After several years of using Wanikani, a few resets, and the achievement of a little familiarity with the Japanese language, I have realized that I now use Wanikani differently than I did before. Maybe some other people used it this way right from the start, but I don’t think that I did. So here is my tiny little mental trick that gives me much higher retention when learning a new word or kanji.
When doing reviews, we see the word or kanji two times. Once for meaning, and once for reading.
Although you are typing one answer, always make sure you give the other answer in your head. If the word is, for instance 大人, adult (level 1 vocab), when asked for the reading, make sure that you also picture an adult in your head. When asked for the meaning, make sure that you say おとな in your head too.
In this way, you will get extra practice and extra retention, with no extra time or effort. Remember, when you are reading or listening, recall needs to be virtually instantaneous. It takes lots of reading and listening to get to that point, but it is worthwhile to use Wanikani to get you part way to that.
As a side note:
I should also say that the new “extra study” section is like gold. For me, repeating my recently missed answers each days has completely eliminated leaches.
I was actually looking for the opposite of this whole thing, a true anki experience where you only see every item once and you have to answer both the reading and the meaning at the same time. All of this on phone and all of this because time is a fleeting resource.
Yeah, imagining the thing in your head sounds like a good idea. I used to read it aloud instead, because I have better echoic memory. But there are some things that one can’t easily picture in one’s head, like abstract concepts.