When should I start learning grammar and try to speak?

need suggestions on when to start and what to start on first or if I should be doing it right now or wait.


That depends. I would certainly wait a bit, seeing as you’re on level one, or maybe two if the forum didn’t update it yet. It’s better to feel out how the workload of wanikani feels like for you before adding another study resource into the mix. But generally you’d want to start as early as you feel comfortable doing.


I started grammar while I was level 5, about 1 month ago. I’ve already gone through all N5 and N4 grammar points on Bunpro. I advice you to probably start as early as I did (that is, if you’re comfortable with it), but not go as fast as I did, since it was quite an intensive pacing.

Regarding speaking, I have no idea, sorry :sweat_smile: But you should definitely start grammar before speaking.


You will probably get lots of different answers as there isn’t an exclusive way to do it correctly. I personally started on grammar before even starting WK, because I was using the Genki textbooks, which also cover hiragana/katakana, vocab, kanji, reading, etc. For speaking, you might start right away in a classroom setting, but if you are planning to perhaps get a tutor or do 1-on-1 sessions on an app, I guess it might be best to have a foundation before beginning. But that also depends on to what extent speaking is important to you.


It depends on your goals. You don’t need to know any kanji before starting studying grammar. If you pick up any of the recommended resources for grammar and stick with it, none of them assumes kanji knowledge and you’ll learn the vocabulary on the way.
Kanji and vocabulary are pretty useless without a good grammar foundation. The Japanese grammar is so different from Western languages that without grammar practice you will usually understand absolutely nothing about what a sentence means even if you know all the words in a sentence (said from experience). Let alone producing sentences and being understood.


@RAHHH Would it be okay if we move this thread to the Questions category? I don’t think it belongs in the Feedback one. If it’s okay, I’ll change it for you :slight_smile:


There won’t be a direct answer to this question, as everyone chooses their own path and pace.
Anyway, I think the best way to learn Japanese is to tackle grammar and kanji at the same time. Plus, using them together helps you remember kanji faster! :slight_smile:


yes you can sorry lol

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I’m pretty new to WaniKani. We are moving to Japan in the summer, so a couple months ago I started using Duolingo with zero knowledge of Japanese. They do a TERRIBLE job of teaching Kanji/Hiragana so that’s how I discovered WK. I practice on both several hours a day and that works for me. There is no native speaking aspects of either but listening to Japanese Netflix shows helps too! (The Makanai: Cooking for the Maiko House is great!!!)

Kanji surely helps to remember vocabularies, so it’s really whether you can practically remember key vocabularies in a grammar book without knowing Kanji first. (Or if they don’t have Kanji.)

But still then, it’s a plus to be able to remember vocabularies without knowing all Kanji in advance, as that will give more freedom in learning vocabularies.

Another part is whether you need mnemonics, or whether mnemonics help. I can’t comment much on that. (Pros and cons, tbh.)

I recalled that I learn basic grammar just fine, but unable to keep up with iKnow.jp – before I eventually decided to use WaniKani and learn Kanji, and then use Core Anki deck.

Knowing more vocabularies makes learning grammar easier.

They do an even worse job of teaching grammar (at least at beginner levels, which are the most crucial). Hiragana and katakana were actually the only things where I found Duolingo to do a decent job.

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I started grammar just when I found out about WK, because at the same time I found about TextFugu (which, unfortunately, is no longer available for subscription), so it’s totally possible to start studying grammar from the very beginning. If you do that – then by level 20 or even sooner, you’d be able to read simple Japanese resources.

In any case, best of luck with your studies! wricat

I would recommend learning as much grammar as you can before vocabulary as the grammar helps contextualize vocabulary.

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Presumably with those questions, you are self studying and new to Japanese, so I’ll assume that.

There’s an old joke - if you put 5 lawyers in a room and ask a legal question you’ll get 6 different answers, so here are my two for grammar:

If your first language is English, or any other Indo-European language, and especially if this is the first second language you’re learning, I wouldn’t worry about it. Japanese will take long enough to learn that whether you start learning grammar today or in six months doesn’t make much difference.

On the other hand, if you have the free time, know hiragana, and are willing to put up with a lot of confusion, you can start now. Rather than study I’d recommend watching some beginner youtube videos first…

[etc, etc, seriously youtube is an amazing resource for language learning]

…and then deciding how you want to study grammar. Personally the only way I’ve found to learn it is to read & listen to a lot and try and use it over and over again. 見る, 見て, 見ている, 見なかったら…

For speaking, there’s no point until you know enough to be able to say things. In the mean time it is worth learning how to pronounce Japanese - you could start by shadowing the vocabulary entry audio on WK.


I think the vocabulary you are looking for here is “words” :smiley:

I guess that’s the thing about English being spoken by many more people as a seconds language than as a first is that it shoots off in all sorts of weird directions where badgers are people and words are vocabs.

It’s not for everybody but I think a little Cure Dolly on the side complements early WaniKani fairly well. It’s extremely light on vocab so you can really focus on understanding the grammar.

I remember trying Genki I and Tae Kim very early on and my inability to understand the vocabulary made it more painful than necessary.

By the time you get to around level 16 you’ll have a very decent kanji base that should make dealing with that stuff much easier. Why 16 precisely? Because that’s where you learn the ever useful 書!

Last year I made this post showing the kanji used in Tae Kim’s grammar book and when they’re taught on Wanikani:

It’s a bit outdated however because some kanji have been reordered on WaniKani and are now at more “reasonable” positions (彼, 俺 and 誰 were all way too high previously).

I am level 15 and just starting grammar with any real seriousness now. I am doing Genki and Bunpro this year. I probably could’ve started a few levels ago, but it’s nice to have a good base of vocab and personally I’m in no rush.

Actually I redid the stats with the current WaniKani level data.

There are a total of 8854 kanji in Tae Kim out of which 744 are unique.

Here’s the coverage by WaniKani level:

Level Kanji Running total (unique) Running total (including dupes)
1 山二上大十女三七人八入口九下一力 16 [2.2%] 553 [6.2%]
2 才木文五四火千立犬六手出白天日田正中々玉小目月本子丁土円 44 [5.9%] 1249 [14.1%]
3 元広太心冬友午生用切外引分少矢方万半今母止台父内 68 [9.1%] 1855 [21.0%]
4 休申打赤早字町名他去主花百気足先車年石礼写平仕見不 93 [12.5%] 2325 [26.3%]
5 走金多声色来社兄毎回作皮図雨林会空行考言弟光代肉何音同自学形谷近交体当 128 [17.2%] 3420 [38.6%]
6 国東前取科直後次知姉歩安店死食全妹向明思夜点長海化画両血有地曲茶京室私 163 [21.9%] 4245 [47.9%]
7 由以紙弱辺理家付教風強未末高魚校必夏時氏通週失民 187 [25.1%] 4643 [52.4%]
8 君役者決数池局身道対話番場医楽答電買所朝間 208 [28.0%] 5038 [56.9%]
9 表美発事和予定新度乗持負物重相保部屋談服返使売要試泳客実勝受験 239 [32.1%] 5439 [61.4%]
10 路公始速漢葉習酒聞親飲開求落業病歌終最運調語配起読鉄顔頭算 268 [36.0%] 5953 [67.2%]
11 洋良伝誰功利味放低指命成神注初秒級意働別育好努 291 [39.1%] 6123 [69.2%]
12 消寒章島着温僕勉悪階息庭旅彼登泉暑短動歯合待商野 315 [42.3%] 6425 [72.6%]
13 練士暗駅然選皆問感宿映料俺館銀題億課情様養 336 [45.2%] 6701 [75.7%]
14 季例願能参的雰卒頑残周格約念囲 351 [47.2%] 6771 [76.5%]
15 猫夫昨秋晴飯匹信列丈司払紀晩単計帰英昼変 371 [49.9%] 7019 [79.3%]
16 留幸関曜品存弁危守証箱遠係辞面書真園荷 390 [52.4%] 7190 [81.2%]
17 無常悲薬栄覚説結堂底非果敗 403 [54.2%] 7262 [82.0%]
18 報可訓忘類句静禁焼枚種洗告座達 418 [56.2%] 7451 [84.2%]
19 若節得詞連続忙混絡改冊加徒減団笛易比容 437 [58.7%] 7574 [85.5%]
20 産裕害在妻困個被嫌確難犯議倒罪防機 454 [61.0%] 7665 [86.6%]
21 済企設判挙断認任解制増派際 467 [62.8%] 7703 [87.0%]
22 坊観策寝統領態状置示姿応過値藤賀降 484 [65.1%] 7823 [88.4%]
23 張職革現呼割収準備優 494 [66.4%] 7874 [88.9%]
24 庁販燃差供違狭製質視量展象 507 [68.1%] 7951 [89.8%]
25 訟輩掛含属構替抜模効絶景慣訴限 522 [70.2%] 8010 [90.5%]
26 授我汗鉛筆再怪独 530 [71.2%] 8050 [90.9%]
27 症痛健迷途締貸退靴怒段康眠屈暇腹郎 547 [73.5%] 8137 [91.9%]
28 綺奇博券微録修麗程 556 [74.7%] 8156 [92.1%]
29 添怖娘街壊積促韓勧航恐緊 568 [76.3%] 8199 [92.6%]
30 背婚越漏符遊騒貧乏盗魅覧押預 582 [78.2%] 8291 [93.6%]
31 粉富菜除編帯掃融救散廊 593 [79.7%] 8329 [94.1%]
32 捨密雑序込秘訳傷久厳染欲 605 [81.3%] 8401 [94.9%]
33 敬誌熟尊閉装窓暮簡否納 616 [82.8%] 8463 [95.6%]
34 純腐奴紅推刻勤痩薦縮貴拝 628 [84.4%] 8494 [95.9%]
35 寿恥酔介遅油剣 635 [85.3%] 8541 [96.5%]
36 超般廃依伸 640 [86.0%] 8554 [96.6%]
37 昭崩弾聴戻跳兆爆恵 649 [87.2%] 8581 [96.9%]
38 避緒奥致逃懸描宜 657 [88.3%] 8617 [97.3%]
39 雇譲鈴謙充御 663 [89.1%] 8642 [97.6%]
40 敏嬉顧隣携 668 [89.8%] 8652 [97.7%]
41 拳嘘樹喧嘩措伺凄徹 677 [91.0%] 8678 [98.0%]
42 焦握滑 680 [91.4%] 8686 [98.1%]
43 筒封滅擦 684 [91.9%] 8694 [98.2%]
44 辛髪謎叫 688 [92.5%] 8712 [98.4%]
45 暦磨疲 691 [92.9%] 8718 [98.5%]
46 寧零吾歳穏瞬 697 [93.7%] 8737 [98.7%]
47 698 [93.8%] 8739 [98.7%]
48 麻蚊 700 [94.1%] 8743 [98.7%]
49 蹴誓奨覆 704 [94.6%] 8751 [98.8%]
50 翻駄漫 707 [95.0%] 8765 [99.0%]
51 頂召 709 [95.3%] 8774 [99.1%]
52 慢呂怠膨蘇 714 [96.0%] 8787 [99.2%]
53 搭戴 716 [96.2%] 8791 [99.3%]
54 717 [96.4%] 8793 [99.3%]
55 718 [96.5%] 8794 [99.3%]
56 恭縫智 721 [96.9%] 8804 [99.4%]
57 漬遮 723 [97.2%] 8808 [99.5%]
58 724 [97.3%] 8811 [99.5%]
59 擬崇 726 [97.6%] 8815 [99.6%]
60 727 [97.7%] 8816 [99.6%]

Not on WaniKani: 餌呟黑罠鯛捻訊朋埃嘲騙雀洩漱罵箇拭

So by level 16 you can read about 80% of the kanji you encounter in Tae Kim. By level 25 you have 90% coverage.

how do you use bunpro to study and stuff because I feel like I’m not using it the right way lol

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Honestly, I don’t think that there is a wrong way :sweat_smile:

I basically just did my reviews every day, and in terms of learning new grammar, I just did one entire lesson every day. However, this resulted in quite a few reviews every day (100+), so I wouldn’t recommend this approach to anyone. The best thing, of course, is to go at your own speed. I’ve seen people that study 3 grammar points a day, and even some that only do 1 grammar point a day. I personally will stick with 5 grammar points every day for N3, N2 and N1, since I also want to keep reading in my learning routine, which means I should pace myself so that I don’t end up with a ridiculous amount of reviews. One advice that I heard is that if you start getting too many reviews, you should stop doing new grammar points until the number of reviews decreases again.

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