What are some vocabulary everyone should know that isn't taught here in WK?


That’s right! Sorry.



お土産 is on WK. https://www.wanikani.com/vocabulary/お土産

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I learn these from conversation, but its worth paying attention when listening to Japanese for double-words– they’re like onomatopoeia, but unlike onomatopoeia, do not (as far as I know) represent real sound effects, and come from redoubling existing words. Some are on WK, but lots are not. Some examples:

まあまあ– so-so, ok
色々– different kinds, various (I’m pretty sure this is on WK, but it’s also super useful and common, so call this an upvote)
たまたま– somewhat
クリクリぱ-[of a person] crazy, bats**t (this is slang I’ve only heard, so I’m not sure on the spelling, also this is accompanied by the twisting finger at the side of the head gestures some english speakers use when saying somebody is cuckoo)
エロエロ– sexy, alluring [from “ero” as in “erotic”] (slang again, used as a な adjective)

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I’d say learn the words relevant to your life and background.

Example: I’m Canadian so knowing that the ateji short form for Canadian is 加 is at least as useful as knowing 米 and the like.



Are the core decks made out of common words?



The Ultimate Additional Japanese Resources List!

I also exported things to Google Spreadsheet, here. Core 10k non-WK sort by frequency [Spreadsheet]

There are also Usually-in-kana and Katakana words. For Kanji-related words, there is Core 10k breakdown Anki deck.



I wouldn’t say things like the Core 2k/6k really hurt, but especially at a beginner level they lull you into a false sense of security. In particular, they don’t really help you adjust to the fact that lots of words in Japanese are used differently from in English.

For example, for a while I thought 面白い meant “interesting,” which it does. But if you Google “interesting movies” you will see a completely different list compared to if you Google “面白い映画” (of course the latter includes more Japanese movies, but even if you only consider Hollywood, the lists are very different, think “Inception” vs. “Minions”)

As long as you know that the Core lists are a supplement, and your main focus is studying words in context, you’ll be fine. But if you study the entire Core 6k by itself all that will do is make you a walking, not-as-knowledgable Google translate … which you don’t need the Core 6k to access right now.



Actually, from Core 10k and from WaniKani Anki exports, I looked up almost every words in goo.ne.jp (which is actually Digital Daijisen and Shogakukan Progressive JE dictionary), so I know the meaning a little more than English translation… It is easy to make a link in Anki.

This is some of things that WaniKani doesn’t tell you to do, although WaniKani does teach vocab.

Still, I have to do some catchup studies on grammar and reading…



Soo it’s not wise to study coredecks as a beginner?

To pinpoint it.
The best way for beginners is reading japanese material (like nhkeasy) equiped with a dictionary?



There is no such thing as “not wise to study” regardless of your level. You might not be able to understand it 10000%, but when you do learn the word or see it in context down the line you’ll have a much easier time for it.

As an example, when I first started out, before finding either WK or Anki or any of that stuff, I was reading Tae Kim’s guide and was trying to memorize the kanji in it. One of the first ones I took on was 友達. I wrote it out several dozen times, memorized it “the hard way” and while it was not efficient, it was effective - it’s one of the kanji that I can now just gloss over and read it as opposed to “ok, hmm, this looks like that, this looks like that” etc. There are a couple more examples like this, so the bottom line is - whatever makes it stick in your brain is good.

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There is a thing like “not wise to study” if your in a context where you have a limit.

I want to learn as much as I can. But this is limited to the point where my brain says whoo too much, give me a break.

So its wise to study method A rather than method B.



I think you’re confusing “wise” with “optimal”. If you expect to be doing 100% top efficiency at all times then I have some news for you… No matter how good a method is, eventually diminishing return will start to set in. It’s good to mix it up regardless whether or not method B is the most efficient one. Learning a language is a very long-term process and you won’t lose much as long as you’re learning something, anything. Say for example you just spend an hour reading meanings of random complex kanji. Nothing might stick except for the fact that “hey, these kanji with this squiggly bit on top seem to have meanings that somehow relate to colonoscopy”, you still learned something and it was worth it.



If it’s between Drilling vocabs/grammar vs. Immersion and learning from context (e.g. reading), I’d say that the more of a beginner you are, the more you have to drill.

Hurried to reading is like finishing Tae Kim without drilling it (e.g. in Anki), and is more likely to fail.

At least, drill some vocab first; and I find WaniKani’s intervals of 4-hour, 8-hour to be effective.

Of course, once you have drilled too much, there is diminishing returns; and immersion is more effective.



I’m sorry, if I mixed them up. I just try to find the best way for me.

Thank you for this information.

So for a beginner drilling in a core deck is a good idea even if they lull you into a false sense of security?



No apologies needed, I didn’t mean anything bad, just trying to help illustrate the point that no matter what you learn, it’s good. Hypothetically speaking, let’s say there are a 100 things to learn in a language before you’re fluent (yes, yes, I know, stupid example). Whether you learn them in order 1 - 2 - 3 - 4, or 1 - 94 - 92 - 4 - 23 etc. matter little in the end since you will have to learn them all one way or another. No knowledge is bad knowledge no matter how you obtain it.

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Train Station Vocabulary

  • 改札口 (かいさつぐち) - Ticket Barrier
  • 券売機 (けんばいき) - Ticket Machine
  • 公衆電話(こうしゅうでんわ) - Payphone

Most major train stations will use English / Kana anyway but these words might be useful for travellers.


  • 遺失物取り扱い所 (いしつぶつとりあつかい) - Lost and found office
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I don’t know how beginner you are, but there is no way I would be able to read nhkeasy even with a dictionary right now. I am still learning basic grammar alongside WK and some core vocab. I am still having to look up grammar for the sample sentences in the core10k deck.

I kind of feel like a lot of people here have started WK after studying Japanese for at least some amount of time and kind of forgot what it’s like to be a beginner at almost 0% knowledge.

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For now, I feel I should rather recommend a vocab deck by textbook…, rather than just a Core deck: https://community.wanikani.com/t/genki-anki-wanikani-template-ver-2-6/11638

Genki textbook. Vocab is better learnt when you learn multiple dimensions at the same time. For non-kanji vocab, EN->JP reading and usage/grammar drill (which is in the textbook.)

There is also Tobira vocab in https://community.wanikani.com/t/some-supplemental-material/8121, which I planned to do later. Thing is, I have already bought both Genki 2 and Tobira.

What I have always been doing for Kanji-related vocab is EN->JP reading and JP seeing->EN, which works quite well. I totally relied on WaniKani for lower levels.

I started doing Core 10k breakdown around Lv 31.

I feel like if I do Core 10k breakdown for Lv 1-10 or Hiragana bonus level, I would be either overwhelmed or seeing useless words…

So, I don’t really recommend Hiragana-only vocab drill, if you don’t plan to use it…



It’s super common in announcements and it could even have served learning purposes by differentiating it from 日本.

本日 is「ほんじつ」by the way :stuck_out_tongue:

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