Study Routines

Ah, yes; this is great. Thanks! I will take a look at these.

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Your Swedish smörgåstårta and the ginger cat photo in the end need to be part of that list! I’m glad you fixed it :+1:


I’ve looked at several of them randomly, and some did post a more simple “I did it!” Level 60 post rather than a detailed study routine summary. Perhaps after you’ve read through the whole list, it won’t be long before you’ll need the link @Rowena gave to look at other Study Logs for more study routine examples.


Good to know. The study logs feel a bit overwhelming, but I’ll look at some L60 posts and see what I want to take a closer look at… Thanks!

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You can look at my study log if you wish! It’s in the Master list — Study Log of a Wild Eoame 🐺. I normally write weekly checklists and summaries, so reading those may give you a good idea of how I study. I didn’t update last week though, and I detailed why in my latest post there.

Honestly I haven’t been as consistent as I would like in the past few weeks, due to being a student. I’ve submitted three assignments in the last three days. But you can see in my study log my highs and lows over the past almost-year, my progress, and how my study routine shifts to accomodate my current circumstances. :slightly_smiling_face:


I will check it out. I’m definitely interested in the moments when keeping up a routine becomes difficult; I’ve been struggling through some busy times but I imagine the day will come when I’ll drop the ball!


I’m over there on the Level 60 Compilation if you want more detail, but here’s a brief rundown:

I have two main modes: active and passive.

Active studying is things like Wanikani when I’m actively engaged in trying to learn.

Passive studying is all the other things that interest me, but that also provide some progress towards learning Japanese, like watching YouTube videos. I don’t count this time as studying because there’s no direction and I just let myself enjoy whatever interests me.

The other major requirement for me is an IOS App. The only way I can keep up with a lesson schedule is by doing it on my phone since it’s always with me. Without Tsurukame I don’t think I would have finished Wanikani at all.

During Wanikani


  • 3 sessions per day: morning, noon, night.
  • 20m per session
  • 150-300 reviews per day
  • 20 lessons per day as long as Apprentice was under 100


  • I have a list of video resources on my post, and I would just watch those after I had done my WK session for whatever time I had remaining before I had to do something else. Usually this would include getting back to work. :wink:
  • I also ran through the N5/N4 items on Bunpro, but only the lessons. I didn’t do any reviews. Doing this helped me familiarize myself with the items without worrying about retention at this point.
  • Funnily enough, by the time I finished WK, I had a pretty decent foundation for N5/N4.

After Wanikani


Right now I’m working my way through the Intermediate Deck on Jalup and the app is good enough to keep me going. It’s sentence/definition based, so I only do one session per day for about 25-30m. In that time, I review the cards that are due and do 10 new cards.

After 2.5 years on WK, I wanted to take it a bit easy so spending half the time per day is good enough for me. :wink:


I’m doing pretty much the same stuff as before with the addition of reading. I’ve mostly been reading Light Novels and some manga here and there. With that, I’ve stopped using any dedicated grammar resources other than a dictionary and Google.

One thing I would definitely recommend for browsing the web in Japanese is Yomichan. You could get the same info via Jisho or, but it’s just a really nice quality-of-life improvement to look things up just by hovering over them.

What’s next? Who knows. :wink: Good luck on your studies :smiley:


This is fascinating! Thank you. I will look into Jalup; it looks like it might be something to add to the arsenal. And I have been told about Yomichan but my reading skills are still so basic that I don’t do a lot of reading online; once I’m ready for NHK News Easy I will definitely add it to my tools. I appreciate you taking the time to sum this all up for me!


During the week from 4-5 a.m. I first do my WaniKani reviews then do 5 new lessons. This usually takes me about 20-30 minutes. After which I choose either Irodori or Marugoto for the remaining half hour or a lesson (or part of) from Japanese from Zero.

On afternoons for an hour I repeat pretty much the same routine or I may just review vocabulary from previous lessons.

Since I have recently started doing 50 minutes with a tutor on the weekends, I will review the work later on that day and also replace a session or two as mentioned above with a review of the lesson. Weekends consist of more of the same Irodori, Marugoto, WaniKani and JFZ except the time is whenever I feel like it.

This of course is a productive week and I can go anywhere from 5-10 hours a week.

For passive listening I follow the Konnichiwa podcast and watch movies or anime.


My study routine is a little intense because I am living in Japan, so I consider learning the language to be a matter of survival in a new and strange place… But I’ve been able to build a routine and it helps that I’m able to study at my desk at work on light days.

Every morning I wake up, make a coffee, and do wanikani, I clear my reviews and do 10 lessons. In the afternoon at 4pm I do 10 more lessons, so that the first review session shows up before I go to sleep. I make sure to hit the 4 hour review marks on both, and then usually do a couple more review sessions throughout the day. This works well because the big review sessions show up twice per day, one when I wake up, and one around 6-8 pm.

I am also working through kitsun n4-n5 decks, as well as a few other kitsun decks, which I try to clear once per day, when I have time. I do 10 new n4 lessons every day there, and other lessons as I feel like it. Once I complete the n4 deck I will move on to n3, etc.

I do the same for bunpro, I try to clear all reviews once per day and do 2 new lessons per day, unless I am feeling overwhelmed by srs. The kitsun and bunpro srs seem less time sensitive to me so I don’t worry too much about scheduling them.

I have one on one japanese lessons with two different teachers twice per week (one paid, one free) and that has been really good for me. I highly recommend getting that kind of conversation practice, if you can, although I know that it can be difficult, especially for people living outside of Japan. Neither of my teachers speak English (although I have suspicions about one of them, no matter what he says, after he translated a japanese word as “paradigm shift”) so it’s a lot of good practice for me.

Usually throughout the week between my lessons I have homework, often writing an essay about a topic that came up in the lesson. I like writing, so sometimes I’ll write other essays about things that interest me as well. I tried starting a diary in Japanese, but just like all the diaries I’ve started in English, the habit didn’t last.

I read as I have time, right now I’m reading Detective Conan, which is super fun.

Listening is the hardest for me, because it really takes focus, so I also fit that in when I have time. I try to understand what the people around me are saying, and sometimes it works ok, and sometimes I have no clue at all.

anyway, tl;dr I have a lot of time to spend studying Japanese right now, and I’m taking advantage of it. One day I hope to be able to interact with the conbini employee without embarrassing myself.



  • Clear WaniKani, Bunpro, and Anki(sentence mining stuff)
  • Up to 30 new WaniKani Lessons
  • Up to 10 new Bunpro

Down time at work

  • Read the four new NHK Easy News Stories (新型コロナ news)
  • Pick a normal NHK News story and read that


  • I listen to the audio of some Anime while driving to and from work/GF’s place (40min)
  • 1Hr of cardio while watching anime with Japanese closed captions
  • Read a little from A Dictionary of Japanese Grammar (20ish min)
  • Struggle through a Japanese video game

Goodness, this sounds very intense! I’m in awe. I do like the idea of a Japanese one-on-one teacher, though; it might be part of my summer vacation routine…


I will check out the Konnichiwa podcast; I do need something more to listen to on the metro!


NHK Easy News is one of my next goals; once I have a few more minutes in the morning, I’d like to make it a daily thing.

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They repeat vocabulary frequently within the same story and throughout other stories. It’s an SRS without flashcards. :smiley:


A snapshot of my study habits as of right now—

Level up every 3 weeks. I always start on a Monday

Day 1: All Radicals + 3 Vocab
Days 2-14(ish) 3 Kanji + 3 Vocab
Days 14-21: 8-11 Vocab (remaining Vocab split into equal chunks across how ever many days are left)

Going through the Wanikani reorganized leveling courses. I’m a couple levels behind my current Wanikani level so it acts more like review.

JLPT N2 Class
Every Sunday: Weekly group class online with a teacher using 新完全マスター series. Currently we are focusing on grammar.

Saturday: Self study this week’s chapter. 4-6 grammar points. Use Bunpro to check out further reading/resources and add these grammar points to reviews. Do the corresponding mini test for that chapter in the book.

Sunday: Class, the teacher usually goes over each grammar point and answering any questions. Then asks us to answer the test questions for each grammar point and asking us to explain why we chose whichever answer we chose. After class I add to a Memrise course I made for myself to do quick meaning studies of the grammar point. “{A}に関して[B]” ⇔ “Relating to {A}, (further info of) [B]” stuff like that.

For 新完全マスター語彙, I’m doing this course JLPT N2 Vocab which is awesome but incomplete. If anyone has any replacements let me know!! I wish I could figure out how to contact the creator of this and see if I can help them finish it. I love that there is audio and that it tests you on kana and meaning as well as kanji and kana.

For reviews and stuff I do it in the mornings during breakfast time as well as at night while I’m hanging out in bed. When I’m learning new things, I do it in the evening before bed while I’m winding down.

Also during the mornings and as I work, I’ll have Japanese tv on. Actively listening in the morning, passively listening during work.

Once a week I try to talk to a native Japanese friend of mine on zoom.


@KJules where do you get the free lesson from?

I get it in person at the international center in my town, so it’s not broadly useful, sorry.

Wow - this is intense! I hadn’t heard of iKnow before; I will take a look at it.

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I’m one of those people with an extremely wordy study log that goes into much more detail if you’re curious, haha.

Full disclosure: I’m employed, but I only work very part time and don’t have family commitments, so I have a lot more time to study than most people. Learning Japanese is currently one of my primary hobbies, along with watching Japanese pro wrestling, so putting this much time into Japanese is neither desirable nor achievable for many people :sweat_smile:.

I spend quite a lot of hours immersing myself in Japanese each day. Most of this time is passive immersion that I don’t count as studying. Sometimes I have partial translation, sometimes I’m completely on my own. It’s a lot of (unsubtitled) spoken Japanese as well as written Japanese on places like twitter and interviews and blog posts and such.

For active study, I have sort of a three-pronged approach:


  • I do at least three sessions a day, once in the morning, once in the afternoon, and once at night. On most days, I break this up into smaller sessions if possible (it’s easier to do 20 reviews in one sitting than 50).
  • I do a consistent number of lessons every morning. On most days, it’s 9 vocab and 3 kanji. When I run out of kanji, I do 10 vocab a day until I level up. The first day on a new level, I do all radical lessons, and if I have less than 10, I usually do a few kanji, too.
  • After doing my lessons, I drill myself on the new material with the self-study quiz.
  • When I have time, I try to run the leech training script to practice the items that are giving me trouble. When I realize I’m confusing two kanji, I usually take a moment to compare the differences and figure out what was giving me trouble (the niai visually similar kanji script is helpful for this).
  • I’m also doing KaniWani to practice recall. I’m more lax with the SRS intervals on this, but I try to do my reviews at least two or three times a day. My KW is set up to only give me new items after they’ve reached guru on WK, so there are usually a few days of delay between me initially learning them and then practicing them here.
  • When I have the time/energy, I’ve also been learning how to write the kanji that I’m learning on WK, though I haven’t been able to keep up with this for all of them.

Minna no Nihongo

  • MNN is my beginner’s textbook and is currently the primary way I’m learning new grammar, as well as common vocab that isn’t taught on WK. I try to complete at least one new lesson before leveling up in WK. I can go a little faster if I push myself (by starting to learn the vocab for the next chapter before finishing the previous one), but it does increase the SRS strain, so I have to be careful.
  • The first thing I do when starting a new lesson is add the vocab to Anki. Then I spend several days just running through the flash cards until I feel comfortable with it. When I started out, I would also learn to write all of the unfamiliar kanji, but I eventually ran out of time to do this. Thankfully, my WK level has gotten high enough, there aren’t very many unknown kanji each level.
  • After learning the vocab, I read the grammar info for the chapter, then put down the translation book and attempt to work entirely from the Japanese-only main text as much as I can. I read the lesson, then do all of the exercises, except for the last one.
  • At this point, I do the exercises for that lesson in my two workbooks. If there are any additional reviews after it, I do those, too.
  • When I’ve finished the workbooks, I go back and do the last section in the textbook, as well as any further review sections.
  • Before moving on to the next lesson, I add all of the grammar information from the previous lesson to my (physical) notes.
  • I try to make at least some progress on the textbook every day. Some days, this means more work than others! No matter what else I have going on, though, I always make sure I at least clear my Anki reviews.

Reading/active immersion

  • I try to get some reading done every day if possible (the read every day challenge on this forum is nice motivation!), but at this point, I’m a little sporadic with it. I only know about 4,500 words and am somewhere between N5 and N4 grammar, so reading is still pretty slow.
  • I started reading my first manga (大海原と大海原) back in September along with the absolute beginner’s book club, and I’ve kept going with the spin-off clubs for volumes 2 and 3. Having deadlines because of the club is really helpful motivation! I often end up falling behind, but so far, I’ve been able to catch up by the end.
  • I realized that I can understand NHK Easy News pretty painlessly now with only a few word look-ups and no grammar look-ups needed, so I’ve dabbled with using this as my daily reading, but I have so much else I’ve been working on, I mostly stopped bothering. It’s a good source of common vocab, though.
  • I also started trying to translate the post-match comments for wrestling shows after a couple of my favorite companies lost their English translator. It has been a little slow-going, due to the fact that I’m very much still a beginner, haha, but it has been excellent practice, and it’s a great source of new words to learn. Trying to get each one translated before the next show also helps keep me motivated to work on them every day.
  • I use Yomichan to mine words from some of my reading. Right now, I’m just focusing on wrestling, and I’m only adding words that contain kanji I already know, and which I won’t be learning on WK. I add the word to Anki along with the sentence I encountered it in.
  • I also started adding kanji to Anki that I come across in my reading which aren’t in WK. For these kanji, in order to learn them more thoroughly, I’m forcing myself to memorize how to write them. I don’t add every kanji I come across that isn’t in WK (for many of them, I don’t even notice that they’re not part of the WK set), but after I reach level 60, my plan is to add anything I don’t recognize to Anki.
  • Eventually, once I’m done with WK, the Anki part of my study will probably ramp up a lot, but for now, I’m capping it at learning 10 new words a day, and most days I’m not even adding any new cards.
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Wow! This is kind of a dream scenario for me (having time to dedicate to this much Japanese study). I’m hoping to put in this kind of hours once summer vacation starts; we’ll see. I am in awe of your dedication! Once I’m a few levels up I might give KaniWani a try, as it seems a lot of people get a lot out of it.

I was using Anki before I started WaniKani; now I occasionally add some new vocab to it but have not reviewed it in many weeks. Another thing to add to my routine once I have a few more hours a day.

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