Skip vocabulary

Is it a good idea to skip vocab and focus on kanji only and lvling up. I now that in the end you will have around 5k lessons for vocab, haha.

I find vocab harder to recall.


To give my own opinion very bluntly(because I don’t have time to write something more elaborate): No, it’s not. The vocab contains multiple readings not taught with the kanj, helps reinforce the ones taught with the kanji, and most importantly: vocab is what actually lets you understand stuff.


Vocab contains a lot of common kun’yomi. If you only do kanji, you’ll only know how to read straightforward jukugo. You won’t know how to read basically any verbs, and it will hamper your actual use of Japanese at every single turn.

So I’d only do it if you’re also going hard on outside vocab learning sources (and even if you do WK vocab, you need outside resources sooner or later.)


Wanikani already has very few repetitions in comparison with other SRS.
You will forget the kanji if you don’t do the vocab, it’s absolutely mandatory.

I’d go so far as to say you’re better off prioritizing vocab above all else on this site, because vocab is what will stay after you’re finished here, and be your reference whenever you’ll recall kanji in the future:

“that’s 要, as in 要る, so it means “need”, and 要求, so it must be read よう”


Even doing the vocab you forget the kanji, I failed a kanji as basic as a 読 burn, the thing that’s in so many grammar ressources, now if it was 読む I’d definetly remember it (or not)


Adding my coice to the chorus but no, it’s not a good idea imo. Same reasons as have already been pointed out.

For one thing you’ll only know one reading, most often the on. So you’re not going to be able to read many very common words (kun words are often less fancy and more everyday than jukugo)

And the vocab will help you remember the kanji! Lots of extra exposure in various context (albeit just the context of a single word)

Also, presumably you want to be able to read actual Japanese sooner rather than later, and while it’s tempting to think that reading the kanji = reading the word this is often not the case.

Especially when all you have is one english keyword. Once you see the various nuances a kanji had in a bunch of words it’s probably easier to guess new words, but there are just a lot words that aren’t as intuitive as you might wish.

Simply put: to read you need words, not letters. Not even letters that have a sort of built-in meaning.


Hello, Just my humble opinion. The fact that you find vocab harder to recall is exactly why you should be using WK to learn them.
I always had a hard time with vocab but using kanji to learn vocab is fantastic. Hopefully for you too, this method will make vocab far less tricky.


Besides all the reasons already given, I want to mention that sometimes, when you are studying vocabs, you’ll come across words that you already know the meaning/reading of, using new kanji, and these will help you remember the reading of said kanji. Also, there’s a bunch of important exceptions (like half kun/on readings, readings that straight up don’t make sense, etc.) which are vital to using Japanese.

I hope that convinced you a bit more, keep up the work!


Hi, another perspective here, when I was in my Japanese classes at university we only memorized vocabulary of the kanji. We didn’t learn the readings. It didn’t seem important at the time that we weren’t learning them, but now that I’ve come to Japan, I realize how important BOTH are.

Sure, you could just do the kanji, but as others have said, you’ll have no idea how to read it in verbs or how to apply it in a sentence. It is absolutely essential that you learn both even if it isn’t as fun as it could be or doesn’t move as fast.

It’s my opinion that if you can’t read the kanji in vocabulary that you really can’t read at all. It’s not super common for a kanji to just be on it’s own. There’s usually hiragana or another kanji with it which changes the readings, and you won’t get that info without it.

I get vocab being hard to recall, but if you follow along with the stories given for the kanji to remember them, by building off of those base stories, ideally, you should be able to remember the vocabulary much easier. Or association also works relatively well. I remember some of the vocabulary because I think of a certain person or story outside of what I would normally think of for the kanji.

I also think it’s really helpful to read the example sentences for the vocab. For me, it not only helps me better understand the meaning and nuances, sometimes I only remember the word because of the sentences. I hope some of this helps! And I wish you luck with remembering the vocab. It sometimes gets me too.


If you are going to skip vocab you might as well skip learning kanji altogether :wink:


Or maybe stop Japanese altogether and go for Greek or Russian.


I already know russian, haha.


Hahaha coincidence, so take Greek or what the heck, why not the vocab from WK.





image The lessons are part of 20 up to 60. Now doing 10 a day.
Depending on your master plan I think Kanji priority can work.
This depends on whether you prioritize reading or speaking, WK hours a day available, years you plan to take to go through WK and learning you do with other means outside of WK.
I started October 2018. Until 12 I also did vocabs but then my time budget didn’t allow me to to take all vocabs together with decent level progress. But YMMV.

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No, I highly disagree with this method and think it’s a bad idea. Through wanikani, you only learn one reading with the kanji. The vocab will teach you the other readings. If you ignore the vocab, you’ll miss out on the other important readings. The only way I’d think it’s somewhat okay to do this is if you teach yourself all the readings when you learn the kanji. But even if you do that, it’ll be hard to remember the kanji without the vocab. In my opinion, kanji by themselves are a lot harder to remember over a long period of time. Vocab help cement those kanji in your memory.


Completely irrelevant, but you have an Ittle Dew profile picutre, and that’s pretty neat.




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