The fundamental flaw - mnemonics are being changed

The Wanikani team are dedicated and constantly improving their system.

However, there is no way to lock a mnemonic. Consequently I feel like I am constantly finding changes in the mnemonics and it is seriously effecting my ability to learn certain words.

  1. This undermines the entire point of the site
  2. it make is hard to recommend unless you plan on finishing all levels in 1 year

Has anyone else found this?


Can’t say I had any problems with this up to lv 60, no matter how many things they changed over that 1 year and some months. You’re not meant to memorize the mnemonics long-term, so once I get items up to guru 2 I’ve most likely forgotten the mnemonics and they remain forgotten until I burn the item.

I only go back to an item page if I fail a burn review, or the item turns into a leech. If some things have changed by then, there is little drawback from it. In fact, getting more than 1 way to memorize something is a common pedagogical idea as it helps increase retention, so getting more than one mnemonic is just increasing your chances of memorization. It’s a case of more is more really.

Remember to consume lots of native media to get better retention - as it’s something that let’s you forget the mnemonics and truly internalize readings and meanings instead.


Mnemonics are like training wheels. Like yeah they’re helpful when just learning about new kanji, but you should say goodbye after you have encountered that kanji enough times. And if you don’t remember that kanji well enough in the time it takes to change it, maybe it wasn’t a really good mnemonic after all. There might be some edge cases where you just learned it and it got changed recently, but those should be rare.


I think once you reach master (or even guru), it should be the time you say goodbye to mnemonics on that kanji or vocab. So it’s not something that suppose to stick with you.

my biggest problem with mnemonic is when in the early levels it kind created a standard for some readings but now they change the way for that standard that was working fine.

the “care” is now all over the place, because before when it was care, it intended for transitive verbs, now it says “dont care” for a transitive or whatever. How am I supposed to remember when is care or dont care?

it broke completely the way to remember those menomics

I keep failing verbs like publish, feel, deliver, many more

I wish all menomics were like the one for ‘lineage’ that I just had in a lesson. One sentence, few words. It burned immediately in my mind.

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I haven’t personally, but I rarely use mnemonics. Which ones do you mean specifically? Is there any chance the mnemonic was changed for valid reasons?

Usually things like that are announced in content update threads.

You don’t need to stay updated with the mnemonics.

  • If the old mnemonics works for you stick with it. You don’t have to go back at WK to use the most current one.
  • If the old mnemonics doesn’t work for you or if you have forgotten it, there is no harm in switching to the new one.

So I would say WK changing the mnemonics should not be a big issue.


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