Top 10 leaches .... coming in at number 10

Wow - I’ve just had a look at my list of leaches, and think it might be time to start trying to deal with them !

I’ve decided to shame myself by going through my top 10 leaches, and writing a little bit about each one in the hope this will help me remember.


So, coming it at number 10 …

欠席 - けっせき - absence.

number of times I’ve got this wrong - 31

looking at it - i think the reason i have started getting this wrong is that the kanji for seat (level 17) 席, is very similar to degrees (level 9) 度 - and I think these have merged in my brain.

Also the combination of lack and seat, doesn’t obviously add up to absence in my head !

Might go and write the two kanji together to help me differentiate.

欠席 has dropped out of my top ten ! seems writing about it has helped :slight_smile:

SO to number 9 …

材料 - ざいりょう - ingredients - level 14 (oh my :cold_sweat:)

I’ve got the reading for this one 95% of the time, but the meaning only 69%.

Lumber (materials) + Fee … Okaaayyyyy.

Provided mnemonic -

You have to pay a fee for the material you use to make food. Those are the ingredients you’re paying for! Imagine making a list of all of the materials you need to make a stew, then making sure you have enough to pay the fees, so you’ll have all the ingredients you need to make it.




I use the other meaning, nonattendance, and just picture a lack of bums on seats.


Nice pair of leeches! Thanks for sharing them! They’re also one of my leeches.

Here’s my “absence” progress. As Radish8 先輩 once said to me. I’m mimicking their English, “Behold!”

I’m writing them both right now. Thanks!
I believe in you, hands’ memory cells. :rofl: looking at my front legs.


Also the combination of lack and seat, doesn’t obviously add up to absence in my head !

But clearly the absence of only one seat in musical chairs means that one person lacks a seat, and that person is out.

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My trick for 席 is to remember that if it’s got a towel, it’s a seat, since you might hang up a towel on the back of a seat, like a sweatshirt or jacket. only seats have towels, not degrees.

度 is the only similar kanji to 席 so that should be enough for all levels:


It really is amazing just how many kanji can be so similar to each other.

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欠 is homonym to 尻, the thing missing on the 席 in 欠席

the opposite is 出席 btw, and 座席 is also a useful word… figured connecting more vocab to those parts might help you, it sure does for me.


This was a great mnemonic. I used to get them mixed up, too, but not anymore. Thank you :slight_smile:


Maybe you are confused by the “yurt + stool” = 度 degree, not seat?

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Do it like them germans and reserve your seat with a towel!
(Actually only happens at pools, etc. I think. I’m German, and I don’t know what annoys the English ;D)


I find it so interesting that usually people have so different leeches. For example I don’t think I’ve ever mixed 席 and 度, although now that I look at them they do have similar components. I guess I didn’t use the mnemonics on those and just focused on the “feel”. I feel like I’ve seen those in context so many times it probably helps, too. I probably fail on some other ones which aren’t a problem for most :blush:

Most of my leeches are vocab but lately I’ve been getting 債, 績 and 積 mixed up all the time!


My leeches definitely have to be the “to have been born/to give birth/birth/to live” set.

So much so that I can’t even remember which one is which.



Hi everyone ^^
where can I find my leeches list ?
Thanks !

Gaah, me too. I’m also really bad with じる、まじわる、ぜる.

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I don’t think there is one. Probably the closest thing would be the items in “critical condition”?

I still get them mixed up, too.
However Leeach Nr 1 is 開発 - took me 47 repetitions…

Where do you find this info on the WK site?


They both have their own threads, but I don’t remember where they are. So I suggest you both to look at wiki.


Most of those are typos of some sort, but typos I make every single time so I still count them as leeches.

Most frustrating:
The non-rendaku of 計算
犯罪: crime, criminal, gullt, guilty… ? I guess wrong every time.
お願い: I always put “a wish”. “A request”: :white_check_mark: “wish”: :white_check_mark: “a wish” :x:

I’ve finally gotten 大した out of the top 20, mostly because once I complained about it on here I started remembering it. (that works!)

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Just a word of caution about this, I also used mnemonic lightly, and relied a bit more on “feel”, but I have been at level 60 for almost a year now, and I still have so many deep-seated leeches because I didn’t pay enough attention to the fine detail of kanji components… I keep mixing-up visually similar kanji :sob:
Stuff like :
浴 谷 容 溶
衰 哀
崖 岸
挙 拳