Level up regret

More organised is a good way to put it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to belittle your experience, I’m just wondering if there’s a reason that WK has chosen not to do this natively since it would be a rather easy thing for them to implement.

No offence taken at all. If you’re looking for reasoning then as with any company, look no further than the bottomline.

I’d like to know why I’ve only recently done 次 as a radical when it’s been at least 6 months since I learned the Kanji 次.

Ensuring that people are subscribed for as long as possible, and paying people’s wage for less hours is in a company’s best interests. Not that I disagree with it, just an observation.

It’s an interesting thing, I tutored for 10 years and always found it interesting that if I failed, I was actually rewarded (if the student had to retake a class, I get more business), but I never found that to be a big motivation for me. Naturally groups/companies are different with individual voices harder to hear in the crowd, but I’d like to believe WK is out there both to make money and in our best interests.

I don’t think there is any direct impact in learning. It’s just an effective way to level up faster, and also a very good tool to manage the SRS workload in the long term. Having a more stable daily review workload might help avoiding mental fatigue, lack of motivation, etc.

That said, the reorder script could have a negative impact depending on how it’s used on reviews.


I’ve not studied psychology/sociology/whathaveyou, but I would tend to think that teachers are not typically the types to be angling to maximizing their profits. Your own experience and feelings towards this as a tutor shows it. Based on my experience with the WaniKani authors and their other projects/products I would tend to think of them as teachers and not out for your bottom dollar. If they are not teachers per say, I would think of them as perpetual students who want to share what they have learned.

As to why WaniKani doesn’t have a reorder script inherently to it, I could suggest a couple of possibilities.
First, it’s possible, they just simply haven’t had the time or thought it important enough to implement. They do work on several projects, and while WakiKani is well maintained, I don’t know that they put much into improving it at this time. I think Koichi in particular has been more focused on bringing new ideas to other aspects of Japanese learning.
Second, it’s also possible, they view it as not best for everyone, and not totally necessary. While you could continually try to make it perfect you would probably never get there. It’s often thought that different people learn differently. While it seems most agree that SRS is great, there is some contention on the exact method is the best. And I get the impression that WaniKani group is part of the “it’s good enough, doesn’t need to be perfect, our time may be better spent working on something else” mindet. They’ve done a great job of opening it up to let users create their own scripts that might help themselves or others out.

I’ve heard many people say they love the re-order script, but I’ve never tried it. I thought about it a few times, but I like the randomness without it also. There are a couple of re-ordering things I would like to do. I would like to do lessons from previous levels before lessons from the current level, and I’d like to make sure my Kanji aren’t too bunched at the end of a level (causing several days of waiting with no lessons for a level up as the last few kanji needed make it to Guru). When I do a set of new lessons, and I don’t like the mix, I just hit back in the browser and reload and see if I get a mix I like.

Something else I learned from Koichi is the importance of seeing things in new or different ways. For me having the radicals, kanji and vocab all mixed up is good. It helps your mind not get to set in one way. Also I found I remember the Kanji and vocab a lot easier if I see them somewhere else while I’m learning them (on a sign, in an article, in a different learning tool). To that point, one of the scripts I use puts the reviews and lessons in a random Japanese font. It gave me a little trouble at first, but I think it’s helped me to see how the Kanji can change in different fonts, and help me recognize them in other settings. It’s another one that may be worth your time.

Sorry I may have ran on and gone off topic…


This is kind of what I’m worried about as far as going with the ordering. I think that this has both made it difficult, and not let me get comfortable expecting vocab next to vocab or kanji next to kanji or any one particular piece all at once. I’m not sure though, it might just be that I think it helps, but it really doesn’t.

I’ll just second what the people above said about the re-ordering - it takes the surprise element away and I love surprises! Though it may be inefficient, the pleasure this ‘chaos’ gives me makes me stick to it long-term, which is the only effective way of learning.

Regarding you question, OP, do you all the lessons at once?! :open_mouth: My usual pace is 10 lessons in the morning and another 10 in the evening, or just 10 overall if it’s a busy day. So it’s like Reviews->10 Lessons->Day Stuff->Reviews->10 Lessons.

Yah, I’ve been doing them all at once. It feels really rough at first when you’re barely passing any, but I still manage to finish each level ~10 days per level (but I’m only level 5 :slight_smile:)

EDIT: I kind of thought the leveling system was designed to make you learn the optimal number of items at once (do all lessons and reviews as soon as you can when they’re available kind of thing), but this theory may be debunked from what I’m reading here…

I’ve always found that writing stuff down as Wanikani introduces them really helps. Otherwise, I blaze through the lessons too fast and end up remembering very little. Just quickly copying down the item, meaning, and part of speech/reading if applicable. I generally do all my lessons in a single sitting too, and I figure I remember about 60-75% on the first review each time.


Ooh, I like that one, maybe learn the stroke order at the same time.

It is a valid strategy to say … “well, I’m going to hold off doing new lessons for my new level until I move more items out of apprentice and guru into the higher levels” – which will certainly decrease your review load. But again, once a Kanji or Radical is on your review list, I wouldn’t avoid doing them and the only other way to reduce your review load is to move items up the ladder by doing reviews.

I guess there’s no real downside to getting something wrong that you’ve never gotten right in the first place. It’s kind of the same as holding off the lesson. It’s just that you can learn as fast as you can if you have the option of getting something right vs limiting yourself by only taking x lessons. I think it may be quicker because of this to do everything asap, but I’m also not sure if it hurts retention trying to learn too much at once.

Just try it out for a few days and see which you prefer, no harm done.

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I think I agree with the randomization comments above - and it’s probably why I haven’t bothered experimenting with the reorder script myself. I like having everything jumbled up, and I’ve noticed for me it seems to help strengthen familiarity with the trickier items when they appear unexpectedly. Although in my case, since I’m weird and bang through all my lessons in one go, the reorder script wouldn’t help me that much anyway, and I still end up with new items clustering together to some extent as it is.

For example, if I l learn a few similar words together, I’ll start to remember them as a set, and so when I see one of them come up eventually in reviews, my mind goes “aha, those other similar ones will be along any time now”, and so I’m not entirely sure I’m reading them properly when they do show up, or just anticipating, recognizing them and then getting them right, which isn’t the same thing. I wonder whether the reorder script would make this effect worse for me by forming clusters of radicals etc. It’s also why I don’t mind typos and silly mistakes toooo much (so long as they’re not critical to leveling!), since it helps to break the clustering up.

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I wanted to post my thoughts on this topic, but couldn’t be bothered. But you seem to have captured all I wanted to say. Thanks DavidDettling. +1

Just wanted to pop this in here since we were talking about the re-ordering script (from the WK FAQs):

Why do you mix radicals, kanji, and vocabulary together in reviews? Why can’t I review them separately?

It’s a little harder this way, but it’s much better for your memory.

It has been shown that when you study different (but similar) things together, you are going to remember more. This process is called “interleaving.” There are a couple of reasons for its efficiency:

Interleaving helps you to make connections. In one review, you will see a radical. Then, you will review a kanji soon after, and realize that it uses the radical you just saw. Later on you see two vocabulary words that use the kanji you just reviewed. This way radicals, kanji, and vocabulary aren’t separate things. They are a greater part of the whole. These connections reinforce the individual items in your brain and create more ways to access each memory.
Interleaving also helps to prevent “review hypnosis.” By repeating the same thing over and over again, you stop learning. By interleaving, you have to pay attention to what type of answer you need to put in. This keeps your brain active, which means you are actively learning.
You can read more about interleaving here.

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I see you’re also level 5, so you and I might be in a similar boat! I was just super excited to finish out my level 4 lessons this weekend, came in this morning and did a bunch of reviews (I slack on reviews over the weekend sometimes), and leveled up to level 5. On the one hand, I’m super proud of that accomplishment, especially since I slowed down a whole lot in level 4 between first waffling about whether to pay to keep going, and then getting a bit overwhelmed … but on the other hand, I now have 60 new lessons. I’m not sure that I REGRET leveling up, but I definitely feel like a new battle has begun and am feeling slightly overwhelmed.

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As with anything, small steps make great strides. IE, its not 60 lessons, its six sessions of 10. (the amount is up to you of course) It will happen every time and it jarring, it was at 9, it was at 10, and heading into 11 I’m expecting it again. But today I did 2 sessions and will probably get a third in as I’m pushing myself harder than normal since my apprentice group is low at 130ish. The point is to learn and to learn requires you to challenge yourself, if you hadn’t wanted the challenge, I would question why you are subscribed, if i’m a bit blunt about it

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No one said anything about not wanting to challenge yourself. This thread is about how others handle the large workload dumped on you at the start of a new level. It’s about best ways to handle it, not complaining about the work. Note that this isn’t a problem with learning kanji, this is a problem with how WK has things setup (if there wasn’t a level system, but instead a running # of radicals and/or kanji that you could have in apprentice at a time for example).

EDIT: But thank you for your point about trickling in lessons in chunks (6 sessions of 10 lessons). Do you find that you retain those 10 lessons each right away this way?

@Kpcs Great job! What I’m getting from other posts is that it’s basically something you get used to. I can’t say I was looking for a magical solution, so I’m not terribly surprised. I’m getting level 6 today :slight_smile: