Vocabulary Learning

How are you supplementing your vocabulary learning?

I tried the Core anki decks and they just don’t work for me. Amongst WK, memrise, and Anki (for university studies not related to japanese), I feel that im not learning it at the rate I would like, and out of 20 cards, ill get 18 wrong consistently day after day.

Just curious how others are approaching vocabulary learning?

Is it the self evaluation aspect of Anki you don’t like? The Core 6000 were taken from iknow.jp, which uses a combination of multiple choice and typing (like WK). It tests a combination of listening, spelling, and recognition and I think the site is pretty user friendly.

Also, here’s a shameless promotion of my referral link, which would give us both an extra 3 months free if you sign up for the 12 month pro plan. :wink:

It can be harsh to Anki at first, but you should change Anki settings. I have never used default settings either.

  • Separate decks for JP->EN, EN->kana


  • Review interval 1 10 240 480 (10 min, 4 hr, 8 hr)
  • Not too many review cards per day. I limit this to 50 review cards per day
  • At most 10 new cards per day, if it is too hard.
  • Create your own mnemonic, and type the mnemonic in the card
  • Textbox, to replicate WaniKani style {{type:field}}

Or, rather, upload this to Memrise. I can’t successfully do that.

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My goals are centered on reading for now, so outside of grammar studies + wk I get most of my vocab from reading on my PC with jisho/rikaigu. If the contents are consistent in subject matter they’ll work out like their own form of interval training. Right now I’m definitely prioritizing other aspects of study over vocab, but for a while my vocab routine was more like this:

Find something I want to read/translate. Break it up into individual sentences in a word document. Below each sentence type out the unknown words along with the hiragana + definition. After a few lines and at the end of the session I’ll revise the interpretations and narrow down the definitions to what was relevant. Words that come up frequently or seem important get added to Anki deck with new kanji getting put into a separate deck. My entries tends to look like this:

Front - Kanji (or as found in text)
Back - Hiragana (part of speech) - Definition - optional context sentence

Generally I only seem to learn well from decks I make myself. Part of that is just having a preferred format, the other is that I have a stronger context for vocab obtained this way. Since my primary goal is reading using decks that emphasize E->J, fill in the blank, ect. are all kind of inefficient for me. Flash cards are an awesome way to quickly get up to speed or drill something, but I want to transition out of these methods and stick to organic J->J learning in the future.

How many times can you get an extra three months if someone uses your referral?

I don’t think there’s a limit.

I see! Well thanks for the referral, I’ve been looking out for some kind of iknow discount over the last month.

Though if it can only be used once then here’s my referral if anyone needs it. :grimacing:

https://iknow.jp/referrals/kwhvs2q7mleluigwc9v93q0998fa14sh/signup

BTW, I have just found a new concept for this – at least 3 card types

  • JP -> EN
  • EN-> kana
  • Whole sentence listening (that is, whole sentence in Kana) -> Whole sentence translation
  • This is the only good way I know to do Kana -> EN
  • Also, this is because “there are too many similar sounding words in Japanese.”
  • (I don’t do Sentence Reading yet)
  • Every step needs a type-in box.

This is probably one of the best way to do Core Anki. And it relies on making sub decks.

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