When/How often should I start writing the kanji down

Dear reader,

I’m on my way to getting to know a lot of kanji now, but I’ve noticed I only recognize the computer font, something which is fine for internet usage or something, but it’s not really what I want. What I really want is learning how to write all the kanji and to read all kinds of fonts, and I think that’s done by practicing writing, but there are so many kanji to be written down, as I’m almost at lv 4. Does anyone have tips as to what to do?
Thank you in advance.


On the ‘reading all kinds of fonts’ part, you can try installing Jitai (字体): The font randomizer that fits on WK. Also, you can try changing your browser’s default font for Japanese, as well. I’ve recently set it so it shows up like this:

For handwriting practice you can look up ペン習字 on Youtube for videos that give tips on how to write pretty. I like 書道家 東宮たくみ:

There are apps as well to help you oractice strokeorder, or you can look up stroke order on jisho, or add it to your lesson routine using this script: [Userscript] An Unobtrusive Kanji Stroke Order, or this script: [Userscript] Stroke Order Diagram


ahh what a great elaborate answer @Saida!! thank you so much!

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In another thread someone also postet a link to a website (i think they created it) where you can download sheets for writing practice: Kanji.sh | Download Kanji worksheets for Free
The kanji are ordered by either JLPT, grade, WaniKani and frequency, depending what you’re interested in most.


Ahh, how handy, as of now, I’m studying Japanese language and culture at Leiden University, but we use みんなの日本語, so not really JLPT but I think starting off with Wanikani kanji in that site should fine!


Oh hey, my boyfriend studied Japanese at Leiden University, and my teacher also has an MA from there!

みんな1 should get you ready for N5, grammarwise, and みんな2 gets you a bit past N4, I feel.

Also, visit For those of you who speak Dutch.

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I personally do my kanji writing practice when learning the kanji off WK. I tend to learn max 15-20 kanji a day, and frequently less, and I have a notebook with graph paper in which I practice writing each kanji for a line (usually ends up being 10x). Mind you, I’m not blindly writing here, I follow a stroke order diagram and make sure that the kanji comes out more or less balanced, that strokes look to be the right size and shape, etc. I use the stroke order script to help me out here. I also tend to repeat the mnemonics, meaning, and reading of each kanji while I’m doing this, so this helps me a ton.

On the bright side, as I’ve learned more and more kanji and radicals, I can pretty accurately guess the stroke order for most of the new kanji I learn (and that intuition only took 3 or 4 levels to develop).

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Great stuff, what a small world it is! Ah yea the grammar is going quite quickly, as we progress through MnN 1 in around 12 weeks; doing 2 lessons per week, also the kanji we do are, for now, sometimes other than the Wanikani kanji, which is real nice, as the improvement is efficient this way.

Thanks for putting up the forum link for Dutch people, I’ll look into it to see if there are people from my city so I can talk about Japanese with them, as now this is kinda impossible T_T

Right, I also installed the script today, and I’m planning to do your way as well! Not going to read the mnemonics too much as I make my own mems, but the writing’s going to be a daily 用, downside is that I have around 140 vocab words and around 50 kanji idioms per week to learn for my study as well, as well as making 10123131 assignments, so it’s going to be me “walking on my toothflesh”, as a true Dutch person might say :slight_smile:

Thanks for your reply, the stroke order comes naturally already indeed, and I’ve been watching some kalligraphy stuff so I do try to implement it, but it seems that I’m a little too fatfingered sometimes for stuff like 運 haha

This is so great omg

I personally only write down new kanji for writing practice, and any sentences I want to answer for grammar practice. My handwriting isn’t terrible and is more or less consistent, so I figure that’s good enough for me, and keeps my time free for other learning that I want to do. If calligraphy is a goal of yours though, lots of practice may be a good idea!

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I’m not sure what your background is, but personally I have been studying Japanese for years and while I feel like I have a good handle on general stroke order and can copy a kanji I see correctly, I have a hard time remembering the different parts of the kanji when just hearing the word or seeing the hiragana version. Mnemonics help with this, but I often get confused by similar-looking kanji when writing, even if they don’t confuse me when reading.

To that end, most of my writing practice involves writing a number of similar looking kanji at once and noting the differences (i.e. 失, 矢, 知, 和).

If you have an Android device, I recommend the app “Obenkyo” for kanji writing memory tests [see the readings and an English equivalent and try to remember and write the kanji]. The app also has Kanji recognition multiple choice or type answer tests (similar to WK).


Well studying kanji outside of class will really excel in your classes. Especially if its a beginner’s Japanese course. My friend took a Japanese course at the college we went to and he said they barely touched on kanji in the first semester.

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I honestly only right the one’s I have difficulty in, that being said if it helps you go for it but keep in mind it can be rather time consuming.

Fyi theres a stroke order for Plugin for Wanikani, it’ll save you tons of time looking up words I HIGHLY recommend it to you if you don’t have it yet.

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Ooh, this is a really helpful perspective. I haven’t focused on written kanji recall so far (I’ve only been studying for 6 months, and am focused on reading right now), but I’ve noticed that recalling how to write a kanji without looking it up is very difficult. I’ll look into the app. Thank you!

I second Jitai, it does absolute wonders for font reading ability. there’s also a [Userscript] Vertical Reviews that helps a bit with getting a look at vertically written kanji. #japanese-language might have some writing threads with some more information and ideas too.

Also, since it’s your first time posting:
\textcolor{MediumPurple}{\huge \textsf{Hi}} {\huge \textsf{@LeonVerr}} \textcolor{MediumPurple}{\huge \textsf{!}}


It’s great to have you here!

If you haven’t already check out the Forum Guidelines and the Wanikani User Guide .
There’s also tonnes of things on the forums to help you on your way such as The guide, The Ultimate resource list, and API and Third Party Apps.

If you have any questions, check out this thread; but if this doesn’t answer your questions, feel free to create a thread like you’re done here, or email The Wanikani staff.

Good luck, and I look forward to seeing you around!


Ah yeah, I see! In this class we’ve learned I think 560 idioms, so kanji words, and i’ve done levels 1-4 now in a month or so, so the pace is going up haha since sometimes the stuff overlaps

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