New People Questions! ~~~<3 [Lost?! Confused?! We're here to help!]


The mnemonics themselves are ridiculous - but that’s the point, right? The more ridiculous it is the more likely I am to remember it. My frustration is that I can remember the mnemonic, but I feel like some of them don’t actually do a particularly good job at helping you remember the reading.

For example, 六日, I can totally remember that it’s cow-related. Hitting the button to have it vocalize the reading, it sounds kinda like “moy-ka” or “mooey-ka” both here and on Google translate. I think the existing mnemonic (moo) doesn’t really do a good job of reminding you of that middle sound. I’m trying to replace the mnemonic with my own - instead of thinking of a cow standing a car, I’m trying to imagine a car painted like a cow, so that I can think “That sure is one moo-ey car”.

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I don’t really have any “IRL” resources for learning Japanese at the moment, so I’m relying on things like Wanikani and Duolingo.

To be clear, I don’t hate the site - I’m just feeling a bit of frustration. I feel like a number of the vocabulary, I just get wrong over and over again even when I do remember the imagery provided. See my other reply for an example of one.

How long does it usually take to get to the next level?

The fastest you can get to level 2 is about 3 and a half days. That’s if you do every review within an hour of it appearing in your queue. Sometimes they’ll appear overnight, so that can make it tough to maintain the fastest pace.

On average, I think people usually take 4 or 5 days due to a combination of being new to the system and new to the language. Some take longer.

Not lost nor confused, just curious.

Does WaniKani grow? In terms of content.
I had found some comparison of WaniKani to JLPT, school grades etc. Usually wanikani stops before reaching the highest levels to 100%. So I´m curious if it´s a work in progress or current 60 levels are here to stay unchanged.


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It’s a work “in progess”. Not too long ago, there were only fifty levels, so perhaps something will change. Perhaps even some time this century.

The fact of the matter is, though, for the most part the remaining handful of kanji left from the joyo set are used so infrequently that it’s barely worth the effort of learning them (aside from the “achievement awarded: learnt all Joyo Kanji!” moment).


That’s nice to hear :slight_smile: Thanks for a quick answer.
And yeah I totally understand the frequency point :smiley:

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i was wondering how many times a day people here get on wanikani? i’m wondering what the best way to do this is, like getting on only once a day or twice or three times

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I personally do reviews on the app whenever I have a little time. But it mostly depends on the speed you want to go at. You can also simply find out when the next review items for your current level are and just do reviews then to keep an optimal speed. To find out when that is, I’d recommend using Dashboard Progress Plus.


I wonder why we have to burn the poor, innocent, and helpless turtles xD

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Read this :slight_smile:

Now, this is just a theory (though people seem to like it), but way back in the day in China (we’re talking 2000BC-ish, that’s around 4000 years ago) people needed to ask questions to the heavens. How did they ask questions? Not by shouting at the sky. Instead, they’d take turtle shells or animal bones and burn them.

The article continues with it:


Different English-speaking areas pronounce words differently, even within one country. We’ve had a discussion or two about this on the forums before.

So, it’s not surprising to me that @bchik was struggling with that. (Hey @bchik, how is it going now, since you made level four and subscribed to Lifetime… I’m assuming good/better?)

For me, one tool to add to the repertoire was to come up with my own mnemonics when the ones provided don’t quite suit me - either because I would pronounce something different or it wasn’t quite tying things together for me. I try to keep them as close to the original mnemonic as possible in case future kanji build upon that original imagery.

The only issue I’m having now is sometimes hitting cognitive overload. Sometimes it feels like the pace is too slow, and sometimes I feel overwhelmed. I’ve been starting to ignore some of the new lessons until I feel more comfortable with the ones I’m still reviewing and making errors on and that seems to be helping.

Having to remember “exception” pronunciations which are case specific for some of the kanji is definitely frustrating :slight_smile:

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That’s totally natural, and most people on the forum seem to settle on doing lessons in several batches.

just have to say I really appreciate the wiggle room allowed for English misspellings. being strict on that would have been an instant deal breaker. if I had kept getting the meaning of 山 wrong because I spelled it moutan moutian instead of mountain every time would have made things impossible.

as someone who is dylexic dysgraphic you have no idea how necessary that allowance is. some other systems have hard stopped me because of that. language, particularly written, has always been difficult for me. so it’ll be interesting to see if the wanikani system is going to work out for me.

the biggest issue so far is with the memetics, but not with remembering the memetics. a river full of cows is quite memorable for example. it’s actually remembering that cow = kawa and not kowa or kawu because all three seem valid ways to convert cow to me and I’ll use all three depending on the specific moment when I type it. so far the best aid for that I’ve found is to just retype the memtic but straight up using the hiragana in place of the relevant English word, removing them from it entirely so I stop tripping over how it’s spelled in English or how it’s being pronounced.

it’s probubly a unique set of mental landmines I have to deal with. at least Japanese it’s self seems to key well, the characters are distinct enough that theirs no bdpq situation yet and the spelling is mostly phonic. it seems the less I associate the Japanese word sounds with actual English words or spellings the better…

simple example but き is ki, and け is ke. reading them theirs no problem at this point. if I think the sounds, no problem when typing either. but if I laps, and fall back on the memtic of き looks like a key, I type ke every time whether I want to or not and often have to retype it. as I more associate the sound and stooped relying on the memtic that has been going away, but that sort of mental cross talk seems to happen with a LOT of the wanikani memetics. so if anyone has any ideas on how to help approach - combat this I’m interested in hearing it.


Hi @twinMirror, even if I don’t have the same issue as you with spelling, not being an English native speaker also makes it hard sometimes for me to get the spelling right. For this I really appreciate the « my answer was correct » button from the Tsurukame app I’ve installed on my phone. So even if you spell the reading wrong, if you know that your pronunciation was correct and you actually had the hiragana right in your head, you can validate your answer in the app. If you don’t know it yet I recommend it :wink:

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Hey everyone. Just wanted to write a quick post to say hello. I’ll hopefully be spending a lot of time here over the next few years. I’m a couple of weeks into learning Japanese and have just started with Kanji and WaniKani. It’s early days but I’m relishing the challenge.

I’ve just unlocked my first bunch of vocabulary this morning and right now the different readings are catching me out, hopefully it’ll all start to make sense soon.



Yeah, just keep at it, and eventually it will stick. If you’re working on Japanese outside of Wanikani, that will help, too.

Why do some kanji have a different keywords than its vocab kanji?
Because sometimes I get confused and don’t remember if the kanji means its vocab word or the other word.

Can you give a specific example? Sometimes it’s just as simple as “this kanji means several things, and when it appears in compounds it often has a different meaning than when it is alone.”