My Journey of 368 days (+ The Ultimate Guide for WK 📖 )

Thanks for the feedback, this satori reader keeps getting more and more interesting. Gotta try

Minna no Nihongo and Genki are pretty comparable, in terms of where each will get you (essentially to N4). MNN is more thorough and gets you a little bit further, but essentially they’re basically equivalent. Here’s an article comparing some popular textbook choices, including those two.

The main difference between them is that MNN’s core textbook is entirely in Japanese. You can buy a translation/grammar explanation book to accompany it (you have the option of I think over a dozen different languages), as well as additional workbooks. So, in this sense, it isn’t “easy to understand” haha, but the way the book is designed, it builds on what you learned previously, so even though it’s intimidating at first, it actually isn’t too hard to read, assuming you learned the previous material thoroughly.

I personally prefer MNN over Genki, but truthfully it’s personal preference. Either will serve just fine to get you through the beginner phase. I like MNN because I liked that it gets you reading Japanese very early, and it has lots and lots of reading practice all throughout. I feel like I’ve benefited from that, and it has helped me start to think in Japanese instead of working from translation. I also like the way the exercise drills are designed, because unlike Genki, they aren’t designed with pair work in mind, and they’re very good at drilling each individual grammar point without being too confusing.

If you already have Genki and like it just fine, then honestly I’d just stick with it, unless you read about MNN and fall in love with the concept of it haha. In the grand scheme of things, it won’t matter too much which one you choose, as long as you’re able to stick with it. Some people prefer MNN, and others prefer Genki, so neither is really “better” than the other.

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Thank you a lot for all the advices, I will stick to genki for the moment but I’ll probably buy MNN, it got me curious.

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Could we import Wanikani api key into Kitsun? I just signed up for it

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Thank you for waiting for a reply :pray:

Currently, it’s not possible. But you can still manage to add your known vocabulary words, however. There’s an inverse WK deck with all the Wanikani vocabulary. You can add the deck to your account and mark words up to your WK level marked as known.

Here’s how to do it:


Welcome to Kitsun :fox_face: Hopefully that helps!

it’s interesting how many hours per day you should study in this temp? Something like 4-8 hours/day?

Nowadays I barely study. You could say a maximum of 1h/day. I’m probably exposed to Japanese for longer than that tho.


I think this is key for a lot of people.

Investing 4-6 hours on top of everything else you want and need to do can be quite a daunting time investment. Incorporating Japanese into what you like to do anyway makes the actual added time investment a lot lower, and both helps with maintaining interest and having an actual tangible use for the Japanese you learn.

Like to watch anime? Watch some with JP subs (or no subs at all) and see how much you understand. Like to watch streamers? Watch some Japanese folks play games with friends, catch some slang and banter while you’re at it. Like to read manga? Get some Japanese manga and read away.

And before you know it you’re immersing in Japanese for hours a day without investing much additional time at all.

Of course if learning Japanese is what you do for fun and studying doesn’t feel like a time investment to you, all the more power to you. But that doesn’t necessarily go for everyone - I’d lose interest pretty quickly if I felt I had to study in more “traditional” ways, for instance. Watching Japanese VTubers, going on Japanese Twitter, and reading manga, on the other hand? Sure, with pleasure! That’s a big part of what I’m learning for anyway.


1 h/day and just 368 days. 368 hours for all the kanjis. A bit magical.
Kind of magic. My problem is that I all the time forget and I repeat the same day-by-day.))) Maybe I need to review more often and do some extras… like writing…

He said nowadays he’s studying one hour a day. Not back during the Journey of 368 Days.


Nowadays, he is just keeping what he already knows.
So, my hypothesis about 4-6 hours/day was, most likely, correct.

…I’m not sure what sort of jump that was but no I don’t think jpr spent 4-6 hours a day on wanikani or anything. I went at a similar speed spending like half that time or less. I imagine he was pretty similar


I did about an hour a day and took just over 2 years to finish, probably more near the end.

If you have 4-6 hours in total per day, I think you’ll get the most efficiency out of spending the 2 hours on Kanji and then using the rest of the time for all the other stuff like vocab and grammar.

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If you wanna know the time I spent exclusively on Wanikani during leveling up, you could say 1h30m on average a day. Later levels (45+) took more time a day because they can be done in 3 days and 12h, so in half the time of a normal level. I was doing 40 lessons a day on those later levels.

But to be honest, time really depends on your environment, ability to focus, energy levels, etc. At the end of the day, you want to focus on having a pace that you can sustain. If you get that right, it doesn’t matter whether you finish in 1 year, 2, or more. You finish it. 99% of users don’t :slight_smile:


Hi, I first read your post a month ago and just had my reminder go off to give you a reply. Your guide has had its own dedicated tab on my laptop since I’ve read it, and I go back to it a lot to quickly check up on things.

Having one place that mentions a lot of useful scripts was really helpful, since this was the first place I read about them and prompted me to look into more things myself. Personally what I’ve found most useful so far is using Tsurukame on my phone, since it has a really nice interface and lets me practice easily even with no service.

Everything else was helpful too of course and learning how exactly the systems and spacing in WK work made it seem a lot less daunting, so thanks for the guide. It’s nice to see that you’re still active here too :slight_smile:


Hey, good job with remembering to leave a message here 1 month later :muscle: This also means that you’ve been going strong since then, which is already something to celebrate! :grin: I’m glad things are going smoothly. Scripts definitely make the whole Wanikani experience even more enjoyable.

Feel free to (ab)use these forums and ask for help if needed :slight_smile: The community is very helpful and we all want to see each other succeed. One of the best ways to stick to a hobby is to have people with that same hobby around us :muscle:


So I read your post 28 days ago, which would be a month if I started in February. Close enough. While the guide doesn’t need improvement at all, since you are trying to

Here’s an overview of where I choose to deviate (I hope it will interest you):

Reading your guide was a great motivator! It motivated me to try and go full speed for now. I want to get the basics in as fast as possible and just rush through the stage where I can start reading. When reach ~intermediate levels I will slow down a bit and focus more on vocabulary that I encounter in the reading I will then start. I did have a few days of break when I learned all kanji of level 3 but was waiting some days before buying a subscription, I found it was easier keeping up a high pace than a slump. That workload image was amazing, it motivated me to go full steam ahead at first and then slow down when I covered the basics. I haven’t chosen the exact level of when that is, but I imagine with knowing most N4 kanji, which would be around level 10-15 according to the site which I also learned about from you.

Now I mastered my first items, I also started Kamesame, first heard of it through your post. It goes surprisingly well with cards I’ve mastered, but is a lot easier with cards that are still guru. Perhaps a tip that can help the guide, Kamesame lets you only learn items you mastered on WK (you can select any level really).

Perhaps give some love to other sibling apps/systems as well? A hidden-gem (that I am ultimately not using) is torii-srs. Which is a free app that teaches vocabulary similarly to wanikani and has an option to learn al JLPT level stuff that is NOT in Wanikani. Personally I choose to follow Genki for my other vocab instead, as it provides some sample sentences, and use anki to test genki vocab. But torii-srs is still a great recommendation for those that want to add more vocab to their learning (especially the non-kanji vocab). Then there is Bunpro, I’ve read many people recommending it at higher levels, but I am quite happy that I started at level 3. While I know far from all the vocab and kanji they use even for the lower level grammar, it is great to notice how I’m gradually understanding more of the kanji & vocab due to WK (and I am already experiencing that by just being in the second bit of level 4 while I started Bunpro in the second bit of level 3!).

  • understanding some very basic grammar rules (e.g. the most basic verb conjugation and adjective stuff), quickly makes it easier to differentiate certain similar vocab in Wanikani. If your focus is purely on learning the kanji, if taking some basic grammar lessons like adjective conjugation early on speeds up your reviews it might end up saving you a lot of time (even if it improves your reviews with just 0.5% or something). Though I doubt much advanced grammar will have such an impact.

I also started with lots of userscripts after learning of them and getting an overview from you. It was nice, but I find Tsurukame providing me the better experience. It just works smoother, userscripts gave me some incompatibility issues. Maybe give the apps a slightly more prominent position, it’s a great entry into WK enhancing and easier to start with than scripts.

I also found your bit on making a schedule very interesting. I am using it for the radicals and the kanji (to level up quickly) and it works well. However I am not using it for the vocab! I struggle most with readings (meaning is on average at ~99% according to wkstats), it helps me to dose it out over the day. Get some reviews when I pee, when I wait in the elevator, when I go for a quick stretching of the legs. So a very scheduled approach to the current level radicals and kanji, and a very spread out approach for vocab and older level radicals and kanji.

Please don’t see this as criticism of the guide, I meant it as a comparison of our approaches only without any value judgement (what works best for someone is entirely personal anyway) :slight_smile:

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This is exactly the direction I needed with WK right now. I just came back from a year-long hiatus with 1500+ reviews waiting for me. I finally grinded those reviews down to zero and realized I need some sort of schedule instead of trying to do all my lessons and reviews at once. Going to post back in a month with the goal of setting up a solid schedule!


I was going to make a thread to ask some of the questions answered here and then found out a lot more than I bargained for! Thanks for making this guide.

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