Re: START (coming back after disappearing for 5 years) A Study Log

Hey everyone,

I’ve been on WaniKani since at least 2015. You would think in 5 years I’d be a Kanji master. Well after a recent decision to get back on the horse I reset my level back from 9 to 7. I’ve finally figured out a system and some study habits that let me tackle my giant pile of reviews and I’m on my way to getting back on track. My new goal is simple. Make it to the end of the year. WaniKani everyday, even if it’s only once - day (though ideally 3 times a day). I also hope to be level 10 or high net by then. I mainly created this post so I can have a way to look back at my progress, so I do intend to update occasionally. If you’ve read this entire thing, wow, uhm thanks? For your time? My Japanese learning quest is really for personal gain; I just love the language and learning the history of different Kanji or grammar points etc. So if you want to keep upgreat, if not it’s ok. I’m used to screaming into the void. It’s cathartic really. Plus no one can judge you if they can’t/don’t hear/read what you have to say.


Well done on coming back after all that time and I’m pleased that you’ve found a study routine that works for you. I’ve had nowhere near that long a break, but didn’t once have to tackle a 1000 review pile, so I know what a mountain it can seem, but we’ll all support you all the If you want some inspiration, check out this thread by @evethemighty who’s just this week conquered a pile of 3739 reviews!


\textcolor{pink}{\huge \textsf{WELCOME! ^-^}}

Even if you’ve been a member for a while, so aren’t really new hehe
welcome gif - crabigator

Take the time to check out the FAQ and GUIDE if you haven’t already…
…but you probably have, because you seem like you’re diligent and awesome like that ^-^

There’s also a lot of good stuff on the forum to help you…
…that you’ve likewise probably already seen, but it still worth mentiioning!

The Ultimate Guide for WK
The Ultimate Additional Japanese Resources List!
The New And Improved List Of API and Third Party Apps

I hope that you continue to enjoy WaniKani that your worship of the Crabigator is eternal!


That is what you think, but I’m constantly judging people for what they didn’t do and didn’t say. Just ask the people I get into internet arguments with.


well welcome back!! we’re happy to have you, and I personally wish you the best of luck on your endeavor. honestly, if I took that long of a break without studying, i’m not sure how much i’d remember! have you been doing anything in particular to keep some of that memory even without actively studying new kanji, just out of curiosity?



I took a break of about 5 years too! I had to reset right to the beginning. But look where I am now! After 6 months I reached level 28, then vanished for another 6 months. But I’m back, baby! And so are you! I realise now this has too many ! but I regret none of them. Let’s get back on track :racehorse:


Welcome back and props for it, too. It is very important to find a study routine which works for you. Well, you’ll soon see whether it works. Be strong.
Remember to be constant. Normally, there shouldn’t be any pressure to quickly finish WK, but as someone who despises wasting time, please consider the fact that WK requires at least 1 year and a half for all the lessons to be cleared. In the event of another break, you might find yourself forgetting everything you’d learned (that is, provided that WK is the only thing you do Japanese related). So be constant, weakly so if necessary, but don’t give up.
I wish you the best!

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Welcome back!

Heck, I’ve gotten mad at people I had bad dreams about. (Well, maybe I didn’t get mad at them, but I definitely viewed them suspiciously for a while…)


This looks like it may be the beginning of a study log - you’d be welcome to add it the Master List

Welcome back and all the best! :bouquet:


I disappeared for 3 years and reset from 15 to 8, so you can do it. :smiley:


If Wanikani releases me, I’ll never come back. Ever. But I don’t see being released. Ever.

I honestly lucked out! I decided to tackle the review pile as way to “test” where my knowledge/memory was. Once I realized I was constantly getting things wrong or confusing them with other kanji I made the decision to go back to level 7.
Went at the review pile again and found it easier to review and that I know at least the meaning, and just worked on the readings. I also searched the
Forums for help!

Wow thanks for welcome back everyone!
I’ve decided that just keeping my Apprentice level items under 100 will leave me with nice review stack sizes that I can do in small chunks. So I’ve started lessons again, I’m very small batches.
But my biggest accomplishment is FINALLY understanding the difference between がつ and げつ when reading 月 combined with other Kanji. This has been driving me insanse and probably one of the reasons I stopped in the first place! I of course found the answer in the forum and it was like a revelation. It made SO MUCH SENSE and made me so happy! Lesson learned: if I struggle with a reading search the forums, someone may have found a way to remember more easily.

Today I learned different reasons!
理-logical reasoning
由-cause (reason)

Yes they all mean “reason” but since this is my third language nuances help me in the long run when it comes to comprehension.

I’m almost done with all my level 7 lessons! I’ve been making great progress with keeping my apprentice items at manageable level so I’m pretty happy.


Birthday week update:

So, unsurprisingly I’m not having quite as much time as I’d like to dedicate to reviews as I’m currently on a mini staycation. But I have been chipping away at my review pile everyday, keeping it at a manageable level. So I’m at least proud of that.

I also found out some of my close friends are ALSO learning Japanese and are on Wanikani. So now I have some study buddies!

Now on to something new I learned:
I found out Tofugu has a podcast and I’ve been giving it a listen. I really do enjoy the back and forth banter and the explanations. And since some of the episodes our with an article I think it really compounds the knowledge (like when you read a chapter of a textbook and go over the textbook the next day in class). One of my favorite episodes was the one on pitch accents. The explanation and mnemonics to remember the different pitch accents were great


Man, lucky. No one I know in real life uses it.

Welcome back and all the best getting those few reviews done and moving forward!

Yay! So back to my normal routine AND I’ve got my review pile back down to zero! Also started chipping away at my lesson pile.

I’ve made it a priority to do vocabulary words first (as they’re available) and then radicals and Kanji. I feel this solidified the kanji I’ve learned this far.

And I’m trying to read the sentences available with the Kanji and I’m finding I’m starting to get the 大体 of the sentences! Very exciting and motivating.

I would like to start learning non-kanji vocabulary. So far my plan is to add any non-kanji Vocab I find in manga and when I listen to Let’s Listen to Japanese with Small Talk (the hosts list the vocabulary used in each episode). Where else should I look?


I think this is a great update:

I leveled up to 8 and the system I’ve set up for myself has been really paying off.
-My goal is to keep my apprentice stack at 100. I find this gives me regular reviews that I can manage.
-I do my lessons Radicals, Vocabulary, Kanji
-I focus on vocabulary as a priority over Kanji because it puts the Kanji in better context for me, and allows me to find any discrepancies I need clarified (like 思うand 考える) so I can better my understanding.

I found a study group for Genki 1,2 and Tobira! I’m super excited about this as I feel it will really hold me accountable and help prevent disappearing for another five years.

I found to help me learn and study non-kanji words (and later different kanji and vocabulary than found on WK).

I hope I can make it to level 10 before Halloween. I want to give myself an incentive if I do, although not sure on what the prize should be. If you’re reading this and you have an idea let me know!


I’m so happy and proud of myself for making it to Level 10. The farthest I’ve ever gotten. I feel like I can give more brain power to my grammar studies as well.

It turns out in my area finding the rice flours I need at a decent price is pretty hard, so instead my prize ended up being Mooncakes as my small 人間 is currently OBSESSED with Over the Moon.

My next goal to strive for is to finish Genki 1! I’ve had this book for years and finishing it will feel so good.

I want to start conversation practice, but a bit nervous to. I know I should just rip off the bandage because I know that reading AND speaking will be what advances my language studies.

I guess we’ll see if I can muster up the courage before the new year!


When I started writing my (much overdue) update, WK informed me if I really want to revive this “old” topic as it has been 8 months since I last wrote. EIGHT MONTHS?!

Let me catch you up:

  1. Midway through level 10 I abandoned my kanji studies because life started to hit hard, my work started to hit hard, and my retention was like water in a sieve. I was extremely discouraged. And procrastinated until my reviews hit over 800 and then I really just slunk away.

  2. Even despite being part of a really great study group for the Genki textbooks, due to all the stress with my job and my family I was just getting more and more demotivated and learning Japanese, while fun, was getting harder as I was struggling to understand grammar points, remembering vocabulary and kanji.

  3. Despite my slump, my study group carried on and I struggled to keep up with them. In March we did our final review for Genki 1. We did it. We finished Genki 1 (although for me it was like passing with a C-) and we were to move on to Genki 2. As a reward I finally signed up for ToKini Andy, a YouTuber who’s Genki grammar videos really helped me out.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is when the game changed.

  1. After gaining access to all of Andy’s Genki content and going back to PROPERLY review Genki 1, things got better for me. The motivation and drive was back. And once I started paying attention to the vocabulary again I noticed many of the words were covered in WK.

PRESENT DAY: Now I’m back to loving and finding my comfort in learning Japanese. I get so much joy watching Anime with no subtitles and understanding the gist of what they’re saying. I can read. In Japanese. I’m still over the moon about it. While I still struggle grasping grammar point sometimes, ToKini Andy makes it easier for me go over it in detail until I do understand it. I’m back to studying WK and got my 800+ review pile back down to zero. I try to participate in the grammar stream TA does even though it’s for the next grammar textbook as it’s fun and really gives me a glimpse of what’s coming up next.

GOALS: Right now my current goal is just to finish Genki 2. I want to be able to read native material and then hopefully, write. I feel like once I get comfortable with writing, speaking will come next (I’m the kind of person who speaks as she writes).

I’m taking WK very easy. I’m keeping my apprentice items under 50 as much as possible, but definitely no more than 100. I’m ALSO keeping a strict eye on my Guru count and shooting for under 500, but preferably like it under 400. No more than 3 new lessons a day, focusing on Vocabulary first then kanji, and finally radicals.

Once I start doing Quartet I’m intending to start actual conversation practice with an italki instructor. I found one located in North America (so better time zone placement), that loves animals, AND was an animal nurse. Being a current vet tech I couldn’t believe my luck. I’m so looking forward to speaking with her and learning all about the Japanese side of animal medicine.

NEW RESOURCES: So I found some resources aside from ToKini Andy that has really helped or will definitely help in the future.

  • Genki Exercises - 2nd Edition | Genki Study Resources
    This has really helped me actually UTILIZE the workbooks. I have both Genki workbooks but since I can’t PHYSICALLY write in Japanese I have to resort to converting it to a PDF file and editing it by typing in my answers. It’s actually pretty hard and very tedious and very frustrating. But this website has really helped make it easier, as well as the reading portions in the Genki textbook.

    A Japanese dictionary/ SRS flash card system that ranks anime, manga, novels by difficulty and offers prebuilt flashcard decks with Vocab FROM THAT ANIME/MANGA/NOVEL!! It’s SO cool! I’m obviously not at the point of free reading due to my grammar level, but I will be soon and this’ll be so helpful!

    A website that ranks native Japanese reading material by JLPT level. I’ve already used it to find reading material at my current level. @sweetbeems shared it here on the forums and I gotta say, it incredible. All literary listings also tell you where you can find a copy, if it has furiagana, and if it has been read for a WK book club (which means Vocab lists and discussions y’all).

I’m so excited for my Japanese learning journey right now. I’m hoping the next update will be filled with more excitement.