New to Tofugu and WaniKani

Hi everyone! My name’s Matthew, and I’ll be starting WaniKani full throttle probably in a couple days. I’m learning Japanese by following Tofugu’s long article on how to learn Japanese. I should have both Hiragana and Katakana fully memorized by the end of the week, at the latest, and then I’ll be fully immersing myself into WaniKani for however long it takes me to get to lvl 60. As a newcomer, I have to ask, any tips y’all can give me? I’m planning on being in it for the long haul. My wife and I are wanting to move to Japan long term in the future, so this is the beginning for me, plus I want to be able to watch my favorite anime and read my favorite manga and light novels without translation/subtitles. So for me, this is something I’m really dedicated to. Any tips that you all can give me would be greatly appreciated! If possible, just keep the tips to WaniKani. I’m not planning on working on grammar etc JUST yet, though that will of course come! Just planning on mainly focusing on WaniKani for a while. Anyways, nice to meet you all and excited to join the community! :slight_smile:


Welcome! I am also faily new, and am doing the same. If you haven’t already, check out the resources in this thread, they’re quite helpful! Find a pace that you’re comfortable with, and stick to that pace. Of course, I’m just echoing what else I’ve heard, and there’s plenty of threads that already exist for new people like us. Welcome to the forums!

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Welcome! I know you said you’re not planning on tackling grammar just yet, but my advice is to start with it as soon as you can - this is just from personal experience. It’s a bumpy ride at first but I don’t think I’ll be able to grasp the context of the kanji I’m learning from WK if it wasn’t for seeing them used in sentences/the wild.

Incorporate some immersion of raw Japanese audio in your daily studies somewhere down the road (I started at level 3 or 4). The idea is to not comprehend yet but to train your ear in Japanese sounds and pitches. If you get lucky you get to pick out words you know. :slight_smile:

I’m also pretty new but so far these two advices have worked well for me in my studying. Good luck!


100% this! It will even allow you (@msennholz of course!) to understand the WK vocab much better…

Also, as soon as you’ve made some progress with grammar, you might consider reading easy texts! There are some books specifically geared towards learners (so-called “Graded Readers”), with easy grammar and vocab, which help you solidify your knowledge. Later you can try to read some children’s books or similar easy material. We also have book clubs on the forums where we read books together and help each other out - this is great fun! Good luck and enjoy the ride :upside_down_face:


@Natsuha Hello stranger! :slight_smile:

Thank you! I’m really excited to dive in!

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Thanks for the advice, I appreciate it! Thankfully, I have multiple years experience in watching SUB only anime and listening to much J pop without looking up lyrics etc, so I already have a decent start on training my ears in Japanese sounds! :smiley: Thanks for the encouragement!

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Thanks for the advice! Yeah, I’m planning on eventually getting graded readers, for sure. When I am ready for them, do you know of any good places online to purchase some well tried and true ones that are trusted?

There is an incredibly long list compiled by Radish8, one of our book club regulars:

Just check out the section on the Graded Readers, and don’t forget to drop by the Graded Readers reading thread! There you can see what people discussed before, which might further guide you in your choice.

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Well, if only restricted to WK, I will keep it short: since you are planning to go for lv60, then you are likely to choose one of the subscriptions. Wait a couple of weeks until the mid-end of Dec for the (akhem) unexpected sale. You still have a few free levels ahead of you so waiting won’t change much anyway.
When I was new to WK I looked into the system around this time as well and only a couple of months later realized that I’ve missed a good chance. Lifetime sure pays back, at least for me personally…


I had a feeling there would be a sale again on the Lifetime, as I saw the last one in previous posts for last year, so yeah, I was DEFINITELY gonna jump on that if it does open up. I’m really excited about that.

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Welcome! May your journey be fruitful and enjoyable!


Thank you!

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Welcome, friend! Restricting comments solely to Wanikani, there’s not much to say except:

  • do reviews daily

  • there are suuuuper helpful userscripts available (such as reorder scripts and ignore buttons), but make sure you aren’t overdoing it on using them

  • pay attention to your leeches (the reviews that you always miss) and go over those especially, so they don’t tie you down every time you go to do reviews

  • consistency is key! that’s mostly a rewording of my first bullet, but I emphasize it because of its importance in SRS


So, super ignorant comment of the day…What are userscripts? :nerd_face: WHAT ARE THEY FOR? I HAVE SEEN THEM REFERENCED AND DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY MEAN lol

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Woops! It would have helped had I explained them! Userscripts are third-party scripts which, here on Wanikani, are made by other members to help facilitate things, like how I mentioned earlier, there’s no ignore button built into Wanikani, but there is a userscript for that. Here’s a decent list of some to get you started!

EDIT (plus kumirei’s correction): You’ll need this one by @rfindley. Also, here’s another list of userscripts: these are made by @Kumirei.


That’s the developer thread, this is the installation thread


welcome to the community! you might check out my thread I made and maybe ask questions there too. maybe you find something there what’s in your interest?

I’d recommend learning the grammar stuff - at least learn the basic “particles”, because it will turn out to be very very beneficial for both Wanikani and learning the Japanese language - you would miss out the additional opportunities on things getting stuck into your brain, when you only do WaniKani while not knowing much of the language itself.

don’t get to hasty though, even if WaniKani really makes fun. there will be review shortages when you have to wait for the last Kanji reviews before reaching the next level anyway so there’s enough room for the language or of course to contribute to this fantastic forum.

you should also check out userscripts, which make the WaniKani Experience even wanikanier: The New And Improved List Of API and Third Party Apps

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Woops again.

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Also, for more advice, don’t try to go faster than anybody else. Find the speed that works for you. It’s not a race, but a long-term commitment.