar recently, and grammar would certainly helped me in the long run. BUT, and this is a big BUT, about 8 out of 10 times I am able to remember either the reading or the meaning of the Kanji/Word, and that is something amazing. Whenever I run into a word I don’t remember I usually open WaniKani, check the reading/meaning, and then ask myself:
Will you remember this the next time you see this?
If the answer is yes, I move forward.
If not, then I unburn the item and start reviewing it again.
It’s a simple as that.
What advise would you give to someone who is just now starting?
Take your time and don’t stress. It’s okay to make mistakes, it’s okay to forget things. And if you can spare the time, start with Grammar around level 25 or so.
Finally remember, learning Japanese isn’t a race, it’s a long paved cobblestone path leading up the mountain. The shrine at the top is what makes it all worthwhile.
What's the next step?
Well, like I said before, Grammar, Grammar, Grammar. This also includes start reading anything I can get my hands on. From a funny manga to a piece of newspaper. It won’t be easy, because I will have my hands full with my Master’s, but even if I can read something small once per week, it’s something.
Progress is progress, no matter how small
I also have another forum post here: Slowly starting with Grammar. Tips and General Advise
A lot of people had the kindness to help me out, so I gathered some of the best advise hoping that it will do some good to someone who feels lost.
That’s all I can think of for now. Feel free to ask me anything, and I will do my best to reply by adding them to the main post!
For closure, please let me say this: It’s great to be part of this community, and while I’m not an active user in the forums, whenever I was lost people rushed to help me. And that is what makes this place so special! A big Thank You to Koichi & the WaniKani Team, and of couse to all of you!!
Now you can stop reading this, open the main page, cry a little bit because you got 300 reviews and start doing them