Missing out on On-Kun?

Hello folks,

This has been bugging me for a while now, so I figured I’d see how much of a concern this is to others.
In WK, you learn the preferred reading with the Kanji and the other as and when it appears in Vocab. This causes me some concern because I realized I know only the preferred reading when I look at a Kanji but need to go through the list of Vocab I can remember in my head to get to the other reading. And, despite the guidelines about when on and kun are used, these are only guidelines so I don’t necessarily know if one is kun or on and vice versa.
Should on and kun both be part of a Kanji reading or am I just being difficult?
I know I could make my own deck and so on, but that’s really not the point of the question. I’m more worried about whether, from an educational standpoint it is better to have both taught with the Kanji or not (so I don’t have to do mental gymnastics to retrieve the other or simply don’t know it).


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Generally speaking, if WK doesn’t teach you one of the readings at all, it’s probably not very common. Recognizing which ones are on and which ones are kun comes with experience, so if WK does teach both, eventually you’ll usually just know which is which based on the patterns.

I’d say it’s pretty rare for them to be equally useful. Usually one or the other comes up way more.

And plenty of kanji have more than 2 readings anyway, so trying to teach them all at the time of the kanji lesson is just a huge can of worms…


I did not know this. That’s very helpful.


Yeah, take something like 本

The onyomi is ほん and the kunyomi is もと

That might throw some people off initially, since usually a single kanji is read with the kunyomi and 本 is such a basic word everyone knows, but it’s the onyomi.

But basically, until you’re at an advanced level, you probably will only encounter the もと reading when it’s used in names. For instance, 山本

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