Vocabulary 用 complaint


I just realized that the vocabulary 用, is pronounced 'yo-", like its Kanji 用, ie the On’yomi pronunciation.
I was expecting the pronunciation to be ‘mochi’, which seems to be kun’yomi associated to this Kanji.

The vocabulary page only states “This has the same reading as the kanji you learned, meaning you know the reading!”. No warning or mention about this.

In the lower lessons, is it common for a 1-kanji vocabulary to use the kun’yomi pronounciation? Do I need to review all my vocabs over again?:fearful:

https://www.wanikani.com/vocabulary/ %E7%94%A8


Many single-kanji vocabulary words use the onyomi, it’s not a rare thing. 本, 天, 点, etc. are some of the early ones off the top of my head.

I’m not really sure what kind of warning you want though. You know the reading because they already taught it to you. What is there to be warned about.

Sometimes they teach the kunyomi in the kanji lessons, but it’s usually the onyomi they teach. There’s no real reason to think about it if you’re a beginner.


Yes, sadly, it’s a mistake to believe that there will be one consistent pattern. Kanji readings in Japanese are wildly inconsistent and there’s nothing WaniKani can do about that. They just teach you what they consider the most common reading for a kanji, whether that happens to be On or Kun. But it’s up to us to memorize the readings for the vocab items. And some of them are indeed tricky.


I was semi-ironical when sending my question, but in fact it is quite a concern : i rely a lot on the on/kun classification, and vocabulary type (1 kanji / 2 kanji / kanji + hiragana) to remember the actual pronunciation.

It means that I need to double-check how many vocabs I got wrong.
At level 5, I had only the problem with 用. For the other example you listed (本, 天), i did not have to question myself because we only use pronunciation type (‘hon/pon’, ‘ten’).


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Doesn’t WaniKani handle that for you? If you’re wrong you’ve got to review it again. Who cares if you classified it correctly if you knew the word.

There are lots of exceptions to the rules people trot out. You can have kun-kun, or mixed readings (on-kun, kun-on), or on+hiragana or just plain exceptional readings.

If you’re seeing a word in the wild for the first time, sure, take a shot at pronouncing it with a heuristic. You might get it right more often than you get it wrong. But when you’re learning words here, just learn the words.

Eventually you’ll just be able to recognize “oh, that can’t be an onyomi” and whatnot. Until then, I wouldn’t sweat it.

Not really sure what you mean by that. Just because you haven’t been exposed to the kunyomi for those yet doesn’t mean they don’t come up in things.

A good idea would be to look up whether the reading is kun or on whilst you’re doing the kanji lesson (or one-kanji vocabulary lesson). This process of looking it up helps reinforce its kun/on categorisation in your head and can help you remember the reading better. What I then do is, write out the readings - hiragana for kunyomi and katakana for onyomi. Writing is a good memory aid.

The various exceptions to the kun/on rules mean that Wanikani won’t always point the kun/on categorisation out for you so you just have to put extra time into learning in this aspect - it pays off reasonably well from my experience.

I would just like to point out that memorizing whether a reading is Kun or On is linguistic analysis. It’s a bit like keeping track of which English words have Greek, Latin, French, Anglo-Saxon, etc. roots. It may benefit you and help keep things organized in your mind, but it’s perfectly possible to get through WaniKani (or for that matter be a native Japanese speaker) without really knowing or caring about which is which.


Vocab lessons will teach you many on and kun versions. Do not hurry.


I just pretty much memorized them as vocabulary instead of worrying too much about it. Back when I first started Japanese the kun and on thing confused me soooo much. But then you get familiar with how it works and it get much easier, if that makes sense.

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Coming in a little late here but I figured I’d put in my two cents.

This has already been touched on but I’m not sure if it was explained properly (or in a way for absolute beginners, unlike you, to understand)

If you’ve never seen a kanji in your life, you’re not going to know either reading and what WaniKani is doing is teaching you the reading that is most commonly used. If you look up the character in a japanese dictionary, you’ll notice that almost all of the compounds use YO-. Imagine if you were first taught to use MOCHI and then all of a sudden, all of the other vocab words used YO-, you’d probably be just as confused.

This is why I try to just go with the WaniKani flow even when there are kanji I recognize from my pre-wanikani days.

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