Vocabulary "in the Real World"

I have a question about some of the vocab words we learn in WaniKani, like “delicious” (おいしい) for example. I’ve come across this word a couple of times in anime or other Japanese apps, and it’s usually written in hiragana - but I just learned this word in WaniKani using kanji (美味しい). Does WaniKani teach vocabulary words with kanji that would usually be written in kana? And if so, how do we know which ones??

Sorry if people have already posted this question, but I’ve been wondering for a while :slight_smile:

Yes, it does, since it’s a kanji learning tool. Sometimes they mention it in the lesson when a word is usually written in kana, other times not. I guess you’ll know which are by encountering them in native material.


For the word 有る (ある), for example:


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The kanji version of おいしい is not particularly rare. I would even go so far as to say I see it a bit more often than the hiragana version, but that’s just my experience.

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I know I’ve seen it in the stuff I read too, at least. But I didn’t know if it was rare, since I’ve also seen 何処 and stuff like that.

You can use jisho.org to see what is usually written in kana, but the info mainly covers words that are very rare in kanji, sometimes words are written in kana just to be more emphatic and not listed.

The problem with “usually written in Kana”, is that it makes no differentiation from “both are common” and “almost never written in Kanji in modern Japanese”.


Well, 今日は is taught in kanji, but everybody writes it as こんにちは. Like @sigolino said, sometimes the lesson will mention if a word is generally written with kanji or with kana, but otherwise you just have to discover for yourself how natives actually write them.

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I think if you wrote it as 今日は then the listener would wonder why you stopped half way though a sentence with that one.

But generally most words can be written in kanji or kana.
Stuff like これ or very common words like ある・いる or auxiliaries are generally favoured in kana though.
That is unless the whole construct is generally considered a word, then both parts are generally in kanji.

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Ah that’s helpful thank you, I hadn’t noticed it

Sometimes I read NHK Easy and also read the original article to see how much I can understand. A funny thing I noticed is that sometimes in the Easy version some words are written in kanji, but in the hard version the same word is written in kana. For example, “今年” in the easy version but “ことし” in the hard version, while I thought it would be the contrary.

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