Question on Lessons

Yes I have read that, but I don’t understand this quote here: “This means that if you want to level up every 8 days: 120/8=15 vocab lessons that must be done every day.”

Say I want to level up every 6 days, I would divide the # of vocab in each lesson by 6 to get the amount of lessons I need to do each day, or by three to do those lessons every other day … what I don’t understand is that, that doesn’t incorporate the radical or kanji lessons. I’m trying to wrap my head around how I should plan that out as well.

Also, it gives me the next level before I finish the vocab, which doesn’t make sense because you said this:


You level up, but by default you don’t see new radicals or kanji initially.

Vocab also have no direct impact on level speed.


So what is that quote saying then? Do 15 vocab lessons a day until you reach the radicals for the next lesson?

Maybe I don’t actually understand how that really work, if so, I’m sorry. (almost as much of a noob as you)

you can change your settings if you wish here

But it will only give you the items that you have completed the pre-requisites for. Example: if you completed 90% of the kanji for one level, you will level up, even though you still have 2 kanji left to guru, so it will give you the lessons for the new level, even though you haven’t finished the vocab for the missing 2 kanji

If you are trying for speed, then you should complete as many radicals, as soon as possible, and same for kanji.

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I don’t know where you’re saying that quote comes from so I can’t check.

This is where it came from. I’m just trying to find a way to understand how it all works that way I am able to build a plan that will work for me and how I work. I really do best under an organized way - so starting with all the radicals, finishing the radicals (guru) and then going to kanji, guru those, and then start on vocab.

Basically what I really would like to know is if it is more beneficial to guru vocab before moving on to the next lesson, that way it goes:

Radical --> Kanji --> Vocab
instead of:

Radical --> Kanji --> Vocab + nextLevelRadical --> Kanji --> Vocab + nextLevelRadical and so on

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It’s just someone explaining how much work you can expect at that speed of leveling up. Since vocab are not directly connected to level speed, you can choose to ignore them or do them all, and as long as you choose to do radicals and kanji first it wouldn’t change anything. But that person was giving advice about what speed to choose and how to estimate the daily workload and choose a speed that works for you.

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There is no reason to wait to guru your vocab lessons before doing the next level’s radicals and kanji.

Sorry let me rephrase what I am asking.

Basically this is what I want to know: should I wait to start working on my radicals for the next lesson until I guru the vocab from the previous lesson? Or should I start on the radical lessons after doing the vocab lessons (so not waiting to guru the vocab before moving on).

It is not strictly necessary, but the vocab is there for a reason, and helps reinforce the kanji. If you want an opinion, then I would suggest (if your review count can handle it) at least starting the vocab. However if you again want to pace yourself, I would suggest putting a limit on the number of apprentice items(ones you will see every few hours/day). Mine is currently from about 100-200, depending on how I’m feeling.

edit: and when you reach that number, then quit doing lessons, until your count goes back down)

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Obviously I am going to do the vocab, I’m not just skipping over it. My question is this:

Sorry if my questions are coming off as confusing, I tend to make something way more complicated than it is because the way I think is really weird.

I’m here to help.
I can’t really give you a solid answer, it just depends on your workload. If you feel like you can handle more, then go ahead and learn everything as soon as you can.

Guruing all vocab before you even start working on radicals will make your minimum level up time like twice as long. If that’s cool with you, then do what works.


I believe I already answered this, but let me try again. Do your lessons without waiting arbitrarily. If you get overwhelmed and want to slow down, fine. But don’t wait just to wait.


Okay sorry if I missed that. Thank you that is what I was looking for.

So would that mean taking up all the vocab at once? Or doing a certain amount of lessons a day, because I’m still trying to figure out the whole “do lessons/days you want to get finished”. The reason why I still don’t understand that is because it only lets me take my lessons in a certain order which doesn’t line up with going into the radicals immediately unless I go through all the vocab lessons first.

Hello! :slight_smile:

The reason why I separate the vocab from the radicals/kanji is because vocabulary don’t interfere with leveling up. Only radicals and kanji do. You could literally not do any vocab lessons and just do radicals and kanji and still level up up to level 60. Mind you, this is far from productive and it would hurt your learning of kanji. The vocab reinforces the kanji tremendously. I was just giving an example so you understand that vocab has no interference :slight_smile:

In practical terms, only kanji matter to level up - you need to Guru at least 90% of the kanji from your current level at least once. Some kanji get unlocked the moment you level up. This is because you’ve already been taught all the radicals that they are made of in previous levels. Others are only unlocked once you guru the radicals of that new level (I called these kanji “2nd batch” on my Guide).

In order to take a kanji from lessons to Guru I, you need at least 3 days and 10 hours (4h, 8h, 23h, 1d23h). Taking this into consideration, it means that the moment you do the lessons from the 2nd batch of kanji, you’ll probably be leveling up in about 4 days or so (depends on the speed, how often you come to Wanikani, etc) because you’ll probably reach the threshold of having guru’d 90% of the kanji from your current level.

The thing is, it’s probably not best to focus too much on the radicals and kanji and level up too soon, leaving a pile of incomplete vocabulary lessons left to do.

That’s why I recommend calculating vocab separately. If you know that your pace for leveling up is 10 days (you’ll learn what your pace is as you gain more experience, don’t worry) and you have around 100 vocab lessons on your current level unlocked/yet to unlocked, then you know that in order to keep up with lessons, you should do 10 vocab lessons a day. This way, you don’t level up and have to face an overwhelming pile of lessons, you won’t get behind in your studies.

Now after this overwhelming explanation :sweat_smile: let me try and simplify things for you:

In order to level up, you need 90% of the kanji from your current level guru’d once, correct? In normal levels, there’s between 30 to 40 kanji in each. This creates a rule of thumb: if you leave 4 kanji lessons left to do, you won’t level up (because it’s +10%).

What you can do is just do all your lessons freely as you wish, knowing that the moment you’ll do your last 4 kanji lessons, you’ll level up 4 days later +/-.

I advise you to do the radicals the moment you level up, and then proceed to do kanji and vocabulary lessons as you see fit. Make sure to do those 4 last kanji reviews around 4 days before you wish to level up. If you wish you level up every 10 days, do those 4 kanji reviews on Day 6.

PS: You could simply not care about this and just do lessons as you see fit. My guide was written as an attempt to simplify things for users, so that they can control their WK routine a little bit better (instead of not knowing why and how things happen). The most important factor to succeed on Wanikani/Kanji learning/Japanese learning is consistency. Show up every day to learn a bit more and with patience you’ll reach your goals :slight_smile:

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You need a script to modify Wanikani this way. I mentioned it on my guide.

Here’s a good one (that I actually recommend more now than the one I linked on the guide):

Let me know if there’s still something causing you confusion :slight_smile:

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I mentioned a few times how that’s the default and how to change it if you want…

Thank you so much, that helps me out a ton.

So just to clarify and summarize what you’re saying so I can make sure I got all of it down, basically do this:

Say if I wanted to level up every 7 days what I would do is I would do my radical lessons and then do kanji lessons (so say there were 40 kanji I would do 35 of them on the day I guru my radicals) and then I would do the last 5 kanji the next day. This would then give me vocab without leveling me up even if I guru my 35 kanji, and I can start those lessons on vocab that day. Then I guru my kanji on the 7th day and I can start my radical lessons that day and do those lessons with continuing vocab lessons from the previous level.

Is that basically what you are saying?

Also - I installed the script but I can’t find this gui:


I’m assuming that gui is for how you set up the mix of radical lessons with vocab lessons.

Thank you!

My recommendation for levelling up every ~7 days (if you wish to) is:

  1. Do all the radicals first (with that script).
  2. It will take you 3.5 days to guru the radicals. In that time, do at at least ~1/3 of the level’s available kanji each day (this will be more later on; early levels don’t have as many kanji available at the start). Once you guru the radicals, do all of the newly available kanji relatively soon after, if possible.
  3. Do ~15-25 vocab each day, trying to avoid letting too many accumulate. This number is fungible, but keep an eye on the varying difficulty of vocab. Some are dead simple and effectively don’t count because there’s nothing to remember (like a suru-verb form of a previously known word), while others are harder (new kun’yomi readings, unintuitive meanings, and words with similar or synonym meanings). Be wary of taking on too many new difficult vocabulary per day.
  4. It’s okay to start the radicals for level N+1 while you still have some vocab left using level N’s kanji.
    But if you guru those radicals and get to the kanji that use them – and still have unlearned previous-level vocab – you’re now behind and need to slow down to catch up. Getting vocab too far behind is bad juju (because the vocab help you remember the kanji long-term, so you should be trying to learn them within a few days of guru-ing the kanji).
  5. Don’t get too obsessed with doing every level at max speed; even if you are dedicated, there will be times (whether due to your RL schedule, getting behind, or difficult levels) that you will need to slow down. Getting lost in a backlog will make you far more likely to quit when things get more difficult, and at level 3, you do not have the ability to judge how well you’ll handle later levels at max speed (by level 20 you will have around ~200 reviews per day, for example). This doesn’t mean don’t try – but be prepared to give yourself a breather if and when you need to.
  6. Try to avoid getting significantly over ~100 apprentice items at any one time. This won’t show up much at your level, but later on, you will forget items that you learned a while ago, causing them to drop back down. If you keep getting them wrong, they will drop back to apprentice. Having a large number of apprentice items is a sign that you’re going too fast – either through picking up too many lessons at once, or through too many old items tumbling down and getting mixed in with new lessons. As the number of apprentice items increases, your ability to learn those items will tend to decrease due to sheer saturation. This effect also tends to discourage people and is responsible for a lot of people quitting.