What is the best way to maximize productivity?

Just curious what is the best way to get through each level is (the fastest).

My schedule looks like this:
Monday: Can only study between 1 and 4pm
Wednesday, Friday: Unable to do anything from 8:00-2:00, the rest of the day I am free.
Tuesday, Thursday: Can study any time of the day
Saturday: Can study before 1pm, and after 8pm
Sunday: Can study after 8pm

Additionally I am spending almost 4 hours a day studying to burn both hiragana, and katakana, and I am also studying my radicals, kanji and vocab. So I have a lot of time I am dedicating to learning Japanese so I can do all the lessons at once is what I am saying.

Basically I am just asking for a recommended time of day to start my lessons so I can finish the level as fast as possible to move up to get more things to learn, review, etc.

Thank you!

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If you want to know how to optimize, here’s the guide that gets mentioned most of the time for that.

Many people have written guides on how to optimize WaniKani, so you should search the forums for more advice. Others have written guides on why not to. I’d not kill yourself over it and burn out, myself. Even with WK’s schedule seeming slow at first, you can overwhelm yourself easily if you’re not careful. So be warned.

Good luck!


The thing is I’ve already spent 50 hours studying Japanese in the past 11 days (yes I have logged all my study sessions). I don’t believe I am going to burn out because I view learning Japanese as a challenging obstacle in my life, and I’ve always wanted to learn a new language. The idea of me being able to speak a different language (a difficult one to learn coming from english) makes me excited and I want to go and study right away. I love when my brain is challenged and gets put in the recalling/problem solving mode. So that’s why I don’t think I’m going to dread going and studying because I know it will pay off in the end, even if I don’t see improvement at times.

I would say, just as a first WAG:
Your primary study time is 8-9pm. Always do reviews then, every day.
Do any new lessons on Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday at 8am, then do the first reviews at noon.

If new lessons come up on any other day, just let them wait another day. You’ll lose less time in the long run than you do if you try to do them but not do the 4h and 8h reviews on time.


Sporadic already answered your question, so I’ll mention something else

I’m going to be harsh, but I’m pretty sure a LOT of people saying that give up after a while, not on this particular quote but your whole post, you can view anything as anything, the reality is: we’re all human, can you keep that passion going and turn it into discipline when it inevitably goes away at times ? (because it will)

If you can, congrats, and keep going, what I’m saying is don’t put yourself in a situation where you set yourself a specific goal, or rather expectations (i.e: not burning out while studying a lot in the beginning), fail to meet them, then feel bad about it and give up.

i hope I won’t get mobbed on for speaking the truth


You’re exactly right, but that also pushes me knowing that people give up easy. Not to be arrogant or anything, but I don’t give up easy when I know me giving up is expected. I’m not normal when it comes to the the things I do, like I love math for example because of the challenge it provides for me. I think just the culture of Japan is what is going to keep inspiring me, and the fact that so many people give up and burn out will keep me going. Maybe I won’t study four hours a day for the rest of the time I do this, but people have done it, and when we learn a language the first time we spend our whole life learning it.

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No worries ! I get what you mean, I know once I started and set sail, I wouldn’t dream of giving up, I knew it would be hard, but knowing how many people usually give up at japanese in general, I wanted to pass though that wall and feel good about it, still not though the wall though, but I believe it’ll come down

For sure, I like the idea of people thinking I’m like everyone else and just gonna give up, it gives me a boost on top of the motivation i already have.

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I know coming from a level two a lot of people will think I’m just like the rest… hehe

I want to see that badge be 60 soon-ish !


Good luck, dude. Hope your journey goes the way you plan.

No one said that you’ll give up, don’t worry :slight_smile: People are just trying to help you based on their experiences.

I’d recommend following this advice (totally not biased :stuck_out_tongue:):


Sorry if it seemed like I was harshing your buzz. Really, I’m excited for you. We’ve all been there at the beginning, when the motivation is high. And it’s a joyful wonderful thing. Treasure it.

But we’ve (or at least I’ve) been on the other end where it seems impossible and “Why the heck am I doing this?” plays on repeat in the back of my head. Thus my caution. Things do happen.

Be prepared for it by reading up on where others have faltered, just in case. Then set yourself reasonable goals and good study habits early, and you’ll weather those storms and we’ll see that 60 by your name before you know it.

Good luck! We’re all rooting for you.


Yeah, I understand where everyone is coming from, but I have my ways of staying motivated due to my personality. I’ll be keeping up to date in the forums.

Thank you

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It’s nice to see someone else with some confidence! These days it’s hard to come by…

Doing your reviews at the same time each day is definitely the most efficient way to get through Wanikani. Like ctmf said above, you want to do the lessons on days that you can come back 4 and 8 hours later to do the Apprentice 2 and Apprentice 3 reviews.

Your schedule could look like this:

Monday: Review at 1pm (this is the only odd time in the schedule)

Tuesday: Do lessons at 8am, review at 12pm, review at 8pm (8pm review should Guru Saturday lessons).

Wednesday: Review at 8pm (all lessons that were correct from yesterday will be promoted to Apprentice 4)

Thursday: Do lessons at 8am, review at 12pm, review at 8pm.

Friday: Review at 8pm (All items that were studied on Tuesday should now be Guru)

Saturday: Do lessons at 8am, review at 12am, review at 8pm

Sunday: Review at 8pm (Apprentice 4 the Saturday reviews)

You don’t need to get 100% accuracy, but you want to be pretty close to it, especially on kanji reviews. Instead of 8am/8pm, you can do 9am, 9pm which will line up better with Monday at 1pm, but will mess up Saturday at 12pm, which is more important due to Saturday morning lessons.

The most important times are Tuesday and Saturday morning lessons. Thursday lessons are just extra. You should always do your reviews at the times you are doing lessons as well.

Anyways, I hope to see you at level 60 at about the same time as me! I’m going at about 50% of the max speed and it seems to work for me.


If there are any, which there shouldn’t be. But probably there will be because failures on Sunday. It wouldn’t hurt to get the Self Study Quiz script and use that if there aren’t too many reviews to do. I most days do [failed items that day], [current level unlocked], [leeches > (some number that changes so that I’m doing about 25-50)], then [about 50 random burned items]. It takes about a half hour, more or less.

Some would say if you’re doing more than the SRS asks you to do, you’re wasting time you could be spending on grammar or reading something. I’m about to start more reading, and only do the self study quiz on leeches and burned items. It’s all a matter of opinion.

But opinions are unanimous on at least one thing. If you want to speak and understand Japanese, WK isn’t enough by itself. Find a way to get grammar, reading, listening, and speaking in the plan.

True, I almost included a side note that he could maybe skip (?!?) Wanikani on Monday and focus on grammar or something else that day. Still, it’s nice to have an easy day once in a while.

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I too am one of those people who doesn’t give up easy and I absolutely burnt out in the mid-20s. Not for nothing do they call it Death. (Hell has been surprisingly pleasant after Death.)

If you think you’re immune to burn-out though, go sign up for Bunpro as well. Vocab’s not much use without grammar. :slight_smile:


Yeah I’m following the guide on Tofugu so I’m gonna start doing grammar at about level 10, unless you suggest starting it asap? Either way I’m not just doing WK right now, I’m spending a lot of my time also burning in hiragana and katakana so when i hear the romaji or see it I can immediately picture the kana in my head. I know that doesn’t have too much to do with this, but I think it will help a bunch in the long run being able to have that down early.

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Thank you! I almost forgot that I had asked this question. I’ll use this to help build a schedule, thank you again.