My first italki lesson

I just had my first italki lesson, and it was amazing. I haven’t really had any conversation practice for a couple years, so it was so refreshing (and HARD) to be able to speak again. I have forgotten so much though :frowning: My ability to recall vocabulary has gone down significantly since I was taking Japanese in college.

I was super nervous, because you know, anxiety, but now I am super excited for my next lesson!

Now I’m trying to decide if I want to make flashcards of new vocabulary I learn (or remember), or wait until I’m done with WaniKani before taking on another SRS…

Any suggestions? I’m really one to try to get the most out of everything I do, but I’ve been trying to take the “quantity over quality” approach that tofugu recommends, so to not overwhelm myself with trying to do everything perfectly. Should I make flashcards or not worry about it?


I don’t know that I have any advice, but I also LOVE iTalki! My husband and I take couple’s lessons, but we’ve taken a break cause we’re a little underwater with life stuff; we have our first lesson back scheduled for the beginning of November and I’m SO excited! Glad someone else is having an awesome experience there, too!

You might want to ask your tutor if they have a plan for how they approach their lessons, and if there’s a method they find works best. Our tutor has been great at watching where we struggle and changing things for us to help us advance. =)


Honestly have been thinking about doing something like italki for a long long time. This is getting me even more enthusiastic.


I also thought about it for quite time not sure if this motivate me or not since i can’t speak at all🙂


I started making my own flash cards way before I finished WK to make it more tailored to my needs.

That said, I think it’s also completely viable to just have a conversation and not bother about forgetting. Talking around words you’ve forgotten is even a useful skill in and of itself!

Finally, above all italki has been so helpful in making me able to speak without hesitation and without caring that my Japanese isn’t perfect, something that was extremely useful during my trips to Japan!

Well done! And keep going, it’s going to get easy… ish… eventually!

As you get to know your partners it’ll also become less stressful since it’ll be more like a chat with a friend.


I am also planing on switching to Itaki, maybe it is just me but, I find it very expensive $25 for just a 30 min is a bit too much.
Then again my langues school teachers wasn’t much of a help either even though i am paying $70 a month. For example, every time i try to use N3 or N2 grammar correctly, she immediately says that Japanese people don’t use it [ex. usage of わけではない] and tries to force me to use N4 grammar combination instead. I like to self study plus attend language lessons at school.Also two people from my class, they are not even studying Japanese regularly and it is slowing me down. Never a fan of a language group but it is super cheap that way.

There are definitely cheaper options than that on iTalki. You can find 30min chats for less than $10 easily.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the SRS.
I find that the new words that I come across during iTalki sessions tend to stick rather easily compared to vocabulary I come across while watching a tv-show etc. I guess our brains register actual human interactions in a different way.

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Sorry i am new to Itaki but if anyone can recommend me some good but not too much expensive teachers that would be helpful.

I typically go for at most $10 for one hour.

I also prefer community tutors both because they’re cheaper and because they’re not as likely to drop a formal classroom-type lesson in your lap (I can study grammar, vocab etc on my own, so I only want a conversation! :slight_smile: )


Well, the ones I’m currently having lessons with are Yuki, Kenshiro and Jasmin if that helps.


I had the EXACT same problem in my college Japanese classes. In like the last 2 semesters you could take, the advanced classes, there were a total of 6 people. 4/6 people could not read basic kanji, insisted on speaking English in the class, and just overall didn’t try. It was so frustrating :frowning_face: It’s part of what made me go into such a huge slump in learning Japanese… being surrounded by so many unmotivated people made me lose my motivation


That’s awesome!! And my tutor said that she normally has the more advanced students read an article or something, then we discuss it at the next lesson. It sounds to me like a great way to build vocabulary. Do you know what kind of approach did your teacher take, and do you think you’ll do anything different when you start back up?

I’m studying? talking with Mami at least once every two weeks. I kind of chose her because she doesn’t charge a lot but I’ve been really pleasantly surprised.

She’s really attentive and just a nice person to converse with. We don’t really do grammar, though I’m sure you can find cheap options for that if you wanted. Once I communicated that reading is a good way for me to learn and I’m better with kanji than grammar, she’s been sending me articles to read and talk about every week. I’m only slowly approaching N3 but we have no problems with communication. (also she’ll be so impressed with your WK-owed kanji knowledge, you’ll definitely become more conscientious about doing all the reviews :') I know I did)

Be advised though that she seems to be very popular and the reason I don’t have lessons every week is because after I finish one, the next free slot is in 10 days!

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Mine is opposite case. I am highly motived but since those two don’t study they are dragging me down which can result in losing 20 min of class just to talk about some nonsense stuff not even related to class topic, and only one language school that offers Japanese, because it is not that popular in my country.

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I’ll bookmark her if need arises [probably next month or so]. But please don’t hesitate to type Itaki teachers.

I couldn’t say ANYTHING in Japanese. It was embarrassing at first, cause I felt like (and was) slaughtering everything, but she was SO kind and patient! Most tutors have different class types you can sign up for (beginner/intermediate/advanced, or casual conversation, or something specific.) You can also give them a little blurb about you so they know you’re just getting started. It’s definitely one of the best ways to get practice speaking without living IN Japan, imo. :grinning:


We started working out of Genki, which is fine, but I felt like I wanted more specific practice, so I started writing sentences outside of the text book and she would review those at the beginning of each session to make sure I had grammar/words correct. We take a few minutes to talk about random things, just to practice chit chat. It’s a good combination for us right now! I think we’ll probably stick with it until we’re done with Genki 2, then I’m not sure! I haven’t thought that far ahead.

We only had one language school here that offered consistent Japanese classes, and it was RIDICULOUSLY expensive (like $900 a month if we both went). I think my italki instructor is a little more in the middle price range (not super expensive, but not really cheap, either), but with both of us doing a class a week it ends up being about $150 a month for both of us. It’s substantially more effective than trying to sit in a classroom setting, as well, since it’s focused on my husband and I and not an entire class of students.


My first lesson was the same! I couldn’t even get my mic to work, so we had to switch to using my phone. She asked basic questions like “what time is it?” and I stumbled so much, I was so embarrassed x’D But she handled it like a champ and was super patient.

No regrets though, I’m so glad I took the dive. I love the site so much. I 100% recommend it to anyone considering!


Ditto with you! No regrets! My husband has been watching anime since he was like 6 years old, so he has much better pronunciation than I do, but he also says everything like he’s the ship’s captain. That deep, serious voice that isn’t his, it’s mildly hilarious. :rofl:


I really like KameSame for vocab SRS. It’s a free tool that was originally created to be a companion to WaniKani, but has evolved into a full fledged vocab SRS. You can put in pretty much any vocab, add your own definitions, and review both recognition and production. The SRS follows the same method as WaniKani (complete with Apprentice-Guru-Master etc levels.)

You can learn more about it here: KameSame - a fast, feature-rich Japanese memorization webapp

A lot of people use Anki, which is more customizable but I find to be confusing to use. I like KameSame because its browser-based and simple to use.

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