Tips when you start to slow down?

Hiya.

I reached level 6 a few days ago, and found that it’s become a bit of a struggle.

I am finding the following:

  1. I struggle to know when to use the onyomi or kunyomi readings.
  2. Some words that seem to have different meanings between the same radical, kanji, and vocab. e.g. Life, Raw, etc.
  3. I am getting lots of things wrong and so they are coming up a lot, but they don’t stick.
  4. Level 1 stuff is coming back up which I have forgotten.
  5. I am doing less lessons… and thus the reviews are piling up, but getting through them all is really tough.

Does anybody have any tips for when you hit this kind of wall? Especially on the first point. I feel like a lot of the time I can work out what both the readings would be - but then don’t get the right one for the context, so if there was a cheat sheet for when to use what reading I could apply that somehow and have a greater success rate - as I’m just guessing atm.

Thank you!

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Another example from points 1 and 2 above:

外 - I know that it could either be そと, がい or はず… but can’t work out the system for when it will be which - especially the first two.

First of all, congratulations on hitting level 6! You’re almost 10% of the way there :wink:

Secondly, the wall is rough. I’ve met it many times on my WaniKani journey. You’re still quite early in the program, so you haven’t built up the intuitive sense of onyomi and kunyomi that comes with time. Remember that it will come! Another tip is: slow and steady wins the race. Consider taking a short break in lessons (since you’re already doing fewer). But keep doing your reviews. I find that an Apprentice count of 100 (or 120 if I’m feeling ambitious) is a good amount to keep in my memory before doing new lessons.

You can do it!

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Hi,

As you progress you may find yourself focusing less on memorizing what the onyomi and kunyomi are for particular kanji, and instead noticing more what the reading is in certain contexts.

But if it helps, a lot of the time that there is a compound word such as 図書館 (としょかん), you will use the onyomi reading. Also often when the character is just on its own like 海 (うみ), it will most likely be the kunyomi reading. There are plenty of exceptions to this, but it is a nice guideline to follow.

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  1. Keep an eye on the background. Kanji is pink (red?) and vocab is purple. Kanji is usually on’yomi and vocab is usually kun’yomi unless it’s a compound word. But, honestly, don’t sweat it in the beginning. You’ll get a feel for it as you progress.
  2. See #1. The vocab one will be related to the Kanji but it will be an actual word, so 生te=“clickysteve, post:1, topic:42519”]
  • I struggle to know when to use the onyomi or kunyomi readings.
  • Some words that seem to have different meanings between the same radical, kanji, and vocab. e.g. Life, Raw, etc.
  • I am getting lots of things wrong and so they are coming up a lot, but they don’t stick.
  • Level 1 stuff is coming back up which I have forgotten.
  • I am doing less lessons… and thus the reviews are piling up, but getting through them all is really tough.
    [/quote]
  1. Keep an eye on the background. Kanji is pink (red?) and vocab is purple. Kanji is usually on’yomi and vocab is usually kun’yomi unless it’s a compound word. But, honestly, don’t sweat it in the beginning. You’ll get a feel for it as you progress.
  2. See #1. The vocab one will be related to the Kanji but it will be an actual word, so 生 is the Kanji that means life in words like 生保 (life insurance) but on its own it stands for the word for fresh (なま) .
  3. That’s ok. Let the SRS do it’s thing. You should get the majority of them after a few tries and if you get something wrong just take a few seconds to reinforce the reading and meaning then let it come around again.
  4. These are called leeches. I’ve still got Level 3 stuff that I learned a year ago that still come up. Just do the best you can with them and see #3.
  5. I split my lessons up into two batches in order to keep my Apprentice below 100 and Guru below 500. I as things move out of Apprentic and Guru I’ll start doing more lessons up to the limit I just mentioned. I’ve even held off lessons for days when I needed to get my Apprentice and Guru count in order.
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:’(

That’s good to know. I feel like I am just guessing a lot of the time. Sometimes I get it right, but I don’t really know why. I felt like everybody else must be memorising the rules of when the on and yon are used and I just wasn’t. Thanks for the words of encouragement!

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This is helpful! I’d noticed that a few times in some of the lessons stated explicitly, but I couldn’t find where it was said again when I went back to look, so thanks!

One question: Do you specifically memorise which reading is which? I haven’t been doing that up to this point as I thought it would add on a fair chunk of work, but perhaps I should.

Thank you! I need pay more attention to whether something is vocab or kanji and think about it more clearly, rather than just rattling off responses to get through things quickly.

Take fewer lessons, start taking notice of how many items you have at Apprentice level, find a manageable amount and keep it there. e.g. I usually only do 5-10 lessons a day (sometimes none) and try to keep my Apprentice items around 90-100

If you feel yourself slowing down, slow down! It’s a marathon, not a sprint - corny trope but true. If it’s really bad, stop doing lessons for a few days. It will stick if you grind at it long enough.

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Most of the time the reading explanation for the vocab will specify which readings you should use (on’yomi vs kun’yomi) and sometimes it even specifies why you should use that reading. Read the lessons carefully and don’t be afraid to go over them multiple times if you feel that the vocab isn’t sticking.

It’s really helpful to know which is which, especially when encountering words where you know the kanji but not the word. If you remember the rules and know which reading are which you can guess the reading without having seen the word before. With time you will also be able to ‘feel’ which reading is which, so don’t worry :slight_smile:

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I’m glad I could help. I agree with @Politoed has said on this. It’ll become somewhat intuitive after enough studying and review.

Once you get the"feel" of it. You will have easier time to guess what reading it might ask you for.

I wrote about my strategy for these a few times, here’s my solution (feel free to check out those threads as well for more answers):

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Thanks a lot for all the replies!

Concentrating on thinking about what a ‘root’ meaning might be (in the case of raw versus life), as well as whether I am on kanji or vocab has helped a lot. As has remembering that it’s not as much about progressing through the levels as fast as possible - but about a longer term goal to learn and understand as much as possible.